More women are buying and carrying firearms every year, and the gun industry has responded in various ways, from creating scaled down versions of popular firearms for smaller-framed shooters, to producing guns they think women will buy, including those in bright colors like pink and purple.
In fact, just this year Taurus introduced an entire line of concealed carry pistols based on the idea of customized colors called the Spectrum.
Adam Weinstein at taskandpurpose.com says that an important step for attaining gender equity in firearms culture would be to get rid of all the pink guns.
In this op-ed he argues that there has to be a more inclusive way of “liberating women from the pink ghetto of their Cabela’s and Walmart sporting goods sections.”
“Manufacturers of guns and gun do-dads think there’s some critical segment of womankind they absolutely can’t reach unless they cute-ify their weaponry. So you get pink PPKs, pink .45s (but chambered in .22, you know, for a woman), woodland pink shotguns, pink ear protectors, hot-pink heart shooting targets, pink holsters, and, of course, the Hello Kitty AR-15.”
“In so doing, the industry is basically reifying an ossified construction of gender identity. That’s fancy talk for ‘If you wanna be a gun chick, you’ll love this pink gun, because you’re a chick.’”
In the post, Newsmax’s Alana Marie Burke says, “Pink guns are just a marketing ploy to raise the demographic profile of women in the NRA.”
Gun blogger Suzanne Wiley says in the story that pink guns are a canard at best: “When looking to buy your first gun for personal defense, make your choice on what fits you best, not what color matches the majority of your outfits.”
Others worry that the brightly colored firearms, especially since many are largely made of polymers these days, too closely resemble toys, and that guns shouldn’t be colored as such.
“Guns aren’t toys and when you start coloring them like toys, some people are going to treat them like toys,” says Youtube personality Yankee Marshal in the post.
Weinstein asks that if pink isn’t a “serious color” and people then might not take pink guns seriously, what does that say about the women who want them, and to whom they are being marketed?
“This actually speaks to a larger problem in gun culture. Firearms and outdoor corporations have fused their products and their brands to ‘traditional’ values, personified by figureheads like the Duck Dynasty boys. Functional tools are supplanted by an acquisitive fetish for the right status objects.”
“In this culture obsessed with status objects, pink guns become an ‘acceptable’ entry point for your moms and girlfriends and sisters. A lot of them may be okay with that, because they think pink is pretty. But is their pink-thinking the result of serious contemplation, or our society’s reflexive gender norms?”
“You’ll never know until we smash the norm. Ban pink guns. Women deserve black parkerized Barretts and so, so much more.”