These Badass Vets Give Whole New Meaning To The Phrase ‘Shoot Like A Girl’

Photo courtesy of Tonya Greenwood

We all know what performing “like a girl” implies — to be feminine, ineffectual, and weak. But two veterans, Kinessa Johnson and Tonya Greenwood, prove that “shooting like a girl” means something else entirely.

The two shooters, veterans of the Army and the Navy respectively, are breaking down stereotypes about women who know their way around a shooting range. And let’s just say that after speaking with them, none of the writers at Task & Purpose want to end up on the wrong end of their guns — bare arms or armaments.

When did you first learn to shoot? Age six.

How often do you visit the range?  I try and go as much as possible but I haven't been able to go with work because I'm gone a lot.

Do you have a favorite gun? I would have to say I'm a huge Glock fan. I carry a 19 Gen 4 because I know that no matter what the likelihood of it having a malfunction is almost impossible. Could it happen? Yes, but it's proven in all kinds of elements and situations that it's dependable.

What’s one thing you wish people understood about guns? I wish people would stop blaming guns for things happening. It's not guns that are an issue; it's bad people who want to cause harm to people.

What’s one thing gun people get wrong about you? Maybe that I'm some kind of expert. I'm not: I like to think that it's a skill that you constantly thrive to make yourself better at. It's a skill that depreciates if you don't do it a lot.

What do you think it really means to “shoot like a girl?” I don't think a woman shoots any different than a man. One [isn’t] better than the other. I have never taken it seriously.

When did you first learn to shoot? Around 12 years old

How often do you visit the range now? A couple times a month

Do you have a favorite gun? My favorite gun is the first gun I ever built for hog hunting: a 300 blackout pistol. It has a 8.5" KAK industries barrel, Shockwave blade, Geissele trigger, and an Aimpoint CompM4 optic. I've taken a lot of game with it over the last couple of years, and it's been one of the most reliable firearms I own. I'm very proud of it.

What do you think of the phrase “gun bunny?” I think it's a derogatory phrase that's been commonly thrown around the industry to describe a woman whose affiliation with the firearm community is more likely for attention instead of actual interest in the sport. It's often a term used to dumb down the person’s knowledge as well, and it instantly resonates that they do not take the female seriously.

What’s one thing you wish non-gun people got right about guns? Terminology.

What’s one thing gun people get wrong about you?  I think many people think I must have a man behind me in the shadows helping me and guiding me through my journey, when in reality I do everything by myself. I run my business by myself and I build all my firearms by myself. When I do run into problems that completely stump me, I'm not too proud to reach out and ask for help or advice from lead industry affiliates, though.

What do you think it really means to “shoot like a girl?”  I think it means being a strong female and bringing some class and sass to the range or whatever shooting platform you represent.

Soldiers from the 1-118th Field Artillery Regiment of the 48th Infantry Brigade Combat Team fire an M777 Howitzer during a fire mission in Southern Afghanistan, June 10th, 2019. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Jordan Trent)

Once again, the United States and the Taliban are apparently close to striking a peace deal. Such a peace agreement has been rumored to be in the works longer than the latest "Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure" sequel. (The difference is Keanu Reeves has fewer f**ks to give than U.S. Special Representative for Afghanistan Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad.)

Both sides appeared to be close to reaching an agreement in September until the Taliban took credit for an attack that killed Army Sgt. 1st Class Elis A. Barreto Ortiz, of the 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division. That prompted President Donald Trump to angrily cancel a planned summit with the Taliban that had been scheduled to take place at Camp David, Maryland, on Sept. 8.

Now Taliban spokesman Suhail Shaheen has told a Pakistani newspaper that he is "optimistic" that the Taliban could reach an agreement with U.S. negotiators by the end of January.

Read More
Audie Murphy (U.S. Army photo)

Editor's note: a version of this post first appeared in 2018

On January 26, 1945, the most decorated U.S. service member of World War II earned his legacy in a fiery fashion.

Read More
A Purple Heart (DoD photo)

Florida's two senators are pushing the Defense Department to award Purple Hearts to the U.S. service members wounded in the December shooting at Naval Air Station Pensacola.

Read More
Ships from Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 23 transit the Pacific Ocean Jan. 22, 2020. DESRON 23, part of the Theodore Roosevelt Carrier Strike Group, is on a scheduled deployment to the Indo-Pacific. (U.S. Navy/Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Erick A. Parsons)

Editor's Note: This article by Gina Harkins originally appeared on, a leading source of news for the military and veteran community.

The Navy and Marine Corps need to be a bit more short-sighted when assessing how many ships they need, the acting Navy secretary said this week.

The Navy Department is in the middle of a new force-structure review, which could change the number and types of ships the sea services say they'll need to fight future conflicts. But instead of trying to project what they will need three decades out, which has been the case in past assessments, acting Navy Secretary Thomas Modly said the services will take a shorter view.

"I don't know what the threat's going to be 30 years from now, but if we're building a force structure for 30 years from now, I would suggest we're probably not building the right one," he said Friday at a National Defense Industrial Association event.

The Navy completed its last force-structure assessment in 2016. That 30-year plan called for a 355-ship fleet.

Read More
Master-at-Arms 3rd Class Oscar Temores and his family. (GoFundMe)

When Oscar Jesus Temores showed up to work at Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story each day, his colleagues in base security knew they were in for a treat.

Temores was a master-at-arms who loved his job and cracking corny jokes.

"He just he just had that personality that you can go up to him and talk to him about anything. It was goofy and weird, and he always had jokes," said Petty Officer 3rd Class Derek Lopez, a fellow base patrolman. "Sometimes he'd make you cry from laughter and other times you'd just want to cringe because of how dumb his joke was. But that's what made him more approachable and easy to be around."

That ability to make others laugh and put people at ease is just one of the ways Temores is remembered by his colleagues. It has been seven weeks since the 23-year-old married father of one was killed when a civilian intruder crashed his pickup truck into Temores' vehicle at Fort Story.

Read More