27 February 2008

...and I carry concealed

Excellent article that Sharp as a Marble found regarding a personal commentary on concealed carry.

Since permissions were explicitly by madrocketscientist on his post, here is his article in all its glory:

At any given moment, on any given day, I can legally conceal a firearm on my person for the defense of myself or others.

As a person who carries concealed, I have accepted an enormous responsibility to myself, my family, and to my community at large. I bear the responsibility to be aware, at all times, of my surroundings and of myself. I bear the responsibility of being trained and confident in the use of my firearm, and to take any and all measures to maintain control of myself, and my firearm, whether it is riding in the holster, or I have drawn it to confront a threat.

Before I can accept this responsibility, I had to be certain of my own moral center, to know that, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that the two pounds of steel and plastic on my hip is more than an uncomfortable bit of weight. To know that should I reveal my weapon, the situation may escalate to a point where I must use deadly force in defense of myself or others, and to know that my skill and training may not be up to the task, and despite the firearm, I may die, and that I am OK with that

Before I can accept this responsibility, I must be old enough, I must have enough money for the permit fee, and I must subject myself to a complete background check, one that involves local, national, and possibly international police agencies. If I have any instances of violence in my background, or events that have demonstrated my inability to be careful, lawful, and responsible, I will be denied this responsibility.

Before I can accept this responsibility, I need to know how to use a firearm safely. I need to know the four rules and have them such a regular part of my daily regimen that I am always aware of them and never forget them. Depending on where I live, I may be required to bear the expense to attend firearms training, or demonstrate my skill with a firearm at the range, or demonstrate it during a mock combat scenario.

Before I can accept this responsibility, I have to have a firearm. I must do my research and choose a firearm that fits my needs, my lifestyle, and my hands. I must again have the financial resources to purchase this firearm, which can range from $200 to $2000. I must have a holster that can safely secure my firearm on my person for carry, and it is likely a good idea to have different holsters for different occasions or seasons.

Before I accept this responsibility, I must know the law governing it. I must know how I may carry, where I may or may not carry, and under what circumstances I may reveal, draw, or discharge my firearm; and I must know the consequences of being wrong in my ability to discriminate these circumstances.

As I accept this responsibility, I must understand that I will be expected to maintain a higher standard of behavior than my fellow citizen, and, it could be argued, a higher standard than even the Police, as should I make a mistake with my firearm, I will be required to defend myself against criminal charges, and I will not have the resources and influence of the Police Union to support me.

As I accept the responsibility, I must understand that I can not be allowed to make a mistake with my firearm, as one mistake will result, at the very least, in the suspension of my responsibility, and should I be convicted, the permanent revocation of that responsibility, and possible loss of my freedom.

As I accept this responsibility, I must understand the following:

  • I can not verbally reveal to anyone that I have a firearm in a manner that could be considered threatening, intimidating, or otherwise hostile without the existence of a credible threat.
  • I can not visually expose my firearm in a manner that could be considered threatening, intimidating, or otherwise hostile without the existence of a credible threat.
  • I can not draw my firearm in any manner without the existence of a lethal threat.
  • I can not discharge my firearm for any reason without the existence of a lethal threat.

As I accept this responsibility, I must understand that I can not allow myself to become involved in an easily avoidable physical, or even verbal, altercation while in possession of my firearm, and that I am required to attempt to leave or defuse a tense situation that may escalate. I must make every reasonable effort to "turn the other cheek" so that should I be forced to fight, it is only in self-defense. I must always stay in control and keep a cool head. I can not give someone a piece of my mind in the parking lot, I can not belt the guy who is talking smack about my mother, I can not go drinking and get into a fight, I must avoid confrontation whenever possible.

As I accept this responsibility, I must understand that I can never be complacent as I carry, as I can not allow another to gain control of my sidearm, nor can I ever place an innocent in jeopardy because I am careless. I must make every effort, and bear every expense, in order to improve my skill with a firearm and my ability to safely use it.

I have to be better than a model citizen, I have to an exemplary citizen.

I accept this responsibility not because I think "guns are cool" or because I want to be a gangsta, or because I want to make someone my "beyotch", or because I want to be a hero, or because I am expecting trouble and want to be tough; I am not so shallow in my self.

I accept this responsibility because the police, as honorable and courageous as they may be, can not be everywhere. I accept this responsibility because criminals, and those that would do violence for their own purposes, respect no boundaries, and can ply their trade anywhere, from the slums to the gated communities.

I accept this responsibility because I firmly believe that the only person that is responsible for my defense is me, and that every citizen, not just the police, are responsible for the defense of the community. I accept this responsibility with the same honor and courage that calls me to the aid of others, whether they are in peril for their life, or they merely stumbled on the sidewalk.

I bear this responsibility willingly and with love because I am a citizen of this great nation, and I want to protect it and all her people, and this desire imposes on me a duty to defend her with my skill, my determination, and possibly my life.

My name is The Mad Rocket Scientist, and I carry concealed.

2 comments:

MadRocketScientist said...

I'm saying thanks to anyone who gets this around. Maybe if more fence sitters see such a statement, they'll be more comfortable with CCW.

I plan to inject it into any CCW discussion I see online where folks are screaming about shoot-outs, which is why I gave permission for any and all to use it (in the hopes that they'll do the same).

Robb Allen said...

Mad Hatter, could you drop me an email (use the contact icon on my blog)?

I'd like to get your data on the research for the 300,000 gun related crimes you talked about on that PSH Journalist's site.

Thanks!

R