Conversation with My "Moderate" Friend about Firearms for Self-Defense


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soonerboomer
July 17, 2009, 04:19 AM
I had an interesting email exchange with a friend I'd consider "Moderate" on the issues of firearms, self-defense, and 2A. My friend is an attractive, confident, and independent young professional woman in her mid-20's.
While not inner-city Detroit or Philly, she lives in an area of town that can be a bit rough at times. Over the past several days there's been a serial rapist in her neighborhood. The suspect was caught by police last night.
Anyway, it made me mad that this punk was in my friends neighborhood. So, I sent my friend an email offering to help her if she wanted to exercise her 2A right to bear arms. Here's a copy of our conversation. I'd be curious to hear your thoughts. I would also like to ask those inclined to be "colorful" in how they feel about people to please refrain from personally insulting or being disrespectful to my friend. Also note that we share a common faith, and this faith is referenced in the emails and is not an attempt to "preach" at anyone.

My Initial E-mail...
Jennifer,
I don't know where you are on this kinda thing (since our nation is quite polarized on the issue), but in my perspective you deal with threats to your safety by exercising your 2nd Amendment rights. Cops don't prevent crime, they only investigate it. Plainly spoken, violent crime either happens, or intended victims stop it.
So, if you ever wanna learn defensive shooting or secure a carry permit, let me know. I'd be happy to show you to ropes.

Her Reply...
Mark,
Thank you for the offer, and I'll keep it in my mind in case I do someday feel differently, but I think for now I'll pass. I did go out and buy some pepper spray, even though I've been anti-spray for a while now. I've also considering a scary looking dog with a mouthful of spiky things. It makes me angry that these measures are needed to protect myself.
Yes, I have to be careful. But I also think that fear breeds fear, and violence breeds violence. I *personally* feel that carrying a gun would imply a sense of distrust about my community. I would not impute that same feeling onto others however. Maybe it's just that I was raised in a place that simply wasn't dangerous.
I guess my opinion is that yes, I can deal with threats against my safety by defending myself (in whatever way that might be), but I can also deal with it by working to improve my community, and to improve my community, I can't be afraid of it.
Fear probably the most dangerous weapon.

My follow up email...
Jennifer,
Some good thoughts here. I totally agree that fear can be a real issue. And, if we foster fear it will keep us from loving our neighbor as Christ has sent us into the world to do. I see so many living in fear, whether its due to events in the neighborhood, issues of national security, or the failures in our current economy. Fear is everywhere!
As you've suggested, I have seen people who own firearms develop a fearful mindset. Some are even paranoid. However, this mindset can also exist in people depending on pepper spray, alarms, dogs, cops, deadbolts, tazers, baseball bats, etc etc...
I look at things a bit differently. First, I think there is liberating truth (from fear) in the promises of God and His sovereign control of all things. I also see wisdom on the topic from Psalm 33:17-18. At the same time, I also see examples, commands, and precepts concerning just war and just self-defense in the bible.
As for a gun, its just a tool much like the forementioned methods of self defense. Like any other tool, it is kept without much thought, but its there if needed. I do not believe that owning/carrying a firearm implies a sense of distrust about my community any more than installing a smoke detector implies a belief that my house will burn down.
We all have the constitutional right to keep and bear arms for self defense. However, people who do so must understand the responsibility, equip themselves in competent use, and understand the legal provisions for self defense. If one is not willing to do so, they should get a toothy dog and make sure 911 is set in their speed dial.
Maybe its the protective husband/dad thing, or maybe its my belief in the brilliance of the 2nd Amendment, but for me I do choose responsible self defensive gun ownership. God forbid, if my family is ever in imminent grave danger due to criminal intent, such actions will be met with the "aggressive negotiations" end of my firearm. =)

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bootless
July 17, 2009, 04:54 AM
Honestly firearms for protection are not for everyone. A gun is only useful if the person using it is comfortable with the responsibility they posses. Not only that, they must be well trained to use a gun effectively and safely. If that person is not willing to do any of this then there are alternative forms of protection. A large dog, pepper spray, taser, etc, can all effectively deter/stop an attacker. Even small things such as wearing shoes that are easy to run in may be one step closer to away from an attacker. If your friend wears high heals/dress shoes to work for example,tell her to bring a pair of sneakers for when she goes home. She should get her keys out well before getting to her door. Don't talk on the phone while she's alone going to and from home. Criminals look for people that are vulnerable. Small changes and situational awareness never hurt. I should also note that people change their minds so if she decides to get a firearm then make sure she knows how to use it effectively and safely.

MovedWest
July 17, 2009, 05:24 AM
Owning and carrying a gun is no more a symbol of fear than is having a spare tire in your vehicle. Personally I'd rather call the guy that I have my road hazard policy with when I have a flat, but if I can't and I need 4 rounds... I jack up the car and change a tire.

A spare tire is there when Goodyear isn't. My firearm is there when other help (police) isn't. Is it fear? Hell no! It's being prepared and deciding to NOT be a victim!

Yes this type of preparation is an unsavory indication of the deterioration of our social fortitude in the USA (i.e. it sucks to have to do it), but it sucks to wear a condom so you don't get AIDS either. Welcome to the new generation. Does she choose to be a victim or does she choose to rise above it?

-MW

Titan6
July 17, 2009, 09:08 AM
This is probably not what you are looking for but....

It makes me angry that these measures are needed to protect myself.

Statements like this generally indicate one of two things:
1. Denial that we live in a violent world
2. A feeling that "someone else" is responsible for "taking care of you"

Yes, I have to be careful. But I also think that fear breeds fear, and violence breeds violence.

Check out this website:

http://www.violencebegetsviolence.org/

And I will say while this may be true that violence does beget violence, violence also ends more fights than it starts.

I *personally* feel...

As soon as someone throws this monkey wrench into an argument you are pretty much done. Until a person as able to look at an issue logically an intelligently you will never, ever change their mind. That is why all of the anti literature is short on facts, long on lies and emotionalism. They don't want people to think about the issue they want them to "feel" a certain way about it.

"....that carrying a gun would imply a sense of distrust about my community."

So I think we have an answer to our first statement which is denial that we live in a violent world *and* an expectation that the community should take care of her.

I guess my opinion is that yes, I can deal with threats against my safety by defending myself (in whatever way that might be), but I can also deal with it by working to improve my community, and to improve my community, I can't be afraid of it.

This is problem solution mis-identification. Working to improve her community won't make a serial rapist go away. Even the best communities have serial rapists.

Fear probably the most dangerous weapon.

I think a .45 wielded by a well trained but terrified potential rape victim is much more dangerous than her attacker with a knife, who may not be scared at all.

We try not to use real names of people, especially without their knowledge.

Just One Shot
July 17, 2009, 09:51 AM
Have her read about David and Goliath.

Here was a man after God's own heart that used that day's equivelent of a firearm to defend his God and country.

(The sling propelled a projectile at a velocity and force unobtainable by throwing it from the hand)

As you stated, there are many examples of self defense in the Bible. If she is grounded in the faith then using it as the basis of your point of view will probably yield the greatest results.

Good luck!

Tim the student
July 17, 2009, 10:08 AM
More power to her, but I choose to protect myself with a gun, and I have no concern at all of being raped (which I think is a much worse crime than anything that can be done to me).

I saw that she said that "that carrying a gun would imply a sense of distrust about my community. I would not impute that same feeling onto others however." Does that include her not locking her doors? Does she leave her car unlocked? Keys in it? When she goes out and about late and alone in her neighborhood, does she carry her phone "at the ready" to use quickly if she needs it? I think you need to try to convince her that she can trust all she wants to, but needs to be prepared for OTHER people that have broken that trust in her.

At least she doesn't want to ban guns I guess, (or she didn't say that outright).

Dravur
July 17, 2009, 10:24 AM
And someday if I wish real hard, everyone will come together and sing Kumbaya.

When and if she ever meets the real badness of this world, all the wishes and platitudes arent going to matter a hill of beans.

She is hoping that since she wishes it real hard, nothing bad is going to happen to her.


Anti Spray? What the heck is that?

Well, I promise not to come to her aid. we wouldn't want her world view to get all out of whack if someone saved her with a gun....

christcorp
July 17, 2009, 10:33 AM
I agree with bootless. A gun is simply a "TOOL". The 2nd amendment simply gives us the right to use that tool. But just because we have the right to use that tool, doesn't mean that it is the right tool; and more importantly, the ONLY TOOL. The 1st amendment provides us the Right to worship and religion we choose. But that doesn't mean that you HAVE TO worship at all. There are a lot of atheists who don't believe in a deity and they don't attend any churches. Yet, they are actually EXERCISING their 1st amendment right by NOT believing in god or going to church. I grew up in the Newark, Jersey City, and New York City area. Definitely in some not so desirable neighborhoods. I learned and developed skills that became very affective tools. I never carried a gun for defending myself when I was younger. My other "Tools" were quite sufficient. And even now, that I do carry a gun, it is only 1 of many tools.

You can NOT rely on a gun to protect you. You have to rely on yourself to protect you. While it's true that "Guns don't kill people; people kill people". It's equally true that "Guns don't SAVE people; people save people". A gun can definitely be a good tool to assist in resisting crime. But people really need to stop having this "FALSE" sense of security that they get by having a gun. It scares me to think of the person who develops a level of arrogance and belief that they are protected because they have a gun. And then a situation arises where they aren't able to get to their gun fast enough or at all. The criminal is able to overcome the victim and harm or kill them. Mainly because once the victim lost their ability to use their gun; for any number of possibilities; they also lost their confidence and fear took over.

I am definitely not against guns. I wish more people would learn to use them and carry them. They are a great tool for defense and for deterrence. But it is only a tool. You need to have other tools. And tools aren't just objects. It's knowledge, skills, training, etc... I can honestly say, "AT LEAST FOR ME"; the ONLY time a gun is probably going to be the "Proper Tool" at the time, will be if the criminal ALSO has a gun. For any Non-Gun threat, I am quite confident in my other tools. This is not to say that a woman in a dark underground parking garage shouldn't use her gun as a deterrence against a rapist because he doesn't have a gun. Not saying that in the least. Only that the woman in the underground garage needs to learn to use other tools. Because the gun isn't always going to be available. Even if it's in her purse.

So I'm not saying that your friend shouldn't be persuaded to get a gun and a concealed weapons permit. But I am saying that a gun should be just 1 of many tools. Don't get the false sense of security of having a gun. Seems like many; "NOT ALL"; but many individuals who buy guns for self defense either get arrogant with their security, or they actually become MORE paranoid of the world around them.

TX1911fan
July 17, 2009, 10:41 AM
What if there had been a spate of traffic deaths, and you had offered to teach her defensive driving techniques and help her buy a safer car. Her responses below would seem pretty silly, but "society" has conditioned too many people to feel this way about personal protection.

It makes me angry that these measures are needed to protect myself.
Yep, I get angry every time I put on my seatbelt and watch what other drivers are doing. I mean, why should I have to worry about the other guys. THEY should just drive better.

Yes, I have to be careful. But I also think that fear breeds fear,

You can't drive around all day worried about getting in an accident. It's much better to just assume it will never happen to you and not take any measures to protect yourself or to avoid accidents. If we are all blissfully ignorant of the risks, they will just go away, right?
I *personally* feel that taking defensive driving and owning a safe car would imply a sense of distrust about the other drivers on the road. I would not impute that same feeling onto others however. Maybe it's just that I was raised in a place that simply had good drivers.
I guess my opinion is that yes, I can deal with threats against my safety by defending myself (in whatever way that might be), but I can also deal with it by working to improve the drivers on the road, and to improve the other drivers, I can't be afraid of them.
Fear probably the most dangerous weapon.

Yep, my being afraid of getting crushed by a 10 ton semi truck is much more dangerous than said 10 ton semi. Why can't we all just get along on the road, and not crash into each other. And we know that we can't BOTH improve other drivers while AT THE SAME TIME protecting ourselves. These are mutually exclusive. You can do one or the other, but not both . . .


Your friend is not stupid, blind or batty. Just conditioned to think about personal safety exactly, 180 degrees opposite of how we are taught to think about everything else. Is protecting myself against identity theft implying that I don't trust everyone else out there? Nope, I just don't trust the criminals. Is locking my door doing that? How about my car? When I don't leave my wallet on the table in an airport while I go to the bathroom does that mean I fear people? Nope, but get a gun to protect yourself from violent crime, and it's YOU who is doing something bad.

Souris
July 17, 2009, 10:42 AM
The Dog thing......

I see this a great deal on some of the forums that I frequent. "I'll get a big mean dog. It will protect me."
Problem is a dog is unpredictable. The dog is a living creature with a mind, personality, and needs of its own. Owning a dog requires as much if not more training (for you and the dog) than owning a firearm. Most people that will not commit time to a firearm will not commit the time necessary to have a dependable dog.
To me a dog is more likely to be uncontrollable in a situation than a firearm.

Also, a big scary looking dog is pretty much a tool to project force,fear and intimidation to all those around you - a passive/aggressive deterrent. By a dog because you want a dog. Not to use it as a force projection tool.

I agree that pursuing the self defense matter through Biblical ideals may be the way to move. I also agree that logic VS feelings is a poor battle to fight since you have to have facts and the other doesn't "feel" that they need to support their arguments with those.

sohcgt2
July 17, 2009, 10:50 AM
And I will say while this may be true that violence does beget violence, violence also ends more fights than it starts.

this is one of the most rediculous statements I've ever read since every fight starts with violence.

As to the OP, IMHO after her reply to your first e-mail you should have let it drop. You made an offer and she rejected it, "Thank you for the offer, and I'll keep it in my mind in case I do someday feel differently, but I think for now I'll pass." and added, "I did go out and buy some pepper spray, even though I've been anti-spray for a while now.". Again IMO you are not likely to convert an anti-pepper spray person to a pro gun person and if you are truly concerned for her safety maybe a better start would be martial arts training or some type of self defence course.

Deanimator
July 17, 2009, 10:54 AM
She has an unrealistic view of human society bordering on the irrational.

Other than religious cults and totalitarian dictatorships, "communities" don't speak with one "voice" and you have no control over those "voices". If one or more of those "voices" say, "I like to hit women, make them have sex with me, then strangle them" you can deal with that or not. Almost invariably, dealing with that "voice" involves violence. THAT "improves" the "community".

"Trusting" EVERYBODY is like petting every dog you see. If you're LUCKY, you'll just get fleas. You might get your throat torn out. If you think that not trusting EVERYBODY is a worse outcome than getting beaten, raped and murdered, then as Sponge Bob says, "Good luck with that!"

I'll bet she doesn't have moats, minefields, checkpoints, or background checks in her "community". That means that even if 100% of the community agrees with her, Ted Bundy can just walk or drive right in and do his thing. You can EFFECTIVELY resist him if you cross paths or not. INEFFECTIVELY resisting him is worse than not resisting him, because you've just given him a bit of excitement before he does his thing.

Violence SHOULD "beget" violence. That's called deterrence. When it DOESN'T beget violence, that's called a "positive reinforcement". When people get what they want by using illegitimate violence, that teaches them (and others) that that's how you get things.

She doesn't WANT to believe that evil people exist in the world, and probably in her community. They do whether she likes it or not. If she REFUSES to believe it and act appropriately, as Wednesday Addams says in one of the "Addams Family" movies, she'll "ALWAYS be the victim".

Deanimator
July 17, 2009, 11:06 AM
I can honestly say, "AT LEAST FOR ME"; the ONLY time a gun is probably going to be the "Proper Tool" at the time, will be if the criminal ALSO has a gun. For any Non-Gun threat, I am quite confident in my other tools.
I'm not interested in being in any knife fights, much less fighting a guy with a knife bare handed. At least in Ohio, a knife is deadly force, just like a gun. Come after me with a knife (or a club) and you're going to get shot until you're no longer a threat to me.

I'm short a godsister because her boyfriend stabbed her to death. Knives are serious business. They certainly were for her.

I don't have the slightest interest in providing a "fair" fight to a criminal attacker with a weapon, nor does the law require me to. If you attack me with deadly force, life's going to get VERY "unfair" for you, VERY quickly.

CoRoMo
July 17, 2009, 11:13 AM
I've been anti-spray for a while

I guess I'm anti-spray too. But insanely pro-gun.:evil:

Seriously though, it sounds like she has a textbook case of community/societal dependence. That is the issue she'll have to square with someday. Once she determines that self reliance is the only way to secure her own safety, she'll come around.

Deanimator
July 17, 2009, 11:20 AM
So I think we have an answer to our first statement which is denial that we live in a violent world *and* an expectation that the community should take care of her.
But HOW? Is it ok for the COMMUNITY to use violence against the rapist? If not, what are they going to DO? Follow him around and nag him about being a rapist? But wouldn't that make him feel bad about himself and imply that he's not capable of modifying his OWN behavior? And doesn't that also imply that her choice to not be raped is somehow to be given greater weight than his choice to rape her?

Fuzzy thinkers just HATE me because I know the jargon better than THEY do.

MovedWest
July 17, 2009, 01:29 PM
Anti Spray? What the heck is that?

Keeps the Brady Bunch away. :evil:

peyton
July 17, 2009, 01:53 PM
This friend is stuck in denial. There is little hope of changing her mind.

Vern Humphrey
July 17, 2009, 01:55 PM
Owning and carrying a gun is no more a symbol of fear than is having a spare tire in your vehicle.
I had someone that lives in New York City tell me, "I'd hate to live in such fear than I had to carry a gun."

I simply pointed at her front door, which had 3 deadbolt locks. "I'd hate to live in such fear than I had to spend my life cowering behind a triple-locked door."

xwingband
July 17, 2009, 02:02 PM
I agree with bootless' first sentence.

Owning firearms AND using them for self-defense is not for everyone. As long as she's not for taking your guns away, an indifferent stance is more a win for the 2A than it is against.

There are many barriers to gun ownership... some simply price. Most often not being okay with possibly having to take a life. For me it was simple, I realized I wouldn't be able to forgive myself if someone I loved had died because I was unarmed. I can and would consider myself blameless if I shot someone is self-defense. I wouldn't be calloused, I'd be calling 911 and praying over them after I was sure they were stopped.

For possibly warming people up to gun ownership. I would always offer to take them out for "fun" shooting like clays and other reactive targets. Maybe they never say yes, but if they do they would likely enjoy it.

One of my best friends was wary. He'd never been around guns and was a bit afraid of them. After taking him shooting and explaining the safety he's pro-2A now. He'll probably never own one, but he's first in line if I give out the offer to go shooting.:D

If your still concerned about her safety, also offer self-defense classes. Offer to let her beat you up a bit as "practice"... might be fun. :D

COMPNOR
July 17, 2009, 03:08 PM
Does she choose to be a victim or does she choose to rise above it?


So if you don't carry, that automatically makes you a victim? What a load of crap. It'd be really nice if Pro-2A people could drop this line of thought.

While her personal views and opinions of the world may not jive with everyone else, 1) She didn't say that all guns should be banned, 2) She didn't say it couldn't happen to her. She said she feels confident with the tools she has available. Leave her be. Guns are not for everyone. They are not the right tool for everyone. Even in the same situation, what works for one might not be the same response for another.

christcorp
July 17, 2009, 03:18 PM
Deanimator; in the quote you made of mine, you will notice that I emphasized the words: "At Least For Me". And later on in the same post, I said that I wasn't saying that as an example, a woman in a parking garage who is possibly going to be raped or whatever, shouldn't use her gun as a deterrent because the criminal didn't have a gun. Please don't read into what I wrote. A gun however is just a tool. Hopefully it is not your only tool. And a tool isn't always an object like a knife, pepper spray, etc... There are plenty of other tools such as knowledge. And that tool; knowledge, training, etc... is what WILL SAVE YOUR LIFE. The gun isn't going to save you. Neither will pepper spray, a knife, or any other object you can think of. You are the one who is going to save your life. And if you rely solely on a gun; or ANY particular single tool; then the only thing I can say is that I hope you are in someone's prayers. Rely on yourself to save your life; not the gun. Definitely have a gun, but the gun is just a tool. And there are times when you WON'T have access to your gun. If you believe that you will ALWAYS have access to your gun, you are mistaken. You better have other tools/options to work with.

Vern Humphrey
July 17, 2009, 06:12 PM
What a load of crap. It'd be really nice if Pro-2A people could drop this line of thought.
Maybe you could set the example -- by not posting things like the above line.

COMPNOR
July 17, 2009, 06:32 PM
Touche

Vern Humphrey
July 17, 2009, 06:38 PM
Blondie Hassler (who commanded the Cockleshell Heroes in WWII) was an avid yachtsman (he originated the OSTAR race.) Blondie said yachtsmen should not carry radio transmitters, "Because we go to sea for pleasure, and if we get in trouble we have no right to call on others to risk their lives to save us."

That's a pretty good philosophy. As a corollary, those who will not take reasonable steps to protect themselves have no moral standing to call upon others to risk their lives defending them.

DeepSouth
July 17, 2009, 07:02 PM
Have her read my Sig.

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cpileri
July 17, 2009, 07:30 PM
She is on a journey, as we all are, and hasn't arrived at the "CHL/CCW" phase- maybe she will, maybe she won't.
But...
If the discussion continues to be faith-centered (Christian, in you rcase) consider this synopsis of a discussion i had with a friend of mine. Both of us also took the Christian arguement path.

Short version:
If Saints Michael, Gabriel and Rafael appeared before me and said that no harm that can be prevented by use of a firearm will ever happen to me or my progeny, I would happily NOT carry one ever again. I do in fact, like guns themselves, but I carry for defense only. Yes, I could take a life, if necessary in the course of legitimate self-defense.
The decision i had to come to in order to carry a firearm and realize I may take life if I ever had to use it is as follows: My life is not mine, it is a gift from The Almighty. My life is His, and I am in stewardship of it. I am also in custodianship of the lives of my wife, children, and possibly others depending on the situation. I can only assume that He made me the way he wants me: among other things, ALIVE. It is not reasonable for me to assume he wants me dead, or else I would be. I further believe He made me for a purpose or maybe more than one purpose. Not the least of these purposes is to know Him and love Him on THIS world; and to raise children to do the same. I can't do either one if I am dead.
Therefore, to not avail myself of legitimate effective means of preserving my life when faced with grave harm or death is to not be in proper custodianship/stewardship of His gift (my life)- it is to hold His gift in disdain(*) which is a grave sin.
Furthermore, in Evangelicum Vitae, we read the following which says, in short: its a terrible thing to have to take life to defend yours, but its the fault of the attacker; and you are still innocent even if the attacker is crazy and not really an evil person; but you still owe it to God to defend your life. See here:
"Christian reflection has sought a fuller and deeper understanding of what God's commandment prohibits and prescribes. There are in fact situations in which values proposed by God's Law seem to involve a genuine paradox. This happens for example in the case of legitimate defense, in which the right to protect one's own life and the duty not to harm someone else's life are difficult to reconcile in practice. Certainly, the intrinsic value of life and the duty to love oneself no less than others are the basis of a true right to self-defense. ...legitimate defense can be not only a right but a grave duty for someone responsible for another's life, the common good of the family or of the State. Unfortunately, it happens that the need to render the aggressor incapable of causing harm sometimes involves taking his life. In this case, the fatal outcome is attributable to the aggressor whose actions brought it about, ...even though he may not be morally responsible because of a lack of the use of reason."
The above even makes refernce to those who take life on behalf of others, soldiers, and police, especially.

END

So my take is that I owe God the gratitude of taking his gift seriously, even if faced with the solemn task of defending life with violence.

Hope that makes sense,
C-

(*) I read that phrase, "hold [His] gift in disdain", in "Nation of Cowards"and i liked the way it sounded, so i adopted it to my speech.

green country shooter
July 18, 2009, 01:43 PM
people change their minds very slowly.

You have planted the seed.

Back off and let it mature.

On another tangent, isn't pepper spray violent? I mean i would consider being pepper sprayed to be a violent assault on me.

Vern Humphrey
July 18, 2009, 02:02 PM
On another tangent, isn't pepper spray violent? I mean i would consider being pepper sprayed to be a violent assault on me.
Both violent and often not as effective as one would wish.

But that's logic. Anti-gun arguments are non-logical. They are based on emotion, and you can't defeat emotion with logic.

batjka
July 18, 2009, 02:58 PM
Well, from what I see your friend has the typical liberal mentality. Did she come from a rich family? Was she brought up by idealistic parents? Was she raised in all-white community? Did she vote for Obama? I'm pretty sure the answer is yes for all of the above questions.

Some people just can't be helped. They have to learn on their own. After a few bumps (hopefully they won't be too hard) she might see that the world is not all rosy and that the "community" is actually made up of individuals and that some of these individuals are criminally minded and cannot be changed by smiling at them and pretending they are nice.

Good luck to her.

1911Tuner
July 18, 2009, 04:13 PM
She said:

I *personally* feel that carrying a gun would imply a sense of distrust about my community.

Having an active police presence kinda implies the same thing...No? Or, does she believe that their primary mission is to write speeding tickets?

The city fathers themselves distrust their community enough to have a police force. They know that within every community are people who would commit violent acts agains their fellow man...and woman.

And for her next response...

When seconds count, the police are only minutes away.

BHPshooter
July 18, 2009, 04:32 PM
But I also think that fear breeds fear, and violence breeds violence.

"One bleeding-heart type asked me in a recent interview if I did not agree that 'violence begets violence.' I told him that it is my earnest endeavor to see that it does. I would like very much to ensure — and in some cases I have — that any man who offers violence to his fellow citizen begets a whole lot more in return than he can enjoy." -Col. Jeff Cooper

Your friend isn't living in the real world. It's not that uncommon, sadly. Even more sad, though, is that it usually takes a serious incident to wake them up to reality. Sometimes they don't live through it.

A childhood friend of mine (about a year younger than I) was an "at-risk" youth counselor. She loved the job for reasons that were echoed in your friend's post -- It was a way to help improve the community, blah blah, etc. Late one night, one of these poor, disadvantaged youths called her, needing help of some sort. When she got there, this poor, at-risk youngster raped her, and then proceeded to stab her to death. http://nomorevictims.net/r_elton.htm

Honestly firearms for protection are not for everyone

You're right. They're only for people who are smart enough to care about self-reliance.

people change their minds very slowly.

You have planted the seed.

And that's about all you can do. One thing I've learned is that people must make their own mistakes -- this applies to every aspect of life.

Wes

nelson133
July 18, 2009, 05:24 PM
I have taught several women to shoot who have gone on to get carry permits. In every case they crossed the line to acquire the means of self defense because something happened in their lives to show the face of violence. It is too bad but it often takes a shock to break the kind of societal conditioning against violence that all of us are exposed to. I believe this conditioning to be stronger in women than men.
Tools other than a gun require rigorous training and luck to be successful. I am reminded of the hiker who was young and trained in the martial arts who fought a man over 60 when he attacked her. Though she caused him some physical pain, he raped and killed because the size and strength disparity was too great. If you are not a strong young man and/or if you end up facing multiple attackers, a gun is the only force equalizer that consistently works. I, like so many in our society, am no long young and I have a few age related handicaps
and I carry a gun every day. I am not guaranteed success in any violent encounter, but I have the most equal chance possible. There is deep truth in the old saying about Col. Colt.
Something that perturbs me is the appearant belief that to use or carry a gun requires the equivalent of 2 weeks at something like Thunder Ranch. More training is better and more practice is better and both should be encouraged. But if you read the print and internet sources on armed citizens facing criminals, you often find people defending successfully themselves without much training or practice. I wouldn't encourage this, but I would not want to make the training issue so big that it might discourage someone who doesn't have the time or money for it to be dissuaded from getting a gun.

hinton03
July 19, 2009, 03:11 AM
Teddy Roseavelt said it best "Speak softly and carry a big stick; you will go far.''

I don't beleive protecting yourself shows distrust in your community; it shows confidence in yourself. Greed is a basic human emotion just like love and fear, as long as it is you will have to protect yourself.

Wile E Coyote
July 19, 2009, 03:49 AM
Protecting yourself with a gun is exactly like protecting your home or vehicle with a fire extinguisher. Do the 3 extinguishers in my home imply I do not trust my local fire dept? Admittedly, the ramifications of using each of those items can be vastly different, but that's what that lump between our ears is for.
I say you should look at the bright side. That being, she did not seem to writhe in disgust at the notion. I agree that perhaps the seed has been planted, and I read some very intelligent rebuttals above for your next go round.

Pack
July 19, 2009, 07:55 AM
I know there are a lot of people in our country like the woman in question here. She sounds like a lovely woman, with a great heart, but I think she's a bit disconnected with reality. Of course that's just my opinion, or perception of reality.

In any event, she is quite useful - useful to me, for example, as a reminder that when I carry, I must continue to foster the mindset that the weapon, my wits, and anything else at my disposal are there only to protect myself and my own, and not to play "citizen's arrest marshall".

If people like her are left to fend for themselves (something which they seem patently incapable of doing), it is unfortunate for them, but better in the longrun, because the free market of ideas - if I may call it that - will "correct" when things get to the point that not even those of such a mentality can ignore the fact that the cavalry is not always just around the corner and they must protect themselves.

Many of us seek greater independence - like that our forefathers enjoyed - and the surest and fastest way back to that way of life is to slowly but surely replace wards of the state with self-reliant individuals, whether it is achieved by persuasion or natural selection.

Vern Humphrey
July 19, 2009, 08:14 AM
I don't beleive protecting yourself shows distrust in your community; it shows confidence in yourself.
When someone says something like "carrying a gun shows distrust in your community" it makes me realize all the money we spend on education is wasted. Can this person not read? Do the newspapers not carry daily accounts of crimes? Does she not have a television and watch the news?

You can trust your community all you want, but if you wind up in the wrong place at the wrong time, you're gonna be a statistic.

Deanimator
July 19, 2009, 11:14 AM
When someone says something like "carrying a gun shows distrust in your community" it makes me realize all the money we spend on education is wasted. Can this person not read? Do the newspapers not carry daily accounts of crimes? Does she not have a television and watch the news?

You can trust your community all you want, but if you wind up in the wrong place at the wrong time, you're gonna be a statistic.
I used to share an office with an elderly man who's irrationally anti-gun.

He didn't see any need for a gun for self-defense, even in his home. I asked him what he'd do if somebody kicked in his door tonight. He replied that he'd give him whatever he wanted. In a totally uncharacteristic kind moment, I DIDN'T ask him if that included his 30-something Down's Syndrome daughter.

The world is what it is, regardless of the comforting fantasies in which you choose to dress it. And it's got a cruel way of slapping you in the mouth to get that message across.

akodo
July 20, 2009, 02:40 AM
violence begets violence

This is true

However, counter the line with the following example

Rapist attacks and ultimately kills a woman he encounters walking in the park at night

A woman walking in the park at night is attacked by a rapist, she ultimately is able to defend herself and kills him.

Are these two situations exactly morally equal? (in both, exactly 1 person dies) Are both situations equally undesirable, or is one MORE undesirable?

tdowell
July 20, 2009, 03:52 AM
She is on a journey, as we all are, and hasn't arrived at the "CHL/CCW" phase- maybe she will, maybe she won't.
But...
If the discussion continues to be faith-centered (Christian, in you rcase) consider this synopsis of a discussion i had with a friend of mine. Both of us also took the Christian arguement path.

Short version:
If Saints Michael, Gabriel and Rafael appeared before me and said that no harm that can be prevented by use of a firearm will ever happen to me or my progeny, I would happily NOT carry one ever again. I do in fact, like guns themselves, but I carry for defense only. Yes, I could take a life, if necessary in the course of legitimate self-defense.
The decision i had to come to in order to carry a firearm and realize I may take life if I ever had to use it is as follows: My life is not mine, it is a gift from The Almighty. My life is His, and I am in stewardship of it. I am also in custodianship of the lives of my wife, children, and possibly others depending on the situation. I can only assume that He made me the way he wants me: among other things, ALIVE. It is not reasonable for me to assume he wants me dead, or else I would be. I further believe He made me for a purpose or maybe more than one purpose. Not the least of these purposes is to know Him and love Him on THIS world; and to raise children to do the same. I can't do either one if I am dead.
Therefore, to not avail myself of legitimate effective means of preserving my life when faced with grave harm or death is to not be in proper custodianship/stewardship of His gift (my life)- it is to hold His gift in disdain(*) which is a grave sin.
Furthermore, in Evangelicum Vitae, we read the following which says, in short: its a terrible thing to have to take life to defend yours, but its the fault of the attacker; and you are still innocent even if the attacker is crazy and not really an evil person; but you still owe it to God to defend your life. See here:
"Christian reflection has sought a fuller and deeper understanding of what God's commandment prohibits and prescribes. There are in fact situations in which values proposed by God's Law seem to involve a genuine paradox. This happens for example in the case of legitimate defense, in which the right to protect one's own life and the duty not to harm someone else's life are difficult to reconcile in practice. Certainly, the intrinsic value of life and the duty to love oneself no less than others are the basis of a true right to self-defense. ...legitimate defense can be not only a right but a grave duty for someone responsible for another's life, the common good of the family or of the State. Unfortunately, it happens that the need to render the aggressor incapable of causing harm sometimes involves taking his life. In this case, the fatal outcome is attributable to the aggressor whose actions brought it about, ...even though he may not be morally responsible because of a lack of the use of reason."
The above even makes refernce to those who take life on behalf of others, soldiers, and police, especially.

END

So my take is that I owe God the gratitude of taking his gift seriously, even if faced with the solemn task of defending life with violence.

Hope that makes sense,
C-

(*) I read that phrase, "hold [His] gift in disdain", in "Nation of Cowards"and i liked the way it sounded, so i adopted it to my speech.
In regards to your quote, I will simple quote Christ,
"Ye do error, not knowing the scripture, or the power of GOD." Mathew 22:29

There is no command given by GOD in either the Talmud, or in the New Testament which instructs us not to kill, in fact, Jesus explicitly instructs his disciples just before his crucifixion that "if you do not have a sword, sell you cloak and buy one." Luke 22:36 He knew that the time would come when it would become necessary to defend ourselves because of our beliefs. As for the 10 commandments, the proper translation is "Thou Shall not take the life of an innocent." or paraphrased, "thou shall not commit murder." It does not say, "Kill" anywhere in the law. GOD himself ordered the deaths of many people after the law was given, and GOD cannot break his own laws.
As for "Turn the other cheek" Jesus was instructing his disciples on how to deal with prideful people not to allow our lives to be put in danger. Jesus never once told his disciples or us, not to protect ourselves.
Regarding your friends issue with arming herself, If she’s a believer, I would give her Luke 22:36. It went a long way towards helping me reconcile within myself how and when I should apply deadly force. The most important part is, its impossible to employ deadly force ever, if you do not have the means. Better to have the means and not do so, then not have the means when it becomes necessary.

tdowell
July 20, 2009, 03:55 AM
"Christian reflection has sought a fuller and deeper understanding of what God's commandment prohibits and prescribes. There are in fact situations in which values proposed by God's Law seem to involve a genuine paradox. .
In regards to your quote, I will simple quote Christ,
"Ye do error, not knowing the scripture, or the power of GOD." Mathew 22:29

There is no command given by GOD in either the Talmud, or in the New Testament which instructs us not to kill, in fact, Jesus explicitly instructs his disciples just before his crucifixion that "if you do not have a sword, sell you cloak and buy one." Luke 22:36 He knew that the time would come when it would become necessary to defend ourselves because of our beliefs. As for the 10 commandments, the proper translation is "Thou Shall not take the life of an innocent." or paraphrased, "thou shall not commit murder." It does not say, "Kill" anywhere in the law. GOD himself ordered the deaths of many people after the law was given, and GOD cannot break his own laws.
As for "Turn the other cheek" Jesus was instructing his disciples on how to deal with prideful people not to allow our lives to be put in danger. Jesus never once told his disciples or us, not to protect ourselves.
Regarding your friends issue with arming herself, If she’s a believer, I would give her Luke 22:36. It went a long way towards helping me reconcile within myself how and when I should apply deadly force. The most important part is, its impossible to employ deadly force ever, if you do not have the means. Better to have the means and not do so, then not have the means when it becomes necessary.

bad_company
July 20, 2009, 06:54 AM
I guess she already made her own choice
Yeah fear is everywhere but again... she made her choice

Yosemite Sam
July 20, 2009, 07:58 AM
This might help a little:

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Do you own a fire extinguisher? Why?
by Jim Downey

Do you own a fire extinguisher? Why? Are you expecting a fire? Or do you have some sort of left-over juvenile desire to play fireman, a private macho image of rushing into a burning building to save a child? Don’t you know that improperly used, a fire extinguisher can be dangerous to yourself and others? And there have been “studies” done that show people who own fire extinguishers are actually more careless with fire risks, thinking that they’ll always be able to resort to their fire extinguisher to solve the problem. Besides, firefighters are always right there when you need them, and can put out any fire for you, so there’s no point in having your own fire extinguisher.

How about an emergency first-aid kit? Do you have one of those? Why? Are you expecting to injure yourself? Or do you have some sort of left-over juvenile desire to play doctor, a private macho image of saving someone from bleeding to death with an improvised tourniquet? Don’t you know that improperly used, medical supplies and equipment can be dangerous to yourself and others? And there have been “studies” done that show people who own first-aid kits are actually more careless in general, thinking that they’ll always be able to resort to their medical supplies to repair any injury they sustain. Besides, Emergency Medical Technicians or doctors are always right there when you need them, and can instantly patch you up if you get injured, so there’s no point in having your own first-aid kit.

Are these responses to being prepared absurd? Yeah. But they are exactly the sorts of responses I get when people find out I have a permit for carrying a concealed weapon, and generally carry a pistol whenever and wherever I can legally do so. And my experience is not at all unusual - most gun owners encounter the same sort of reaction from non-gun owners. We’re asked if we’re expecting to have a shoot-out in the supermarket. We’re asked if we have some childish fantasy about playing cops & robbers. We’re told that if we want to play with guns and shoot people that we should join the military. We’re confronted with facts that guns are inherently dangerous to ourselves and others, and that “studies” have shown that owning a gun makes it more likely that we will behave in such a fashion as to need to resort to using one to get us out of a dangerous situation. And besides, there’s always a cop around when you need one, just to protect you, so there’s no need to have a weapon for self defense.

Are there gun owners who think that carrying a weapon makes them invincible, and they therefore go around with a chip on their shoulder, putting themselves in dangerous situations thinking that they can always whip out their pistol and escape? Yeah, probably. But that is no more the typical mindset of a gun owner than is the notion that someone who owns a fire extinguisher is going to be careless with fire risks. Are guns inherently dangerous, and if used improperly present a threat to the owner and anyone else in the vicinity? Definitely. Which is why anyone who carries a weapon has a responsibility (usually mandated by law in the state which issued their concealed carry permit) to know how to safely handle and use a firearm, how to safely store it, and when it can be legally used in defense of self or another. And are there gun owners who think that they’re some kind of auxiliary police force, ready to jump in and right any criminal wrong they see being committed? Yup. In fact, a lot of people who legally carry a firearm do so precisely because there are situations where intervening could save the life of a loved one, a friend or even a stranger. But that doesn’t mean that they are wanna-be cops. Rather, they’re just trying to help contribute to their own safety and the safety of others. The police, firefighters and EMTs can’t be everywhere. We do have a responsibility to protect ourselves, to make prudent preparations in the event of an unexpected turn of events. That means having a fire extinguisher handy in case of a fire. It means having a first aid kit, and knowing some basic medical skills for dealing with an emergency. And for me it means having a gun available as a tool for self protection. Your level of comfort with how you are prepared for what situations may well be different, but that does not mean that my decision, and the decision of millions of other Americans, to legally and safely carry a concealed weapon is wrong or paranoid.

Yosemite Sam
July 20, 2009, 08:00 AM
We’re asked if we’re expecting to have a shoot-out in the supermarket.

Say... Didn't this just happen? ;)

Deanimator
July 20, 2009, 10:15 AM
We’re asked if we’re expecting to have a shoot-out in the supermarket.
Hmmm, let's choose:

1. "Shootout" in a supermarket.
2. Five execution style murders in a Lane Bryant clothing store.

Oh yeah, getting shot in the back of the head while you're cowering on your knees; that seems SO very preferable to a "gunfight"...

MisterMike
July 20, 2009, 10:32 AM
First, I'd commend the OP for making the effort to help his friend protect herself. I don't necessarily think she's made the right decision, but she appears to understand that she's responsible for her own safety and has come to a reasoned determination as to how she's going to deal with the possibility of violence. As others have noted, guns aren't for everyone. Truthfully, I'd rather see a woman make an informed decision to pursue other means of self-defense, rather than mindlessly start carrying a gun, without the benefit of having the attitude and technical proficiency to employ it effectively.

I think you've taken it far enough. Maybe at some point in the future you could ask her if she's interested in going to the range with you. But seriously, even if that occurs, I wouldn't push it any further. If she comes to see the utility of carrying, great. If not, then you've made a very noble effort by doing something you believe is in her best interest.

catspa
July 20, 2009, 12:30 PM
When I hear someone say "violence begets violence" and use it as an argument against carrying or owning a gun (or any weapon, as some do), it tells me that they have failed to understand or refuse to admit the distinction between unprovoked violence and protective violence. If no decent person was willing to engage in the latter, the bloodiest and most ruthless among us would soon be at the top of the heap, and the rest of us would be cowering in fear as our loved ones were murdered and raped before our eyes.

Look at Somalia for an example of how that works.

Parker

KSDeputy
July 20, 2009, 02:57 PM
I think because of my career, I know what is out there. I have been carrying a firearm for 42 years. I will carry one until I am home bound, then I will have it handy. I believe in God, but I also believe He expects us to help ourselves. Peace officers cannot be everywhere, nor can we be expected to be there at the second you need us. It is up to the individual to protect themselves. I have always advocated for the right of law abiding citizens to keep and bear arms. I helped fight for concealed carry in my state. It isn't perfect, there are way to many places in the statute where people are prohibited from carrying, but it is better that it was before. I'm hoping someday, the legislature will whittle down the list where one cannot carry.

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