I used to linger around the handgun counter at the Gibsons Retail store on the north side of the square of my hometown Alva, Oklahoma. Usually I would be at the Gibsons late in the afternoon, as I made my way home after the Sunday Matinee at the Rialto.. On request they would let me handle the pistols for about as long as I wanted. Always friendly and accommodating good customer relations..
Many a summer morning saw me walking through town, heading either to or from the Nescatunga River with my rifle in the crook of my arm. I was your average small town boy living a small town childhood. Basically the behavior and rules were the same for any kid in town.
To see a young person briskly walking down a city sidewalk with a rifle across his shoulder would alarm none. The number of mass murders at schools when I was a young teen was exactly “0”. When I was 15 years old I bought an M1 carbine. It was a semi-automatic rifle developed as a weapon for the military.
The reason I could walk through town brandishing a weapon was that the social fabric of the American culture was so tightly knit back then that anomalies as lone psychos with guns were a bit fewer and farther in between than today. A good man can be a dead man if he is frightened of the weapon that would save him.