Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Japanese and Their Interest in Guns

James Rummel of Hell in a Handbasket talks about anime and how Japanese illustrators really got the guns right. Japan severly limits private ownership of all guns and virtually bans handguns. Despite that, many Japanese have a great deal of interest in guns. As Rummel points out this is a bit of the "Forbidden Fruit" syndrome.

Sometime ago, Yosemite Sam and I saw just how much guns interested at least one Japanese man. We went to a commercial indoor range for a little target practice. It's a range that also rents submachine guns and sells ammo. As we were signing up for a lane a man and a woman came to the counter to check out. She told me, "I hope you don't get the lane we had. There's a scary Japanese guy in the next one."

We entered the just vacated lane and, sure enough, there was a Japanese guy in the next lane. He was using one of the range's HK MP-5 fully auto guns. He wasn't scary to us, but he was intense and dedicated in his practice.

The area around was feet was covered with spent brass. I don't mean sprinkled, I mean covered like snow. Brass was piling up in corners and cartridges cases were sitting on top of another. It wasn't ankle deep, but I've never seen that much brass in one place shot by one person before.

While we were there, he kicked his way out of his brass pile and safely returned the MP-5 to the counter. He came back with a handgun and several boxes of ammo. He was hitting his target and taking his time with each shot. At one point while Yosemite was shooting, I complimented him on his shooting. He thanked me in polite but heavily accented English.

We went through six boxes each ourselves and then we left. He was still there shooting round after round and spending dollar after dollar. In fact, I can't imagine how much he spent there.

That's dedication and desparation all at the same time. Dedication to shooting and desparate to shoot all he can until he returns to his country where he can't shoot at all.

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