Before I crossed the turnpike that Sunday, I told my father I was willing to learn, but that the idea of owning a gun still made me feel uncomfortable and afraid.
* * * he following week, after I returned to Philadelphia, my friend Jameel taught me to shoot.
I’m sure my father knew this is what would happen, figured curiosity would get the best of me and I’d eventually call with the news I was a legal gun owner with a permit to conceal.
Jameel rubbed my arm, promising my predictions of killing someone after dropping the gun would never happen. Driving across Philadelphia toward that range was like a death march. There were too many questions and not enough answers.
He reminded me that he was there to teach me everything I needed to know. Still, I found myself clutching a pair of ear protectors to my chest while men, young and old, fired long guns around me.
wo days before Philando Castile was killed while informing a police officer of his concealed carry permit, I learned my father had one, too.
I was home for the Fourth of July weekend, happy to be in the wide expanse of Ohio when my mother informed me that my father carried a gun.