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I thought I’d share a somewhat outside perspective. First, I think you’re absolutely right. But I wanted to share this for the others in your audience who I think took offense at your last article.

I come from a family that does not own guns. Some of them are fairly or very anti-gun. While I plan to own firearms and get a concealed carry permit, if I told them this I’d get blasted. They have a negative perception of gun culture and SOME gun owners (not all - not my cousin or some of our friends) and especially the NRA (the NRA deserves it in my opinion).

Personally, I don’t think all the antipathy to gun owners is warranted. BUT I do think that the performative aspects of some gun culture (see Massie, Thomas) really turn people off. Why? Because some gun owners who flaunt guns come off as irresponsible.

Some of that negative perception may be unfair and some may be justified. BUT, leadership requires taking responsibility for it, regardless of who is at fault. If you run a business that develops a bad reputation, your responsibility is to correct that. Even if you don’t think it’s your fault.

Recklessness by some has given gun owners a bad name. While I will push back against the rhetoric of the “I hate guns” crowd, I’ll also say that I think the only thing that can truly restore a good name is for responsible gun owners to stand up and take extreme ownership. Including at times to speak out as you are doing here, Justin, against the irresponsibility on the part of a few gun owners.

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