The Whippoorwill of Freedom Zapped Me Right Between the Eyes


Philadelphia Weekly's Steven Wells was intrigued when Philly photog Kyle Cassidy took portraits of many of the city's stereotype-busting gun owners for his book Armed America. Wells hit the streets to interview some of Cassidy's subject and came up with a fun anthology of profiles.

Patrick Rodgers is a registered but not entirely convinced Libertarian. He articulates the NRA line on gun control carefully and concisely. He argues eloquently for the right to bear arms, quoting historical precedents and skillfully linking the right to bear arms to other rights closer to liberal hearts.

Donley thinks Michael Nutter's stop-and-frisk policy will lead to racial profiling. Layton thinks Republicans aren't real conservatives, and disagrees with the NRA on a range of issues, but thinks "they're our 800-pound gorilla on Capitol Hill."

Punk rocker Chris says he's all for gun control, as long as his gun is taken last.

Bash, perhaps only half-jokingly, says Philly's murder rate would be reduced if illegal gun owners "learned to shoot straight."

"It drives me insane that we have this many murders," says Layton, "particularly this many murders where criminals are using guns. It's a real horrible thing and a horrible pain in the ass, and I hate lying in bed at night and hearing gunshots and wondering if bullets are going to come flying through my window. That sucks. But making sure my neighbor can't buy a gun isn't going to stop that."

Wells makes sure to include lots of off-kilter quotes (I could actually relate to the exchange about what to do when/if the zombies rule the Earth), but it's a good read.