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The other side.

I started, as usual, reading the latest edition on the long hike back from the mailbox. Of course, missing the "pink" section in Speak Out was about as likely as sneaking dawn past a rooster! Some of the "best" letters are from those who seem to see sin and degradation everywhere they look. It makes me wonder if they have to go through life with a blindfold and ear plugs so as not to see or hear anything that might possibly offend them. Or, if more likely, they are not simply merely highly selective in what they choose to be offended by. Moreover, I have to wonder if "Ms. Wilwol, Educator, Morn and Grandma, 4-H leader, etc." has ever perused the ads, articles, and photos in any of those high-end, glossy, "respectable" women's magazines? Sears and Roebuck catalogs be damned, my pals and I would have sold our souls for one of those when we were 14! Or perhaps she ought to watch some of the guests and topics on Oprah if she really wants something to get her juices boiling. Of course, that's all done in the interest of "education and enlightenment," so it's perfectly acceptable. While you and your band of merry men, on the other hand, are openly dedicated to appealing to the barely contained prurient interests of a bunch of equally barely literate, red-necked, gun nuts who buy your rag in the hope of seeing some "nekkid wimmin." So when are you going to show us some!

Like Granddad often said, "Some folks will steal your axe, and then complain it wasn't sharp enough."

Oh well, life's a Hillary.

Lee Fowble

Edmonds WA

I would like to respond to the letter Ms. Wilwol wrote regarding pictures of women in your magazine. I have a mother-in-law, a wife, two daughters, five granddaughters and one great granddaughter. With the exception of the latest addition they all read and enjoy American Handgunner. They are also involved in the shooting sports. They all accept the fact beautiful women and girls can be appreciated by male shooters without losing their dignity. They would be thrilled with the opportunity to appear in an advertisement in your magazine.

I would hope they do not have their personal pride destroyed by the blinder-wearing, outdated thinking of one sour educator and/or 4-H leader. An educator should teach facts, not foist erroneous opinions on young minds. Please allow me to extend an invitation to join us in the 21st Century.

Fred J. Brightman

Via e-mail

I'm one of the 1.8 percent of your female readers and I must be missing out on something since I haven't been able to find anything in American Handgunner that offends me. The laundry list of exploitive and/or offensive things you print in American Handgunner, as trotted out by Ms. Wilwol, makes me believe she must be reading a parallel universe version of the magazine. As you pointed out in your response, some people just choose to be offended.

And then there's the guy who sees the Nazi SS symbol in Kimber's SIS pistol. I'd laugh, but it would probably offend someone.

American Handgunner is great as is. I always enjoy The Ayoob Files and Guncrank Diaries, but the entire magazine is usually a cover-to-cover read for me and my husband.

By the way, a nice guy from our local range club saw my letter in the July/August issue asking about recoil in the new S&W 325 Thunder Ranch .45 ACP revolver, and called to invite me to shoot his S&W 325 PD .45. He saw my question and figured the 325 PD would have very similar recoil. I was impressed with the PD, and the recoil was very manageable. I'm now anxiously awaiting the Thunder Ranch Model 325. Patience is a virtue--but it's highly overrated.

Mary Gentry

Espanola, NM

I too am offended by the sexy, long-legged, beautiful blonde, and other sexy photos in your last issue (July/Aug). The letter by Lin Wilwol is right on. What man in his right mind would like to see the long legged beauty on page 17, or the gorgeous beauty on page 18, let alone the bombshell on page 35? I for one am very offended--did I mention the great legs on page 17?

There is no place in a gun magazine for paying advertisers to ask you to run such an offensive ad (did I mention the long-legged beauty on page 17)? I guess you will probably continue to offend me in future advertising--did I mention the fantastic legs on page 17?

Thanks for trying to offend me, but I suggest for you to succeed completely it will be necessary for all ads to be populated with attractive, long-legged, blonde-bombshells, or others just as offensive.

Did I mention I was particularly offended by the legs on page 17?

J.E. Sublett

San Antonio, TX

My husband is an avid reader of your magazine, and he showed me the letter to the editor from the woman who thought you were sexist. You were right in observing the woman who was offended was choosing to be a victim.

Jan "Granny" Sikes

Funny thing, but I never think of Handgunner as a "family" magazine. It's specifically slated for the demographics of our core readership (males, 30-ish to 80+) active shooters, general gun-guys.

I confess, though, I don't seem to hear the complainers getting worked up over seeing a pretty gal helping to sell a new car on TV, in an ad in Time magazine, or on the cover of People magazine at the grocery store checkout lane. Where, by the way, kids stand in legions begging for the candy, also conveniently placed there.

I asked my own daughter, age 19 now, what she thinks of all this. "Well daddy," she said, paging through the issue in question, "I've been reading your magazines since I was a little girl and I honestly never noticed, and I simply don't see what the fuss is all about. I mean, who cares? It's just a pretty girl, no different than seeing a picture of a hunky male competition shooter running in tight shorts, right?"

Uh, um, right. So, she notices that, eh? Does that mean I have to stop running pictures of "hunky male competition shooters?" Hey, if I ran more pictures of sweaty, hunky, well-muscled competition shooters holding race guns would male readers be offended? If they were smart they wouldn't be, because it might get their women-friends to read the magazine, perhaps making future gun-buying less of a battle on the home-front.

On the Kimber thing, sent some--as my dad, the psychologist says: "shirt-front therapy"--to the fellow complaining about the "SS" moniker because, honestly, I'm sick and tired of hearing the whining. Recently Mike Venturino did an article about 1911s and Lugers and featured a picture of a GI helmet and a German helmet. Sure enough, we got a letter. "How dare you honor those Germans ..." blah, blah, blah.

I once did an article on a Tokarov pistol and we showed the old communist flag as some of the artwork showing the history. Same thing--you'd have thought we were trying to pitch little red books to future communists of America.

It just seems like we need to be worrying about other things. I just found out hundreds of kids a year are killed on bikes and tricycles. I wonder why that lady who wrote to me isn't up in arms about that? "How many children must die!?" Eleven? Nine hundred and sixty-three? Then will they be as "outraged" as they are now at a picture of a lady in a dress?

Seems more kids get killed riding bikes than by looking at legs in Handgunner, and, if you think about it, if some 14-year old is reading Dad's Handgunner then he 's not out riding his bike--which just might get him killed. So technically, we're doing our part to make kids "Bike-Safe?"

Give me patience. Editor.
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Author:Fowble, Lee; Brightman, Fred J.; Gentry, Mary; Sublett, J.E.; Sikes, Jan "Granny"
Publication:American Handgunner
Article Type:Letter to the editor
Date:Sep 1, 2008
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