Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Not Only A Right, But A Responsibility

This photograph of Alexandra Knight with her son, Truett, appears in the book “Chicks with Guns.” “I’m so eager to teach my boys everything I know,” the Houston mom writes in the book. “Knowing that one day they will be teaching their boys or girls the same thing with the same gun makes me smile.” Taken from an article written by Laura T Coffey, 9.28.2001 on

Years ago, while traveling back from the Reno Rodeo in Reno, Nevada, on my way to Elko, Nevada; I had a blow-out on the front driver's side of my extended-cab pickup. It pulled me into the barrow pit, and the pickup slid halfway down a very steep embankment. The angle that the truck was left in, made it very difficult to change the tire.

There were two other things that made this bad situation worse:
1) It was 2 am
2) I had my four-year-old daughter and year-old son with me.

I knew how to change a tire - but like I said - the truck was sitting at a bad angle and jacking it up was fairly dangerous. One young man stopped to ask if I needed help when I was just getting the bad tire off. He said something about it being at a "hairy angle", and the next thing I knew, he was speeding off on his merry little way! By the time I got the tire completely changed, a highway patrolman stopped. Good thing! He had to hook up to me and give me a pull out of the barrow pit, as the truck was just a 2-wheel drive.

When he first stopped, he of course checked over the situation. He looked me square in the face and asked, "What do you have with you for protection?" I felt sheepish when I had to answer that all I had was a tire iron. "You need to have more than that with you, if you know what I mean!", he exclaimed. I knew from the concerned look on his face and the tone in his voice, that he strongly felt it to be my responsibility to not only care for my own safety, but the safety of the kids. "I would hate myself if I came upon you too late to help you!", he continued. I thought long and hard on his words, went home, and wrote this poem:

Not Only A Right, But A Responsibility By Eileen Phillips

"I just don't think I could touch a gun!"
Said the woman with a shudder;
"I didn't grow up in a gun atmosphere",
She ended with a mutter.

I have heard this conversation,
And never knew what to say before;
I have never quite agreed with it,
But arguing is such a chore!

There is a time when one should,
Give an opinion albeit humble;
For I feel that if the world goes on like this,
Our society will certainly crumble!

We depend upon the government
To protect, provide and preserve;
To pay for the unexpected,
And to "give us what we deserve"!

We're a people of wants and needs,
And expect others to get us through strife;
But do we have a God-given right,
To ask another to trade in his own life?

Should a policeman or woman on duty,
Have all that laid at THEIR door?
Or should we as individuals,
Do a little something more?

We have the responsibility,
And we certainly have the right;
To protect, provide, and preserve,
Our families, our freedom, our rights!

And yes, it's work to learn to do that,
It takes a lot of practice and time;
Self-protection is a skill,
That could prevent a crime!

It's true, that old saying,
"God helps those who help themselves!"
One certainly cannot do that,
With a gun tucked away on a shelf!

We wouldn't think to starve ourselves,
We look upon suicide with distaste;
And yet we turn our noses to guns,
And would give up our life in such haste!

We have the responsibility,
Each and every one;
To keep ourselves alive,
And that could mean with a gun!

There is some really useful information on this site:

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