Cel­e­brat­ing 40 years of Sport­ing Gun

Sporting Gun - - SNAPSHOTS -

ead­ing an ar­ti­cle in the Novem­ber 1992 is­sue of Sport­ing

Gun en­ti­tled, “Times they are a-chang­ing” by wild­fowler, Eric Begbie, I was par­tic­u­larly struck by a com­ment he made. He iden­ti­fies a “mu­tual dis­re­spect be­tween ‘coun­try yokels’ and ‘town­ies’” as a threat to our sport. He goes on, “The bat­tle lines seem firmly drawn with coun­try sports be­ing por­trayed as be­ing solidly on one side of the di­vide. In re­al­ity, I sus­pect that many shoot­ing folk (and Sport­ing Gun read­ers) live in towns while, from the op­po­site view, many coun­try dwellers have lit­tle ap­pre­ci­a­tion of our sport.”

To set this in con­text, Begbie is writ­ing about the threat to shoot­ing by com­mer­cial­i­sa­tion and other changes that have af­fected our sport

Rfor good or ill. This po­lar­i­sa­tion of “town­ies” and “coun­try folk” is still very much present today and it is un­help­ful. By as­sum­ing coun­try dwellers know and sup­port our sport is sim­ply wrong. Many of the farm­ers I grew up with didn’t have a clue about shoot­ing and weren’t al­ways that keen on it. Con­versely, I have met peo­ple born and raised in towns who have a great ap­pre­ci­a­tion of our sport and the coun­try­side.

I be­lieve that shoot­ing is a sport for all, whether you alive in the town or coun­try and there shouldn’t be a “them and us” at­ti­tude. At the end of the day if you shoot, you are a shooter, wher­ever you live and we should form a united front against those who crit­i­cise what we do.

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