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Blown Away: American Women and Gunsby Caitlin Kelly
Reading Group Guide
By Caitlin Kelly
Reading Group Discussion Guide
1) The author discusses her own experience of learning to shoot a handgun. Would you ever consider shooting a gun? Owning one? Why or why not?
2) While women face so much violence, especially from men, what can they do to better protect themselves? How can they better protect other women or their own children?
3) If you bought a gun for self-defense, how would your family and friends react? What if you bought one for hunting or sport-shooting?
4) If your daughter or a female friend or relative decided to get a gun, how would you feel?
5) Why do you think women with guns are often portrayed as sexy in the movies, but not in real life?
6) What do you think can be done to protect teenagers from gun violence in schools, to prevent another massacre like the one at Columbine?
7) What would you do if you found out that the person you were dating, or married to, owned a gun but had not told you about it?
8) Law enforcement remains male-dominated, with only 13 percent women. Why do you think this is? Do you think women would feel any safer, or be any better protected from violence, if there were more women in uniform?
9) How important is gun control to you when you vote? If you had the power to make a new law, or several, regarding gun use or gun ownership, what would it be?
10) Why do you think the gun "debate" remains so polarized? Can you imagine a day when it is not? What will it take?
11) Have you ever acted on your beliefs about gun ownership — written a letter to the editor or to an elected official? Made a donation to a gun control group, or gun rights group?
12) The author writes: "We can pay now or we can pay later." Do you think that poverty contributes to gun violence? Would increasing relief to the poor decrease gun-related crime?
13) What surprised you about this book? What did you learn that you previously did not know? Did reading the book affect or alter your views about gun ownership? How?
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