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Nov 2, 2022

“It’s a hell of a thing, killing a man,” is my favorite quote from my all-time favorite western. “Unforgiven” is the Oscar-winning 1992 Clint Eastwood movie about William Munny, a has-been killer who learns of a $1000 bounty in Big Whiskey, Wyoming, that brings him out of retirement. 

Killing is a hard thing to do, and a hard thing to live with afterward. 

Our modern and public discussions about gun violence often skip this part of the trauma. Americans intuitively view resolutions of conflict, including violent conflict, through a search for winners and losers. The truth is violent conflict rarely produces a winner. Including those who pull the trigger and come out of it alive. 

“Behind the Bullet” is a 2019 documentary directed by Heidi Yewman, that explores the impact America’s death-by-gun problem has on the shooter. Yewman was at Indiana University last week to discuss the making of the film and the related experiences connected to its creation. One of my classes is studying the gun safety movement right now, so the timing of her visit was fortuitous. 

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