remember the words of George Burns, if you're old enough.
"I wouldn't be a member of any club that would have me as a member"
remember the words of George Burns, if you're old enough.
"I wouldn't be a member of any club that would have me as a member"
I do. I am. And I agree! :biggrin2:
This is an excellent opportunity to examine why you carry a weapon. When I got involved again in shooting and got my CCW, my primary purpose was to protect my wife and myself from thugs and assorted low lifes that prey on the sheep. However, I was also very aware that we live in strange times and that someday I might encounter terrorist acts being carried out. While I'm sure that since I'm not a combat veteran, I might be a bit shaky about facing an armed terrorist (or madman in a mall), I do consider myself a citizen militiaman of sorts and would not hesitate to make the effort. What is the second amendment all about if we are not willing to use force of arms to defend our homeland? My homeland is anywhere that I'm at doing whatever I do. That means the grocery store, the mall, the bowling alley, whatever. Legal consequenceas be damned. If some creep is killing people I feel obligated to shoot him or them. That's why I carry. That's what it means to have a second amendment right to bear arms. It is for ordinary citizens to be able to stop the creeps with deadly force.
I didn't mean to rant, but this posting gave me a good opportunity to examine my own feelings. I fault no-one for their decisions, but this is how I feel.
It's good to know there's someone else that thinks along the same lines. Its even better when I see that you are located close by!
The position you articulated so well does NOT put you (or me,) in the "LEO-wannabe," "mall ninja," or "vigilante" class, either. We are not going out looking for a wrong to right, a battle to be fought, or a life to be saved.
I carry a weapon as my own personal, last line of defense. But I cannot and will not shirk my responsibility to my fellow man by not coming to the aid of another because of a self-imposed "rule" of "me and mine ONLY," or worse yet, fear of a lawyer.
I have to live with the decisions I make.
Like it or not, we are a part of a society. We have to look out for ourselves, but if we don't look out after others when we have the means and ability to do so, then we are turning our backs on society.
The "blissninny" is on one extreme, sitting in a circle, holding hands and chanting, "Can't we all just get along?" Meanwhile, the wolves surround that circle, selecting their next meal.
On the other extreme, are those who feel every man is an island. They watch the wolves circling the sheep, thinking "They're not after me, it's not my problem."
What an excellent thread.
I think mindset is, by far, the most important thing to keep you and your loved ones alive. And we all need to reevaluate it often.
Just a couple of observations: Like probably 95% of us here, I have not faced the elephant and until I am forced into that situation I try to stay away from definitive statements of what I will or will not do. I only know what I hope I would do given a certain set of circumstances, what I train to do. But no two situations are alike.
You'll have the rest of your life to evaluate a response (or non-response) that you had to determine in just a couple of seconds.
Authorities will put the incident under a microscope and realistically defense lawyers will smell blood in the water.
Does this weigh in on your decision to "take the shot"? Of course it does. Should it paralize you into not taking a justified action? I would certainly hope not.
As to the two men who were packing at the mall: I can only speculate about the first from sparse information and, sadly, the second paid with his life. It's quite possible he would have been shot in any circumstance but the potential to drop the bad guy was evidently there.
It seems that many people are concerned with hitting bystanders. To my mind, in the worst case and if the BG is already firing, hitting one or two bystanders is much less damage than the BG is going to cause if you let him continue.
When I was younger, and way before 9/11, my Dad would always say that if he was ever hijacked in a plane, he would rather die trying to take out the hijackers than live with the unknown of what they might do to him as a hostage.
When I was younger, I thought he was just showing off some bravado and that I'd rather stay alive than take a chance trying to attack several heavily armed terrorists. My father served in WWII, but never fired a gun after the war. When I started buying guns, he didn't understand why I wanted to.
Then came 9/11 and the reality that there are people who will kill no matter what, and my thinking changed. I decided on that day, that if I am ever in a situation where I can stop a threat, or die trying, then I will. That's one reason why I got my CCW. Yes, it's a last line of defense for me and my family. But it can also stop a threat to others. I hope that I never have to use my gun, but if I were in that mall and saw the BG killing others, I would have acted.
I have had a concealed carry permit for 32 years as a civilian....in that time I have pulled it once and one reason I didn't shoot was fear of legal ramifications (I was in the program to be a pilot in the Marines at the time) and I was pretty rattled. This was a case where I came to the assistance of 2 girls swimming in a popular abandoned quarry who where probably about to be raped by 3 wana-be Hell's Angles. I had one other occasion to “reveal” the fact I was carrying to settle down a potentially bad situation.
I also rode on patrol with a sheriff’s deputy buddy of mine for several years and during that time I had 8 maybe 12 men at gun point and very nearly shot one. It was out away from any other people, I was behind cover and only my confidence in my ability to shoot saved his life by giving him enough time to come to his scenes. The short of it is I have faced the situation a few times, and like buck fever when deer hunting, the first time can really rattle your mind. After a couple encounters you learn how to control it. I had been a USPIC shooter for several years before I started riding on patrol and still that first time I had to draw on a man I could hardly think straight, the last time I was so cold it scared me a little when I thought back on it. So yes, if I am in a situation where a BG is shooting I WILL take him out, I have faced the situation before, I am sure I will be in control and I could not live with myself if I just stood by.
I think Rock hit the nail on the head. Hopefully, the first thing ANYONE does before deciding to CCW is to honestly examine themselves and make sure they have what it takes to act if the situation warrants. As we all know, a gun is no good without the will to us it.Quote:
Originally Posted by rocky
I think something that can help individuals attempting to deal with shoot/don't shoot situations, is great gobs of mental conditioning....what I refer to as ...what if....and I believe it is important to get in the habit this type of mental conditioning. To be sure, when it may be time to shoot, you do not generally have much time to mentally evaluate the situation to consider IF you should shoot. For the most part, that needs to be done before hand...to the greatest extent possible. If such a time should come that you must/will shoot, there generally is little time for additional evaluation since you must be:
1. Trained for stress fire
2. Mentally conditioned to focus and carry out the act such, that you do not simply fail.
Stress fire training can be had by competition and also by finding a training partner, willing to help train you to stress fire practice/train.
Mental conditioning for the average guy, could simply be working through mental scenario's that go from beginning....to final conclusion, and the mental training is the basis for being able to complete the scenerio in the first place. In your mental training, you must be as detailed and realistic as possible envisioning various complete circumstances and visualizing what you would see, how you would move, what cover you might take, what the sounds would be like....what dealing with a threat moving would be like, what the images would look like ...just a ton of things like that.
It's fine to pre commit yourself to assist others, or not as you might see fit, but it's quite another to actually prepare yourself such that you stand the best chance possible of actually saving a life....yours or someone else.
In this vain, I find it completely understandable that a individual even though packing concealed, is simply not prepared to assist at the moment such might be required. If you do not mentally train, and do not physically prepare (become capable in stress fire)...it is completely possible that some would simply not act, even though their normal best intention would be to do otherwise.
It's not just that you might freeze up, it's also a matter of being mentally overwhelmed and ill prepared....and suddenly realizing it.
Best intentions not withstanding, you owe it to yourself and those you believe you may be compelled to protect....to bring yourself to the point where you are really confident and capable such that should you choose to act.....that you are capable and clear thinking enough to get the job done as safely as possible.
It is a great responsibility, and a great privilege we have and we owe it to ourselves and others, to be at our very best, should we choose to carry concealed.
Very well put Paul. The mind, for most intents and purposes, does not know the difference between "dream" and reality. It's the conscious mind only that knows the difference. I have said before here that conditioning yourself mentally by going over scenarios in your head can be a great benefit. I do this regularly during the day and every single night before I nod off to sleep. I run scenarios. I pick something or someplace I had been during the day and throw a scenario at it. I work it out in as many ways I can think of. If I ever have to face the music for real, I KNOW I'll be able to react in a positive, decisive manner because I have probably already seen "it" many times already. Menatl conditioning is the key I believe.Quote:
Originally Posted by ppro
I have seen hundreds, thousands of fires in my short time as a career firefighter. I have only been in 4 real fires. I have had my SCBA fail in every way, shape, and form I can possibly imagine hundreds of times in hundreds of places. I have never had one fail for real. But I am completely comfortable walking into a 1000 degree structure fire, not being able to see, at 2:30 in the morning, on the hottest day in August/coldest day in January, with only my irons, my partner, my training, and my knowledge. I'm comfortable only because....
I've already been there.
I've never been in such a situation involvings guns.
I have been in unarmed situations where I've intervened. I really cannot say what I would or wouldn't do while sitting safely in my chair but I do hope that I do the right thing as the situation warrants if God forbid it ever happens.
The suggestions regarding mental conditioning are sound tested methods to assist in preparing you and are normally used in conjunction with actual physical training to obtain the best result.
Those of us who have faced these threats feel fairly comfortable making these types of suggestions....while sitting in our chair....but I can even more comfortably say, that to simply hope...is to hope against fate and the outcome becomes even less predictable than it would normally be as a result of your best efforts to reasonably prepare yourself.
Some training is better than none.....and the more effort you put into it will generally result in a more predictable outcome.
I would feel badly if I did not at least mention some of this, and as a result you were less aware, and subsequently less prepared...ending up in a situation that you had no idea you would likely not survive......for lack of preparation, practice, and some training.
Thank you for your input.
I do try everyday to mentally prepare, I also try to train as often as poss, drawing, sight pics, etc and practice at least once per week. I also plan on at least 1 tactical training class this spring or summer. I always carry and have been involved with firearms since an early age. Pistols, CCW and the responsabilitie that go along with these is relatively new to me (almost 3 months) so I am self concious and awkward at this point. Having been a good shot with rifle I was surprised when I recently took up handguns at how poorly I shot. I am improving and did manage this past weekend to put every shot into a 5" target at 10 yards. As unimpressive as that might be it is better than when I started and I am working for better grouping before moving out to 15 yards. I usually have a spotter and get advice from guys on our little home built range who are far more experienced. As soon as I get to be consistant at 25 yards I will take a tactical class. I would feel little remorse at dropping a BG who was intent on causing serious harm to others, my main concern at this point is concern about others with my limited skills.
I hope foremost never to have to be in that type of situation and secondly to be able to rise to the occasion if need be. I am working toward that goal.
A point of interest to me and maybe someone can explain this: I can hit a man sized target (no shot group sizes, just hit the target) with good regularity at rifle ranges (100 yards) using combat sights after spotting my first round hit but had more difficulty initially shooting at the closer ranges.
My goal is reliable 5" accuracy at 50 yards and I have a ways to go for that.
No one here would want me to have to try dropping a BG with my current skill level if your loved ones were near.
I will continue praying that I never have to shoot another person and practicing in case I do.
I guess for me it all depends on the situation. If I were in the mall by myself I would have to draw and fire. If I were there with wife and kids or parents or just kids, then it is priority one to get them out of there. I think all those stores have a back entrance so I would take them out that way. The question then arises once out do you go back in?