My fathers family comes from Scottsburg, a small village in Halifax County, VA. We went there this weekend and learned firsthand, from our family, that every American gun owner is not as zealous as some would have you believe.
His name is Sterling and he is my father's first cousin. He and his family live on a sprawling farm where they raise grass-fed angus beef, among other animals. He is also involved in trucking, logging and other land-based ventures. He is a hard working businessman who works the land that his forefathers worked - and does so very successfully. At our family reunions he is the patriarch who opens and closes our gatherings with prayer and punctuates any interaction with a healthy mixture of seriousness, humor, and a deep faith in God.
A few of us were gathered in the kitchen when I asked him what he thought about the recent efforts at "gun control" (i put that in quotations because it is a weak term, like the word minorities, that has very little meaning - and the meaning it does have is very, well, loaded).
Sterling was very clear and very sensible. He has been an avid hunter his whole life and said that no hunter would use the assault rifles that they are proposing banning. Those weapons have no place hunting animals - for sport or for food. He mentioned that gun owners, such as himself, also did not need that amount of ammunition to do the type of hunting that people typically do.
What did I learn from this?
When President Obama and Vice-President Biden talk about sensible gun owners I now put a very friendly, very loving, God-fearing face to that term. There are scores of good people who have always and will continue to use firearms responsibly.
What did I surmise?
People who buy assault rifles intend to use them to kill other human beings. These people are expecting that there will be a war fought on American soil. These are the folks that are bracing for some kind of ultimate showdown against the government or from some other faction.
Who would they be fighting?
I imagine you can answer that question.