About 2:20 this afternoon a reporter from The Seattle Times called me. They explained they found my name on the Pink Pistols website as someone who is LGBTQ friendly and offering firearms training in the Seattle area. I suspect it was this Pink Pistols post which linked to Erin’s Operation Blazing Sword.
Lots of gun people will tell you, with good reason, to NOT talk to the media unless you know they are a known friendly. The debate between talking to him and saying I wasn’t interested in talking bounced around in my mind as I listened further. The Seattle Times has never treated me unfairly. They have been very anti-gun in general, but they have never misrepresented me. I decided to listen and make up my mind after I got an idea of what their angle was.
They wanted to know if I have had an increase in interest in instruction from people in the LBGTQ community since the Orlando shooting. Okay. Probably friendly, I decided.
As I left my cubicle to find an empty conference room and get some quiet I told him, “That’s an interesting question.” And that if he dug into the Seattle Times archive deep enough he could find an article on the topic which mentioned me and Ray Carter (there is also a closely related Lewiston Morning Tribune article).
Once I had settled into a comfortable chair I told him my story. I jumped around some but I gave him a very brief history of Cease Fear, Ray Carter who approached Joe Waldron of CCRKBA with the idea of firearms instruction for people at risk in the LGBTQ community, the involvement of CCRBKA, SAF, and Washington Arms Collectors in the Cease Fear projects, and the creation of the Pink Pistols a few years later. I told him about distributing flyers for firearms self-defense classes to bath houses and gay bars on Capital Hill in the late 1990s. I told him about Erin Palette earlier this week creating the Google map of LGBT friendly firearm instructors. I told him that although 15+ years ago I was very active on the topic he was researching, until I added my name to the map and sent an email to the Yahoo Cease Fear list earlier this week I seen any interest in years but that I was pretty much disconnected from that side of things for a long time until this week. This week I had a couple of people contact me.
He seemed very interested and perhaps was taking notes. I told him to send me an email (over two hours later and I still haven’t received it) and I would send him a bunch of links. He said, “That would be great!” This blog post is probably going to be the collection of links I send him.
He had one final question for me. “How do you identify?”. “I’m heterosexual”, I told him. I continued with, “I’m very straight. But I have a nephew who is gay and a close blood relative, who values her privacy, who is trans.”
He thanked me and told me he probably wouldn’t be doing much more work on the story until Monday.
We’ll see if I misjudged whether they were a friendly or not. There weren’t any strangely worded, leading, questions which hinted an a hostile narrative. So, I think, it will either turn out okay or will be dropped.