She is a Toronto grandmother of two in her mid-sixties and she is sharing her love of guns in mid-winter on a underground range in Torontoâ€™s west end. (That range has since closed; Ellenâ€™s club now shoots at another range in the City of Toronto but will not disclose its location.)
Ellen also wonâ€™t share her real name. The request for anonymity reflects a reluctance to disclose personal information in a city in which even legal gun ownership comes with a stigma attached.
â€œYou have to be careful who you talk to,â€ she says. â€œItâ€™s like religion and politics.â€
As long as gun owners remain underground and won’t talk about what they do, the extinction of the culture that allows and tolerates gun ownership is inevitable. Also, to change anything for the better, you have to change the culture. From a Canadian Criminologist:
â€œI know some people like sport shooting, but it doesnâ€™t seem to me like much of a sport, personally. I think a lot of people would also think of it as quite peculiar as a sport, especially because where are those guns stored and how safely? A lot of people would share the view that you should get yourself a proper sport and go play hockey or something.â€
And the reason you need to be “out of the closet” so to speak, is because if you’re not, you can’t attack people like this above for being the sanctimonious pricks that they are. The key to changing the culture is to make the attitude displayed above unacceptable. You won’t see anti-gun folks here saying stuff like this, because we have succeeded in accomplishing that.