A few weeks ago, Second Amendment advocate Stilettos and Shotguns posted on Instagram (her primary account got nuked so I can’t reference!) about the lack of action from the Second Amendment community concerning domestic violence issues, especially during Domestic Violence Awareness Month. In the spirit of things, I published a post concerning the subject, and she responded with a wealth of information and commentary that rendered the prior article essentially hideously incomplete. As I spoke about in the subsequent iteration, I planned on providing more detail. After a few emails back-and-forth, this interview came to be. I had the chance to (virtually) do a sit-down and pick S&S’s brain on the Second Amendment as related to domestic violence survivors, her organization We The Female, and more…
The sad fact of our world is that domestic violence affects us all. I guarantee we all know someone who has been affected by it. I’ll say that this short interview was extremely insightful, and should definitely highlight the fact that as Second Amendment Radicals and armed citizens, we should be taking more nuanced approaches to the “get all the good people armed” ethos.
Anyway, without further ado…
Q: Hi S&S, thanks for taking the time out to chat today. In your own words, can you tell us what the mission and purpose of We The Female is?
A: Thanks for the opportunity!
In short, We The Female’s mission is to arm the women with education, confidence and self-defense; based on the understanding that self defense starts with helping women embrace a wholistic defensive mindset lifestyle.
Q: What has been the response so far to your mission?
A: I am grateful for the overwhelming positive response and support We The Female has received. While there is still some disconnect between understanding domestic abuse in the 2A community, many creators such as yourself, as well as industry manufacturers and trainers have been supportive, and willing to take the time to listen and learn; particularly about the differences in how domestic abuse victims/survivors need to be approached about self-defense and firearm ownership. One the the easiest ways I like to explain it: Oftentimes, we can’t arm the women(victims/survivors) until we help them realize that their lives are worth saving to begin with.
Q: Is We The Female just you or do you have help?
A: The bulk of the work is handled by me alone, although I have recently had a few people reach out asking how they can help. As work about We The Female’s mission continues to spread, there will definitely be a need to expanding volunteer opportunities.
Q: 2020 and 2021 have been big years for the Second Amendment community thus far. A lot of new people coming on board, buying guns, ammo, and taking classes like crazy. Has it affected (positive or negative) We The Female in any way?
A: It has been incredibly positive. Women are realizing that they must embrace being responsible for their own safety, and We The Female is looking to expand it’s circle of educators to accommodate moving the mission of arming the women forward.
Q: The right to keep and bear arms is often regarded as the ultimate expression of individual rights. With big government rearing it’s ugly head over the past year or so, how has that affected the way things are for We The Female? Do you get any blowback on your stance?
A: Running a non-profit that works with women, particularly survivors/victims, I fight two fronts: The first being those that want to take away our ability to defend ourselves; ironically, that is the easier battle;. The second, which is a much more frustrating and an uglier battle, is trying to help those that do not understand that the approach to arming women, especially survivors/victims is needs to be changed. In other words, people in 2A community needs to stop victim blaming and lecturing “just go buy a gun” and take the time to understand WHY victims “just don’t leave”, and why just buying a gun isn’t the answer.
Q: When you and I first started kicking around this idea of getting your mission and message out there, you mentioned that the Second Amendment community needs to do more for the issue of domestic violence, especially within it’s own ranks. From where you sit, what is the scope/severity of the issue in our community?
A: October is Domestic Violence(Abuse) Awareness month. Ask yourself this: How many advocates, or other industry/community members have posted about it? How many, especially any oh the women, have talked about helping women learn to defend themselves from their abusers? How many talk about supporting women learning to use a firearm but said or did absolutely nothing this month? That is all you need to know about how bad this industry needs to change.
Q: How can the community help in this issue?
A: Taking the time to understand DV and making the effort to use their platform to speak out is a start. More “2A community” members are more worried about their brand image, than they are truly helping women, especially survivors embrace self-defense.
Q: I’m guilty of being “gun-centric”, since this is a firearms blog. The domestic violence issue response requires way more nuance than “get armed and fight back!” – What is the best approach that you can recommend to us in the 2A community overall to this issue?
A: This is unfortunately a question that requires a lot of conversation, but for the sake of levity, I can sum it up with two statements: One one I mentioned at the beginning “Oftentimes we can’t arm the women until we help them understand their lives are worth saving to begin with” and equally as important: Women don’t need more firearms specifically designed for them. We need the industry…from the manufacturers, and retailers, to the instructors and advocates, to change how women are APPROACHED about firearms.
Q: We The Female is one organization doing amazing work – are there any other people or organizations we should be looking out for and supporting that you can recommend?
A: The Diamond Arrow Group is doing some great work with situational awareness education. Starssnoppdog(as she is known on social media) is a survivor turned advocate as well. She also does fun content to help spread awareness about domestic violence and self-defense. How I Carry offers great, positive reinforcement content for women new to firearms.
From S&S: Thank you for taking the time, as using your platform to help bring awareness to We The Female’s mission to #armthewomen ! For those wanting to donate: We are a 501c3; all donations are tax deductible donations can be made on our website: WeTheFemale.net
It was definitely my pleasure to help bring some much-needed nuance to this hugely-important issue. By taking this approach – we can all be better ambassadors and Second Amendment Radicals.
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Source link: https://regularguyguns.com/2021/11/04/An-Interview-With-Stilettos-And-Shotguns/ by Regular Guy at regularguyguns.com