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Thread: Why I carry a firearm

  1. #1
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    I have read a few posts on the subject "why carry " and after a couple of days thinking about it and reading through some old emails I have come up with a few good reasons why I carry a firearm.

    1. I carry a firearm because a Police Officer is too heavy.

    2. When seconds count the Police are just minutes away.

    3. An armed criminal will kill an unarmed victim with monotonous regularity.

    4. If you find yourself in a "fair" fight your tactics suck.

    5. I used to be able to fist fight, if I had to. Now I'm too old. I only have about seven good seconds left in me but you'll remember them the rest of your life!

    Now I admit to a lot of plagiarising here but you get the picture. We do have reasons to carry and they are valid and logical not to mention reasonable. We have to get past "But what will everybody say or think" mentality and have sound, logical and reasonable answers to those who will question you as to why you are carrying a gun.

    To quote another member who got me started on this...and you can give him all the blame...Ha ha ha

    "Do I think I'm going to be mugged soon? No. Do I think I will be at the right (or wrong) place and time to prevent a crime? Maybe, maybe not. But, along those lines, do I think I'll be in a car accident? No, but I wear a seatbelt. Do I think my house will be robbed while I'm away? No, but I have door locks. Do I think I'm going to die soon? No, but I have life insurance. Do I expect to pull someone's disabled vehicle out of the road today? No, but I carry a tow cable. Do I expect to jump someone's battery? No, but I have cables. Coincidentally, I used BOTH my tow strap AND jumper cables today - good thing I had them. Some things I do because there is the possibility that something MIGHT happen. Carry concealed to protect yourself, your family and those around you. Carry open to protect yourself, your family, those around you, to make a statement that guns are not bad, that rights are worth exercising, and that liberty and security are paramount to making sheep comfortable and helping them forget about the wolves at the door."

    As they say in the Army..."Carry on!"

  2. #2
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    Good expression! Although I think the smartass remarks aren't going to win any supporters for the OC movement - more power to you.

    Some day, I'll get a shirt made up with the Army Oath of Service with the Constitution in the background and the Army logo underneath - and the Bill of Rights on the back.

    On a side note - I wonder who would draw more attention at Wal-Mart - my wife with her "F--- you, you f---ing f---" or me OC'ing?

    +1 For thinking through why YOU OC (because who else really matters?)

  3. #3
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    You are right about the remarks..thanks for the redirect..and they are not even mine! I thought they were cool but you are right..they are notappropriate for this Org. and this forum. I offer my apologises to the members and the quests. I have never discussed things over the computer like this before and I am a little gruff.
    Some times I tend to get a little off course so feel free to re direct and correct.

  4. #4
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    Like I said, everyone is welcome to their own opinion and is entitled to the freedom of speech to express it. I think that most of the smartass remarks are made in jest for the purpose of the forum viewers and in that light, I think they are funny. Out in the real world, interacting with others, I would probably hesitate to use them. Now, if someone on the other side decides that a reasonable conversation is not where they want to go and instead chooses the smartass method, I would have no issue giving it back to them.

    Don't feel pressured by anyone to change or do something different. We all have the same rights, that both you and I (and others on the board) have fought for.

    I was just commenting that, when dealing with "the man," smartass remarks are less likely to make them see your point of view than a reasoned argument.

    Hooah! And carry on. (I think I borrowed that from someone...) =)

  5. #5
    Campaign Veteran deepdiver's Avatar
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    I think there is a difference for many of us between why we carry a firearm and the reasons we give in a public or private encounter as to why we carry. I think that for many, perhaps even most, of us it has been a long road to the decision to carry a firearm. When we talk about why we carry in most threads it is really more a thread about what we will say to someone when asked why we carry a firearm. Canned responses, if you will, to a sometimes delicate question. I think that is a great thing as I have a repetiore of "canned responses" for various interaction be it with a casual public inquiry, to a hostile public inquiry, to an LEO inquiry and others because of such discussions on internet forums. However, my real decision to carry, my real reason for carrying is not found in a sound bite although it can be approximated.

    I think it important for each of us to separate out our canned responses as to why we carry from the very personal reason each of us has made that decision. Face it, carrying a firearm is in many way a royal pain in the butt. We have to know myriad statutes and ordinances, case law, federal law, restrictions, risks, safe firearm handling, situational awareness, threat matrices, and our equipment. We have to know how to shoot, how to clear malfunctions or jams, how to clean, how to disassemble, how to draw, stance, sight, evaluate the target, what's behind it and the risk/liability of shooting vs standing down. To CC as well you have to alter your wardrobe, have multiple holsters, worry about printing, carry another gov't permission slip, ie license at all times and subject yourself to fingerprinting and background checks. You probably want an atty on speed dial who knows you carry and who is willing to defend you against related charges. If you have a family you probably want to buy an umbrella liability policy that will pay for your defense in case of a civil suit which requires you up most of your other policies making it more expensive than at first glance and you have to find one that will cover you in the case of a civil suit related to your use of a firearm. You have to insure your firearms, load/unload, buy safes, cases, lock boxes, maybe trigger guards or locking cables. You have to buy mags and ammo and snap caps. You have to practice draws, stances, sight pictures, trigger pull, dry fires and sidearm retention. And after all that you never know when an LEO is going to point a gun at your head or arrest you for having done all those things to safely, competently, responsibly and legally carry a firearm or if your name will show up in the local newspaper's "Police Blotter" as having been arrested or detained for a firearm related offense and all the social stigma and questions that brings with it.

    So think about all the crap we have to go through to own, carry and be proficient with our firearms and then think about why you really go through all of that. Probably the only short answer anyone could give that would sum it up is that s/he loves her/his family enough to put up with all that stuff. I can't imagine anyone puts up with all that "because I can".

    I agree with jbradford1 that "We do have reasons to carry and they are valid and logical not to mention reasonable. We have to get past "But what will everybody say or think" mentality and have sound, logical and reasonable answers to those who will question you as to why you are carrying a gun." Each of us must decide how much of that "real reason" we want to divulge in various encounters. Flippant responses, while sometimes satisfying to us, may give people enquiring the wrong impression of what we do, why we do it and what we have to go through to do it. On the other hand, some people deserve no more than a flippant response. I just think it important that each of us ensure that we know in our hearts and minds the real reasons we have made that decision because sitting in that jail cell, or playing over the shooting in your mind, or writing that check to your attorney or seeing your name in the "bad part" of the newspaper, "I did it because I can" or "a police officer is too heavy to carry" just isn't going to cut it for you or your family.

    /soapbox
    Bob Owens @ Bearing Arms (paraphrased): "These people aren't against violence; they're very much in favor of violence. They're against armed resistance."

  6. #6
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    deepdiver (19 July 2008 Saturday 17:51) opines:

    I think it important for each of us to separate out our canned responses as to why we carry from the very personal reason each of us has made that decision.
    Yes. Thank you.

    I used to be in a position where I'd be asked for advice about certain academic things like undergraduate majors, going to law school, etc. My first advice was always "You need to know why you want to do <whatever>. It's a perfectly good thing to do, but it's going to cost you something and affect your life. You don't need to share your deep-down, personal reason with anyone else if you don't care to, but you need to know what it is."

    Carrying a firearm is not quite like going to law school, but I think the advice applies to any serious decision.

    Face it, carrying a firearm is in many way a royal pain in the butt.
    When I was CC-ing in Georgia, that was my experience. After I got used to it and knew (more or less) what I was doing, I still thought it worthwhile but at any one moment it was mostly a PiTA.

    My own personal reason(s) to OC (which, to be honest, I don't do yet) rather than CC, would probably be something like

    • a) serving as a goodwill ambassador for firearms owners, and

      b) to assert my rights as a citizen.

    I am aware of the debates about tactics, etc. For better or worse those debates aren't at the top of my list of reasons. Reasonable people may differ about that.

    Thing is, if reason b) is expressed badly (or maybe at all in most venues), it's going to invalidate and possibly work against reason a), which I consider more important. So I probably won't give reason b) outside a very select circle.

    So why do I bother to think about b), even to myself, if I'm not going to say it to anyone else? Because it guides me as to how far I'm willing to go, what I'm willing to do, and how I think I should act.

    I don't want to be melodramatic about it, but it's like mental "what-if" scenarios that LE run in their heads; "if X happens, what would I do?". I am trying to put myself in some of the scenarios I read about in these forums, and ask "what would I do?". Part of that answer has to involve how my behavior would advance the reasons I have for OC in the first place. And since carrying a firearm is a serious business, with potentially serious consequences, I have to know my own real, serious reasons. Which may change as I consider and learn.

    All of which is just my long-winded way of giving +1 to deepdiver.

    regards,

    GR

  7. #7
    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    jbradford1 wrote:
    I have read a few posts on the subject "why carry " and after a couple of days thinking about it and reading through some old emails I have come up with a few good reasons why I carry a firearm.

    1. I carry a firearm because a Police Officer is too heavy.

    2. When seconds count the Police are just minutes away.

    3. An armed criminal will kill an unarmed victim with monotonous regularity.

    4. If you find yourself in a "fair" fight your tactics suck.

    5. I used to be able to fist fight, if I had to. Now I'm too old. I only have about seven good seconds left in me but you'll remember them the rest of your life!

    Now I admit to a lot of plagiarising here but you get the picture. We do have reasons to carry and they are valid and logical not to mention reasonable. We have to get past "But what will everybody say or think" mentality and have sound, logical and reasonable answers to those who will question you as to why you are carrying a gun.

    To quote another member who got me started on this...and you can give him all the blame...Ha ha ha

    "Do I think I'm going to be mugged soon? No. Do I think I will be at the right (or wrong) place and time to prevent a crime? Maybe, maybe not. But, along those lines, do I think I'll be in a car accident? No, but I wear a seatbelt. Do I think my house will be robbed while I'm away? No, but I have door locks. Do I think I'm going to die soon? No, but I have life insurance. Do I expect to pull someone's disabled vehicle out of the road today? No, but I carry a tow cable. Do I expect to jump someone's battery? No, but I have cables. Coincidentally, I used BOTH my tow strap AND jumper cables today - good thing I had them. Some things I do because there is the possibility that something MIGHT happen. Carry concealed to protect yourself, your family and those around you. Carry open to protect yourself, your family, those around you, to make a statement that guns are not bad, that rights are worth exercising, and that liberty and security are paramount to making sheep comfortable and helping them forget about the wolves at the door."

    As they say in the Army..."Carry on!"
    I for one do not think your responses were either flip or smart ass. They are a consolidation of thoughts boiled down to a concentration of words and you need not apologize for them nor refrain from using them in the furure.

    With different audiences and in diverse locations, other more formal instructive responses might be in order. Occasionally a simple, "I'm sorry that you feel that way" may be appropriate while departing. Plainly put, there are no all occasion answers that are #1 on the hit parade all of the time.

    Many, many of us have used such expressions in defining why we carry and will likely do so again.

    Why do I carry? Because it is legal and I choose to! Any questions?

    Of course "Why do you ask?" is better and reverses our roles, taking the position of inquisitor away from the challanger.

    At ease!

    Yata hey
    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.

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