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Thanks Supreme Court (well, five of you anyway) for affirming that individual Americans have a right to bear arms. Or possess firearms. That little girls and boys can grow up in this country learning how to handle guns.

I love guns.

I should.

A gun got me my husband.

Really.

It goes like this.

Back when I was a teenager my parents didn’t allow me to date until I was sixteen, and then it was with a group. When I was seventeen I was allowed to go out on a date with a guy in a car. If a young man got me home one minute late, my father was at the door to meet us with his double barreled shotgun.

If I went on more than one date with a young man my dad put him through the trick glass quest. If he didn’t pass the sense of humor test he didn’t date me. And he went home with a wet shirt.

But quest number one? The young men I dated had to respect the gun.

My husband (back then just a cute guy who had completely caught my eye) got me home five minutes after my Dad’s curfew on our first date. I was a little nervous knowing my Dad’s proclivity to be at the door waiting with one of his guns.

A few times when I had gotten home on time Daddy was at the door with the gun and the young men turned pale and left as quickly as they could. I never heard from them again. It kind of hurt my pride but my Dad told me that they weren’t dating me for the right reasons if they couldn’t pass the gun test. If they were that sissy or afraid to face my father they just didn’t measure up. After a while (and I didn’t date that much really) I began to enjoy the idea and felt a sense of pride that my Dad was there waiting for me every time I went out.

But on the night that Bob got me home late I was nervous because I really liked him and I didn’t want Daddy to scare him off.

I needn’t have worried.

When we got home as we walked up to the house the front porch light went on. As we stepped on the porch the door opened and there was Daddy standing with his double barreled shotgun, looking serious. Bob took one look at him and grabbed the gun away from him and said, “Is that an LC Smith?” He took the gun apart, exclaiming over it and Daddy had found a kindred spirit. Before the night was over Daddy was showing Bob his barbwire collection. It got so late that I was sleepy and went to bed. Daddy and Bob were still talking.

Bob tricked my Dad on quest number two. When Daddy offered Bob the trick glass he was so thirsty he finished the glass in one drink. His shirt was dry. Daddy was really intrigued. By that time so was I.

Guns have always been a familiar presence in my families’ lives. A good presence. We have all been taught how to respect and handle a gun. It’s a tool for some, a hobby for others but for all of us it is protection from those who would harm us.

In a perfect world there would be no need for a gun but we do not live in a perfect world. We need to be able to defend ourselves against the criminals who would take away our possessions, or our lives.

Thank goodness there are still five members of the Supreme Court who abide by the Constitution.