I’ll be the first to admit when it comes to the products I buy, the colors I wear, and the activities I participate in, I fall in line with what’s considered a “gender norm.” I own an SUV, grew up wearing blue, hunt and fish more than I should and sport what I consider to be a respectable hunting beard. This all sounds pretty normal for a 25-year-old guy except for one small fact: I love pink guns.
From birth, society instills what’s generally accepted as being normal or “ok.” Deviate too far from these norms and your path through life may become a tougher row to hoe. Hence my first reaction to pink firearms: “Wow, that’s dumb. I wouldn’t be caught dead in a pheasant field or duck blind next someone who carries that.” However, before I start to make my old Gender and Communication professor cringe, I’ll confess I was viewing these bright and shiny synthetic guns from the wrong vantage point.
I’m not going to rush out and buy a pink shotgun, because frankly, I don’t want one. That said, I love the idea of them. They represent a larger acceptance of the hunting and shooting community and help bridge the gap to an oftentimes neglected portion of the outdoor world. Women hunt. Girls want to hit the field with their dads…and even moms. And believe it or not, some wives and girlfriends would love an invitation to come along and chase birds with you, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong if it takes a pink gun to get that conversation started.
More pink guns = more women shooters = more hunting households = more kids involved in the great outdoors = future conservationists. Seems like a win-win situation. If a shiny, synthetic gun that flairs ducks from 100 yards is the easiest way to get more people involved in the lifestyle we love, then let them flair away because at least you’ll be in good company.
- Andrew Vavra, Pheasants Forever’s Marketing Specialist.