Part 2


A gun owner in Minerva, Ohio, defends his own and others’ right to bear arms.


Michael Kreitzer, Juvenile Corrections Officer

“You never know when at any second something might happen that you might need it. That’s the point. It’s not that you think it’s going to. It’s that you recognize the possibility that it can. You recognize the possibility that there are evil people in the world who do evil things and you have to be able to protect yourself against that.

“I think I’m an average gun owner because, I mean, I’m an average guy. I mean, there’s nothing really special about me. 
 “From an early age, dad would go out hunting, I went with him. You know, I was always in the woods with him shooting and you know, at the range shooting, and, you know, that’s just, it was a way of life. 

Read the full transcript

“We’re going to the Minerva Sportsman’s Club, a local range that I’m a member of.

“This is my AR-15 pistol, Hungarian AK-47, Marlin Model 60-22 rifle, Heritage Rough Rider, the U.S. made rifle that’s kind of a cross between an AK-47 and an AR-15, Spanish police pistol, SKS rifle, little Taurus TX-22, Ruger Mini-14.

“I own more than a dozen firearms and less than I want.
 Well, for several different reasons. Like any other tool, specific firearms are for specific purposes. I have rifles that are just simply, strictly for accuracy to try to put holes in a piece of paper far away. I have firearms for hunting. The majority of my firearms though are for defensive purposes.

“Over a period of years, that’s what most people do. They get one here, then they get one there, then they get another one. Sometimes they tell their wife, sometimes they don’t. Sometimes they just, ‘Oh no, I’ve had that one for a while. Yeah, don’t you remember I bought that back then?’

“So, this is 
Jason Sphon. He’s a friend of mine and a firearms instructor. His family runs the local gun shop here in town.

“What’d you bring with us today?”

Jason Sphon, Firearms Instructor

“Ah, I brought a duty pistol and a Henry Golden Boy.”

Michael Kreitzer

“Nice. Classic. 
Yeah, I think between all of us, we have some pretty good representations of what kind of stuff people own around here.”

Jason Sphon


Michael Kreitzer

Alright, let’s go get some targets.

“It’s wonderful if you’re a duck. It’s a horrible downpour but, you know, I don’t really mind shooting at it once in a while because you can’t always pick when you might have to shoot.

“I practice shooting with my firearms at least once a week. I try to get to the range as much as I can. Shooting is a perishable skill. If you don’t practice, you lose proficiency.

“Given that I carry a firearm with me everywhere that I’m lawfully able, I feel it’s incumbent upon me as a responsible person to be proficient with that firearm because any time that you press the trigger, you’re responsible for what happens.

“I think that the vast majority of gun owners are responsible people. If the 350 million firearms that are out there were the problem and if the 150 million gun owners were not responsible, those hundreds of millions of weapons would be put to use far more than the ones that are already misused.”

Nathan Sphon, Co-Owner, Sphons CCW and Armory:

“Maybe it’s a little different in the big cities where if you need help, help might be closer away. Here, we have massive response times. If you need help, it’s on you to provide that help for your friends or family. The police, you know, they’re 15 minutes away because they’re covering an entire county.”

Jason Sphon: “We grew up, if the car broke, you fixed it. If the electric is out, you fixed it. If the power company quit, you had a wood stove. I mean, all of this stuff and a gun was just, it was just a last tool in a whole line of tools that you used. Right? And it’s rooted in self-sufficiency.”

Michael Kreitzer:

“They demonize the tool. It’s not the tool that kills, it’s the person.

“When I hear about these atrocities that happen, when the mass shootings, you know, Parkland, Dayton, El Paso, and I hear the backlash from the media and from politicians, saying that if we had less guns, if people didn’t have guns, they wouldn’t be able to do things like this, I have to answer that the opposite is true.

“While it’s not a guarantee that the good guy will stop the bad guy, I can tell you one thing. There’s a lot better chance of stopping that from happening if he’s there than if he isn’t.

“People who want to curtail our Second Amendment rights [to bear arms] have wasted no opportunity to exploit any tragedy or atrocity that happens. I see no reason to believe that that strategy wouldn’t continue.

“I’m going to Washington DC this weekend because I want to have my voice heard. And I want to have my voice heard, not just for myself but for my kids, for my grandkids.”

Rally crowd: “… the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. Amen.”

Michael Kreitzer:

“We’re all coming here to let the politicians that work in that building up there, let them understand our rights aren’t negotiable. They’re not for sale. They’re not to be traded away for political advantage. They’re ours and we intend to keep them.”

Rally speaker: “
Guns are the teeth of liberty that protect our rights and keep men and women free from tyranny and oppression.

“If we allow them that are against us to undermine the Second Amendment, our entire Republic is for nothing.”

Michael Kreitzer:

“I believe that, you know, we’re not at the point in history where we would have to rise up in armed rebellion against our government. We’re not there. Our government is not a tyranny. Because right now we don’t have tyranny doesn’t mean that it can’t transform into tyranny easily. That’s why I think it’s still important for us to maintain our Second Amendment rights as a guarantee against our government.

“I think what people don’t understand about most average, everyday gun owners is that we’re just that. We’re average, everyday. We are doctors. We are lawyers. We are judges. We are magistrates. We are firefighters, cops, factory workers, mechanics. We are people. We are not the paranoid gun nut. ‘Government ain’t going to come take my guns.’ That, I mean, that’s not us. Now granted, there are always examples of that sort of thing, just as there are examples on the other side of the, you know, hold hands, Kumbaya, hippy-dippy liberal types. But that’s not everybody. We’re just people. We want to be left alone. We don’t want to be held responsible for the crimes of someone else. We want to live our lives and as long as we don’t harm anybody, we should be left alone.”

Rally speaker:

“… our Republic, our Constitution and our Second Amendment.”