Gene Logsdon and Friends

Pink Pistol Packin’ Mommas

In Gene's Weekly Posts on May 21, 2014 at 8:17 am

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From GENE LOGSDON

My twenty-two caliber rifle is almost as important a tool on our garden farm as my hoe. I need it to dispatch overpopulating wildlife that would otherwise make our way of life almost impossible. You don’t need to agree with me on that to get a laugh out of the irony that is presently facing us. We went to town yesterday for a box of rifle shells and there was nary a one to be bought. All the stores that normally sell them were sold out. Even Walmart. The regular gun store had plenty of other shells but not .22s.

Had the anti-gun lobby or some organization for the protection of animals decided they could win their point if they attempted to keep .22 caliber shells out of gun owner hands? Surely not. Twenty two caliber rifles are only a little more effective than paint guns. As a social statement, buying up armor-piercing shells would make the point better.

Want I learned was that gun owners, or at least bullet owners, were hoarding the shells. Why? A gun store proprietor rolled his eyes and shrugged. It didn’t make sense to him either. A sort of panic is in progress. Some shooters are taking advantage of it, buying up .22 shells in bulk and selling them by the box at inflated prices at gun shows. Many of the buyers really believe the government is going to take away their guns and ammunition. As insane as that might seem to some of us, if that were really the case, hoarding twenty two caliber rifle shells would be about as effective a way to stop Uncle as stocking up on slingshots. The hoarders should be thinking rockets and rocket launchers if they really believe what they say they believe. Please, freedom fighters, have mercy. If it’s the principle of the thing, why not hoard peashooters so at least property owners like myself can defend society from a real danger: raccoons.

When I was a young man, I loved guns and hunting. I got fairly good at shooting a pistol from the hip. Practicing my fast draw, I almost shot my big toe off. Even in the seminary a group of us supposedly pious students were dubbed “the sonuvabitchin’ Davy Crockett boys” (you can read about them in my novel “The Lords of Folly” if you can find a copy) because during free time, we avidly roamed the Minnesota River valley pretending to be great white hunters. The only thing we ever actually killed that I remember vividly was a steer that had broken out of a barn and gone wild.

But so help me, not once in all those wonderfully crazy years, did any of us ever have any notion that we were learning how to protect ourselves from bad guys. Carrying a concealed weapon was as foreign to our thinking as carrying bazookas over our shoulders. The issue so much argued today about whether to allow guns in churches or bars would have brought howls of disbelieving laughter from us. Even in the wild west movies, the sheriffs learned to make the gunslingers check their weapons when they came to town.

I can see what’s coming. The walls of church vestibules will soon be dripping with handguns during services while the preachers give sermons on loving thy neighbor.

I opened up an advertising flyer from one of our local stores recently and found pictured there, right before Mother’s Day, a pink pistol for sale. I thought at first it was a toy. No. It was a .380 Ruger handgun. $299.00 please. When I asked about it, I was told in all seriousness that nowadays a woman needs to consider protecting herself by keeping a gun in her purse. Really? My experience trying to find stuff in women’s purses is that I’d be robbed or raped twice before I could even fish the pistol out, much less shoot it accurately. A spray can of insect repellant would be cheaper and a whole lot more practical. A society that thinks it has to carry pistols in purses for protection has already lost the battle.

 P.S. For the record, a few days later I beat the hoarders to the gun store and got a box of shells. I bought two, not knowing when they might be available again so I was adding to the hoarding fever. They were five bucks a box. Back before insanity gripped us, they were two bucks a box.
~~

 

  1. Again the voice of reason–what a rare whisper that is these days!

  2. I know you’re article was written to be funny (and it was, I laughed throughout) but I am a 60 year old woman and I carry a gun almost exactly like the one in the photo you show except mine is purple, not pink. I also do not carry my gun in my purse, I have a special holster for it. I don’t wear it all the time, but I think it’s a good idea for women to think about having one. I live in the wild west and I doubt I’ll ever use it to kill anything but a rattlesnake or two, but having it vs not having it is security in my book. The way today’s laws are, however, you must be careful. ‘Nuff said on that.

    I have a question about using a .22 on rabbits in my yard who are bound to eat all my newly sprouted garden stuff. They will not leave my lettuce alone, and have eaten the tops off all my carrots. I know a lot of people say trap them don’t shoot them. Well, I don’t have time for trapping them, and even if I did what would I do with them after they’re in the trap, feed them??! I need to get rid of them because where there’s one, there’s more. Should I be using a .22 to get rid of them (I live within the city limits so is this legal) or would I have to find out what local laws are regarding this? I hate asking anyone in “authority” because then you go on some sort of list and they watch you even more than we’re being watched already. Can you (or someone) offer any advice on how to deter or get rid of rabbits?

    • Feed them??? They will feed you, especially after eating your delicious salads and carrots. The liver especially is awesome. Cook them with carrots and onions, or with prunes, or with mushrooms and red wine, or with strong Dijon mustard and sour cream, many ways to make this meat shine.

      • Maybe I was too subtle but the “feed them” part was supposed to be funny. Ha ha. I can’t cook the things until I know how to legally deal with them, you know, snuff them.

  3. I still have a couple boxes marked 99 cents. Wouldn’t be caught dead (shot or otherwise) with a pink handgun. A bolt action .22 with a straight shot is all I need.

    • I’m afraid I can’t carry a bolt action .22 on my person without being, shall we say – noticed – but I still need my question answered about whether or not a .22 will do the job (these are just small jackrabbits, not jackalopes!) and how do I go about finding out whether or not it’s legal for me to shoot them without ending up in the clink.

      • Get a slingshot and a pile of pebbles. It’s all you need on a rabbit.

  4. Pink it and shrink it is the new marketing strategy to get us wimmin folk to buy stuff. I avoid that at all possible costs. As an example, I could only find Muck Boots in my size in pink/purple. Could barely get my pant leg tucked inside because they were narrower than the old unisex version. (What good is a taller boot if it won’t keep your pants out of the muck??) Totally shredded those things in less than a year.
    I am having trouble finding .22 ammo as well, and I don’t have time to hunt it down. Instead, the gun dealer wanted to sell my a .17. But…I already own the .22, and like it, and have dispatched many varmints with it…

  5. Gene: Your experience mirrors my own. I live in East Tenn. and I went searching for some .22 shells to have in case we have a rabid skunk or raccoon come onto the farm (has happened in the past). I could not find shells at Walmart, Bass Pro Shop, or anywhere. I even checked Ammo shops while driving to Florida. I finally got mad enough to stand in the middle of Bass Pro Gun display and point out to the clerk (and bystanders) that when the marauding hordes came from the evil cities to rape and steal, all that .22 shells were going to do is make ‘em mad. Idiots. The overwhelming paranoia displayed in the South, Midwest and elsewhere is mixed up with some sort of doomsday prepper/Obama-gonna-take-our-guns panic. I own guns. I enjoy shooting. They are tools on my farm. They are not, however, some sort of symbol of red-blooded patriotism, fight til the last ditch, Obama-is-evil, I-need-to-carry-a-gun-everywhere (because danger is everywhere) belief.
    My son has a license to carry, because he carries a lot of cash in his business. I have no problem with that. However, I know some people who have a license to carry who shouldn’t be trusted with a sharp stick.
    Maybe this paranoia will pass after a few more election cycles. I am afraid that a lot of people are making a lot of money out of stoking the fear, however. Sometimes it is hard to recognize the decent, sensible country people I grew up with.

    • Why when across much of the globe guns have been outlawed or so severely restricted that they’re not available for the things for which your Southerners and Midwesterners (which is effectively to say farmers and rural people generally, i.e. those “unenlightened” people that have just enough economic sovereignty to want to think for themselves, too) would want them (both regular uses and special circumstances)… why then is it paranoia to expect the same to happen here, especially when large, mainstream political factions support following those same countries? Perhaps you’re fooling yourself, too, but in any event I don’t think you’re making an honest case.

  6. Hilarious and amen.

  7. This is why I don’t watch/read the news. All this crazy stuff that people believe is all born in the media.

    • Crazy stuff? I guess it’s all in your point of view, and it may also depend a lot on where you live. This is rather interesting and may serve to help explain at least a few of the reasons.

      http://fox8.com/2014/05/21/growing-gun-trend-more-grandmas-packing-heat/

      I agree, however, about the media which is why I never watch news of any kind. I get my news from the alternative sources on the web these days. I don’t think I’ve watched TV news in the past 10 years and that’s a fact. I just don’t care because they lie anyway. I did follow Neil Cavuto during the election a little bit in 2012 (only because Ron Paul was involved) but other than that you can count me out as a viewer of those on-air rags.

  8. The lady facing the tough situation in regard to killing the rabbit in a town mirrors the apparent contradictions in today’s society. My daughter encountered a mother and juvenile raccoon on her porch and front yard on several occasions. The raccoons were attempting to simultaneously steal her outside cat’s food, kill the cat and in the process scare her and her four year old daughter with aggressive behavior. This kept recurring and she was told by City officials to call the state wildlife department .She did so and was informed by the wildlife department it was a civil matter for the town officials to address. The town officials made it clear that a gun was not an option. As an alternative, I supplied her with a bow and arrows but it was a lightweight bow and she couldn’t find sharp broadhead arrows so during the next encounter she shot the coon with a field tipped arrow and it didn’t phase the coon much. As I understand it, during the next attack even after the coon had been shot with a field tipped arrow, my daughter fought with the coons like a mother bear armed with a broom and screams for help. She succeeded in attracting the attention of a neighbor who is also a town policeman and she at least stunned the juvenile raccoon while the off-duty officer rather reluctantly helped her battle the raccoons to the point they left the premises for a while.

    One can argue that she shouldn’t feed a cat outside, because that lures the raccoons, but they are not housebroken cats and she exhibits allergic response if cats are in her house. But without any cats the mice and rats overrun everything and contaminate everything with their nasty feces and urine. Placing rat and mouse poison to the point that no pets or children can encounter it is not much of a solution either. I once lost a precious milking doe goat who foiled my attempt to poison rats with poison located out of the reach of pets livestock and children, or so I thought. The doe goat ingested the poison because it used bran as a vehicle to entice the rats and mice to eat the poison. Now I depend on numerous cats to keeps rats and mice under control. Cat food is expensive but losing goats to poison is really expensive.

    Fortunately the only actual fatality during the raccoon encounters my daughter experienced was a feline, but her little dog was nearly lost to the jaws and claws of the raccoon as well and her young daughter is still definitely traumatized by raccoons. I showed her the pelts hanging in the woodshed of two raccoons I recently skinned. I was able to shoot one with a 22, and the other my brave dog managed to corner and kill. Raccoons are cute, but nothing to mess with. Please note that, properly prepared, raccoons are good meat.

    Fortunately, during my raccoon encounters I still had 22 caliber shells from when I stocked up some years back. If well skilled in safe responsible use of a 22, one can eat well and, in my opinion, defend oneself as well. I’ve used a youth-sized 22 single shot rifle to kill marauding pests and humanely slaughter farm animals including large steers, and hunt game animals. Even moose have been killed with 22 handguns. ( I don’t recommend this course of action except in the direst circumstances.) If skilled with a 22 handgun one can also eat well and not feel unprotected against attacks from wild animals or the two-legged predators either. I’ve enjoyed meals of grouse and rabbits taken with a 22 handgun in my younger days when my eyes were sharper.

    There used to be some 22 short cartridges called CB caps on the market which made very little noise but at very close range could kill small game or pests with accurate shooting. The lady in question might consider these cartridges as an option for removing the pesky rabbit from the gene pool. . It may not be a totally legal course of action, but I think in America one should still be able to protect their property, including garden vegetables. If the rabbit ended up in the stew pot and the rabbit innards fed the house cat; well all I can say in that regard is: “City Hall doesn’t need to know everything”.

    Shotguns are quite effective at close range and less apt to endanger neighbors because birdshot dissipates energy fairly quickly in regard to longer range. At very close range however birdshot is deadly and will do a number on a raccoon. There are light loads available which small people can shoot comfortably but still pack enough punch at close range to be effective. But legal shotguns, even pink ones, do not fit well in purses.

    I agree with Gene that a gun, especially a 22, is a vital homestead tool. I’ve provided many meals and fended off predators with a gun many times, but still on occasion lose poultry to predators. I suspect my future corn crop might be subject to predation as well, so I might need to defend my corn crop from predators as well. Once again a gun will most likely play a role.

    I eat meat, mainly from what I hunt or raise. Although I did once slaughter a farm animal without benefit of a gun I will never do it again. When slaughtering farm animals a well-aimed 22 bullet to the brain center is instant lights out. I cannot bear to inflict needless terror and suffering on animals I’ve nurtured from birth. Contrary as it sounds, to a homesteader a properly used gun is a tool to promote humaneness,a tool to limit needless suffering on the respective parts of predators prey and ourselves. I hope the lady enjoys her well-earned meal of rabbit.
    /jmt.

  9. James: I also have a shotgun. I bought a Remington “youth” 16 guage pump shotgun which is shorter and lighter than a full scale shotgun. This is much better for close shooting. I do not like to use a .22 for anything other than stand-shooting at varmints, as the chance of just wounding is much higher. I have had to put down injured animals (with a vet not available) and while a .22 placed carefully can be effective, I would prefer a .38 for a merciful and certain end, especially in cows. The skull thickness can vary tremendously. Any homesteader needs to know how to mercifully kill either wild animals or domestic animals. To stand helplessly by while a creature suffers is immoral, in my opinion.

  10. It’s not just .22 ammo, Gene, it’s all kinds of ammo, powder, shell cases and similar supplies. Hubby reloads his own shells and can’t find the makings any more.
    We’ve always had guns — handguns, rifles, shotguns, you name it. I always carried a gun when I was on the rodeo trail, partly because law enforcement officers weren’t allowed to shoot your horse if you had a wreck and the animal was mortally injured; they had to wait for the approved vet to come and give a lethal injection. No way was I going to let my animal suffer in a situation like that. Hubby is a gun-nut hunter and was often gone for long stretches on various jobs, such as three stints at the South Pole. Those guns made me feel very comfortable about handling everything from prowlers to raccoons to feral dogs.
    Very useful the day my 12-year-old and I came home to our out-in-the-boonies home and found the front door literally kicked in. This was long before cell phones, and there was no way to trot down to the neighbors’ to call the cops; no close neighbors. I had to lock the kid in the car, unchain the dogs and send them in the house while I waited outside with my .38. Since the dogs made it clear the burglars had long since gone, I went in and called the law, who showed up 30 minutes later.
    Then there was the time some yahoo came driving up our gravel road at about 60 miles an hour, slinging dust and gravel to beat the band. He screeched into the yard, jumped out and came stomping up to the door, yelling and cussing and shaking his fists. Hubby — who was home alone at the time, believes his home is his castle and is not the sort to turn the other cheek — opened the door and stuck a double-barreled shotgun in the guy’s belt buckle. He then said softly, “You got a problem, buddy?” Immediate deflation of nasty visitor, who managed to stammer, “W-w-w-r-rong house!” and backed very carefully to his car, leaving much more quickly than he arrived.
    We laughed about it, and called the sheriff to tell them in case there were any problems, but i hope wherever the guy was really going, they were equally well-prepared.

  11. I bought a .22/20 over-and-under youth gun 35 years ago and have long since lost count of the number and variety of varmints I’ve used one or the other barrel on, from rabbits (.22 because they’ll freeze and you can walk up to them) to raccoons of all sizes (.22 or 20-gauge, depending on circumstances) to snakes (20-gauge just today). Yes, that little gun is a valuable tool out here in the country. I hope I never have to use any gun for personal defense, pink, purple or otherwise.

  12. Lucky that .22 shells are relatively cheap, it took the wife about 6 shots before she hit the tomcat that was chewing the heads off of the new kittens in the barn. She blame the misses on her new glasses!

  13. I have recently begun ordering my ammo from Cabelas. No this is not a commercial endorsement. I just got tired of driving all around. I use a .270 primarily.

  14. This is completely off topic but I wish folks would stop using slingshots as a metaphor for being unarmed. The Balearic slingers of the Carthaginian armies were the most effective long range “death delivery” system of their day. They could score a fatal hit on an armored opponent in the head or body with lead or stone shot at 900 feet (considered their “close quarter” range) and were more effective than the archers of their day. Whenever the preacher trots out David and Goliath as a parable for God helping the “little guy” against overwhelming odds, I just shake my head. David had killed lions and bears attacking his sheep with that sling! Poor Goliath never had a chance.

    Now, I’m a 60-year-old lady farmer with no upper body strength to speak of so I won’t be using a sling to deal with raccoons. A .22 rifle or a shotgun or my little .380 is more what the doctor ordered for me. The poor woman with the raccoon problem on her porch might also want to try a trap (which you can sometimes get from the Game and Fish people) since blasting the vicious varmints is a no-go. As to what to do with the raccoon once she catches it? I say drop it off at the police station and tell them that now that you’ve solved YOUR raccoon problem without shooting, they can figure out what to do with the raccoon!

  15. Sandra: One of the handiest guns ever made. Savage is making new ones now, but they run about $500. (And you STILL can’t find the ammunition!)

  16. Gene, I know caricaturing your political opponents’ arguments makes for more entertaining/humorous posts, but you do know you’ve merely responded to an absurdly unrealistic caricature, right? Isn’t there enough absurdity to reality to find humor without the caricatures? Is it a coincidence that most of the countries that are only a couple generations away from living under the rule of monarchs are today the same countries that favor centralized power and centralized decision-making? One doesn’t just submit to that centralized power and centralized decision-making (inevitably by urban elites) when one goes without rocket launchers; the blind submission to the centralized powers is made much more real when one forfeits the ability to defend one’s own food supply from wildlife or to defend one’s house or person from a common criminal. As Berry said, “A person dependent on somebody else for everything from potatoes to opinions may declare that he is a free man, and his government may issue a certificate granting him his freedom, but he will not be free…Men are free precisely to the extent that they are equal to their
    own needs. The most able are the most free.”
    And since I have trouble stopping when I get started with Berry quotes, here’s another with parallels to 2nd amendment issues: “a people who are entirely lacking in economic self-determination, either personal or local, and who are therefore entirely passive in dealing with the suppliers of all their goods and services, including political goods and services, cannot be governed democratically–or not for long.”

  17. The irony of today’s American political climate is that we trumpet the need to be an independent, free-thinking electorate and then we abdicate most of our responsibilities as an educated and informed populace to the influences of corporations, the wealthy and the special interests. All the while, we convince ourselves that our opinions on websites and Facebook posts actually matter.

    Those countries with “centralized power and centralized decision-making” have a citizenry much more involved in the governing process, with multiple parties represented in parliament, fewer career politicians, a shorter election cycle and MUCH less money corrupting the process. Additionally, because they avoid the truly undemocratic process of Gerrymandering of which the American ruling elites partake, the politicians represent more closely the people by whom they have been elected and their interests. Hardly “urban elites”!

  18. A widowed neighbor of mine was asking me about a ‘ gun’ for protection. I told her to get a bottle of wasp or pepper spray and a baseball bat. So many people falsely assume just having a firearm is protection, when they have never shot it. Another woman believes that one can use a gun pointed at a intruder with a gun to stop them. I tried to get her to understand that a gun should never be used as a threat. That she needs to be ready to SHOOT…. I pray she never gets a gun. My rifles are for VARMINT ( rat, fox, coyote, opposum, coon, and hopefully soon groundhog before my cabbages go out in the garden) control, but I sleep next to a loaded revolver, when I am not target shooting with it.

    • So you have a firearm/rifle for shooting varmints and a revolver by your side at night, but this other lady shouldn’t have her own form of protection? Why? You should have instructed her to take safety/shooting classes so she could learn how to properly handle a gun rather than discouraging her altogether.

  19. The thing that gets me about all this is that the gun people always, always, always say they need their guns, to stock/hoard ammo, whatever, because it’s their security against government tyranny. How strange that today in the United States where we do have government tyranny, no gun owners are standing up or have stood up to it. Where were the gun owners defending us against tyranny when the Patriot Act was passed and the government wiped it’s feet on the Bill of Rights? Where were the gun owners defending against tyranny when the Supreme Court ruled that police can initiate a strip search for any reason? If you’re unlucky enough to be a beautiful women caught speeding, it’s perfectly legal for police to have you strip-searched for no reason; no suspicion of drugs or anything. Where are the gun owners defending against tyranny in New York with “Stop and Frisk”? A law that has been proven to not only be ineffective, its also highly racist with blacks and latinos being specifically targeted. Where are the gun owners defending against tyranny of the government with the NSA spying? There is real tyranny and the people claiming to defend it are nowhere. The only time these gun owners get riled up is at the “tyranny” of the Left when they suggest something so horrible, so Constitution raping, as better background checks so crazy people can’t get guns as easy and go on shooting rampages. Oh, the tyranny…

    Finally, hoarding .22 ammo in case the government tries to take our guns, like you said Gene, makes no sense; with modern military armor i think .22 rounds would bounce right off. The whole safety think is equally as weak an argument. You mentioned the gun in the purse, but how many people keep their guns locked in a safe? So if a burglar comes in is he gonna be nice and wait for you to run to the basement and unlock the safe, get a gun and load it? Probably not…For me, i have a 6 inch knife next to my bed and a tomahawk. People can tell when someone is scared even if that person is holding a gun so simply having a gun isn’t that threatening to a criminal. But a pissed off man wielding a knife and a tomahawk ready to carve up a criminal like a Thanksgiving ham will scare off a criminal…

    I always carry a knife with out in public as well, Kershaw makes good knives that have a spring loaded quick open system so you can open them with one hand as fast as a switchblade.

    • I don’t know about anyone else here, but I wasn’t talking about defending the whole country against tyranny, I was talking about defending myself and whoever might happen to be with me if confronted by someone with evil intentions when we are out and about. When at home I have a whole ‘nother action plan and I don’t intend to talk about it here.

      I do, however, agree with you about keeping guns in a safe. If you do that, the only thing protected is the safe. When I heard that lady say that in the video in the link above I nearly croaked with laughter. There are about a gazillion places to hide weapons (in case you’re worried about grandkids finding them or whatever) but I have kitchen knives in my drawer and they never bother those – just as much a weapon as a gun, too. Simply put things out of reach and out of the line of vision to kids. It’s all common sense stuff. Weapons can be kept handy without being a main attraction.

      There are plenty of article on the web about “where’s the best place to hide/store/keep guns” if you care to read them.

      • I’m with you, Dave. I have nearly always lived in places where you cannot rely on law enforcement to arrive in less than 20-30 minutes — and that’s if someone just happens to be in the neighborhood. Even in town, when some stupid, crazy bully or drugged fool decides, as one did recently, that my husband should give him his 49er football jacket, the cops aren’t going to get there fast enough to do anything but pick up the pieces. The clerk at the pharmacy counter was scared nearly spitless by the fool, who was obviously bent on terrorizing someone he thought was old and defenseless. When hubby reached in his pocket and demonstrated that his concealed carry was readily available, the fool left in one heck of a hurry. When the budgets for resident deputies were slashed, centralizing what deputies remained in “the city” 35 miles away, it simply reinforced our long-standing habit of keeping guns readily available. We do store some in a safe, having been the victims of a robbery years back before we had a safe, but there are several ready to hand in different rooms of the house. A little bit of paranoia can be a positive thing…

    • > How strange that today in the United States where we do have government tyranny, no gun owners are standing up or have stood up to it.

      It’s not hard to think of examples to disprove that assertion. The guy in Nevada and his proponents that stood up to the Bureau of Land Management is the most immediate example that comes to mind. John Brown at Harpers Ferry is a very notable historical example. Ruby Ridge and Waco are fairly recent examples. There are lots of less prominent examples like the guy in a neighboring (to me) county about eight years ago that resisted an involuntary commitment order. There are various historical examples of Indian tribes resisting the federal government. Of course, the story of our nation’s founding is largely one of armed resistance with the equivalent of modern 22’s. That was certainly how it got started. I don’t mean to suggest that all or any of these examples were on the right (or wrong) side, but their influence and significance are very notable, despite having faced overwhelming opposing firepower.

      Perhaps more to the point, though, is D. Smith’s reply. Those sorts of actions (and self-sufficiency that never came to action) are similarly much more significant than the limits of the firepower.

      • Touche. You provided examples. The only critique i offer is that perceived tyranny is not the same as actual tyranny. At Waco and in Nevada people broke the law and the government was enforcing it; that’s hardly tyranny and violation of civil rights. Now, in general, one man’s tyrant is another’s hallowed leader and it depends on how you look at it…In my opinion, if it affects a large group of people (“Stop and Frisk” for example) it’s probably tyranny. If it affects a small handful (Bundy in Nevada) it’s not tyranny.

  20. I have a good friend, a very thoughtful and generous person.He lives about 3 blocks from the courthouse of the county seat and about a mile from the nearest corporation limit. He loves to garden and has maintained a beautiful garden on his property for years. The last couple years have been near total failures because of deer. He was a C.O. during Nam and eschews violence as a solution to human problems but would gladly shoot the deer that ravage his garden. Last year he sought clarification from one of our local elected officials concerning two questions.
    1 May I shoot someone on my porch if I feel threatened ?
    Answer: ” yes with reasonable provocation”
    2. May I shoot a deer when it is destroying my garden 30 feet from my house?
    Answer ” definitely not”
    It’s an interesting world we live in and you make it even more interesting Gene.

  21. Nathan, you have made an excellent point. Most gun owners are only concentrated on 2nd amendment rights and concern about invasion of one particular right. The Patriot Act in particular was passed in near-hysteria and we are going to spend decades walking it back. Hypocrisy abounds, however. The ACLU lost me as a member when I realized they were advocating the widest possible reading of the entire Bill of Rights (school locker searches, freedom of press, freedom of speech) except for the 2nd amendment. That was interpreted on the narrowest terms. While Consistency may be “the hobgoblin of little minds” I do not think you can stretch the Bill of Rights as far as possible without bringing the Second Amendment along for the ride.

    • I totally agree, hypocrisy does abound. The problem with bringing the 2nd amendment along for the ride as you state, is what should people worry about more: the safety and prosperity of a country, or whether all rights granted are equal in their depth of granted freedom? I do understand what you are saying and how when people talk about rights many times the Left leave off gun rights, but i think with this case you have to be more concerned with the safety of the nation and not with whether all laws are equal. There is already a problem in this country with crazy people getting guns (i cite Virginia Tech shooting) if we had greater gun freedom i think violence would increase. I think it’s Oklahoma that just passed a law that guns are now legal in bars and churches. Yeah, it’s great that there is more freedom but is that really a good idea? I mean no one ever gets drunk and into fights at bars, so i’m sure adding guns to the mix won’t hurt anyone right? In the philosophical realm of thought, the problem with granting freedom where none is needed is that eventually it will lead to anarchy because all laws are then “oppression”.

  22. Sounds like we are all having the same experiences while buying ammo. I still have a carton of subsonics i’m saving for squirrel season. As to vermin control on the farm, I’ve switched to using my .17hmr. I can still buy amo for it. It’s more expensive of course and when and if .22 amo returns for regular sale and reglar prices I’ll go back to useing them. But the .17hmr does a nice job in the meantime.

  23. Sundancer55, the .22 is more than adequate to dispatch the bunnies. You didn’t mention how close you can get to the rabbits, which is an important consideration. If you’re willing to practice, you can get your rabbits with a .177 pellet gun equipped with a good scope. They are pretty quiet, which makes them excellent for not attracting attention. If you can get close, the person who suggested the sling shot has a good idea, too. I kill squirrels and bunnies with the .177, and often get multiple kills because there is no noise to frighten the others. You can put a pellet in a chipmunk’s ear at 50 feet. It’s just not considered a manly gun, but it’s safer than about any other firearm, if used with respect. You mentioned you didn’t have time to trap, but trapping is by far the most efficient way to deal with animals, time wise: there is no stalking time. Eat what you kill. Cats would eat baby bunnies, and a good rat/Jack Russell terrier would make your neighbor’s yard look better to the varmints.

    I have read about the alleged “shortage” of ammunition with some humor; some of my “black helicopter” friends are certain the government is buying up all the ammo so we are defenseless, which is amusing, since those friends created the shortage by purchasing all the can get now, and now have lifetime supplies. I’ve always had difficulty understanding why people carry guns to feel safer. I grew up using guns to hunt food/shoot pests, and I was/am a confident shot. Never in my life have I felt I would have been safer if I had a gun or knife on me (of course, I live in an area that doesn’t have many poisonous snakes, lions, tigers, or bears). In social situations, when I’m around people, I would never feel comfortable, even with a concealed weapon. I don’t have any Harry Callahan stories, I don’t want to have any Harry Callahan stories. I live in a backwater, inbred area, and several years ago a local coffee shop hosted one of those events where people were encouraged to wear their sidearms to the coffee shop. I mean it was sanctioned by the coffee shop! I will never enter that coffee shop. When you wear a sidearm to a coffee shop you should also wear a T-shirt that says “Ask me about my Adequacy Issues”. It’s one of life’s sweet ironies, but those are the people who should be disarmed. Guns are not the problem. Idiots with guns are the problem. You can’t outlaw idiots, we don’t have the jail capacity.

    • Nope, no time to trap. We had a pellet gun but our youngest son took it to kill critters in their yard (they live in what is considered an urban rural area) and we’ve never been able to pry it loose from his hands since he “borrowed it”. As long as I can use a .22 (which I’ve since found out I can as long as I don’t say a word about it to anyone local) that will be the ticket. Our dog scares the rabbits off but they come right back. The dog thinks they’re as much fun to play with as our grandkids do. But they are voracious little vegetarians to my gardening project. ;)

      I’m not going to get wound up in the debate about who should or shouldn’t be allowed to have guns. I just know I’m in favor of self-protection and sometimes mace or pepper spray or even Raid isn’t the answer. The people we citizens need protection from are the ones who are already armed by our leaders, no less, and think they have authority and superiority, IMPHHO.

  24. It’s interesting that NJ almost passed a law within a law to get the .22 off the market. Christie would have had to become a democrat if he’d signed that bill, I think. I hope no other states try that shenanigan.

    http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2014/05/new-jersey-to-ban-22-rifles.php

    • OK, Dave Schulz has an answer below to your original question about what to use on the rabbits – pellet guns are not firearms, and don’t run afoul of the great majority of city reg’s. You can get a decent .177 cal rifle on Amazon and start practicing in 2 days (Prime shipping!). As for personal protection, that’s your right to choose.

  25. My answearto having no 22 ammo has been to use my 36 Cal muzzle loader which I make my own bullets for out of old lead pipe and I even make the percussion caps out of beer cans and toy cap gun paper caps. I have a real problem with Richardson ground squirrels and I have to shoot a heck of a lot of them or they really become a huge problem…..and then the badgers move in and make huge leg breaking holes that even the draft horses are in danger from . Not only that each squirrel clears the 10ft perimeter around its hole of all grass. Multiply that space by 250 or so and that adds up to a lot of pasture loss. Last year I gave a big box of .22 shells to some teenagers and hoped they would do the job . They shot all 500 rounds and had a body count of only 27. I shot more than that with my pistol!

    • When I was a kid in South Dakota, my dad paid me a nickel for every gopher I shot. Since .22 shells cost me about .02 per shell, I had to get pretty accurate to turn a profit. I did o.k. with his old Remington single shot, but then I earned enough doing chores to buy a lever action 22 and learned how fast I could burn up my profit with a repeating rifle, which never did shoot as straight as the old beat-up Remington.
      Interestingly, in later years when the milch cows were sold and the pasture grew up from over-grazing, all of the gophers left. It appears that they only did well in over-grazed short pasture where they could see predators coming. Once the grass crowned, they left for good. So all of the effort spent to control the gophers was pretty pointless, because we did not realize why they were doing so well. In defense of my dad, he had a small farm and 3 kids to raise. Still, if he had known about a paddock system or had been able to rotate the pastures, he might have avoided a lot of trouble.
      Maybe some of the other varmints mentioned here would simply move out if conditions were not so attractive for them: you cannot shoot every whistle-pig in Ohio, maybe there is a reason they are everywhere (lack of predators now that we killed all of them off?) Something to think about. However, there is no question why Raccoons head for the sweetcorn (wouldn’t you?) 6 rescue dogs around the yard keep my garden losses to a minimum, and I don’t have to kill creatures who are only trying to find a meal.

      • I grew up in SD too, Chris N. We didn’t get to shoot gophers, my Dad made us snare them. I suppose because it kept us out of his hair a lot longer! You had to be patient to snare a gopher. It was all about the timing and the waiting. We took the tails to the Co-op Equity in town and got 7 cents per tail. That was in the late 1950’s early 1960’s. Can you imagine kids today having that kind of fun – unsupervised?!! My parents were NOT helicopter parents, for sure. We were outside until after dark and they practically had to hog-tie us to get us into the house, washed up and into bed.

  26. We’ve reached a kind of homeostasis here on my homestead. The dogs keep the raccoons, possums and coyotes at bay. The cat catches the rabbits and squirrels to share with the dogs. The guineas root out the snakes and sound the alarm on air assaults from the hawks. That just leaves an occasional flogging rooster for me to dispatch–usually I just pull them down off their perches at night to butcher the next day–so I didn’t know there was a shortage of .22 shells. I have 1/4 box of them and since they are so dear, I guess I should write them into my will for the kids. ;)

  27. http://www.thefirearmblog.com/blog/2013/10/20/remaining-lead-smelter-usa-closing/

    If you want to know the real reason for ammunition scarcity then read this article…and then read BETWEEN the lines….and ‘Guest’s’ post.

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