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Here are some short excerpts of interviews from the kids featured in GUNSTORIES:

Merry Briski

 “ If you’re going to be in contact with a gun or around the shooting sports at all you need to have an understanding of value of human life and of the power of what you are holding in your hand. -

Theo Milonopolous

“ I just don’t see any purpose for them in our lives today. Maybe our forefathers needed them 200 years ago. But now, what do you need them for besides killing something?  And you can’t shoot in most urban cities today, so why do you need a gun? You are willing to kill just say for hunting.  Well what’s the point of killing something. Is that supposed to be fun?”

Cori Miller

 “The first time I was taught to use a gun, I remember it like nothing else.”…  I used to be really shy. Once I started shooting I got less shy and I really started coming out of my shell. People were then like, oh, I know who you are. And it really makes you feel that you have some self -worth and makes you have confidence.

Adam Galvan

 “I was looking at it, at the barrel from the side and then right at it and then just BAM, it fired. I fell backwards. I didn’t feel anything; it was like a dream. I was thinking I’m going to wake up soon.”  

Sarah Davis

 “ What I do think is, it all comes back to the idea of, if we’re ever going to put a stop to things like this then we need to come to terms with the fact that people who do this, they’re human. They’re not so different from you and me and you’re not going to be able to just pinpoint and figure out who’s evil.  It doesn’t really work that way.-


Victor Salgado

 “It happened so fast. ….Antonio, he just laid in my hands and I’m like “Antonio”,  I started screaming “Antonio!” I had his blood all over me. …….We drove him to the hospital. He died on the way over. I was covering his bullet hole. I couldn’t believe it. You know, everything was going perfect and then my friend died. Who would have expected that on such a good day something so tragic could happen.”

Lupe Ornelas

“You know, getting shot, it’s just something I’ll never forget. After that happened,  I wasn’t the same person…… I was very scared about who I was around, thinking there were people that were going to put me in danger. It changed my life a lot.”

Aushayla Brown

“A gun took away my mom. ….You can have physical pain and you can do something to make it go away. But once a bullet hits, and the person is gone, there is nothing you can do about it. And you know what it’s like to have someone taken away from you? They say the worst pain is from a paper cut. That’s not the worst pain. The worse pain you could ever have is emotional pain. There’s no prescription drug for that.”

 Jeff Naswadi

So I guess I’d say guns have changed my life politically, I mean, we have obligations to stand up for our rights. Not just about guns, but in everything.  I think there’s a lot more credibility to the pro-gun side than there is to the anti-gun side because we’re standing up for something that’s written clearly within the Constitution, while the anti-gun side is trying to slowly change the meaning of that.”

Rosie Heil

Yeah, growing up with a pro-gun  mom or a pro-gun dad,…it’s definitely made my life different….. Growing up with an anti- gun mom or dad is pretty bad because you don’t get to hear the second side of the story. You don’t get to hear why guns are good, just all the bad stuff about guns. I’m just like Maggie, if I had Million Mommer mom, then I’d probably be anti-gun. And my mom teaches us about guns and how to clean them. She speaks at rallies and …I would definitely say I’m proud of my mother trying to preserve the Second Amendment.

Lonnie Washington

 “One difference that I see from when I was growing up is, if you had a problem, you knuckled up and put your gun on the cement and went at it. It was more of a respect thing.  But now, it’s shoot first ask questions later. Kids really don’t know the damage that guns can do. If they get a chance to see that you don’t get back up after you get shot, then I think they start to understand....“Another thing about guns, it’s a fad. Like everybody wants Michael Jordan shoes. Every kid that wants to have that power. They think, “Ooh I got a gun. I’ll get this girl over here. I’ll get a little more respect.”  But kids don’t know what they’re doing. And like Gil says, once you shoot the gun and it goes off, you’re in a whole different ball game.”

Luz Santiago

“I’m assuming that the kids reading this will know these stories are real. The stories come from hurtful backgrounds. And as powerful as guns might seem, they’re not so powerful when you lose someone you love and when you have to do time. I would hope from reading these experiences, they would learn that guns aren’t toys and that guns can impact your life. It should not be the way for you to go and change your life. Why go through that route. Why would you want a gun to change your life? “