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my new book:
Armed And Female - Taking Control
Now available at Amazon.com:
Armed And Female
Twelve Million American Women Own Guns, Should You?
"In the women's gun movement, Paxton Quigley is the great persuader."--Morley Safer, "60 Minutes"
Not an Easy Target
Paxton Quigley's Self-Protection for Women
PROLOGUE: I was a corporate executive at Playboy Enterprises in Los Angeles, during the last of its heyday years. It was during that time in 1981 that the company was forced to close down its highly profitable Playboy London Clubs and more than 100 betting shops across England as a result of its violation of that nation’s gaming establishment laws. They constituted the Playboy’s major profit center, accounting for 85 percent of the Chicago-based company’s pretax profit.
Employees were understandably concerned and over the next couple of years, lay-offs occurred throughout 1983 and 1984.
Playboy’s identity has represented many different ideas to people. Religious people have hated its founder Hugh M. Hefner and so have many feminists. Others believed he was a sage who opened the doors to the sexual and drug revolution.
Since Hefner’s death, countless articles have been written about him, especially about the juxtaposition between Hefner’s exploitation of women versus his editorial and monetary support to women’s political issues such as National Abortion Rights Action League (NARAL) and the Equal Rights Amendment campaign, as well as other issues such as the Hugh M. Hefner First Amendment Awards and the initial funding in1979 of the Children of the Night, which has rescued more than 10,000 children from prostitution in the U.S.
Children of the Night is a non-profit organization that was initially funded by the Playboy Foundation, which has rescued more than 10,000 children from prostitution in the U.S.
Additionally, hundreds of other non-profit organizations held fundraisers at the Playboy Mansion in Los Angeles. For years, The John Tracy Clinic, which helps children with hearing loss, held its annual tennis fundraisers at the Mansion. They were sold-out events.
Magazine, June, 1982.
Political candidates had their fundraisers there too, including Senator Edward Brooke, the first African-American elected to the U.S. Senate; John B. Anderson, a Republican from Illinois, who ran for U.S. President; Tom Bradley, the first African-American mayor of Los Angeles; Eugene McCarthy, who ran and lost to Robert F. Kennedy in the Democratic primary, as well as Governor Jerry Brown of California.
Through the years, literally, tens of thousands of women and men paid money to go to these charitable fundraisers at The Playboy Mansion.
Why? I discovered the answer working for Playboy Enterprises. The charitable aspect was only an excuse for going to these events, although some people wouldn’t admit it. There was something elusive about the Mansion that exuded sex for most people. It was if someone had taken an enormous atomizer, filled it with an aphrodisiac and sprayed it throughout the entire property. So, when most people went to the Mansion events, they felt sexy and they were happy. I saw this phenomenon over and over again. I felt it, too.
the popular vote. Hefner, a supporter of Anderson, held a fundraiser for Anderson at the Playboy Mansion.
It was in late spring, 1978, in Chicago at the Drake Hotel when Christie Hefner hired me to fill a newly created position, as Corporate Director of Community Relations at Playboy Enterprises, Inc., where I would be reporting to her and to Margaret Standish, who was the head of the Playboy Foundation.
Christie and Margaret were in the Chicago headquarters and I would be in the Los Angeles office at the 8560 Sunset Boulevard corporate office with its famous, but small “rabbit head” logo shining from the building’s roof-top.
My role was to promote the so-called “good side” of Playboy and the Playboy Foundation. Christie suggested that the evening before I started work, I should go up for a 7:00 dinner at the Mansion in Holmby Hills. She would be there and I would be meeting Hefner, and then tour the zoo, the grotto, the tropical garden greenhouse and the game room.
A week later after my meeting with Christie, I drove to the Mansion on the Westside’s Charing Cross Road. I was excited, but surprisingly not nervous. Once inside the gated grounds, I looked up a high grassy hill, caught a glimpse of the grand “Gothic-Tutor” house and then slowly continued up to the circular driveway to the front entrance where I was greeted by a waiting butler.
The butler led me through the house’s large wood-paneled foyer to the dining room where I interrupted a lively conversation between silk pajama-clad Hugh Hefner, who sat at the head of a long table with actor James Caan, comedian Bill Cosby, and Christie Hefner. Everyone stood up for introductions.
Christie invited me to sit to the left of Hef, as he was known to friends. As if we were in a restaurant, a kitchen staff member explained the specials of the day and we ordered whatever we wanted and conversation resumed. It turned serious.
We discussed the situation regarding the 63 Americans who had been taken hostage in the American Embassy in Iran some months before, as well as whether the Dodgers or the Giants would win the pennant.
Then Bill Cosby turned to me and said, “I like your name. Pax Quigley. Imagine, you’re a football ball player.” He took his index finger and began drawing an imaginary line down the dinner table and talked as if he were a sportscaster. “And there goes Pax Quigley holding the ball, crossing the forty yard line, to the thirty yard line, and, and …” he looked up at me, grinned and continued, “She scores a touchdown!” I stood up and curtsied. Everyone broke out clapping, except Caan who booed as if he were on the opposing team.
After the main course, Hef announced that we would “have our dessert in the game room and play some pinball and have more fun.”
Hef got up from his big chair and we followed him out of the main house to the game room, that housed some fifteen different types of pinball machines.
Hefner liked to play pinball. Since I wasn’t very good at it, Christie gave me a lesson. Soon I got the hang of it and, while eating ice cream, we all switched on and off to other machines for about 45 minutes.
Then, I smelled something … marijuana. Christie took a hit and passed the joint to me. I thought really quickly, ”Well, if she’s smoking, I guess it’s okay for me.” I took a hit and passed the joint to Caan. The joint came around again and I took another smaller hit.
About ten minutes later, I looked at my watch. It was 10:10 — too late for me. I told Christie who announced that I was leaving. The three men protested, but I said, “Hey, tomorrow’s my first day on the job.” Apparently, they understood.
Escorting me back to my car in the driveway, Christie explained to me that tomorrow we’d meet in the Playboy building lobby on Sunset at 10, introduce me to everyone, and show me my office. Also, I would get a tour of the Mansion in the afternoon. She added that the Mansion staff had put my name on the list so that I could go there anytime I needed. Day or night.
“To get you to know about Hef and Playboy, we’d like you to spend some days there looking through his scrapbooks (at his death, there were approximately 3,000 scrapbooks) in the scrapbook room on the second floor. You’ll meet Mary O’Connor, Hef’s assistant, who will help you.
She also pointed out that there were two fundraisers coming up at the Mansion in the next two nights: Tomorrow’s was for COYOTE — and both fundraisers were funded by the Playboy Foundation, which, she added, I would be representing on the West Coast.
Second night at the Playboy Mansion
I was back up at the Mansion at 8 p.m. for the COYOTE event. There were lots of cars waiting around the circular driveway for valet parking.
Walking into the large foyer, I was struck by the number of men hanging out, grabbing hors d’oeuvres from waiters’ platters, and sipping wine. But where were the women? I slowly made my way through the crowd and through the double glass doors onto the large flagstone patio that faced an expanse of lawn back-dropped by the lighted walls of the grotto. And there were more men! Eventually I saw the women who were mostly scantily dressed and rather sexy. (Disclaimer: I hadn’t had the time to research what COYOTE stood for).
Don Rogers, who was Playboy’s P.R. man, explained that COYOTE stood for “Call Off Your Old Tired Ethics” and was founded by WHO (Whores, Housewives & Others) in 1973 by Margo St. James, a former prostitute, who was campaigning for decriminalization of prostitution. I started laughing and asked why COYOTE members were at the Mansion. Throwing up his arms, Rogers matter-of-factly replied, “We’re giving them some financial help. Why not?”
I stayed to hear Margo St. James call for the legalization of prostitution. The men hooted and applauded. Frankly, I was disturbed by their exuberance and left early. I hoped that I would never have to publicize Playboy’s involvement in the campaign. Christie never did ask me. Today, legal prostitution is present only in Nevada with its 19 brothels.
Third night at the Playboy Mansion
I was more prepared for the next evening’s fundraiser for the National Organization to Reform Marijuana Laws (NORML) What I wasn’t ready for was the strong scent of marijuana when I walked into the foyer. NORML folks were well-prepared with “refreshments.” It seemed as if everyone was smoking it.
Most of today’s pot smokers and medical marijuana users don’t know that as early as 1971, the Playboy Foundation had quietly provided NORML with an initial funding of $5,000 and became its primary funder during the 1970’s; giving them $100,000 a year for seven years. Also, the magazine had focused attention on some of the most egregious acts of the war against marijuana smokers. Today, the organization has a large grassroots network with 135 chapters and over 550 lawyers. I guess Playboy put NORML on the map but Playboy preferred to stay under cover.
The following morning, I went to Mary O’Connor’s tiny office on the second floor of The Mansion to look at Hefner’s scrapbooks. Mary was six feet tall and prematurely grey. She was known to have spent more time with Hefner than anyone. She had been his trusted secretary, confidante, and adviser for more than 40 years.
She was considered “the Mother of the Mansion.” She took care of the Playmates and other women who stayed in one of the eight dormitory-like rooms. I once peeked into one of the rooms; they were dark and dingy. When the house was originally built in 1927, these rooms were the servants’ staff quarters.
I liked Mary immediately. She had a wry sense of humor and already knew that I was told to spend time looking at Hefner’s scrapbook. She laughed and said, “you can be there for months. There’re a couple of thousand scrapbooks. We have some ready for you.”
I went to a small room off the dormitory rooms and spent a number of hours over the next couple of days looking at the photos. I finally got bored and couldn’t look at another picture. Except I spent time looking at the photos of Hefner with Barbi Benton (aka Barbie Klein), who was his girlfriend from 1969 to 1976. I focused on his eyes and the expression on his face. I was taken at how he looked at Barbie and I felt he was really in love with her. She appeared on the cover of Playboy four times and in additional nude layouts in two more issues.
Later I found out that Mary had “other” duties. She had good connections with the UCLA and USC sororities. Almost every week, she’d talk to the sororities’ House Mothers, asking if any of the coeds wanted to come up to the Mansion for Friday night dinner. A Playboy limousine would pick up the young women and later bring them back to the sororities.
Once while at the Mansion at a Friday night dinner, I made a point of sitting next to a 19-year-old coed from USC.
“Are you having a good time here?” I asked.
“Yes,” she said, “it’s real pretty here.”
“Do you plan to come back?”
“God, no. The men here are so old,” she whispered, rolling her eyes.
In other weeks and months that followed
During my stint at Playboy, I was asked to be on a number of Advisory Boards. One was the Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center where I suggested that we have a luncheon meeting at the Playboy Mansion, and I would give them a tour of the grounds.
Since the board was made up of men except for me, they liked the idea. One day, shortly thereafter we met at noon for lunch there and I gave them the tour. It so happened that on that afternoon four women were sitting topless on chaise lounge sofas around the pool area. We passed them by on our way to the zoo area. On the way back, one of the men asked if they could walk around the pool again. Unfortunately, (for the men) when they returned, the woman had put on their bikini tops. As we left the area, I kidded with them about missing a second ‘look’ at the pool. They all started laughing.
John Sack was Esquire’s war correspondent in Vietnam and also editor for Playboy magazine. In ”M” (New American Library, 1967), John followed an infantry company from its training at Fort Dix to battle action in Vietnam. Praised for its mix of compassion and objectivity, the book grew out of an Esquire cover article, ”Oh My God! We Hit a Little Girl,” which remains the longest article to appear in the magazine. Some of his other books proved more controversial. While writing ”Lieutenant Calley: His Own Story” (Viking, 1971), an account of how William H. Calley Jr. came to be convicted for massacring Vietnamese civilians in My Lai. Photo: Larry Logan
Around that time, Christie wanted to add more staff to my department. Linda Tillman, an attractive African American woman who was in personnel, was transferred to my area. Her brother was a guard at the Mansion. Linda said she could tell me “all about what happens at the Mansion.” I said that I didn’t want to know because if I did, I wouldn’t be able to do a good job.
Christie also decided to hire a recent Playmate in my department. The 25-year-old pretty woman was very well-educated and even studied in Europe. She was nice to work with and eager to take on responsibilities, but a month into her job, she came to work later and later. We all got in at about 10 a.m., but she began arriving at noon and even showed up at two in the afternoon. She also looked tired and her once-smooth face broke out in pimples. I told her that she had to come in earlier like we all did. I soon discovered that she got hooked on the Playboy Mansion late-night scene of drugs and sex, and, unfortunately, our promising star had to be fired.
Playboy magazine’s 25th Anniversary was coming up. Christie told me that I would be going out with Playboy photographer, Dwight Hooker, to hunt for the Anniversary Playmate.
The plan was to publicize the event in major college towns’ newspapers announcing that Playboy magazine’s representatives were seeking the 25th Anniversary Playmate. The ads informed where and when Playboy’s staffers would be conducting interviews.
The first stop was Columbus, Ohio. The photographer and I had a two-room hotel suite for interviews and photo-taking. We started at ten in the morning and worked until six in the evening for two days. I was amazed at how many women showed up. There was almost a continuous line outside our hotel door, except when Dwayne and I broke for lunch.
When the applicant came in, I would give her a standard form to fill out and ask her a few questions. Two questions brought the most enlightening answers:
“How did you find out about our ‘open-call’?” and “Why do you want to be the 25th Anniversary Playmate?”
A very high percentage of the women responded that their “boyfriends, brothers.” and even their “fathers and mothers” told them about the ad and “encouraged” them to go to the “interview.”
Others said that it was “a chance to become famous” or “to be a movie star.” A few just wanted the money, or so they could leave Columbus.
My biggest surprise in the answers was to the question:
“Are you willing to pose full-frontal naked?”
Everyone of them said “yes.”
The second stop on our “search” for the 25th Anniversary Playmate was Norman, Oklahoma, home of the University of Oklahoma.
There I heard the same story that I heard in Columbus when I asked:
“How did you find out about our open-call?”
A lot of people of both sexes encouraged these women to go to the interview.
And Norman, Oklahoma was where I met the future 25th Anniversary Playmate. Her name was Candy Loving. She spoke well, was very pretty, but not beautiful, yet had the so-called freshness of a country girl.
Candy, who was 22 years old, worked in a local dress shop was also a waitress when she saw the ad in the local paper. Her (then) husband urged her to try out.
When the final decision was made, I remembered her, and was not surprised. Candy beat out 35,000 other women. After the centerfold and publicity around the 25thAnniversary, Candy then undertook her assignment of traveling throughout the world for a year as the Ambassador of Playboy magazine. Unfortunately, her glamorous career was not ever-lasting.
My next Playboy assignment was to interview upcoming Playmates to see if any of them would be possible candidates for a job position. I remember one afternoon, Marilyn Grabowski, who was Playboy’s Photo Editor, sent to my office an incredibly beautiful young woman who was going to be a Centerfold within two months. I inquired about her future plans.
“I don’t want to be around my town when the magazine comes out on the newsstands. I never told my folks that I posed nude for Playboy. My father would be horrified and embarrassed. I’m taking the $10,000 and going to Europe.
“I have no plans to come back to America.”
Part II, continued. After those two road trips and interviewing Playmates, I told Christie that I thought she was wasting my time with Playmates. She agreed and told me that my next project would be quite different and challenging, because its subject was historical and dear to Hefner’s heart. It would be a travelling exhibit called “Freedom Of The Press: The Anglo-American Struggle, 1644-1837,” introducing the First Amendment Freedoms Collection of the Chicago Public Library.
I reported to Martin Cooper in the Los Angeles office, who was Senior Vice President of Marketing & Corporate Communications. The exhibition travelled to various cities for two years and in each location, it opened with a reception with local dignitaries in attendance and press coverage.
It would begin in Los Angeles with an opening reception with Hefner in attendance. At around that time, I was working to set up a women’s group called “Women in the Middle Of …” with two women from Pasadena named Maggie Cherniss, the wife of Charles Cherniss, editor of the Pasadena Star News, and Marjorie Chandler, wife of Otis Chandler, publisher of the Los Angeles Times. Marjorie was hosting a Saturday afternoon luncheon to introduce our idea to a group of local women.
When the luncheon ended and people were leaving, Otis Chandler walked in. I introduced myself to him, and explained that part of our exhibit would be aimed at publicizing the exhibit to Chicago area schools and inviting school trips, so that children could learn more about the history of our country and the First Amendment. He liked the idea.
“Is Hefner coming to the opening?” he asked.
“I’ve always wanted to meet him. I admire the guy. I like him.”
Chandler agreed to co-sponsor the exhibit in the building’s public space, for two months. He said he would host the opening of the exhibit.
My next big challenge was New York City. Thomas Orlando, Curator of Special Collections and Archivist at the Chicago Public Library, suggested I contact the Fraunces Tavern Museum (54 Pearl Street). The museum and tavern is the city’s oldest building in New York City and is where General George Washington bid farewell to his troops. It was the perfect historic site for the exhibit. At first the director was a bit concerned about Playboy’s involvement, but after talking with Thomas Orlando, it was a done deal.
Our last exhibition was held near the Atlantic City Playboy Casino and Hotel in the Seaward Gallery of the Atlantic City Art Center with a reception on August 14, 1981.
Hugh M. Hefner Awards
Christie came up with a brilliant idea regarding Playboy’s strong stand for America’s First Amendment rights. In 1979, in conjunction with the company’s 25th anniversary, she established an annual awards program to those who had dedicated their profession, and some their lives, to upholding and exercising their First Amendment rights in seven categories.
That first year the winners were decided by a group of “heavy-hitters” such as Los Angeles Mayor Tom Bradley; playwright and social cartoonist Jules Feiffer; Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences president Fay Kanin; The Nation magazine editor Victor Navasky; and New York Times associate editor Tom Wicker. Christie named it The Hugh M. Hefner First Amendment Awards, which continues to this day. The event was held at the Playboy Mansion with Hefner in attendance.
One of our awardees was Sonia Johnson, a fifth generation Mormon living in Utah and a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (LDS Church.). She co-founded with three other women “Mormons for ERA,” and in the late 1970s was publicly critical of the position of The Mormon Church that was against the Equal Rights Amendment. Sonia was ex-communicated from the church for her activities.
I called Sonia and told her of her award. She was reticent because it was coming from Hugh Hefner. She said she would think about it for a few days and would call me back. Within three days, she called and said she was honored to receive the award, and would come to the awards luncheon. We made all the travel arrangements, including the hotel. Over the next two months, I periodically called her just to make sure she was on board. She was always positive.
Like many events, the awards luncheon was held outside in a gigantic tent with about 150 attending. There were a number of people from the Los Angeles chapter of the ACLU, including its long-time president, Stanley K. Sheinbaum, who established the ACLU of Southern California, as well as some Hollywood celebrities, including Norman Lear.
Christie hosted, with Hefner sitting at one of the tables. Then came the moment, when Christie announced the award to Sonia Johnson who walked up to the podium.
She said: “Thank you for the award, but I cannot accept it because of Playboy magazine’s attitude of using women as sexual objects on the covers and inside the magazine.” And she walked off the stage.
There was a collective gasp from the audience. We were stunned. I went over to Hefner and asked him what he wanted to do.
“Nothing…” he said, adding, “She voiced her opinion and that’s what the First Amendment is all about. I’m sure the press will want to interview both her and me. Please, line them up.”
He smiled at me and I returned his smile. That evening, I called my mother who lived in Chicago and told her about the day’s events. “Mom, I have a job made in heaven,” and I meant it.
Conference of Hispanic Feminists in San Jose, California
In 1980, there was a conference of one thousand Hispanic feminists in San Jose. I attended to speak about the Playboy Foundation’s philanthropic contributions to the Equal Rights Amendment, as well as other women’s rights groups. Walking up to the stage to address the group, the women booed and yelled all sorts of onerous names at me. The chairwoman tried to stop the heckling, but they kept on, and I literally was forced to leave the stage.
I didn’t expect that kind of “welcome.” As I walked out, Connie Skipitares, a staff writer for the San Jose Mercury newspaper, grabbed me and said, “Come with me. I want to do a story on Playboy.” She wrote a positive article about Playboy and extensively quoted me. She ended the article with the following: “Basically, we are a grass-roots foundation,” said Ms. Quigley. “There are a lot of organizations out there working in the area of controversial issues like abortion rights, marijuana legalization, gay rights and they cannot get funds from establishment foundations. We give those groups money where nobody else will.”
Another project that required my attention was the Playboy Jazz Festival at the Hollywood Bowl, as well as on the KCET Public TV event where Hefner gave a donation to rebuild the small theater at the station. KCET renamed the theater The Hugh M. Hefner Theater. Two years later I noticed that the station had taken down the Hefner plaque. I didn’t have the guts to tell anyone at Playboy.
Another year-long project was the LeRoy Neiman/Andy Warhol: An Exhibition of Sports Paintings in November, 1982 at the Los Angeles Institute of Contemporary Art on Robertson Boulevard.
The Institute was located off the beaten track in LA, at 2020 S. Robertson Blvd. It opened its doors in 1974 by its director Robert Smith. The Institute’s primary mission was to support local contemporary artists in the community.
Because of decreased public spending to the arts, the Institute fell on hard times by 1980 and needed additional funding. One day, I received a call from Smith asking if we could meet. He had an idea that he thought Hefner would like bringing Neiman and Warhol together for an exhibition of the artists’ sports paintings that would include an opening night party ($125 per person) where both artists would be present.
I asked him to put together a proposal and I gave it to Martin Cooper, who presented it to Hefner, who liked it because he had close business relationships with both Neiman and Warhol.
LeRoy Neiman and Hugh Hefner met in the early 1950s, when Neiman was doing women’s high fashion drawings and Hefner was a copywriter at Carson Pirie Scott department store in downtown Chicago. When Hefner had the idea to start Playboy, he asked Neiman to do the original artwork, and the “Femlin” was born. From then on, every issue of Playboy had two black and white Femlins. She was usually on the jokes page behind the centerfold.
Neiman contributed two Femlins drawings for every monthly issue, for 50 years.
Neiman became a “popular” American artist, but was never considered a “good” artist. Nevertheless he ended up a multi-millionaire.
Andy Warhol was commissioned to do art for Playboy magazine multiple times for nearly 25 years. The most iconic of his works was the Rabbit Head Logo that appeared on the January 1986 cover of Playboy. It became one of the most widely known and valuable pieces in the Playboy Art Collection.
The exhibit’s catalogue was beautifully done with photos of the artworks, plus two articles by art historian Lynn Thorpe McAllister with illustrations by artist Jeff Perrone.
On opening night about 200 paying guests began arriving at 7:30 for cocktails and hors d’oeuvres to see the 27 paintings of Warhol’s Muhammad Ali, O.J. Simpson, Willie Shoemaker, Dorothy Hamill, etc. and Neiman’s Joe Namath, Wayne Gretzky, Muhammad Ali, Jack Nicklaus, etc. Many of those attending purchased posters of four different paintings and were waiting for them to be autographed.
Finally, the stars arrived. Hefner came in with seven beautiful young women, followed by Neiman and Warhol. The photographers snapped their photos and people asked for autographs. Warhol never smiled and just stood there as if he were in a coma, while Neiman flitted around.
The entourage left at 9:30 and returned to the Playboy Mansion. I stayed awhile to discuss the evening with the Institute’s staff. Ultimately we hoped we would receive some good press reviews so people would come the exhibit.
Painting by Leroy Neiman of famed American golfer, Jack Nicklaus and painting by Andy Warhol of world-famous boxer, Muhammed Ali. Both Paintings were exhibited at the LeRoy Neiman/Andy Warhol exhibition at the Los Angeles Institute of Contemporary Art funded by Playboy Enterprises.
A few weeks later, I had a meeting with two of the movie directors at Playboy Productions. We were throwing ideas around how we could do a documentary on the Playboy Foundation’s contributions. I was there to give them an overview of all the work the foundation had done over the years.
There was a young man in the room who had recently been hired by the group. After much discussion, he turned to me and said, “You know, I have a friend you must meet.”
“Why?” I asked.
“Just call him. The two of you will really get along. Here’s his number,” he said as he scribbled a number on the back of his card. “His name is David.”
I called David the next day. We spoke on the phone for more than an hour as if we had known each other before. I’m happy to say that Playboy brought me together with David Patrick Columbia. We’ve been best friends ever since.
My book, Armed & Female was published in 1990. I advocated that women should own guns for self-defense. The American media from Good Morning America to Oprah, to The Wall Street Journal to Glamour Magazine, etc. were shocked by my advocacy—especially since I had been anti-gun.
But, how times have changed. Today, twenty-seven years later, women are the leading buyers of guns. A just-released study by the Crime Prevention Research Center (CPRC), reports that in eight states that record gender data for gun permit holders, women account for 36% of the total number of permit holders. These states had data from 2012 to 2016 and they saw a 326% faster increase in permits among women than among men.
Also, in general, concealed handgun permits soared by 1.83 million since last July, setting a record for the fourth consecutive year. That brings the total number of concealed handgun permit holders in the country to 16.3 million with some of the biggest increases occurring among women, as well as Asians and African-Americans.
Of course, I strongly advocate that any woman who is thinking about purchasing a gun should take a professional gun-training course that are provided by local law enforcemt or at private gun clubs.
I’ve recently been told that there’s been an increase in minority women learning how to shoot gun in a number of cities, such as Detroit, St. Louis, Cincinnati, Savannah and Dallas.
“Minority women are definitely increasing in numbers,” Rick Ector, a firearms instructor, said of attendees at his weekly course just outside of Detroit.
“Women overall — in particular, minority women — are looking toward guns to protect themselves against crime,” Ector said. “Women are definitely drivers in the market right now.”
The reasons cited for an increase in gun ownership among minority women are varied. Ector noted an increase in rape cases in the Detroit area and said, “There’s a huge rape problem here in the state of Michigan.” When Ector started as an instructor 10 years ago, he said he typically encountered only one woman in a class of about 15. Now, he said, “women make up half the classes.”
John Lott, of the Crime Prevention Research Center, published data in July showing a general upward trend in the percentage of people with permits to carry a concealed firearm are women in seven states — including Arizona, Florida, Indiana and Louisiana.
In a paper titled, “Concealed Carry Permit Holders Across the United States: 2016,” Lott wrote that, “While whites still hold the vast majority of permits, the number of black permit holders has grown more than twice as quickly as the number of white permit holders.”
“Concealed carry has increased most rapidly among black females,” Lott concluded. “From 2000 to 2015, the rate of growth was 3.81 times faster than among white females.”
This is important news for all of you who believe in the right to defend yourselves. If you have friends who doubt your position, please send them a link to my site so that they can hear about a real live situation.
From Google Alerts:
“Local defense attorney Edward Kroll says, given how the laws are written in Oregon, … because a homeowner has the right to defend themselves in most cases. … So jerry couldn’t pull out a gun and shoot him under Oregon’s laws”
For five years prior to her work in women’s security Paxton Quigley was an executive for Playboy Enterprises, reporting to Christie Hefner, CEO. She is on the Board of Governors of Impact/Model Mugging of LA, and took first place in the Charlton Heston Celebrity Shoot, Women’s Division, 2 years running. Her message of women’s empowerment hb aired on more than 300 TV and radio shows including The Today Show, Good Morning America, Oprah Winfrey, Larry King, Regis and Kathy Lee, Hard Copy, The NBC Nightly News with Tom Brokaw, 60 Minutes, CBS Evening News, Fox and Friends and many others.
Paxton was interviewed and profiled in the WSJ, the LA Times, Chicago Tribune, Miami Herald, NYT, Wa Post, and just about every major media outlet there is.
She is the author of 6 books and is here to talk about her latest, Armed & Female: Taking Control.
Some of the issues discussed during the interview are:
- I understand from your first book, which was written in 1989, that you were anti-gun before you decided to write Armed & Female. What made you change your mind?
- Story about women driving alone long distances.
- Talk about your experience holding classes in Los Angeles after the Rodney King Riots in 1993.
- What is the perception of gun ownership by women? How many own guns?
- Over the years, have there been any changes in women’s attitudes toward guns?
- I read that you have taught 7,000 women how to shoot a handgun. Who are these women and what was their motivation to get involved?
- What are the gun laws in NYS and in NYC regarding carrying a concealed weapon?
- I’ve read in the press that people are more likely to be killed by brandishing or trying to shoot an intruder? Is that true?
- You have written two sequels to your original book–the last one being titled “Armed & Female: Taking Control” in 20ll. Why did you do that?
- Experiences in other countries, e.g., pre-war Germany. What happened?
By David Patrick Columbia, New York, Published: February, 2015
PI went to Michael’s to lunch with Pax Quigley who is an old friend from Los Angeles and now lives here (and in Miami, still unable to withdraw from the Sun). Pax and I met over the phone, introduced by a mutual friend in 1980. We talked for the better part of an hour and that was it; we’re still talking. She was an executive with Playboy at the time. Playboy , namely the lifestyle of Hugh Hefner was always interesting conversation around Hollywood. For a lot of reasons having to do with (male) stars and the Bunnies…
By Kathrin Werner, New York, Published: November 9, 2013
Paxton Quigley created a handbag where you can safely carry weapons and accessories; it is black, plain, made of leather and is called “Pax” – like “peace” and as her first name. Quigley does not think too much of all the “pink” products. “They are too girly, I ‘m against it ,” she says. “It makes the weapons look frivolous. Weapons are a serious thing.” Quigley is a guru for the women’s movement and weapons. She looks a little like she was coming from the TV series Dallas: blonde, perfect hair-do, perfect smile, she does not tell her age. She has written four books in which she explains why women should have firearms. And she’s a shooting teacher, having taught over 7000 women how to handle weapons. “I have a small army” she says. For a while she worked as a bodyguard, among the many of them, Yoko Ono.
Quigley hated weapons all her life, she says; she was a democrat, even a relatively left. Some of her old friends have turned away from her since she fights for arming women. Sometimes it deters men from going out with her. But there was this key experience: It was the middle of the night in 1988, when the call came. A good friend was on the phone, in tears, she was brutally raped in her own home. Quigley took the girlfriend to the hospital and asked: If you had had a gun, could you have fought back? Yes, said the friend. “Back then I swore to myself that such a thing will never happen to me,” Quigley said today, ” Weapons prevent rape.” She learns to shoot a gun, buys a gun, the gun-hater becomes a gun advocate.
Piers Morgan, February 21st, 2013
The author of “Armed and Female, Taking Control,” Quigley addressed gun manufacturer marketing campaigns that are geared to a female audience, and the ways in which such advertising impact sales:
“I think they’re [gun manufacturers] marketing that way, but I don’t think women are following in that way,” she told the host.
“In most cases, I would say that women go to a gun store. And even before they go to a gun store, they first learn how to shoot and they’re not shooting pink guns,” said Quigley.
A Gallup poll reported that in 2005, 13 percent of all women owned a gun. That number jumped to 23 percent in 2011. Many women say they are buying guns to protect themselves. NBC’s Stephanie Gosk reports.