Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 34

Thread: When children ask why you have a gun?

  1. #1
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    Tomahawk and Abbotsford, Wi.
    Posts
    561

    When children ask why you have a gun?

    Looks like winter might be over here, and with that quite a bit more open carry outside. I live near a walking/biking trail that goes by an ice cream shoppe and I almost daily walk my dog past there. On the lake, scenic area, lots of people sometimes, and often lots of children.

    Generally, the dog will get some attention, and once in a while someone will mention I'm armed. North of this area is woods, but meeting any dangerous wildlife would be a fairly remote possibility. Wolves, black bears, maybe a moose could be possible, but unlikely.

    So, when people ask me why I carry a gun, I generally just say that "I believe I am responsible for my own safety." Sometimes it goes to more than that, sometimes not. I would say I talk to 10-20 people a week in that area, and maybe 2-5 will include something about a firearm. Most people seem to not notice, or don't care. We have a lot of tourist from Illinois up here, and they seem to be interested and positive, as well as more likely to start a conversation. I generally say hi if we make eye contact, but keep walking. I'm happy to stand and talk if someone has questions, but I don't initiate a conversation and I NEVER bring up the firearm myself.

    Anyway, once in a while I will get someone who is say 4-10 years old ask me why I have a gun, and my standard answer doesn't really seem adequate to me for a younger person. Not bad or wrong, but maybe too mature of an answer? Any thoughts or ideas on a better way to answer this? Most times the parents are close by, but I've actually had quite a few kids come up to me and ask about petting the dog while the parents were some distance off. Then, they noticed the firearm later, I think.

  2. #2
    Regular Member OC for ME's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    White Oak Plantation
    Posts
    12,273
    "To protect me from bad people."
    "I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it." - Thomas Jefferson.

    "Better that ten guilty persons escape, than that one innocent suffer" - English jurist William Blackstone.
    It is AFAIK original to me. Compromise is failure on the installment plan, particularly when dealing with so intractable an opponent as ignorance. - Nightmare

  3. #3
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    Tomahawk and Abbotsford, Wi.
    Posts
    561
    Quote Originally Posted by OC for ME View Post
    "To protect me from bad people."
    Thanks, I like that.

    I will include that I open carry 6" S&W 686 in a leather belt holster, which is pretty hard to miss, OR a Sig 226 in a kydex OWB, which is less noticeable. I can not really say that one gets more response than the other, except that I would say people don't seem to see the wheel gun nearly as intimidating maybe, although it is bigger and more obvious. Non scientific survey on that.

  4. #4
    Regular Member Freedom1Man's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Greater Eastside Washington
    Posts
    4,690
    Who will stop the bad guys?
    It gives them pause.
    Are you a cop?
    No, just a citizen who wants to keep himself safe.

    Sent from my SM-G386T using Tapatalk
    Provision for free medical attendance and nursing, for clothing, for food, for housing, for the education of children, and a hundred other matters, might with equal propriety be proposed as tending to relieve the employee of mental strain and worry. --- These matters obviously lie outside the orbit of congressional power. (Railroad Retirement Board v Alton Railroad)

  5. #5
    Accomplished Advocate color of law's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Cincinnati, Ohio, USA
    Posts
    3,737
    Some grown-up people carry a gun to protect themselves and the children.

    It's for the children.

  6. #6
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Thru Death's Door in Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,161
    Since these are children 4 - 10 years old, how about, "Because I am a grown-up."

    Maybe the retort will be, "But my daddy is a grown-up." You can leave it hanging, even children may be smart enough to get that one.
    I am responsible for my writing, not your understanding of it.

  7. #7
    Accomplished Advocate color of law's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Cincinnati, Ohio, USA
    Posts
    3,737
    Quote Originally Posted by Nightmare View Post
    Since these are children 4 - 10 years old, how about, "Because I am a grown-up."

    Maybe the retort will be, "But my daddy is a grown-up." You can leave it hanging, even children may be smart enough to get that one.
    Well, maybe your daddy is a wuss.

  8. #8
    Regular Member WalkingWolf's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    North Carolina
    Posts
    12,279
    Quote Originally Posted by color of law View Post
    Well, maybe your daddy is a wuss.
    Or a progressive democrat/republican.

    How about "Because I want to come home to my family"?
    Last edited by WalkingWolf; 03-08-2016 at 11:24 AM.
    It is well that war is so terrible otherwise we would grow too fond of it.
    Robert E. Lee
    The patriot volunteer, fighting for country and his rights, makes the most reliable soldier on earth.
    Thomas Jonathan "Stonewall" Jackson
    What separates the winners from the losers is how a person reacts to each new twist of fate.
    President Donald Trump

  9. #9
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Englewood, Ohio, USA
    Posts
    654

    Children....

    I just tell them, "It's to protect my family from the bad people, until the policeman shows up to help."

  10. #10
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Northwest Kent County, Michigan
    Posts
    757
    I've never been asked by a member of the public, but if asked I'd say that I didn't have a reason to carry, thankfully, and that I'd like it to stay that way.

  11. #11
    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    North Chesterfield, Va.
    Posts
    34,622
    I carry for my safety and that of my loved ones.
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

  12. #12
    Regular Member WalkingWolf's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    North Carolina
    Posts
    12,279
    "Because I am too old to carry a cop"
    It is well that war is so terrible otherwise we would grow too fond of it.
    Robert E. Lee
    The patriot volunteer, fighting for country and his rights, makes the most reliable soldier on earth.
    Thomas Jonathan "Stonewall" Jackson
    What separates the winners from the losers is how a person reacts to each new twist of fate.
    President Donald Trump

  13. #13
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    Tomahawk and Abbotsford, Wi.
    Posts
    561
    Thanks for the replies, some great usable ideas.

    I'm awesome at sarcasm, but that would be out of place with children. (and maybe adults......) The dog attracts people, often they don't notice the firearm until later. I try my best to be a good ambassador to the gun scene.

    I hear "you must be a cop?" quite a bit. I try to have answers to questions that people ask that they might not expect, and hopefully make them think a little. Or ask them a question in return. So, "What makes you think that?"

    When people ask me "Do you REALLY need to carry a gun?" I reply back with "I certainly HOPE not!"

    I like to have my answers sort of prepared and ready. I don't want to be stumbling over my words and come across like an idiot. I sort of take a real fast read of the person and try to figure out if they are genuinely inquisitive, interested, or maybe somewhat anti, and adjust my response accordingly. After 5 years of talking to a lot of people, I have to say they are overwhelmingly not all that bothered about an old white dude with a gun, even around their children. It's probably some the Northwoods area, I suspect the results might be different in a big city urban setting.

    But, children I ALWAYS error on the side of polite and friendly. Personally, I am about to the place where if I walk through a bunch of people with a dog and a gun, and nobody mentions the gun, I consider that a success.
    Last edited by Wstar425; 03-08-2016 at 09:02 PM.

  14. #14
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Sparks, NV
    Posts
    55
    Children understand the answer "to keep safe from bad guys". Get on their level while answering. Take a knee, or find a bench nearby to sit on so you can be eye-eye vs "towering adult". No matter what form it takes on TV, there is usually some good/ bad interaction on every show. If you give that answer while mom/ dad is nearby, it's a good time to educate them too. You can also direct the child to ask mom/ dad more about it later.

    Sent from my XT1058 using Tapatalk
    Last edited by SW40VE-OC; 03-08-2016 at 10:10 PM.

  15. #15
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    Tomahawk and Abbotsford, Wi.
    Posts
    561
    [QUOTE=SW40VE-OC;2183763]Children understand the answer "to keep safe from bad guys". Get on their level while answering. Take a knee, or find a bench nearby to sit on so you can be eye-eye vs "towering adult". No matter what form it takes on TV, there is usually some good/ bad interaction on every show. If you give that answer while mom/ dad is nearby, it's a good time to educate them too. You can also direct the child to ask mom/ dad more about it later.

    Sent from my XT1058 using Tapatalk[/QUOTE

    Good advice and I often do this. There are benches at the Ice Cream Shoppe and sometimes I will sit on one and people watch, while dog sits off leash. As long as I am seated on a bench with a back, firearm is hard to notice under right arm. My goal is to have her stay while I go inside and buy a water. As long as the line is short, she's good for a couple of minutes. Sometimes someone will walk out the door and she breaks. Working on duration. With no distractions about 15 minutes. If a chipmunk runs by, all bets are off! I let her chase chipmunks and squirrels on the trail, people feed the chipmunks at the Shoppe, so they are somewhat tame. Making the distinction between the wild chipmunks and the "tame" chipmunks is a hurdle maybe too big!

    I have noticed that children and people sitting seem to notice a firearm first, I suspect because it is at eye level. I have talked to a few people that come here on a yearly vacation who said they talked to me last year, tho I didn't remember. I talk to a LOT of people.

  16. #16
    Campaign Veteran MAC702's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Nevada
    Posts
    6,520
    I'm a big fat nobody and I've 'needed my gun' more often than I've needed my fire extinguisher, yet I still keep that around, too, without hearing dumb questions about it.

    And just because you didn't actually shoot someone doesn't mean you didn't 'need the gun.'
    "It's not important how many people I've killed. What's important is how I get along with the people who are still alive" - Jimmy the Tulip

  17. #17
    Activist Member golddigger14s's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Lacey, Washington, USA
    Posts
    1,991
    Because I have kids, and love them. To protect them, and to make sure I'm around to keep on protecting them.
    "The beauty of the Second Amenment is that it will not be needed until they try to take it." Thomas Jefferson
    "Evil often triumphs, but never conquers." Joseph Roux
    http://nwfood.shelfreliance.com

  18. #18
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    earth
    Posts
    29
    "Because there are bad people out in the world that want to hurt others" the question I get from kids most is "are you a policeman".

  19. #19
    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    North Chesterfield, Va.
    Posts
    34,622
    Quote Originally Posted by radio3579 View Post
    "Because there are bad people out in the world that want to hurt others" the question I get from kids most is "are you a policeman".
    Well, a a ah, you are wearing a badge in your avatar. If you dress out like that, it will give that impression to more than just kids.
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

  20. #20
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Thru Death's Door in Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,161
    Quote Originally Posted by grapeshot View Post
    well, a a ah, you are wearing a badge in your avatar. If you dress out like that, it will give that impression to more than just kids.
    Quote Originally Posted by radio3579 View Post
    [ ... ] i prefer to carry it more as it is mimics my duty gear in release and draw stroke.
    qft
    I am responsible for my writing, not your understanding of it.

  21. #21
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    earth
    Posts
    29
    Quote Originally Posted by Grapeshot View Post
    Well, a a ah, you are wearing a badge in your avatar. If you dress out like that, it will give that impression to more than just kids.
    That was "Casual Friday", lol. I don't wear the badge if I am not working it gets tucked into my wallet with my agency ID, since we have OC now for everyone licensed I prefer to try and blend in with the locals.

    Kids seem to think anyone with a holstered firearm is a cop.
    Last edited by radio3579; 03-19-2016 at 07:40 PM.

  22. #22
    Newbie
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    DelCo, PA
    Posts
    3
    I personally CC but one of my friends always tells everyone "I am an Eagle Scout and the Boy Scouts taught me to be prepared". I tends to get asked more often by people (kids, adults, and police) as he carries a nice shiny Kimber and it tends to get noticed. He also happens to be black which does draw more police attention than it should.

  23. #23
    Accomplished Advocate BB62's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Cincinnati, Ohio, USA
    Posts
    3,887
    Quote Originally Posted by Keighvin View Post
    ...He also happens to be black...
    Cool! We need more like him to do so.

  24. #24
    Banned
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    earth's crust
    Posts
    17,838
    "Go away kid, yer bothering me.."

  25. #25
    Newbie
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    Dallas TX
    Posts
    7
    I say...Ask your Mom.

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •