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

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by soonerboomer, Jul 17, 2009.

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  1. soonerboomer

    soonerboomer Member

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    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. =)
     
  2. bootless

    bootless Member

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    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.
     
  3. MovedWest

    MovedWest Member

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    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
     
  4. Titan6

    Titan6 member

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    This is probably not what you are looking for but....

    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"

    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.

    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.
    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.

    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.

    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.
     
  5. Just One Shot

    Just One Shot Member

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    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!
     
  6. Tim the student

    Tim the student Member

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    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).
     
  7. Dravur

    Dravur Member

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    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....
     
  8. christcorp

    christcorp Member

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    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.
     
  9. TX1911fan

    TX1911fan Member

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    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.

    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.

    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?
    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.
     
  10. Souris

    Souris Member

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    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.
     
  11. sohcgt2

    sohcgt2 Member

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    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.
     
  12. Deanimator

    Deanimator Member

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    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".
     
  13. Deanimator

    Deanimator Member

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    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.
     
  14. CoRoMo

    CoRoMo Member

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    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.
     
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2009
  15. Deanimator

    Deanimator Member

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    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.
     
  16. MovedWest

    MovedWest Member

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    Keeps the Brady Bunch away. :evil:
     
  17. peyton

    peyton Member

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    This friend is stuck in denial. There is little hope of changing her mind.
     
  18. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    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."
     
  19. xwingband

    xwingband Member

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    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
     
  20. COMPNOR

    COMPNOR Member

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    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.
     
  21. christcorp

    christcorp Member

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    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.
     
  22. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    Maybe you could set the example -- by not posting things like the above line.
     
  23. COMPNOR

    COMPNOR Member

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    Touche
     
  24. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    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.
     
  25. DeepSouth

    DeepSouth Member

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    Have her read my Sig.

    l
    l
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    \/
     
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