An open letter to the now-former Facebook friend who chose to post a picture of a gun on Christmas Eve

Dear ______________,

You may have noticed in recent days that you haven’t been seeing any pictures of my cat in your Facebook feed. That’s because I’ve unfriended you. I hope you can live with the barren cyberscape your life has now become. If you can’t, then you should have thought about that before you posted that picture of a handgun you got for Christmas on Facebook.

“Merry Christmas to me! :-)” you tagged it in the worst use of the smiley emoticon I have ever seen. Well, Merry Christmas to me! :-)… I’ve dumped your ass. I don’t need your negative, bougie death cult in my life.

I need to get this said right away: Do you have any idea how tacky it is for a grown-up to post pictures of the expensive things they got for Christmas? Nothing like rubbing your good fortune in people’s faces. You’re right up there with people who post about getting their seat upgraded from Business Plus to Business SuperBigDick Deluxe or complain about how hard it is to find a good ‘Vette mechanic.

I’m by no means a religious person, but I do get a strong sense of peace from attending Christmas Eve services at the church where my brother-in-law is the minister. Maybe it’s the especially quiet candlelit version of Silent Night they do, or maybe it’s the sense of tradition. First there’s the connection with my family; we’ve been going to see him do him this service since I was a kid, not to mention we gather for crock-pot meatballs and games beforehand. But it’s also the two thousand years of people gathering to celebrate the birth of the Babe in the Manger and the countless millennia of folks celebrating with light on or around the longest night of the year.

santagunBut most of all, Christmas Eve is a night of PEACE. You know peace; it’s that thing without guns. Without shootings. Without fear. The Magi brought gifts not Glocks. What the hell would an infant do with a Glock anyways? Tuck it into his swaddling in case one of the sheep got, y’know, uppity? But I guess you live your life in fear of the uppity, don’t you?

Whatever the reason, by the time I was getting ready for bed, I was filled with all sorts of Christmas spirit. And maybe a wee bit of Maker’s Mark. But then because I can’t live without seeing if those little red numbers have changed, I picked up my phone to look at my Facebook feed, and I saw it: that fucking picture of a newly unwrapped handgun.

The worst part, other than your misplaced pride, was the fact that the gun was red. Like Santa’s jolly suit. Like a Voit playground ball. Like a child’s little red Radio Flyer. Sense a pattern here, fashionista? I pray to pistol-packing Baby Jeebus that no small children ever come in contact with you. But then, it wouldn’t be much of a Christmas prezzie if it wasn’t in a seasonal color, right?

Why does it even need to be in a color, you Calamity Jane of the Kohls? A gun should be the ultimate no-fun, no-frills utilitarian item. The fact that you chose a color for your gun suggests to me that you can’t wait to brandish it, and that means, no doubt, that you should not be trusted with a gun.

But you say, “Ohio is a backwards-ass open carry state; I can have my gun in the car with me, and it’s important that it match my minivan.” Okay, I’ll give you that one. The law allows for open carry in this state. But I have news for you…. RED IS NOT YOUR COLOR. You are a Spring. I could get away with a red gun because I’m a Winter. I could also get away with gun because I wouldn’t be sick enough to post a picture of it on Christmas Eve. Seriously, “Merry Christmas to me! :-)”?

A gun is pretty much a permanent solution to a temporary problem. And that problem won’t necessarily be a bad man with a gun. That temporary problem could very well be a long, dark night of the soul. To be honest with you, I have no business having a gun, no matter what some fussy men in powdered wigs a couple centuries ago misplaced a comma about. I hope every election that intelligent people elect other intelligent people who will enact laws to keep guns out of the hands of people like me. You probably know I’m bipolar as fuck, and I’m 100% sure that had I ever owned a gun in my lifetime, I would not be around to rant at you right now. All that would be left of me would be a red stain on the wall –a stain which, no matter how hard you tried to accessorize, would not go with you because you are not a Winter. Listen, _______, from what I slightly remember, you seemed like a nice person in high school. But no one, no one, is immune from the soul-crushing depths of despair. Permanent solution to a temporary problem.

Now before you go and say that your gun is meant to keep the peace because only a good person with a gun and stop a bad person with a gun, can we just have one fucking night in this Dodge City of a country where I don’t have to have some reminder of the gun epidemic rubbed in my face. You are part of the problem. You’re just making sick people believe that any problem can be solved with a gun. I know at this point, if you’re still reading, you’re saying that you’re responsible and that you’re following all the safety protocols. And I have no doubt you’ll keep the gun locked and the ammo stored separately. But why does everything have to start with a gun with you people? To paraphrase John Cleese in Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life, “Why not start her off with some pepper spray before you go stampeding to a Glock?”

But to end, your sick, sad Christmas present has given me a belated Christmas present: a renewed sense of purpose going into 2016 to fight against the culture of Death over Peace you are trying to force upon us normal, life-loving Americans. I will not go quietly into that violent night, holey night you so desperately seem to want.

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