There were plenty of difficult things to watch and read and digest this weekend, in the wake of the UCSB shooting and the horrifying ideology that apparently motivated the attack; Richard Martinez's response to his 20-year-old son Christopher Michael-Martinez's preventable death is particularly gut-wrenching. (Watch it here, if you'd like.) Adam Gopnik's short essay on "the war against euphemism" gets at the bravery behind Martinez's speech:
Martinez’s brave words put me in mind of a simple point, which I failed to make in a long essay about language this week, or didn’t make strongly enough. The war against euphemism and cliché matters not because we [...]
These two bystanders in Times Square shot by the police (they're okay, and commissioner Ray Kelly describes them as in "good spirits"), and this man in Charlotte who was looking for help after a car wreck, also shot by the police (he is dead). Also the three people, including one police officer, who were shot at the Washington Navy Yard this morning in an ongoing situation, and let's just say probably all of the 289-ish people who will be shot in America today.
"There’s this idea that women are more affiliative, more peace loving, more pacifistic, which should then make women as a group gun averse," said one women's studies professor and gun-book-author in this Times article about women and firearms, and yet:
Women’s participation in shooting sports has surged over the last decade, increasing by 51.5 percent for target shooting from 2001 to 2011 … and by 41.8 percent for hunting, according to the National Sporting Goods Association.
I went to a shooting range once, thinking it'd be exciting, maybe something like the movies, but I was wrong and hated it. I guess I'm glad I went, though. Any more-interesting [...]
The popularity of women in swimwear shooting guns is both well known and easily explained. Men like women in swimwear. Men like guns. It's the surf-and-turf of testosterovisual stimulus. Not surprisingly, videos of attractive women in bikinis shooting guns are very popular (see above).
But a sub-genre of women shooting guns is even more popular. Videos of women being injured, overpowered, and generally manhandled by the huge guns they've been given have racked up hundreds of thousands, and, in many cases, millions and millions of views. They've largely avoided mainstream attention, however, until now: This August, a cable network show will feature the most famous woman ever [...]