Women getting gun happy - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Women getting gun happy

March 29, 2006

Albany -- Whether it's for protection, self-empowerment, or sport, more women are packing heat.

Gun makers are marketing lighter and smaller guns just for women. Women can also find female hunting apparel for those looking to shoot in style. Some of them learn to shoot for protection. But for others, it's just for fun.

Taking aim and firing is what Amy Grasman has been doing at Flint Skeet and Trap for the past year.

"I started coming out with my husband, had never shot a gun, and started pulling, pushing the button, got where I wanted to try to do it," said female shooter Amy Grasman.

Now she comes out at least once a week, emptying shells and shattering clay targets.

Ed Stamper manages Flint Skeet and Trap and says there were no women shooters when he started, but that's changed now.

"Women like to feel safe and part of this is learning to shoot because then they can protect themselves. And the by-product of that is they get into shooting, they find out, hey I can do this, so then they become competitive," said Flint Skeet and Trap manager Ed Stamper.

Coming from a family with four brothers, Amy Grasman says competing is in her nature.

"I was the only girl so all the guys were like, oh she's a girl she can't do it. It was more of a challenge," said Grasman.

"Now I can hold my own with all the guys out here, so it's just fun," said Grasman.

Grasman's gun will stay loaded to challenge any of the men out on the range.

For many women shooting becomes a passion because they would try it out at the range with their husbands.

Not all people support gun-toting women. Some gun control advocates say more guns only increase the chances of accidents in people's homes.

Participation in an NRA shooting program for women has increased 1000 percent in six years.

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