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News of the Weird: Holy Handguns
One of the many decisions greeting Pope Francis, as Salon.com pointed out, is whether to officially recognize a Patron Saint of Handgunners — as urged by a U.S. organization of activists for more than 20 years. According to legend, St. Gabriel Possenti rescued an Italian village from a small band of pillagers (and perhaps rapists) in the 19th century by shooting at a lizard in the road, killing it with one shot, which supposedly so terrified the bandits that they fled. No humans were harmed, activists now point out, signifying the handgun was obviously a force for good. The head of the St. Gabriel Possenti Society has noted that, however far-fetched the “lizard incident” may be, it was rarely questioned until U.S. anti-gun activists gained strength in the 1980s.
By Chuck Shepherd
March 26, 2013