This Pro-Gun Woman Group is Doing Incredible Things in America
Semi-automatic or revolver? Ankle or hip holster? A purse you can use to concealed carry vs. a concealed carry purse?
These are not your typically overheard female conversations – unless you’re attending a TWAW chapter meeting or event.
The Well Armed Woman (TWAW) is a national organization of more than 300 chapters and 10,000 members — not bad for a rapidly growing group that’s little more than three years old. The brainchild of Arizonan Carrie Lightfoot, TWAW is the outstanding result of the frustrations Lightfoot felt when she began to consider carrying a concealed handgun.
Lightfoot found no single resource that spoke to the female gun owner/shooter. In a male-driven industry, Lightfoot found very little information specific to the female’s different needs. She set out to create TWAW, ‘the complete resource for the woman gun owner.’
Apparently, Lightfoot was not alone.
A Gallup poll reports that 23 percent of all women surveyed said that they own a gun. In fact, women are the fastest growing demographic of new firearms owners. In the states that record gender in their data from 2012-2016, eight states saw a 326% increase in concealed carry permits applications for women.
The banner on the TWAW website reads “Where the Feminine and Firearms Meet”. Lightfoot’s aim is to Educate, Equip and Empower the female gun owner.
The group addresses the specific needs of female gun owners andshooters, covering everything from gun size (women generally have smaller, slighter frames and smaller hands) to strength (the average woman does not have the same strength as a man of similar size and thus can be perceived as an easy target.) Even topics like clothing are regularly discussed; the clothes women wear in different seasons of the year can make concealed carry more challenging.
The group also tackles the way firearms are marketed to women — the “pink gun” is not the only option for a female shooter, but if could be the first one offered to her in a gun shop. Until very recently a ‘little lady’ at the gun or ammo counter was assumed to be shopping for a man. Women staffers are becoming more commonplace as well. Female shoppers may approach the entire do-I-need-should-I-buy-a-gun topic with trepidation; a woman as part of the shop sales staff would be a welcome sight.
Once a woman has decided on her purchase, a female instructor makes the learning process easier. Women extend excellent support and encouragement to one another without competition. A woman who have never held a gun will tap right into the support that surrounds her. And an experienced female shooter might want to look in to becoming a certified instructor herself.
While male shooters also have kids and a home life, women are more likely to be concerned about safe storage; according to TWAW, mothers often want to see resources on how to protect and educate her children about the gun in their home. The NRA ‘Eddie the Eagle’ program and ‘Kids Health Gun Safety’ from Nemour’s Pediatric Health are good places to start child education research that will best suit your needs.
As a group, we still don’t know quite how to address women as gun owners, but that is changing. Back in 2000, a woman might have been at a loss to answer. Now, thanks to these female Second Amendment champions, her answer to some questions about gun ownership and her own firearms may very well be:
“I know my weapon and how to use it properly. I can’t display a concealed, but I’ll take you to the range on Saturday and teach you to shoot”.
Firearms empower women in a variety of ways and continue to surge in popularity, thanks to women trailblazers like TWAW.
~ Firearm Daily