Women Fighting for Concealed Carry in Illinois

By: Shannon Smith
By: Shannon Smith

FREEPORT (WIFR) -- Illinois remains the only state to not allow concealed carry and now more women are fighting to take matters into their own hands.

For years Valinda Rowe was afraid to leave her house after being stalked and threatened by a mentally ill family member. So she decided to take matters into her own hands by getting a gun.

“I decided I didn't want to live that way, I wanted to protect my family and protect myself,” said Rowe. A few lessons later, Rowe got a license, but she can carry it anywhere but Illinois. . "I feel very vulnerable, I feel very uncomfortable, I feel something is a miss because if something happened I’m a potential victim," said Rowe.

Now as the spokesperson for Illinois carry.com, Rowe says getting her license changed her life. “But if given the choice of being a victim or a survivor, I choose to be a survivor," said Rowe.

Ivy Schexnayder grew up in a family who loves to hunt. “I grew up around guns with my family shooting guns, thinking guns were a good thing," said Schexnayder.

As a horse trainer, she says she doesn't feel safe when traveling for work. “I'm going to places with people that I don't know, I’ve never met and there's a degree of danger.” Schexnayder says it's going to take more than the police to lower crime.


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