How to defend against unwarranted observer complaints.

How to defend against unwarranted observer complaints.

This is a discussion on How to defend against unwarranted observer complaints. within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; A current holder of a Carry Permit who has "studied", not just read all applicable laws must understand that there not only exists many in ...

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Thread: How to defend against unwarranted observer complaints.

  1. #1
    New Member Array Aarius's Avatar
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    How to defend against unwarranted observer complaints.

    A current holder of a Carry Permit who has "studied", not just read all applicable laws must understand that there not only exists many in our society who are totally committed to 100% gun control and will use any opportunity to put you in their skewed spotlight but also a very large number, if indeed not the vast majority of good citizens who simply cannot put all the pieces together that properly explain why a person would want to strap a lethal weapon on legally and go about in public. Even though they may see several times a week on the nightly news reports about a person or persons who has been injured, perhaps fatally, by gunshot fire and the part of that report that clearly says that the suspected assailant was in the act of committing a felony and may very well have had preconceived intentions to kill others was totally lost on them.

    One matter that concerns me and has as recently as a few days reared its ugly head is how to react when a "citizen" observes through an open coat or perhaps protruding from or bulging through a sweater the obvious outline of a handgun and then proceeds to "get involved".

    Without giving everything but my GPS coordinates I will say that I live in a place that houses many occupants and in order to gain access to my front door I must pass through a secured front door and pass a common area to arrive at my front door. I also must pass a common area with sofas and a fireplace to reach my mailbox which I do either coming or going about every time I leave or return home.

    With no more information given than the above many of you already know many things because you have likely seen the exact same type of place a dozen times. There is ALWAYS the fact that two, three or four or more little old ladies who will be sitting by the fireplace and their one job in life is to discuss matters they observe, think they observe along with a huge helping of gossip the contents of which will likely be 99% baloney.

    Not too long ago while passing this gaggle of gossipers and my having exchanged all the cursory pleasantries one of them spoke up, rather loudly, with a question that in many settings would cause everyone around to assume the prone position without any degree of invitation, "Are you carrying a gun?"

    Turning to see the lady face on it was easy to see that by now I had an audience. Without the slightest degree of concern and in that flash of an instant that happens in the minds of seasoned LOE's or licensed carriers I smiled and replied, "Yes ma'am, I am", Then without missing a beat she bellowed "WHY?" Then happens that instinct inside that so many reading this knows exactly whereof I write and considering the fact that I already was quite aware of why any sane person should do everything possible to avoid these "ladies" I wanted to say, even if restraint was applied; "Because I can!" and be on my way. Realizing in that same instant such a reply would not do I replied, "let me show you". Reaching for my wallet to display my bright red permit I was met with, "I don't care what kind of ID you have I want to know why you have a gun in here?" Now diplomacy with a modicum of "Lady you are out of line" in my voice took over. "Perhaps all you need to know is that I am legally armed for not just my protection but very much possibly for yours as well". A hasty retreat seemed in order.

    A few days later the manager, who was very much aware sine before I moved in that I was a licensed carrier for ALL the right reasons, asked to speak with me a moment and proceeded to ask me matter-of-factually if I had "shown" my gun to anyone in the lobby? Now a very long and distinguished career in law enforcement plus a flash in the mind of all the concerted efforts I go to every day in order to protect everything that is the Utah CCW rules and Regulations guide was in front of me like a billboard. Also present was a pretty good understanding of just how busybodies like those ladies can cause more trouble by accident in one minute than many others could in an hour, I just gave the manager "that look".

    Here is where the "education" comes in for this long posting because many who are law abiding, legally licensed CCW holders either already have or will experience something like this.

    A matter-of fact "absolutely not" would have been the truth that could not be questioned because that lobby is under video surveillance 24/7 and I could have left abruptly without another word. I already knew of my incontrovertible proof yet I took another path because I have a responsibility to protect my CCW and YOURS.

    After making that definitive "absolutely not" response I proceeded to call this good person by name and asked if they had even the slightest concept of what the implications of that question were? There was some mumbling of which I politely interrupted and quoted some of the local and state laws regarding what "BRANDISHING" a firearm meant. Unloading a dump truck full of information I sewed the whole matter up with what that manager was now going to do - period.

    Because one or more of those little old ladies had made a choice to make a statement or complaint, or even a reference however it might be worded, that questioned me and how I conducted myself while carrying a lethal weapon legally, there would now be a follow-up and so as to not corner those little old ladies who in truth had far less understanding of what a serious thing she/they had done than did this manager, any and all possible questions about this matter would be asked, made a record of and filed away for the simple fact that even in one's wildest dreams SOMETHING could happen in the future and that complete "misunderstanding" (actually the need of a hateful little old lady or ladies to be noticed was carried out) could not be re-opened to come back and bite me squarely in the posterior.

    If you have not completely lost interest in this one little (very long) example of how quickly things can go from everyday life to "Oh! Crap, now what do I do?" then may I invite you to pay close attention to the moderators of this site, ask questions, post blogs, become involved with all CCW holders to better understand how to help us protect each other and every human life we come into contact with every day of our lives while legally carrying a lethal firearm plus get yourselves educated about every possible and conceivable scenario that might happen to you at a time and in a place when you least expect it and then be able to go about your daily lives more confident in who you are and what events might transpire that could change your lives in an instant.


  2. #2
    VIP Member Array AZ Husker's Avatar
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    Ever find out how the little old lady made you?
    Welcome to the forum, nice post!
    Treat me good, I'll treat you better. Treat me bad, I'll treat you worse.

  3. #3
    VIP Member Array Sticks's Avatar
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    Might have been a good time to take a deep breath, pull up a seat, and engage in a calm Q&A session with them. You may loose the discussion, but what you say, providing you say it in a manner that is not offending and full of "opinion", they will continue to think looong after the discussion is over.

    For me, there is a distinct possibility that I will get called on the carpet one day at work (the "no weapons" policy is in a state of flux at work - changes in print every year, last year it was omitted in print, but verbally stated). I have carried all day, every day at work since the fall of '07. No incidents, been made twice, so probably 10 of the 150 employees know.
    Sticks

    Grasseater // Grass~eat~er noun, often attributive \ˈgras-ē-tər\
    A person who is incapable of independent thought; a person who is herd animal-like in behavior; one who cannot distinguish between right and wrong; a foolish person.
    See also Sheep

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    Distinguished Member Array kelcarry's Avatar
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    Same crap from the anti-smoking crowd. There is no "middle ground" in any of these discussions and there is no "civility" in any of these discussions, no matter what our king says after the AZ shootings. If you have the right to CC and have the CCWP and follow the rules, you can politely discuss it with anyone (which is a waste of time) , or impolitely tell them to mind their own business and if they do not like it, TOUGH!!! I have never had this conversation over CC, but have gone to great lengths to use every bit of bad language I can muster when it comes to lighting up my cigars where I can.

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    Welcome to the forum and well-written first post.

    Of course I wasn't there, but I think I'd erred on the side of "concealed means concealed". Obviously the little ole lady was trying to bait you, at least that's what it seems. I had a PR guy tell me once that comments like that are best handled with ignore or with a streak of humor. It is tough to get an unexpected bush-whacking catch-you-off-guard comment like that. It seems to me that by engaging with her, the interaction you had, generated the rumor that you brandished your gun and got the manager involved.

    her- "Are you carrying a gun"?
    me- "Me"? Why would you ask me that? (keep walking)
    her- "You've got something under your shirt"
    me- Either ignore (keep walking) or "You're suggesting I'm fat"? (keep walking)

    My favorite would be to just ignore her, don't even make eye contact after her comment.
    her-"Are you carrying a gun"?
    me- Ignore her and keep walking, she's probably a busy-body prying for info to gossip about.

    her-"Are you carrying a gun"?
    me-"Should I"? (keep walking)
    Turn the election's in 2014 to a "2A Revolution". It will serve as a 1994 refresher not to "infringe" on our Second Amendment. We know who they are now.........SEND 'EM HOME. Our success in this will be proportional to how hard we work to make it happen.

  6. #6
    VIP Member Array TedBeau's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aarius View Post
    After making that definitive "absolutely not" response I proceeded to call this good person by name and asked if they had even the slightest concept of what the implications of that question were? There was some mumbling of which I politely interrupted and quoted some of the local and state laws regarding what "BRANDISHING" a firearm meant. Unloading a dump truck full of information I sewed the whole matter up with what that manager was now going to do - period.

    Because one or more of those little old ladies had made a choice to make a statement or complaint, or even a reference however it might be worded, that questioned me and how I conducted myself while carrying a lethal weapon legally, there would now be a follow-up and so as to not corner those little old ladies who in truth had far less understanding of what a serious thing she/they had done than did this manager, any and all possible questions about this matter would be asked, made a record of and filed away for the simple fact that even in one's wildest dreams SOMETHING could happen in the future and that complete "misunderstanding" (actually the need of a hateful little old lady or ladies to be noticed was carried out) could not be re-opened to come back and bite me squarely in the posterior.
    Welcome to the fourm.
    I guess you lost me at several points above in bold. Did you call the lady that made the complaint and explain to her the definition of brandishing is? Secondly, it sounds like you wanted the manager to do something, but I couldn't figure out if it was your desire for a report, or what. Maybe I should get some coffee and read it again.

  7. #7
    VIP Member Array Sticks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ppkheat View Post
    ...

    her- "Are you carrying a gun"?
    me- ...
    "Colostomy bag. Time to go empty it again, excuse me, I better hurry."
    Sticks

    Grasseater // Grass~eat~er noun, often attributive \ˈgras-ē-tər\
    A person who is incapable of independent thought; a person who is herd animal-like in behavior; one who cannot distinguish between right and wrong; a foolish person.
    See also Sheep

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    VIP Member Array JoJoGunn's Avatar
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    My snarky thought would have been to say "I carry a firearm to protect myself from thugs like yourself!" (There is no age range to be a thug)

    However, I would have calmly said that "I do so because the U.S. Constitution and my WV permit allow me that right" and then just walk away. No sense in verbally boxing with an anti who is bent upon starting an argument you know you will not win. I never engage in a protracted conversation with one because they believe they are right and no matter how many good reasons are given, they are not going to be convinced. It's just my observation and experience with many of them.

    You handled it in a very good manner but we are always on the losing end when confronted with anti's like her.
    "A Smith & Wesson always beats 4 aces!"

    The Man Prayer. "Im a man, I can change, if I have to.....I guess!" ~ Red Green

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    3D
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    "What's in your purse is your business, not my business.
    Likewise, what's in my pockets is my business, and not your business." . . . hold eye contact a few more seconds . . . then continue on with whatever I was doing and do not re-engage or respond to ANYTHING more with her.



    [EDIT: Welcome to the DC Forum Aarius - that's an impressive first post.]
    "It is easier to resist at the beginning than at the end"____Leonardo da Vinci 1452-1519

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sticks View Post
    "Colostomy bag. Time to go empty it again, excuse me, I better hurry."
    her-"Are you carrying a gun"?
    me- "Ma'am, I always carry an extra bologna sandwich with me"
    Turn the election's in 2014 to a "2A Revolution". It will serve as a 1994 refresher not to "infringe" on our Second Amendment. We know who they are now.........SEND 'EM HOME. Our success in this will be proportional to how hard we work to make it happen.

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    Welcome to the forum,
    I live in Arizona where carrying is now common practice and therefore its no longer perceived as a big deal. Interesting how the new constitutional carry thing’ completely changed perceptions.

    Anyway, my initial thought is ‘how did I get made, and what can I do to prevent it?’ As for responding to self-righteous demigods I’m more inclined to ignore them completely. It sorta follows the same reason why we shouldn’t talk to police if we’re involved in a shooting. Meaning, what you say isn’t what they hear, and therefore isn’t what they relay onto others’.

    Dan
    “Monsters are real and so are ghosts. They live inside of us, and sometimes they win.”
    ~ Stephen King

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    If it were concealed how did she even know to ask you if you were CC'ing? Do they ask that of everyone that comes through? I have CC'd for years and the ONLY person that has asked me if I was CC'ing has been my wife because she couldn't see it anywhere and wanted to make sure I haden't forgotten it.
    It's not the destination, it's the journey.

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    As TedB., I got a little confused trying to understand exactly what happened after.

    While I will readily admit that trying to catch flies with honey isn't my style, it is a style which would likely work well in these sorts of situations. Polite answers, respectfully given, in a calm manner, should defuse all but the folks who are going around looking for a reason to get upset.

  14. #14
    Member Array Sledzep01's Avatar
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    I would have said none of your business and walked away (nicely). If someone were to freak out and start screaming I would just say call the police. When they dialed I would dial. Wait for the police, let them see that you are legal to carry. Hopefully the police will let the fine ladies know that you are legal and they should not call again.
    As for all the rest of what if they say they saw it, you brandished it etc etc.
    False accusations are just that. If they press, so can you.

    Walk around legal and you dont have to walk around worried.

    Sled

  15. #15
    Distinguished Member Array kapnketel's Avatar
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    I quit trying to reason with these people some time ago. You cannot have a battle of wits with an unarmed person.
    I'd rather be lucky than good any day

    There's nothing that will change someone's moral outlook quicker than cash in large sums.

    Majority rule only works if you're also considering individual rights. Because you can't have five wolves and one sheep voting on what to have for supper.

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