50 Women from 50 states! Why? Well let me introduce you to the DC Project. Started by professional 3 Gun shooter and retired Law Enforcement Officer Dianna Muller, the DC Project is a nonpolitical group whose mission is to have female firearms professionals establish relationships with their individual state lawmakers to reveal the faces and stories of 2nd Amendment supporters and to serve as advisors on American gun culture. This diverse group of women is made up of gun store owners, competitive shooters, firearms and concealed carry instructors, and 2A radio talk show hosts. Not only are they involved in the firearms industry they are mothers, daughters, wives, military spouses, entrepreneurs, PTA Presidents, seamstresses, and professionals all bonded together by the common goal to ensure citizens of the United States keep their 2nd Amendment Rights.
This past February, 13 ladies from around the country and I met in Washington, DC to begin the ground work for our July trip. Our job as team leaders is to work out all the details for our future trip in July with all 50 ladies. So what all is there to meeting your legislator? Well preparation is key. I began preparing by researching current 2A bills being proposed in this session of congress and whether my state representatives were for or against proposed legislation. I wrote emails followed by phone calls for about 3 weeks out from our February 25-26th time frame. I got creative on how to approach representatives that were not in my district. I just so happen to be a facilitator for a chapter of A Girl & A Gun Shooting League and I travel as a competitive shooter around the state. So, not only am I a constituent for my district, I am a conduit to many other constituents in my state, aka women firearm owners, thus helping with our cause. I was very fortunate to be able to get meetings with a Senator and four Representatives.
We all arrived in DC, ready to take Washington by storm, but I quickly realized that just navigating to the metro was not an easy task. Now granted I grew up on a tiny island with no stop lights, so cities are not necessarily in my comfort zone, but quickly my cohorts had me swiping my metro pass and learning the routes with my handy metro app! Now if you have ever been to The Hill you probably know that the congress and senate buildings run along both sides of the capital. What I didn’t know was there are cool passageways that run underground so that you never actually have to go outside to move from one building to the next. That’s an important detail when you have 15 minutes to run from one building across to another for your next meeting and it’s freezing cold outside.
All 5 of my meetings were with Congress members that are pro 2A. I figured I would start off with the nice guys and get a feel for it all before launching into the anti 2A bunch in July. Thankfully I also had fellow competitive shooters Heather Miller and Rebecca King along with me. Together, we shared our personal stories and highlighted our valuable resource of knowledge about current gun culture and how legislation affects us as gun owners. One of the best parts of the meetings was their willingness to not only encourage us but they also spent time brainstorming on how to approach both Senators and Representatives that don’t see eye to eye with the constitutional right to bear arms.
What we all took away from our meetings is that we indeed have a voice. The number of women firearms owners is growing rapidly in our country. Some statistics show it as high as 50% of current gun purchases are being made by women. In addition, women attending firearms training is up to 30%. Mothers, daughters, and sisters are the newest face of 2A. Why is that important? Well women tend to be the center of the family unit and are often the one who yay or nay to firearms being brought in the home. Firearms are seen as the toys/tools of overly macho and establishment males. Firearms used, safely handled, and promoted by women shatters that stereotype. With this rapid growth of interest and realization that firearms can be kept safely in the home, are a defense tool, and can also be a great family past time, our next generation of firearms owners are made and thus continuing to preserve our 2nd Amendment rights by knowledge and appreciation of those rights.
Please stay tuned for my post in July about the success of the DC Project! You can stay up to date with the DC Project at http://www.agirlandagun.org/dc-project/
She is a Certified Concealed Carry Instructor for the State of North Carolina, is the Facilitator for the Jacksonville, NC chapter of “A Girl & A Gun” and works to defend our 2nd Amendment rights as the North Carolina Representative for the D.C. Project.