Saturday, February 6, 2010

Every Day Law-Abiding Citizens Anonymously Defend Themselves From Criminals

As a Firearms Trainer and gun rights activist, I get engaged in a lot of discussions - online and offline - about the Second Amendment and gun ownership. In a number of those conversations, an anti-gun person has tried to argue the position that law-abiding citizens should not carry guns because they aren't as skilled as criminals and will not be able to defend themselves.

The anti-gun folks argue that armed law-abiding citizens create another liability for the community. It is beyond their empty rhetoric and belief system that a selected victim can both draw and shoot an assailant - in many cases without suffering an injury.

Rather, the eventual outcome that the anti-gun people like to paint is that of a gun owner who is surprised by a predator and can't act which leads to having his gun taken away from him, being shot with his own gun, or having another illegal gun in the community.

I won't totally side-step the issue of how "skilled" some criminals are in their abilities to commit violent offenses: rape, murder, and robbery. However, I would be remiss if I did not state that all perpetrators of violent crimes are not experts at their trade.

In fact, many criminals are fairly inexperienced and use unloaded firearms to ensure they don't hurt their victims. They are "counting on" their victims to fold once they see a weapon formed against them. Of course, there are also vicious criminals in our community who would kill their neighbors at the drop of a hat to quell the pains of their drug habits.

Obviously, anti-gun people do not regularly read the newspaper or watch the nightly newscasts, because if they did they would have been made aware of several publicly documented cases where citizens who were lawfully armed did just that - defend themselves, their loved ones, and their homes.

Furthermore, everything that happens in our community and elsewhere doesn't make the news. In some cases, as told to me by several suburban law enforcement officers, a concerted and deliberate effort is made by local suburbs to keep their crimes from being reported in the media. In other cases, a simple editorial decision at either the newspaper or the broadcast station keeps certain stories from being publicly divulged.

Moreover still, a significant number of crimes and successful defenses of crimes are not even reported. I can personally attest to not reporting to the police unsuccessful attempts on my safety and others who were with me at the time. Also, I stay in regular contact with my students - via Facebook, Myspace, Twitter, and this blog - who have made me aware of how they defended themselves but did not report the matter to the authorities.

Finally, in a national survey conducted by Florida State University's famed criminologist Dr. Gary Kleck in 1993, it was determined that roughly 2,000,000 handgun defenses are executed in the US every year by law-abiding citizens. You just haven't heard about them.

Bottom Line:
Don't let a weak and unsupported argument from an anti-gun crusader keep you from joining the ranks of US citizens who are prepared to defend themselves from the unprovoked and violent attacks of predators. Every year, law-abiding citizens defend themselves and their families. You can be one of them. Buy a handgun and get trained on how to use it.

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