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Why a Firearms Instructor Who's Straight Wants to Start a Gun Club for Gays and Lesbians


"I look at it as a disenfranchised minority that needs someone who’s willing to reach out ..."

Not surprisingly, gun sales have spiked in the wake of Sunday's Orlando terror attack at a gay nightclub that claimed the lives of 49 people.

Now Mike Smith, a firearms instructor in Colorado Springs, is noticing a new trend within the surging number of gun purchases: gay and lesbian buyers.

Image source: KDVR-TV

“I think right now, because of what happened, people are looking for answers,” Smith told Denver's KDVR-TV. “You walk into a gun shop, you expect to see people who, frankly, look like me. And I think that we forget that we’re a country of laws for all people, not just people who kind of fit that predetermined or pre-thought mold.”

Image source: KDVR-TV

Smith noted that a national LGBT self-defense club known as the Pink Pistols, which uses "Pick on someone your own caliber" as a handle, has experienced a jump in membership from about 1,500 members on Saturday to 3,500 on Monday, the station said.

Image source: KDVR-TV

With dozens of new Pink Pistols chapters being born, Smith told KDVR that he has volunteered to start one in Colorado Springs, even though he's not gay.

“So, I look at it as a disenfranchised minority that needs someone who’s willing to reach out and say, 'I’m here as a resource to help,'” he told the station.

Members of the Pink Pistols regularly meet at gun ranges to practice shooting.

After the Orlando terror attack at the Pulse nightclub, the Pink Pistols issued a statement asking the public to focus on the attacker's motives rather than his guns.

“This is exactly the kind of heinous act that justifies our existence," Gwendolyn Patton, first speaker of the Pink Pistols, said in the statement. "At such a time of tragedy, let us not reach for the low-hanging fruit of blaming the killer’s guns. Let us stay focused on the fact that someone hated gay people so much they were ready to kill or injure so many. A human being did this. The human being’s tools are unimportant when compared to the bleakness of that person’s soul. I say again, GUNS did not do this. A human being did this, a dead human being. Our job now is not to demonize the man’s tools, but to condemn his acts and work to prevent such acts in the future.”

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