March 4, 2010

Packing Heat

Today, I got the call that my Concealed Carry Permit had been delivered to the Sheriff's office and to come pick it up! I've been waiting for this for months!

And of course, immediately people - usually women around my age - get very nervous and say, Why would you want to carry a gun? I don't even want one in my house! or Do you even know how to use that thing? Aren't you afraid of hurting someone? or Gee, paranoid much?

I didn't get my driver's license until I was 19. Why? I was terrified of cars. To me, they were nothing more than rolling death boxes driven by immature children and blind old people. My parents had to force me to get my license so they wouldn't have to drive me to class at college every day. I would have panic attacks when I got behind the wheel.

Seems silly now, doesn't it? After all, it's just a car. Everyone, especially in flyover country, drives a car. Maybe on coastal cities where public transportation is more prevalent, that's not the case. But around here, everyone drives a car, because we live in the suburbs and you have to in order to get anywhere. So why was I so freaked out?


For the same reason most people, especially women, get freaked out by unloaded guns locked in a gun safe: ignorance. I didn't know how to use the car, didn't trust it to operate the way it was supposed to, and knew that I was untrained in the operation of the car. The same is true of the general population when it comes to guns.

Most people's familiarity with firearms comes from pop culture. We most often see a gun in a movie or TV show being used by the bad guys - whereas the cute little 5'0" 80 lb actress is somehow able to karate chop a 6'3" 250 lb gun-wielding psychopath into unconsciousness without getting a scratch on her - contrary to all laws of physics.
So it's no wonder that when you mention to someone that you enjoy going to the range or - gasp - might want to carry some means of protection other than Mace, they become uncomfortable. Between Hollywood telling us that only "bad guys" carry guns and the MSM telling us only "crazy people" like to shoot them (yes, I'm looking at YOU, Diane Sawyer!), why wouldn't you want to give anyone who says they are applying for a CCW license a wide berth?

But here's a little statistic you won't find on CSI: you are 57 times more likely to be killed by a car than a gun in the United States. Yet we will usually get in the car with just about anyone to save gas on a trip to the movies.

I love police officers, I have several in my family, and will never say a negative word against them. But they are not omnipresent, and don't claim to be. As Law and Order so accurately states: "The people are represented by two separate, yet equally important, groups - the police, who investigate crime...." Police investigate crime, and their presence is meant to deter crime. Add to that that average emergency vehicle response time is 9 minutes. And that's after you call 911. Cops are not your personal bodyguards. They just can't be. And they sure as heck aren't paid enough to be.

So what's the point of all this preaching? Obviously, I'm not trying to talk you into anything you don't want to do. And I do not believe that everyone should carry a weapon, although everyone should have the right to make that decision for themselves.

But I do think it's important - especially for women - that we don't decide against learning about the most effective means of self-defense without all the facts.

And after careful consideration, training, and practice, I decided to take the responsibility for my own safety and that of those around me.

Because you really never know who's hanging out in the mall parking lot.

14 comments:

  1. I am in the process of getting mine too.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I grew up around guns. The guys in my family are big hunters. I have been shooting skeet since I was about 8 or 9. Of course, I was closely supervised and was taught the proper handling and respect of guns. I agree that most people are scared of guns because they do not know anything about them. But I would much rather be armed with a gun than a knife/baseball bat if someone is breaking into my house!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Yay you! I want to get mine too. I love going to the shooting range. I understand why other women don't feel comfotable, but for me, I feel more secure when I know I have a way to protect myself and my son, if I have to.

    ReplyDelete
  4. You go girl! I need to get mine too. My husband and I don't go to the range nearly as often as I'd like to. I used to be scared of guns, but now I feel much more secure knowing that I can protect myself.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Totally meant to say GOOD for you! :)

    ReplyDelete
  6. I would love to get my Concealed Carry Permit, and then eventually get a gun. It will be awhile though. Have to wait until I have more money.

    ReplyDelete
  7. LOVE this!!! I honestly can't wrap my head around the thought process that people have when they try to justify not allowing citizens to carry guns. It truly mystifies me.

    Ha, and funny story, ADT called the other day to ask if I wanted to subscribe to their services. I told them I already had a security service. When they asked what company I used, I told them I didn't have a company, I had a shotgun next to my bed (loaded, but not chambered) and that I certainly felt more safe with that than any service that could only call the cops for me. She quickly laughed and got off the phone.

    And besides, if anyone ever tried to break into our home and harm my family, I'd feel better if they left in a body bag rather than cuffs. :) But that is just me. I'm downright vicious when it comes to protecting my family.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I am your newest follower and I totally love this! Thanks for stopping by my blog as well!

    ReplyDelete
  9. I grew up in Massachusetts where the only people who had guns were criminals and hunters. I never had anything against them, just didn't know much about them due to lack of exposure. You can just go shooting to learn how to shoot a gun. You have to pay to take a class. Then you have to do blah blah blah. I am not against classes by any means, but you have to climb to the top of mount everest to shoot a gun [legally]. One of the first activities me and the future hubs did together was shoot during "ladies shoot for free" in Tennessee. I was TERRFIED, but really wanted to try. I mean I had an army man who gets it right on target 39/40 times so who better to teach me? This last time, I was so confident and now he is thinking of buying me my own gun next christmas. I don't think I'll carry it, but have it at home. My demented, drunk patients are crazy so I need to take self defense classes that are acceptable in a hospital. Anyway, once you learn, they aren't so scary!

    ReplyDelete
  10. My husband is trying ever so hard to get me to go shooting with him. We are buying him a pistol in the next few weeks and I just can't seem to bring myself to go shooting. I know I need to learn, and who knows I may actually enjoy it, but right now I am still a little too scared. Love your gun though its so cute with the pink on it!

    ReplyDelete
  11. I never thought about it, the way you put it! Makes sense and I respect it. Having a gun in my home would freak my out. I just keep the chain on the door and hope everything works out. I guess I'm naive. But I'm all for responsible gun owners! More power to you. When I have a child, or my fiance leaves for Basic, I might be all "two guns up" and protecting the house. I don't know.

    ReplyDelete

I was nice and didn't turn on word verifications. Please reciprocate by having your reply-to email set and not posting anonymously.