was it real or just a dream?

A few weeks ago I was driving around town with my husband. We decided to go to the movie theater to see what was playing and then he wanted to show me this area behind the movie theater where they starting a housing development. We parked the car for a moment up on a hill to look at the empty lots where new houses would be in the future. “Does that guy have a machine gun?!?” said my husband. I was seeing the same thing and indeed, had the same thought. There was a young adult male standing at the back of his SUV pointing what looked to be a machine gun at something, as if he were about to do target practice with it. Next to him watching and laughing was a younger looking male (I swear he had to be a pre-teen) holding what looked to be a shotgun. I could see the face of the younger kid with the shotgun more clearly because he was facing us (they were both at a distance though – thank god) and he looked like he was laughing in a fun way.

I couldn’t believe my eyes. Was I really seeing what I was seeing? Was I really seeing two young adults playing with a machine gun in such an nonchalant way, right next to a busy shopping area? As we both stared in disbelief the guy with the machine gun turned his head and looked at us. I felt fear go through my veins and I wanted to be out of there right now. We drove away a few moments later. We talked about maybe calling the police, and maybe we should have, but I don’t think what they were doing was even illegal.

My mind keeps flashing on this weird, terrifying moment. I still can’t believe it was real.

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14 thoughts on “was it real or just a dream?

  1. Wow, what timing! I read your post just before heading out for lunch. As soon as I turned on the radio in my truck, the local talk station was talking about how the neighbor of the house where they found pipe bombs and ammunition from the couple who did the shootings in San Bernardino, saw many different people coming in and out of that house. The neighbor also said that they saw packages being delivered at odd times throughout the night. The neighbor knew there was something suspicious going on, but chose not to say anything. This also reminds me of the interview with one of the airport workers who checked in the lead terrorist on 911. He wanted to say something because there was something about the man he was letting through. One call would have notified authorities that this man was on a government observation list. Hindsight is 20/20, but my point is that Political Correctness is going to be the death of this country. The neighbor and the airport employee were probably afraid of being called a racist or worse. Thus, they just went about their business. I am not saying that you did not say something about what you saw due to PC, but in a lot of cases, if not most, people shy away from saying anything in fear of retaliation. Chances are those men you saw did not have machine guns. They were probably semi-automatics. Hopefully they were not up to no good. I stand behind the Second Amendment. Our Founding Fathers had the foresight to allow the people to protect themselves against its own government. We the People are the only ones who can protect ourselves. When you only have seconds, the police are just minutes away.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. having a feeling about something and choosing not to say something is not political correctness. Each person had their own personal reason for not saying something- and each reason is different. I can’t speak for the other examples but, as you mention, my reason had nothing to do with politics, or even fear really. Secondly, I don’t think political correctness will be the death of our country. The problem with our country is that opposing sides are unwilling to see eye to eye and compromise on important issues. We need to all put our egos aside and figure out how to fix things. Our problems are entirely fixable.

      I respect your belief in the second amendment. I disagree with the way it is currently being interpreted.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I agree that not everyone’s decisions in such cases are based on PC. However, I do believe there is a wave of PC sweeping the nation that is trying to control the speech. When you fear what you say or what you believe might get you in trouble, you have the tendency to stay quiet. That is what’s scary to me, and I believe it’s having a negative effect on the nation and the world.

        I agree with your ego statement. I think the guy in charge now definitely has a big ego. However, I believe compromise is the problem. I reside on the right side (pun intended) of the aisle and I believe those so called conservatives have compromised too much.

        This is what I love about the US. We can agree to disagree and live to argue another day, at least for now.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Honestly are there any politicians that don’t have big egos! 😉

          I agree with you regarding that chilling effect that makes it hard for people to speak up. I feel that too.

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  2. Good for you Moni! Re reply to first comment! What is very interesting to me about your story is that you felt it was probably not illegal. Why would it not be illegal to be showing weapons in a public area? I lived in Arizona for awhile and was under the impression that it was not alright to carry a gun or worse to bring it out in public. Not sure if I got that right? I would’ve been terrified in your situation!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I need to read up on gun laws in Oregon, honestly. Each state has different laws. And there are different permits for the way you carry a gun. You need a permit to carry a concealed weapon but honestly I think it might be ok if the weapon is in view. Like I said, I need to do some research on that – just haven’t had a chance. At the library a person came in with a machete (we could all see it) and we called the police. The police said they could do nothing because it was legal. I think as long as it can be seen its legal. But not sure. (It all gets complicated)

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      1. You got me thinking about it Katherine so I did a quick Google search: Oregon is an Open Carry state. Meaning it is perfectly legal to openly carry a gun. So my instinct was correct: I was not witnessing anything illegal (unless the one person was under 18) and if I’d called the Police they would have told me exactly that. Here is a link to some info on the Oregon Gun laws for more info: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gun_laws_in_Oregon

        I think it is interesting that the illegal part of it is that you can’t carry a concealed weapon. I don’t know why that strikes me as weird.

        It was a scary moment. Guns are fucking scary. Seeing one out in the open is scary. They are objects whose sole purpose is to kill. I don’t like them and I don’t like seeing them. It was very disconcerting.

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        1. I can understand how seeing a gun might frighten some people, especially if you are not used to seeing them. However, I would be willing to bet that if you found yourself in a situation like what has been going on in the news lately, you would wish someone was there with a gun to fight back and possibly save your life.

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          1. Nope. I doubt that would be the think on my mind. I’m a pacifist and I don’t believe adding more guns is the answer. I trust the police and SWAT and am fine with them saving my life. What I would like is not being in this situation in the first place.

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            1. That’s the problem. SWAT and Police are great, but they show up after the damage is done. I rather be in a position to defend myself and not have the Police draw the chalk line around my body.

              Liked by 1 person

      2. Wow! Carrying a machete into a library is legal? That is very uncomfortable for all concerned, except perhaps for the person carrying it! Laws are mysterious to me as they seem to be designed for only the initiated to comprehend. I hope you generally feel very safe where you are. I worry sometimes for my friend in NYC as we here a lot about gun massacres in the USA over here. It seems most often to happen in big places like cities and universities.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Pennsylvania is open carry, There’s a guy in my town who goes everywhere with an AR-15 style rifle slung over his shoulder and a big, chrome-plated big caliber pistol that looks like an old .45, on his waist. He goes in the grocery store and just walks around, not shopping, among other places. I’ve passed him several times at the store, in the mall, stood behind him in the line at Dairy Queen–a lot of folks walk out when he walks in–and the eye contact he makes, you can tell he’s just itching for a confrontation. I don’t think that he wants an excuse to shoot people, but to babble about his “rights,” like those guys who walk around outside schools with weapons. It’s all about the attention. What bothers me is not his delight in making people uncomfortable, but that it binds me to a specific reaction. I can’t avert my eyes and ignore him, because that gives him the satisfaction he craves, because he’ll think he’s intimidated me–so the only thing left to do is look at him hard, which I’m sure he takes to mean that I’m opposed to his god-given second amendment rights.

    Now the truth is, I’m not afraid of him, not at that point–he’s a pot-bellied, bent-spine, hunched over couch potato with skinny arms that have that flab that hangs down where he triceps should be, like a grandmother’s arms–he looks working class at first glance, but his hands are soft and his nails are clean. A fraud. I thinking: you with your holstered firearm, me with my baseball bat, let’s see who walks out of here. But that’s just me being angry and juvenile.

    What I’m sayhing is that the guns are all that make him tough. And the real irony is that I don’t really care about his arguable rights–I have no qualms with responsible gun owners, but these guys, these obsessive fetishists, whose self-image is so wrapped up in a tool–and that’s what a gun is, a tool for killing–I have no time for it. But that is the appeal, in the end, these redneck Beavis and Buttheads think buying themselves a gun makes them bad asses worthy of respect, when all they’re really doing is announcing their idiocy to anyone who crosses their path.

    As for the business owners, they have the right to ban firearms on their property, but the bigger companies–this guy likes a grocery store called Giant Eagle, because they don’t stand up to him–are afraid of what happens after. Not a shooting, but the NRA gets involved, dumps a bunch of money locally and organizes boycotts because, you know, in their eyes some rights are more important than others.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I can’t agree more with all of this. Very well said. Yes. This whole idea that they have to carry a gun to show their “toughness.” The idea that they have to even do this. I think that is what gets me too. And also the fact that their tool for this – their gun – does serve it’s purpose. It scares me and it has a chilling effect. Knowing someone has a gun, and that they are so egotistical that they are proud of the gun, scares me and prevents me from speaking up.

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