Claim: Well-armed old lady with a carry permit isn't afraid of "a damn thing."
Example: [Collected via e-mail, November 2011]
I made a traffic stop on an elderly lady the other day for speeding on
She responded that she indeed had a .45 automatic in her glove box. Something — body language, or the way she said it — made me want to ask if she had any other firearms. She did admit to also having a 9mm Glock in her center console. Now I had to ask one more time if that was all. She responded once again that she did have just one more, a
She looked me right in the eye and said, "Not a damn thing!"
Origins: This story about a well-armed elderly woman driver stopped by a law enforcement office appears to have begun its online life in May 2011, after it was reportedly told at a Brush Country [Texas] Republican Women's meeting when the topic up for discussion was that state's concealed carry law. That rendition of the tale was framed as a third-person anecdote about an elderly lady and a highway patrolman, with no details provided as to where the incident was supposed to have taken place.
Later versions changed the story into one purportedly related by the police officer who had encountered the well-armed old lady and supplied the putative location of the traffic stop (e.g., "on
In December 2011, we encountered a Canadianized version that was presented as the account of an OPP (Ontario Provincial Police) officer (e.g., "I made a traffic stop on an elderly lady the other day for speeding on
In January 2012, the well-armed senior tale circulated on the Facebook social networking site, where it was presented as a "Story from a Minnesota State Trooper" in the form of a graphic fashioned to resemble a newspaper clipping (likely not a real newspaper article, but the invention of some unknown person enthralled by the story):
Feisty armed elderly women feature in other urban legends: the armed granny who blew the testicles off the two men who had raped her granddaughter, and the old lady who pulled a gun on a pair of thugs she found seated in her car. Unarmed yet still dangerous distaff seniors appear in yet more apocryphal tales: The granny who beat up six airport security guards, and the old gal on the witness stand who let loose with her assessments of the two lawyers trying the case she was part of. In the realm of urban folklore, sharp-tongued or sharpshooting old women are the ultimate "victims who aren't victims" figures, seemingly frail and vulnerable members of society who — appearances to the contrary — are more than capable of taking a round out of any bad guy fool enough to trifle with them. Such stereotype is one of empowerment: if sweet, little old ladies can effectively stand up for themselves, surely we, their more able and younger societal counterparts can easily do likewise.
As to what to make of the well-armed granny tale, a coda supplied on one of the numerous
Barbara "granny get your gun" Mikkelson
Last updated: 30 January 2012