America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 39

Shooting Straight
with Lauren Boebert

L

By Mel Dixon, Managing Editor

crime, when criminals, by definition,
break the law.
" Is this you? " my friend laughed
when she sent me the video. I had
lived in Colorado, taught firearm
safety courses and am physically
similar to Boebert, so it was an easy
mistake to make. And, like Boebert, I
certainly didn't appreciate O'Rourke's
pointed threats to disarm law-abiding
Americans instead of going after the
real problems of crime. Unlike Boebert, though, it hadn't occurred to me
to confront him. I had to applaud this
brave, Glock-toting woman for standing up to him in a crowd of O'Rourke's supporters.
Looking into who she really was,
I discovered this was not the first
time I'd heard about her after all-
she'd made national news before
for the Western-themed restaurant, Shooters Grill, in Rifle, Colo.,
she and her husband had opened in
2013. After a man was attacked near
it, Boebert worried about the safety
of her staff. She began to open carry
a gun herself and allowed trained
staff to do so as well. Reporters were
shocked when they found out these
guns were not merely props.
The O'Rourke confrontation was
not the last I would hear of Boebert, either. She took that video's
momentum and turned it into an
astoundingly successful campaign,
becoming the first woman to represent Colorado's third congressional district.
Photo Courtesy Lauren Boebert Campaign

When I spoke with her just after
her freshmen orientation in December, it became clear how she's done
all she has: Boebert puts off so
much energy and passion when she
speaks, the air around her seems to
crackle and spark. When she turned
that energy to politics, she was
unstoppable.
A1F: How did you first get interested in guns?
Boebert: I didn't grow up around
guns. My mom was a Democrat, and
guns were " scary. " We were supposed
to stay away from them. But I'm a selftaught conservative. I moved out at 17,
started working and just learned that I
can take care of myself better than the
government ever could. Some of my
friends had experience with guns and
took me target shooting. I handled
an AR-15 and learned that they don't
just fire at will-all I had heard about
them was false. That was the extent
of my gun knowledge for a while. But
then we opened Shooters Grill, and
shortly after, a man was beaten to
death near the restaurant. I wondered
how I could protect my employees. I
soon purchased a handgun and began
to open carry. Then I had servers, who
had their concealed-carry permits,
approach me and ask if they could
open carry, too. I agreed-it was much
better for them to have it on them
than in their purse or car, and they
had the training, so I knew they could
carry responsibly.

Photo: David Zalubowski / AP

ike many, I first noticed Lauren Boebert when I saw a viral video
of her confronting Beto O'Rourke over his gun-control extremism at a town hall meeting in Aurora, Colo., in September of
2019. " Hell, yes, we're going to take your AR-15, your AK-47, " the
former congressman and (soon-to-be-failed) Democrat presidential candidate O'Rourke had just told the world during a debate in Texas.
" Hell, no, you're not, " Boebert responded, ignoring his supporters' boos
and jeers. She then pointed out how a gun can be an equalizer against larger
aggressors and demanded to know how O'Rourke intended to legislate away
A1F: What was the reaction to that?
Boebert: Locals didn't give a rip;
guns were nothing special to them.
It took months for anyone to care. A
woman came in to do an interview
about our food and thought that
the guns were fake-just part of the
theme. When she found out they
were real, the article changed. That
was the first time I saw that it was a
big deal to anyone.
A1F: Has anyone expressed concern
over safety?
Boebert: I take safety very seriously. All new employees undergo
basic firearm training, and can get
a carry permit, at no cost to them.
We all train and go target shooting together at least once a month.
We've done gun retention training, too, though we've never had
a problem.
A1F: You have four boys-do you
take them shooting?
Boebert: My boys go target shooting with me. The oldest two are definitely naturals-they're great shots.
Maybe it's the video games.
A1F: OK, let's pivot to your political career, which seems to have
launched with confronting Beto
O'Rourke at one of his town hall
meetings in Colorado. What drove
you to attend?
Boebert: O'Rourke has a background
of boarding schools, an Ivy League

america's 1 st freedom I february 2021

39



America's First Freedom - February 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of America's First Freedom - February 2021

Contents
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - CW1
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - CW2
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - Cover1
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - Cover2
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 1
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - Contents
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 3
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 4
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 5
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 6
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 7
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 8
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 9
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 10
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 11
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 12
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 13
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 14
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 15
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 16
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 17
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 18
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 19
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 20
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 21
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 22
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 23
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 24
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 25
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 26
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 27
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 28
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America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 30
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 31
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America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 33
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 34
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 35
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 36
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 37
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 38
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 39
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 40
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 41
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 42
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 43
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America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 55
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - 56
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - Cover3
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - Cover4
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - CW3
America's First Freedom - February 2021 - CW4
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