Stop Being Pigs

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Well, we’re back from the SHOT Show. Correction; I’m back, Bob’s stuck in Vegas due to the Snowpocolypse.

Anywho, I have a slew of subjects I want to cover from my time at the Shooting, Hunting, and Outdoor Trades (SHOT) Show. I’ll have articles on UTM bullets, Daniel Defense’s new guns, gear, rethinking my everyday-carry (EDC) gun, veteran’s events, “swag hags,” being responsibly armed, and a number of other things.

There’s always one, of course, that I feel I need to get off my chest before I can concentrate on digging in and writing about the SHOT Show. This year, it’s pigs. No, not the kind you roll up in a blanket and eat, or the little piggies that are in desperate need of a pedicure after leaving the show.

Read more: Bearing Arms

4 thoughts on “Stop Being Pigs

  1. Jenn, As a father of three (I have two daughters), this concerns me too. My oldest is in 4H shooting sports and on a CMP oriented air rifle team. She’s one medallion away from her full CMP Master Marksmanship certificate.

    What you write concerns me. Personally, I have seen nothing but encouragement toward women and girls at the ranges I frequent.

    Some of the men are gruff and stiff from military training. However, as I pointed out to my kids, it’s almost always because they’re concerned about safety. When shooting in a match, we should remind ourselves every so often that we ARE shooting real bullets at high speed. Even the Air Rifles are nothing to trifle with. The kids see pretty clearly what becomes of the pellets they shoot against the backstop.

    As an exercise, I have seen some parents put potatoes downrange and have the kids shoot them. A .22 will make a real mess of a potato. Some then turn to the kids and point out that if they’d been standing where that potato was, that would have happened to them to. They get it. They’re not just punching holes in paper. Note that this is subsonic, round nose, match-grade ammunition. We see everything at the range where we practice, from muskets, to full-auto machine guns.

    I’m saddened that there still are a few dinosaurs in this business. Those “pigs” have not been my experience. My daughter’s shooting sports team has gone from just a few girls when she got started to a nice mix where girls and boys are evenly distributed according to skill. The evening squad she’s in has two boys and six girls ranging in age from about 10 years old to 17 (my daughter).

    Keep up the good writing, and know that there are generations who will be following you.

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  2. I’m not going to apologize for my gender (like so many commenters are doing at BA,) but I do promise you I myself will not hustle you or any other woman. I have a few points to make:

    Any woman who walks into any bar is going to get hustled. It’s not fair, it’s not “right,” it’s not “civilized,” but it’s an undeniable fact of life. We firearm enthusiasts supposedly have “situational awareness,” and we supposedly avoid dicey situations. Apply that situational awareness to bars. I don’t drink, I don’t go to bars, and those two choices protect my health and my life expectancy. You should choose to avoid bars if you don’t want to encounter pigs, and also to avoid a higher risk of violent injury or death.

    Trade shows have always exploited women and used them as sexual objects, and trade show attendees (and businessmen in general) are often pigs. This has always been true and is not a big secret. It’s ten times as true in Las Vegas. Your column is not going to change that. A thousand columns like yours won’t change that. So if you really, really don’t want to encounter pigs, don’t do trade shows.

    My final point is this: pigs get lucky. Pigs behave the way they do because a surprising number of women respond positively to their approach. Some women, for whatever reason, like and reward piggish men. That’s something women really need to get together and caucus about, and fix.

    Now, the pigs can’t know ahead of time how a particular woman will respond to their grunts, so they’ll hustle every woman they find attractive. So women like you, who are offended by pigs (rightfully in my opinion) should respond demonstratively and negatively to their advances. Consider wearing a body cam if you must go to a bar or a trade show. Publicize the pigs’ images, names and their employers when possible. I would not use a squirt gun; that’s possibly assault and/or battery, and is an escalation beyond the offense which might get you hurt.

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  3. I agree with those who feel that more direct action is required in order to eliminate these kinds of situations. I think perhaps it would be well for the women who attend the SHOT Show to pre-arrange ahead of time to take the names of those who are guilty of such actions and notify their companies. If they get enough complaints and if people such as you put their names and companies out in the public I think the backlash will have a salutary effect. If you simply state what was said or what happened without editorializing or commenting on the verbiage or actions, fear of legal action needn’t be present. Truth is always a defense against slander or liable actions. If just one woman complains, however, the complaint is very likely to be brushed off as just one hyper-sensitive woman. In fact, it might be well to let it be known throughout the industry that the women attending the SHOT Show intend to do just that, record names and companies and follow up. That might be a big cold water bath which is, apparently, what some of these low-lifes need.

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