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Thread: Do you carry/use a gun for protection?

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    I constantly hear people talk about they are going to get a gun for protection or they carry a gun for protection. This ranks right up there with the "Shoot First Law" in grating on my nerves. The only way I see a gun protecting you is if you get enough of them to make a suit of armor out of them. If a gun is such good protection then why do so many soldiers get killed while carrying a gun?

    A gun is a tool in your self-defense arsenal along with your brain.


    These also rank up there with those that proclaim every crime or murder could have been prevented if only someone had been carrying a gun.

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    Are we nit-picking a little bit? I think that more people going out and buying a gun is a good thing, even if they confuse the meaning of "protection" with "self defense". And I don't think they are expecting the gun to act as a body guard. I think when they say "protection", what they mean to say is "so that I can protect/defend myself".



    ETA: emphasis

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    I have to agree, nit picking here. I make that statement myself, knowing the the gun itself will provide me with no actual physical proctection.

    I believe it's one of those implied statements like Expvideo stated. It's like CCW and the use of it. People will get all over others for using CCW, but they still know what that person meant when they used the term.

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    Campaign Veteran deepdiver's Avatar
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    expvideo wrote:
    Are we nit-picking a little bit? I think that more people going out and buying a gun is a good thing, even if they confuse the meaning of "protection" with "self defense". And I don't think they are expecting the gun to act as a body guard. I think when they say "protection", what they mean to say is "so that I can protect/defend myself".



    ETA: emphasis
    I agree, expvideo. PT111, I think your argument, for the vast majority of cases, is merely semantic in nature. I have variously described my firearm choices as for protection, self-defense, to defend myself, to protect myself and loved ones, etc.
    Bob Owens @ Bearing Arms (paraphrased): "These people aren't against violence; they're very much in favor of violence. They're against armed resistance."

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    It may be nit-picking but is it any more nit-picking than the person who says that if his mother ever wants to seehim again she will have to come to his house because she won't allow him to carryhis gun inher house. I have seen that posted several times and defended by many people. I am not sure the word protection bothers me as much as those who feel that a gun makes them invincible. If you won't go some placewithout your gun do you really need to go there with it?

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    Campaign Veteran deepdiver's Avatar
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    PT111 wrote:
    It may be nit-picking but is it any more nit-picking than the person who says that if his mother ever wants to seehim again she will have to come to his house because she won't allow him to carryhis gun inher house. I have seen that posted several times and defended by many people. I am not sure the word protection bothers me as much as those who feel that a gun makes them invincible. If you won't go some placewithout your gun do you really need to go there with it?
    I don't think those two examples are in any way similar, but that's just me maybe.

    I have seen very few posts in the handful of firearms forums I post on where the bravado associated with invincibility is espoused and when it is, it is typically quickly quashed by several people who understand reality. From what I see the majority opinion on those forums agrees with you that "If you won't go some placewithout your gun do you really need to go there with it?" I think few would disagree with that position and those few tend to be younger, mall-ninja types for the most part.

    Was this sparked by something you read on OCDO or another forum or was it sparked by something you saw or heard in your community? Knowing what got you thinking about this may help us understand where you are coming from.
    Bob Owens @ Bearing Arms (paraphrased): "These people aren't against violence; they're very much in favor of violence. They're against armed resistance."

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    Founder's Club Member - Moderator longwatch's Avatar
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    PT111 wrote:
    It may be nit-picking but is it any more nit-picking than the person who says that if his mother ever wants to seehim again she will have to come to his house because she won't allow him to carryhis gun inher house. I have seen that posted several times and defended by many people. I am not sure the word protection bothers me as much as those who feel that a gun makes them invincible. If you won't go some placewithout your gun do you really need to go there with it?
    I don't think you get it. Most people carry because they MIGHT need to protect themselves. Not being psychic, they don't gamble with their life. If they knew a certain location would REQUIRE self defense they wouldn't go.

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    deepdiver wrote:
    PT111 wrote:
    It may be nit-picking but is it any more nit-picking than the person who says that if his mother ever wants to seehim again she will have to come to his house because she won't allow him to carryhis gun inher house. I have seen that posted several times and defended by many people. I am not sure the word protection bothers me as much as those who feel that a gun makes them invincible. If you won't go some placewithout your gun do you really need to go there with it?
    I don't think those two examples are in any way similar, but that's just me maybe.

    I have seen very few posts in the handful of firearms forums I post on where the bravado associated with invincibility is espoused and when it is, it is typically quickly quashed by several people who understand reality. From what I see the majority opinion on those forums agrees with you that "If you won't go some placewithout your gun do you really need to go there with it?" I think few would disagree with that position and those few tend to be younger, mall-ninja types for the most part.

    Was this sparked by something you read on OCDO or another forum or was it sparked by something you saw or heard in your community? Knowing what got you thinking about this may help us understand where you are coming from.
    There hasn't been any one incident but a lot of posts lately on this and some other boards about people refusing to go somewhere that they can't carry their gun and where someone made comments about how they felt safe when they had their gun with them. I know that I will catch a lot of grief for saying this but I really don't feel any safer with my gun that without it. I know that it gives me one more advantage but I certainly don't feel invinvible because I have a gun on. I sat down one day and counted up that I had9 different friends that have been killed with guns under various circumstances ranging from suicide to murder. Some were "accidents" by people that had been around guns all their lives.

    It just bothers me that when you read about someone getting killed by a crazed idiot it seems that everyone wants to immediately jump on the "if only someonehad been armed it wouldn't have happened" bandwagon. I watched as two ladies tried to qualify for their CWP and from 10 feet hit the target once out of 50 times. (Life size targets) After the VT, church and mall incidents there was a great outcry from both the antis and the pros about guns. Where were you before then. Those incidents didn't change my mind one bit about carrying or what could happen. I had thought about all those things before. Some people act like Wal-mart is a war zone with their wanting to carry. I don't have any stats but I would imagine that you are 10 times a likely to be attacked in the parking lot as in the store. Same way with a mall.

    Everyone keeps thinking up all these weird scenarios about 5 thugs breaking your door down at 3am or the enraged husband at work rather than the individual attacking you on the way to your car. They worry about a Cho shooting up students in a classroom when my worry is about one of my college student daughters being attacked on her way to class. While they are in class is when I worry about them the least.

    It's just too many posts on OCDO and otherforums about people thinking that a gun is the answer to their protection problems. Too many people that can't see the forest for the trees when it comes to guns. I had a person once tell me that they didn't worry about being attacked or anyone breaking into their house because they had a gun. As I have said before that when I reach the point that I can't go to the bathroom in the middle of the night withoutcarrying my gun with me it is time to either move or just give up living.

    rambling over

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    expvideo wrote:
    Are we nit-picking a little bit? I think that more people going out and buying a gun is a good thing, even if they confuse the meaning of "protection" with "self defense". And I don't think they are expecting the gun to act as a body guard. I think when they say "protection", what they mean to say is "so that I can protect/defend myself".



    ETA: emphasis
    I agree. Most people have enough sense to know that when it all comes down to it, they are responsible for their own safety, and they know that by owning/carrying/using a gun, they are enhancing their ability to defend themselves.

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    If someone sees your gun and decides not to attack you is that protection. The dictionary allows us to use either term.

    pro-tect
    (pr-tekt)v. tr. pro-tect-ed, pro-tect-ing, pro-tects. 1. To keep from being damaged, attacked, stolen, or injured; guard. See Synonyms at defend.



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    PT111 wrote:
    It just bothers me that when you read about someone getting killed by a crazed idiot it seems that everyone wants to immediately jump on the "if only someonehad been armed it wouldn't have happened" bandwagon. After the VT, church and mall incidents there was a great outcry from both the antis and the pros about guns. Where were you before then. Those incidents didn't change my mind one bit about carrying or what could happen. I had thought about all those things before. Some people act like Wal-mart is a war zone with their wanting to carry. I don't have any stats but I would imagine that you are 10 times a likely to be attacked in the parking lot as in the store. Same way with a mall.

    I think your right about it being more likely to be attacked in a parking lot. I don't know about you but I don't usually wander around store parking lots just for fun. If I can't carry my firearm into the store then I can't carry it through the parking lot either. Doesn't do much good should I need it, in the store or the parking lot if it's locked in my car.
    Colorado Gun Owners - COGO
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    A discussion forum for Colorado Gun Owners.

    Colorado Firearm law.
    http://www.lexisnexis.com/hottopics/colorado/
    Lexis Nexis: Colorado law pertaining to firearms.
    Title 18, Article 12

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    If you won't go some placewithout your gun do you really need to go there with it?
    Because we all know crime only happens in 'bad' neighborhoods.

    Maybe it is a matter of principle, you know, 2d amendment and all that.

    You are projecting too many posts from other forums onto this one.

    It's the frikkin internet people say all kinds of crap.

    If you hadn't noticed, a lot of people here do not see guns and civil liberties the same as you, get over it.
    "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants." - Thomas Jefferson

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    PT111 wrote:
    There hasn't been any one incident but a lot of posts lately on this and some other boards about people refusing to go somewhere that they can't carry their gun and where someone made comments about how they felt safe when they had their gun with them. I know that I will catch a lot of grief for saying this but I really don't feel any safer with my gun that without it. I know that it gives me one more advantage but I certainly don't feel invinvible because I have a gun on. I sat down one day and counted up that I had9 different friends that have been killed with guns under various circumstances ranging from suicide to murder. Some were "accidents" by people that had been around guns all their lives.
    You could be quoting me because I know I've said that. The problem is that you are confusing "feeling safer" with "feeling invincible". Yes I feel safer when I'm packing, because I know that I have fairly effective means to defend myself. I feel unsafe when I'm not packing because no matter what the environment, I am at the mercy of everyone around me. Now a lot of that is just what I'm comfortable with because of habit. I'd probably feel about as vulnerable if I left the house without wearing underwear just because I'm used to wearing underwear. That doesn't mean that I rely on underwear to feel socially acceptable, it just means that the underwear is so routinethat I feel uncomfortable without it. I don't go to places where it is illegal to carry a gun, such as national parks, because I don't want to be incapable of defending myself, and I don't want to rely on other people to protect me. That doesn't mean that I think a gun makes me invincible. It just means that I feel safer when I am capable of defending myself.

    It just bothers me that when you read about someone getting killed by a crazed idiot it seems that everyone wants to immediately jump on the "if only someonehad been armed it wouldn't have happened" bandwagon. I watched as two ladies tried to qualify for their CWP and from 10 feet hit the target once out of 50 times. (Life size targets) After the VT, church and mall incidents there was a great outcry from both the antis and the pros about guns. Where were you before then. Those incidents didn't change my mind one bit about carrying or what could happen. I had thought about all those things before. Some people act like Wal-mart is a war zone with their wanting to carry. I don't have any stats but I would imagine that you are 10 times a likely to be attacked in the parking lot as in the store. Same way with a mall.
    I didn't start carrying because of some event either, but I don't understand where you are going with this. There is plenty of documentation on internet forums and blogs that there were students at VT that day who had CWPs, and would have been carrying if it were legal to do so. These students likely would have put a stop to the shooter. So when I say, "if only someonehad been armed..." I don't understand how I am being blind to anything. Also, I don't think that Wal-Mart is a war zone, but there is no way that I'm going to Wal-Mart unarmed. I don't know what wal-mart is like where you are, but where I am it's full of some pretty ghetto/gangsta people. I don't go creaping about the isles like some crazed lunatic, and I don't constantly look over my shoulder. I act the same as I would anywhere else, which is like a completely normal person. But I wouldn't be comfortable going there (or pretty much anywhere) without the ability to protect my own life. It's like a seatbelt. I don't wear a seatbelt only when I'm in a bad neighborhood where people are known to street race or drive drunk. I wear it whenever I'm in my car. Out of habit, I'll put it on when I get into the car, even if I have to do something for 10 minutes before I even start driving. Out of habit, I'll leave it on when I'm parked. Of course, I'm not expecting to need my seatbelt when the car isn't even moving, but I make it a habit to be wearing it when I'm in the car, just like I make a habit of carrying a gun when I leave my house. It's not because the gun makes me feel invincible, it's because the gun (read: ability to defend myself) makes me feel safer.

    Everyone keeps thinking up all these weird scenarios about 5 thugs breaking your door down at 3am or the enraged husband at work rather than the individual attacking you on the way to your car. They worry about a Cho shooting up students in a classroom when my worry is about one of my college student daughters being attacked on her way to class. While they are in class is when I worry about them the least.
    Actually, no. I'm not worried about that. I'd be worried about that, but I have a gun, and therefore the means to deal with those situations. So those things don't even cross my mind. I don't think I'm invincible, but I know that I am as prepared to defend myself as a person can be, so I think that my bases are as covered as possible, and I simply don't worry. If I was walking around unarmed, of course I would be affraid of these things. Because they happen, rather frequently, actually. If you have your drivers license with you, do you go around fearing a situation that you will need to produce your license? Do you think that just having the license will get you out of a ticket? Of course not. But you probably don't worry too much about it. Now if you go driving without your license you will probably feel a lot less comfortable, and worry a lot more about having to produce it. If you are put into a situation where you have to produce it, you're pretty screwed. It's the same thing with a gun. A gun will not necessarily save you from the guy who is going from cubicle to cubicle shooting your coworkers, but when your cube is the next in line, you are going to have much better chances with the gun than without it.

    It's just too many posts on OCDO and otherforums about people thinking that a gun is the answer to their protection problems. Too many people that can't see the forest for the trees when it comes to guns. I had a person once tell me that they didn't worry about being attacked or anyone breaking into their house because they had a gun. As I have said before that when I reach the point that I can't go to the bathroom in the middle of the night withoutcarrying my gun with me it is time to either move or just give up living.

    rambling over
    Tell me, what should the people that live in low income housing and can't afford to move do? I don't carry a gun to the bathroom in the middle of the night, and I don'tlive in any government subsidized housing,but I do live in a shady neighborhood. Do you think I live there because I don't like suburbia? Or do you think I might live there because I have low income? I suppose I should "just move" to some other shady neighborhood that I can afford to live in. Some people don't have the luxury of living in a completely safe neighborhood where they will always feel secure in their own homes. For some of us, the shotgun and the pistol are the things that make us feel secure in our homes. Now I agree that it doesn't make any sense to not worry about being attacked in your home just because you have a gun, but I sure feel a lot safer in my home due to the fact that I have a gun. I guess that the one thing that I need to emphasize in this reply is that my gun does not make me feel invincible. It doesn't even make me feel safe. It makes me feel safer.
    My replies in green.

    ETA:

    I would also like to point out something else. You use the terms "safe" and "safer" interchangably, and that is part of the problem. Safe is a black and white term, while safer is a shade of gray. There are two ways of seeing this. There isthe black and whiteway:

    How do you feel when carrying a gun?
    a. Safe b. Unsafe

    And there is theshades ofgrayway:

    How safe do you feel when carrying a gun.
    a. unsafe b. not very safe c. the same d.safer e. safe/invincible



    So as you can see in my example, when someone says that they are feeling "safer" when they carry a gun, that does not necessarily mean that they feel "safe" carrying a gun, because a feeling of complete safety is essentially a feeling of invincibility, while feeling "safer" is just a level of comfort with your surroundings.



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    expvideo wrote:
    Are we nit-picking a little bit?* I think that more people going out and buying a gun is a good thing, even if they confuse the meaning of "protection" with "self defense".* And I don't think they are expecting the gun to act as a body guard.* I think when they say "protection", what they mean to say is "so that I can protect/defend myself".

    *

    ETA: emphasis

    I agree.

    Very well said.


    Tarzan

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    I think the problem the OP is really refering to deals with taxonomy of words, how a single word has multiple meanings depending on the reader or writer and how it's used in the sentence.

    I think the OP gets it right when he states A gun is a tool in your self-defense arsenal along with your brain. - I also think that's what the majority of people mean when they say they want to get a gun for protection. I don't take it in the literal sense that the gun they are going to purchase will come equipped with some super power and ability to become animated at the nearest hint of bodily harm by some evil-doer, leap out of the holster or where ever the carrier has it stored, and execute a headshot between the eyes neutralizinga threat. Sure that's abit overboard but sometimes exaggeration is the best way to make a point.


    I think that there is real data showing that an armed person COULD reduce the number of casualties in situations, but it takes an individual to actually make that happen. The odds increase that the number of casualties will be reduced, but doesn't completely eliminate the chance that even with an armed person in the area, that a massacre won't happen. Too many variables. The variables decrease with the amount of people that do carry that are in the area though - because where one person who is carrying may chose to run, another may chose to stand. It's never going to be perfect, humans are too unpredictable.

    Cutting through all the bs, aren't you just voicing your frustration with the general population not stating intelligently their reasons for wanting to carry in public?

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