Saturday, February 20, 2010

Myth: People who carry guns are looking for a fight!

Those who would ban the civilian ownership of defense guns feel that this absorption of potentially deadly power can create dangerous change in the character of the armed man. They fear that a man who before avoided quarrels, whether from reasonable or cowardly fear, will now be so fortified by the artificial potency of the gun that he will pick up on the slightest insult, perhaps escalating minor, everyday arguments into deadly confrontations.
Over many years of carrying guns, and of living in a part of the United States where the practice is commonplace among law-abiding citizens of all levels of society, I have learned otherwise.
In a normal, conscientious person, the presence of that deadly power engenders not belligerence, but an enhanced degree of self-control and coolness in tense moments of real or potential conflict. There are, I think, two reasons.
“If I hadn’t been carrying a gun, I would have punched that wise-ass in the mouth.” I have heard this sentiment many times. I have uttered it myself.
The responsible man who carries a legal gun does not respond to emotional provocation as he might if unarmed. An insult to one’s wife by a punk on the street is a case in point. The instinctive reaction is a threat or a blow. The presence of a gun does not give a reasonable man unnatural arrogance in this situation; rather, it creates a restraint. He knows that what would otherwise be a fistfight could escalate at the moment he, an armed man, engaged the provocator in physical combat, and he knows that the responsibility for the outcome would be his. It forces him to respond to the dictates of reason, not those of outraged pride.
Secondly, the possession of the ultimate degree in personal, physical power gives him an edge that improves his footing in more ways than one. An unarmed man threatened with physical assault responds largely from fear. A danger he is ill prepared to cope with has two results: it clouds his thinking with fear, even panic, and it provokes him to extremes to ensure his own survival. For instance, the two responses may combine, inducing him to attack before the use of force has become entirely necessary.
He who is armed is not above fear, but he experiences it to a lesser degree. The knowledge that he is prepared to cope with and survive the worst, relieves his mind of the heaviest fear, and lets him turn his full mental powers toward a non-violent escape from the situation.
He can afford to try to talk or walk his way out of it. He’s not giving up anything by holding off—his gun, and hopefully his skill with it, will still be the deciding factors if the assailants choose to make it a life or death situation. Another advantage is that he is under no social pressure to reinforce his masculinity with a counterattack: his possession of the gun, and the responsibility that accompanies it, give him an acceptable reason to excuse himself from the conflict.

• From the book: In The Gravest Extreme. By Massad F. Ayoob

Friday, February 12, 2010

The Castle Doctrine. What it is and why your state needs it.

The Castle Doctrine, in the simplest terms gives the law abiding, licensed firearm carrier two valuable rights.
1. While in a place that you have every right to reside such as your home, vehicle or place of business, you have the right to stand your ground if threatened by a violent criminal, even if that puts you in a position to use deadly force to protect yourself or your family. You are not required by law to flee, if the opportunity presents itself.
2. Neither the perpetrator that you shoot, nor their family has the legal right to sue you for damages.
The following states already have this law, Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, West Virginia and Wyoming.
The following states DO NOT HAVE THE CASTLE DOCTRINE! California, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin,
If you are a resident of one of these states that do not have the Castle Doctrine, I strongly recommend that you contact your governor, local representatives, your state Rifle Association (if you have one) and the National Rifle Association asking for their help in passing the extremely valuable law in your state.

Here is a link to an example of a Castle Doctrine law from the state of Texas. Most state Castle Doctrine laws are similar in wording.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Guns-at-Work law needed in many more states

I invite all of you to copy this letter, changing the name and state, and send it to your governor if your state does not currently have this law.

Dear Governor,
It has come to my attention that Texas is in need of a new law to protect its citizens. The law I am referring to is the “Guns-at-Work” law. This law prohibits Texas businesses from terminating an employee for having a legal firearm in their vehicle on company property. Many states have already passed this law including Alaska, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Kentucky, Minnesota, Mississippi, Oklahoma and Louisiana. Why hasn’t Texas?
I am a law abiding Texan with a Concealed Handgun License and my company policy forbids me keeping my gun in my car while I’m at work. This not only prevents me from protecting myself at work, but also during the commute to and from work. My only recourse right now is to risk termination by keeping my firearm in my car anyway or park my vehicle off of company property which is unrealistic.
The law already provides a solution for “gun-free-zones” such as schools, airports, federal buildings etc, by allowing the law abiding gun owner to leave the firearm in their car even though it’s parked in the parking lot of these places. Let’s send a message to all businesses and corporations with locations in Texas that they do not have the right to terminate their employees for exercising their constitutional rights.

Cody [last name withheld]
NRA Member