For many years, I’ve worked in some of the worst places in the world. While there, I was required to carry weapons for protection. Since I’ve been back in The States, I’ve not really worried about it. Furthermore, my thinking was that I wanted to stay off the radar and not be targeted by local authorities if and when SHTF.
Recently, a friend of mine, who teaches the NRA courses for concealed carry, asked me, “Do you think you are not already on their lists?” Think about it; a former Government Agency employee, currently contracting with Dept. of Army! Not to mention that I don’t know how to keep my mouth shut in confrontational situation. I am a Sheep Dog! ….Hmmm….Good point! So, I’ve taken the course and now I’m waiting for my date to go down to the Sherriff’s Department to do the fingerprints and background fees.
There are a few things to think about if you have been thinking about getting your concealed carry. Questions you need to ask yourself before you carry:
Are you responsible enough?
Just carrying a firearm is a great responsibility and shouldn’t be taken lightly. Do you stop at the bar for a couple of drinks on the way home? If so, carrying a weapon is not for you. You need to be clear headed and sober at all times. I don’t mean “legal limit” sober, I mean stone cold sober! This includes any medications that may impair your judgment. If you take meds for depression, are on prescription pain meds, you probably shouldn’t carry. It won’t stop you legally from getting your concealed carry permit; it’s just my personal opinion.
Do you have a temper or history of violence?
Then you probably shouldn’t carry. Many people these days have concealed carry permits and will never pull their weapon; this is a statistical fact. If you have a temper and are involved in confrontations, you might wind up pulling your weapon in anger. Next thing, you’ll be sitting your butt in jail.
Do you have respect for others?
If you do, then you should carry. We The People, need to be responsible Citizens and protect the innocent. Many have forgotten that the police are there to help protect us from the evil. Not completely protect us. When seconds count, they’re minutes away.
Where do I start?
Well, first off, do you own a weapon? Then the gun stores are where you start! Even if you own a firearm, check with your favorite shop. Many of them are now also certified instructors for your State’s requirements to carry. They will also have contacts who are instructors.
What’s your level of experience with firearms?
If you are a beginner, expert, or it’s been awhile since you’ve handled and shot a weapon, then you need to start getting out on the range. Shooting is not an instinct; it requires continuous training to keep the skill.
Personally, I think that owning weapons is a way of life, not something you do now and then. I take my family out shooting at least twice a month and I shoot at least once a week. A weapon is just another tool, but if you don’t know how to use it, or maintain it then you shouldn’t carry it. Practice like your life depends on it and you will save your life or the life of others when the moment comes. In my former life, I’ve had to use lethal force on several occasions and I hope to never have to do it again. However, I refuse to be a victim and if anyone has to bear that burden, let it be me. I’d rather have to live with taking a life than knowing that someone lost their life because I failed to act.
We’ve all seen the recent news reports and YouTube videos of violent acts of hate crimes perpetrated on innocent people. Just the act of concealed carry will curb this violence. Believe me, it’s not just an idiom when they say an armed society is a polite society. It is true! I’ve been in areas of the world that are corrupt and ruthless. The only thing they know is power through violence.
The act of concealed carry by itself is a violent act. Criminals will only act if they think the public is unarmed, but if they don’t know who is or isn’t armed; they will not continue to act violent. In the last 20 years, the number of firearms almost doubled in the US and the “firearm-related murder and non-negligent homicide” rate was more than halved. I think this proves the point.
I want to leave you with one last quote:
“When bad men combine, the good must associate; else they will fall one by one, an unpitied sacrifice in a contemptible struggle.”
Cover Image by Free State Project – PorcFest 2009 – Open Carry