On my daughter, Alexis’, blog today, she writes about a disturbing product promoted by the NRA. Zombie Industries markets a line of life-size mannequins for shooting practice. Not just any target, these bleed when a bullet penetrates the skin of the mannequin. In Alexis’ blog she writes about the disturbing fact that of the company’s 15 mannequins, there is one female. The fact they thought they needed to not appear sexist by creating a female mannequin to even out their offerings is not what is most unsettling. Nope. That’s small potatoes compared to the name they’ve given this abomination. The Ex.
Yup. They’ve got ‘Terrorist’, ‘Wiggles’, ‘the Alien’ and ‘SS Nazi’, all of whom are considered to be male. But the female one comes complete with big breasts, white bustier that reveals a skimpy bright pink push up bra and the target name, ‘The Ex’.
Yes folks, not only did they think it was necessary to create a female shooting target mannequin, they decided the only real woman to shoot at was, the Ex.
Now, this isn’t envy ’cause seriously, I’d rather they didn’t use anything closely resembling human or animal form for target practice. In fact, just so we’re clear, I like Canada’s gun control laws. I like living in a country where owning a gun is not considered ‘a right’. I like the fact that I can’t just pop into the corner store and pick up a quart of milk, and say, And while I’m here, I’ll take that cute little pearl handled hand gun with it and 3 cartons of ammo too. Oh, and does it come in a gazillion rounds a second automatic-firing version?
But wait! This is Canada. We thoughtfully limit magazine capacity to only 10 rounds. That’s of course, unless you want to use a drill to take out that cute little rivet thing-a-ma-bobbie that limits the magazine capacity. But not in Canada! We don’t have people who want to cause harm to others who would dream of doing such an illegal thing! Of course not!
But I digress. My angst isn’t about gun control or even the fact that Zombie Industries could only dream up one image worthy of being their female mannequin, the Ex.
Nope. It’s about the fact we, and yes, I mean all of us, let this happen.
I am 100% accountable for what happens in my life. I’m not accountable for Zombie Industries. I am accountable for what I say and do, or don’t do once I learn about what is happening.
I am accountable for my voice, and my silence.
In Canada, Half of all women have experienced at least one incident of physical or sexual violence since the age of 16.
On average, every six days a woman in Canada is killed by her intimate partner. In 2009, 67 women were murdered by a current or former spouse or boyfriend.
I suppose, Zombieland would tell me that they weren’t all killed by guns. We don’t encourage gun owners to shoot real people, they’d say I’m sure. We just like to give them something real-like to practice on, cause who knows when an Alien might invade your backyard, or an Ex leap out of the bushes and start acting all crazy like in front of you. Why, if you hadn’t practiced on our mannequin, you might have mistaken her for the 80-year-old widow down the street and hit the wrong target!
Colour me confused. Colour me disturbed. Colour me aghast. But do not colour me speechless.
I once did have a man jump out of the bushes in the dark. I did not mistake him for an 80-year-old neighbour down the street, nor did I stop to chat. I used the best weapons I have. My lungs and my legs. I screamed and ran like a banshee into the light of a doorway across the street.
If I’d had a gun in my purse, I might have thought about sticking around and firing it. Especially, if Zombieland had conveniently me provided me a target named, the Male Ex and dressed him up in Speedo bathing trunks complete with a nice big bulge where his balls should be. Of course, if I had stuck around he might have overpowered me and taken the gun away and who knows what might have happened then.
Seriously people. What are we thinking?
That guns make peace? That guns protect us?
The evidence says otherwise. A woman’s likelihood of a violent death within the home actually increases by 270% when a gun is kept inside the house. Homicide figures don’t lie. Having a gun within their possession didn’t protect women from murder. In fact, it accurately predicted their higher likelihood of death. (SOURCE: http://www.policymic.com/articles/40049/nra-vendor-sells-ex-girlfriend-target-that-bleeds-when-you-shoot-it)
So, what do you say? Will you stay silent or will you use your voice. It is a powerful tool for creating a world of difference for all of us.