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NAT’L – SELF-PROTECTION – Female firepower: more women opting to carry firearms

Gun ownership will always be a hot-button topic in a country where the language of a centuries-old document is still being analyzed for meaning. What was once considered a subject saved for just the men of the world, though, is now becoming a unisex interest, opening up a whole new industry for female firearm carriers. Data from the Pew Research Center shows that one in five women owned a gun in 2017, the year with the most recent ownership figures, and that this percentage has slowly gone up over the years. “With women we don’t necessarily have size or strength or speed on our side as opposed to the average male,” Alysha Wilson, co-chapter lead of the Well-Armed Women in Roanoke, said. “For women, it’s more a matter of leveling the playing field.” Women’s groups like the Well-Armed Women have, as a result, become more common in and around local shooting ranges and sports clubs. The Roanoke chapter of Well-Armed Women, which operates out of Hillside Shooting Sports, has about 30 active members, according to Wilson. The membership numbers, Wilson noted, often spike after violent tragedies in the news or that they hear about in their communities. “It ebbs and flows when different things happen and people become more aware of maybe threats to their security,” Wilson said. “Mass shootings, an increase in crime, a report that there’s been an increase in sexual assaults; we might see an influx of people.”  [full article]

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