I am new to handguns, but rather than start easy with a .22 I decided to jump right in with a 9mm as a first pistol. I have signed up for a CCW class - coming up Oct 1 and 2 - and need at least a .380 to qualify, but decided 9mm would give me the best combination of stopping power and affordability. After some research I decided to get a Steyr M9 as my first pistol, procuring that from CDNN three weeks ago. While I waited in slobbering anticipation for the M to arrive, I got antsy and bid myself into an S9 on Gunbroker, which came two days ago. I also ordered 250 rounds of 147gr Lancer FMJ (after reading and consulting the likes of jng1226, Navy87Guy, and climb14er) to go with the 100 pack of 115gr WWB I picked up at McWally's, and that arrived the same day that my S did. So here I am, almost no experience shooting pistols yet armed to the teeth. Kind of like being all dressed up and nowhere to go. So why did I all of the sudden get an interest in handguns and sign up for a CCW class? More for ideological reasons than for safety concerns. I have some experience with trapshooting and hunting and am comfortable with long guns, and I am a supporter of hunters' and gunowners' rights, but reflection on the political turmoil across the globe that our generation has seen- Darfur/Sudan, Zimbabwe, the Congo, Rwanda, East Timor, Yugoslavia, Cambodia, and on and on - has helped me understand the relationship between the right to keep and bear arms and the freedoms I enjoy as an American. When Ohio gained CCW, with the controversy over reporters being able to publish the names of licensees (which my brother says they do in nearby Shelby County), I thought, "I want my name on that list." Even if I never carry a concealed handgun, I want to stand with those who take on this right and responsiblity. As a citizen and a patriot, I AM part of the militia, whether I bear or even own arms or not. If the list makes the paper I see it as a public declaration of my beliefs, an affirmation of faith in the wisdom of those who risked and even lost everything to throw off the yoke of tyranny 230 years ago. We risk little for freedom in this country today, and possibly being labeled a "right-wing nut job" is a small price to pay to protect the liberty we can take for granted. Urban liberals and European socialist utopians can call us "cowboys" or "gun nuts", but this is America - ain't it grand! Besides, while words will never hurt me, sticks and stones CAN break my bones, and my 9mm says that's not gonna happen. So I'm no longer part of the arm-chair militia; I'm getting into the game. Yeah, I want my name on that list.