The reasons for carrying a concealed firearm are probably as varied as there are people who carry concealed. I have spent a lot of time trying to honestly understand my reasons and I find the answer to be very complicated and personal. I am sharing this with the readers of this form because I think an honest answer will help every person learn how to clearly convey their reasons to anyone interested in an honest discussion. This post may be a bit long, but I can do it no shorter. So here goes.
I am 66 years old and have never had to defend myself or anyone around me from an assault of any kind. I have only been carrying for a little over three years. So why the change of heart (mind?) after more than 60 years of not carrying? There are several personal factors that have influenced my decision.
1. First of all, the world is a very dangerous place and is getting more dangerous by the day. It is not the same world that it was when I was growing up. Morality and the ability (or willingness) to determine right from wrong are almost non-existent any more. Evil has always been with us, but is now, it seems, being given an almost free hand to prey upon the weaker ones in our society.
2. I have never been a jock. I have always been more of a geek. To paraphrase the song, “I was a geek before being a geek was cool.” I don’t think I ever won a fight on the playground or the back yard when I was growing up. It would be useless for me to attempt to learn any martial arts as a means of protection. It just would not work for me.
3. As I said earlier, I am 66 years old and whatever physical prowess (?) I might have possessed in the past grows less and less every year. I am not as strong as I used to be. I cannot run as fast as I used to be able to run. My reflexes are continuously getting slower. My eyesight is not what it used to be.
4. I am currently three years cancer free. I was diagnosed with stage 2 colon cancer, underwent major surgery where two sections of my large intestine were removed and endured six months of very serious chemotherapy. Though I am doing well, it has taken a toll on me. I am not sure what a severe punch to my abdomen would do to me since my surgery. I still suffer from numbness and tingling in my finger tips and the bottoms of my feet. It is only in the last six months that I can once again make a fist. My balance is all messed up because of the condition of my feet. Physically fighting with these limitations would be bad enough if I had once been a good fighter. Since I never have been a good fighter, I think it would be almost impossible for me to survive a physical assault under my present circumstance.
5. I have been a Christian since I was nine years old. Because of this, I do not fear dying. But, at the same time, I am in no hurry to leave this life. I want to enjoy my wife of many years, my children and grandchildren, and the wonderful world God has created for many years to come. More than death, I fear not properly protecting my family or my friends if the need arises. Where I might hesitate if only my life were in jeopardy, I would willingly and fiercely surrender it to protect those I love or care for.
Therefore, given all these very personal circumstances all I want to do by carrying a concealed weapon is to try to level the playing field, or even the odds, or however you might want to phrase it. If I cannot physically defend against an attacker because they are younger, bigger, stronger, or more than one, how else can I defend myself unless I have something that gives me a fighting chance of surviving, and hopefully winning? The only thing that I know of that will accomplish this is a firearm. Pepper sprays and tasers are not designed for giving you the ability to win, even if you could successfully deploy them. Rifles and shot guns are obviously not a practical solution, at least not away from home. Only a hand gun will provide me with the stopping power I need, is readily deployable, and, so far, very reliable. So, for me, this is why I carry a concealed handgun, all day, every day, everywhere I possibly can carry.
Your reason will be your own and probably no less complicated than mine, but your very own none the less. I hope that my opening myself up to you has in some way helped. If not, then so be it.