[VIDEO] Nirbheek: New Gun Made for Women, Will it Make Them Safer? HELL YesPosted: January 12, 2014
This news feature is riddled with subtle (and not-so-subtle) anti-gun bias, and has an overall tone that I think is condescending to women. And men. Even the original title’s suggestion: ‘…but will it make women feel safer?” is offensive. The reporters here are all male, and though they make an appearance of getting contrasting points of view, it’s obvious that these men do not approve.
Which is interesting, because every woman in India that’s beaten, raped, or killed, is a sister. A wife. A mother. A daughter. Someone with men in their lives who endure profound suffering, having a family member victimized. These men don’t need to be insulted by some fatuous reporter narrating a news segment. The Supreme court in India recently ruled–not unlike here in the U.S. –no one is obligated to be a victim, and the option of protecting yourself, with deadly force if necessary, is a fundamental, universal human right.
A minor, but annoying error, in the news report, is the image on screen repeatedly flipping back and forth between a certified Nirbheek, and a gun that is obviously not a Nirbheek (it looks more like a hammerless Smith & Weapon or Ruger .38) with no effort to explain the repetitive, arbitrary appearance of gun that’s not relevant to the news report.
More worrisome: the most glaring falsehood in this video news report appears a few minutes in, when the narrator asks if “arming half the population” is really the answer. Excuse me? Who said anything about arming half the population?
Then he suggests it’s not really about protecting victims, it’s just a marketing ploy by gun companies. A smug comment, but about what you’d expect from an anchor, media figure, or news reporter who enjoys the luxury of working in an office building protect by armed private security guards. Someone who takes his personal safety for granted.
The notion that anyone is advocating that half the population– every woman in India–should be armed is misleading, absurd, dishonest, and stupid. Even if a fraction of the adult female population (or any other group that’s vulnerable to predators and violent criminals) were armed, 5-10%, or only 3%, this is a powerful deterrent. The evidence backs this up. Rapes and murders are always higher in places with the strictest anti-gun laws, where citizens are forbidden or restricted from individually protecting themselves.
In fact, that’s the whole point of a concealed weapon. An attacker can’t know who is, or isn’t carrying one.
Does this mean that the simple act of purchasing a gun and carrying it is the answer? No, but it’s a good start. Training, preparation, avoiding vulnerable situations, stronger community standards and support for victims, a functioning justice system and effective law enforcement, all of these things play a role. But any person that meets the basic qualifications to own a personal weapon should not be restricted from owning and carrying one, if they choose to. And if these conditions are met, yes, it doesn’t just make them feel safer, it actually makes them objectively safer. Nor should they be mocked, condescended to, or lied to, by the media.
The prisons are full of men–criminals and sexual predators–who will absolutely tell you that they prefer victims who are vulnerable, unarmed, unprepared, and easy to prey on. They are not interested trying to victimize a woman who might be armed, and might shoot them.
It couldn’t be any clearer. But this news report managed to muddle it anyway. As many do.
The Nirbheek has certainly sparked a national debate in India, about crime, self-defense, and the epidemic of rape and violence against women. I, for one, hope the Nirbheek, or a similar weapon, could be made at a more affordable price. In the meantime, its a step in the right direction.
From the NewX YouTube description:
Giving more power to women to defend themselves and as a tribute to December 2012 ganrape victim Nirbhaya, the Indian Ordnance Factory, Kanpur, has manufactured Nirbheek, a .32 bore light weight revolver, India’s first firearm designed for women. At 500 grams, it is also the first IOF handgun made of titanium alloy.
Priced at Rs 1,22,360, Nirbheek was launched on January 6 and has already received around 80 formal enquiries and over 20 bookings. “At least 80% bookings are from women licensees,” says Abdul Hameed, general manager of IOF. Described by arms experts as an Indian hybrid of a Webley & Scott and Smith & Wesson, for its simple mechanism and light frame, it is the smallest revolver made in India — an ideal to fit a purse or a small hand bag.
- Defense Against Rape: Meet the Nirbheek, India’s First Firearm for Women (punditfromanotherplanet.com)
- India makes first gun designed for women (deserteagletech.wordpress.com)
- India makes first gun designed for women (foxnews.com)
- Indian Gunmaker Reinvents the Webley Revolver, Renames It, And Charges US $2,000 For It. (thetruthaboutguns.com)
- Indian Women’s New Toy: Guns Not Boys (reason.com)
- Anger as ‘handgun for women’ named after Delhi rape victim (independent.co.uk)
- Handgun for women, named after Delhi Braveheart, sparks fury (ndtv.com)
- India’s ‘handgun for women’ sparks fury (arabtimesonline.com)
- India’s ‘handgun for women’ sparks fury (skynews.com.au)