Tuesday, July 23, 2013

"Learning to shoot would form a new field of feminine activity."


If They Are to Be Athletic Why Not
Be Armed?

   In these days, when women ride bicycles into remote wildernesses camp out in mountain fastnesses, and generally take upon themselves the positions formerly occupied by men, the question of whether or not they shall also take upon themselves masculine weapons naturally arises. Shall Diana carry a revolver? Shall Lucy wear a dagger? Shall women learn the noble art of self-defense not only in the form of increased muscle but in the use of weapons?

   The millennium has not yet arrived and therefore watch chains and watches, finger rings and brooches still tempt the wayfaring kleptomaniac. In other words, a woman wearing articles of more or less value and tramping or riding, apparently unprotected along a lonely road, may prove a temptation to the tramp with imperfectly developed notions of personal property. There are also men who are in a constant state of semi-intoxication, and who are dangerous on that account. There are once in a long time dogs as ferocious and as unguarded. Shall women provide themselves with weapons against all these dangers?

   It would seem that ordinary common sense and ordinary prudence would prevent a woman from riding in a dangerous region unless she was protected in some way. The case of a young wheelwoman whose escort left her to her own devices when she was attacked by roughs would indicate that the mere presence of a masculine escort is not sufficient. The matter, therefore, resolves Itself into the question of whether women shall ride, drive or walk anywhere except in beaten paths, at whether they shall go armed. As the tendency of the times seems to be distinctly towards women's riding, driving and walking wherever they please, it, therefore, seems that weapons will be part of the modern woman's

   There are some compensations, however. A revolver thrust through a belt is not altogether without its picturesque features. Jeweled pistols, firearms of rare metals and the like would open up a vast vista of gifts. Learning to shoot would form a new field of feminine activity. It would also train the eye the mind and the hand of the woman who learned. To be sure it might prove a temptation to some fiery-tempered woman when she grew angry and it might be a constant menace to the well being of the community in the hands of silly young persons who wished to "show off." But all that might be easily arranged by the simple expedient of granting permits to carry firearms only to even tempered and well balanced women. Thus the revolver would become in time a badge of honor, and country highways, mad dogs and the like lose all their horrors.--N.Y. World
 [Hopkinsville Kentuckian, Hopkinsville, KY., Friday, November 01, 1895. Vol. XVII. No. 79. Pg. 5]

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