Down memory lane now. I am 8 years old, a third grader at Our Lady of Fatima Heights Catholic School. I am slated to serve as altar boy at the midnight mass. I have a fever of 101 degrees from the flu or something. I am forbidden to attend Mass. Secretly, I am thrilled because earlier in the evening we were all allowed to open one present. After a year of begging I received my dream gift. A Marlin .22 caliber bolt action single shot rifle. While everyone was a mass I sat there and dry fired that sucker for two hours. I was so sick and so happy at the same time.
I attended firearm safety school in the basement of the Coronado Club at Sandia Base. It was an NRA school in the days of that organization's emphasis on gun safety. I was a member of the NRA and got their magazine for young kids. I always enjoyed it.
I kept that rifle for years. It was my first gun and I have had numerous others since then. But that little rifle that I shot .22 shorts out of was the best ever. There wasn't an empty beer can or bottle that littered the foothills of the Sandias that survived.
I did not have any assault rifles and have never figured out why anyone needs one other than our military members. But hey, things just went haywire with the NRA.
Have a great Holiday!