When I still lived in Florida I had a concealed carry permit. Unless I was going out to a bar I carried everyday and everywhere. I didn’t do so because I’m some macho guy who thinks I’m going to be the thin line between anarchy and order, or because I have any desire to ever shoot anyone, or even at anyone. I did so because I grew up shooting, because I was comfortable with guns, because gods forbid I was ever in a situation where one might be useful I didn’t want to be without, and because I had the right to carry one.
As someone who grew up reading comics, as a Bat-fan, a Super-fan, a Strange-fan and a Spider-fan, I knew that the price of power was using that power responsibly, and as such I practiced with my choice of carry pistol regularly. I read Massad Ayoub, I made sure that I didn’t print when I carried, I practiced shoot/don’t shoot scenarios at the the range, and I thought seriously about what situation I would or would not be willing to draw in.
Most people I knew back then never had any clue I was armed at almost all times. I can remember many times when casual acquaintances who were anti-gun would state sentiments along the lines of “I could never feel comfortable if some around me had a gun on them”, or “No one other than police officers should be allowed to carry guns”. I would smile to myself, try to point out holes in their arguments, to educate them if they seemed open, or to try and open their minds to the possibility of an alternative point of view, but I never let them know that the object of their fears was on my person. Not only would it have been counterproductive, it could have been viewed as brandishing, which is grounds for the revocation of ones CCP.
While gun ownership, carry permits, and general interest in learning how to operate a firearm safely and effectively have increased by massive amounts in the last couple decades there are still many people who feel that all gun owners and especially gun bearers, are either psychotic macho assholes begging to shoot someone, or insecure cowards trying to compensate for their micropeni.
While there is no chance I can persuade those who crusade against gun freedom’s I have seen a few videos recently that may cause the open minded to reconsider what they know or think they know. Understand, none of the people in these videos are paragons, role models, perfect, or even particularly eloquent. I have mainly chosen each video because I have recently seen it, and because each, no matter how imperfectly makes a halfway decent point.
First up we have a fairly recent video from cutlerylover in which he describes what is a nightmare scenario for most gun owners. It is a lesser nightmare, as he did not fire, or even aim his gun at another person, but make no mistake the situation he describes is in fact a nightmare for any gun owner. Also his comments at the very end of the video are dead on. They are also shared by damn near everyone I have ever met in the gun community.
Next up we have a video by TheFireArmGuy, and while I am not a huge fan of his style or his channel, the points he makes in reference to the specific incident he is referring to are both valid, and sobering.
For those who claim they look at things from “a woman’s perspective” I ask you to watch the next video and ask yourself this one question, “Without a gun, what could this woman have done?”
Personally I think this video by NutnFancy is a damn good primer to explain the carry psychology.
But if none of those videos give you pause, or give you reason to reexamine your conclusions then I urge you to watch the “Terror at the Mall“, an HBO documentary about the Westgate Shopping center attacks in Nairobi in 2013. The footage was complied from the more that one hundred security cameras that recorded the carnage. While the incident was major news when it happened, most of the reporting has severely underplayed the role that civilian gun carriers played in helping to bring many to safety. The following video is one of the few I can find other than the aforementioned documentary that even touches on it.
There is an attitude among much of the carry community in the US. It is the attitude that we do not carry because we want to be, or even think we can be heroes. We carry because there may come a time when we might, at best, make a minor difference. On that day however civilian good guys with gun’s did not just make a difference, they were in fact heroes.