What do you do?
This is a bit of a wander…bear with me. I’m trying to articulate a whole bunch of deep emotions. I have to explain 20 years of thought process and maturation.
So, to begin. One of the bloggers I read, Matthew from Straight Forward in a Crooked World, posted a story about a client that he took on in a particularly tough situation. A little girl had been kidnapped. The family was grasping at straws. They wanted him to help look for the girl. As it happened, all was for naught. The little girl was already dead. Her body was found later that day. They have the mutant that murdered her in custody. Justice would be feeding him slowly into a meat grinder, but I’m sure he will get something.
I admit that when I read the first few sentences, I suspected that this was the case. One of the things that lead to my decision to carry was the realization that evil is real, and that it walks among us. Matthew knows this…his blog deals with it in an honest, straightforward, if unsettling way. Good. It should be unsettling. Sometimes you need to be shaken from your misconceptions.
To evil. The driver that got me into firearms was the Assault Weapons Ban of 1994. I was I was in college at the time. It offended me at a visceral level. I can’t say way. I generally react…badly…to being told I can’t do something. When I found out that the law didn’t really ban anything, but was just about cosmetics, it triggered every anti-government sentiment I have ever had. So I rebelled. When I moved out of my parent’s house, I bought a shotgun (A Mossberg 500) and an AR (a Bushmaster stripped lower that I built up, and a completed Bushmaster upper) put them under the bed, and called it a day.
Hang on, we are getting to evil. So, I was a happy young man, newly married, living in New York. I decided that I needed to get a pistol. Now, in New York, you can’t touch a pistol unless you have a pistol permit. You can’t get a pistol permit unless you own a pistol. So, you buy the pistol, then you apply, then 6 months or so later, if you are lucky, the county will issue your pistol permit. By a quirk of NY law, there is no such thing as a carry permit in NY. A permit to own is a permit to carry. However, the permits are issued by the county judge. The judge is allowed to “restrict” the permit in any way they want to. In upstate counties, the are typically “unrestricted.” In downstate counties…not so much. I was issued a “target” permit. I could carry my gun to and from a range, and have it in my place of residence.September 11, 2001. I was a young man, working in New York City, for a computer company selling to Wall Street. I spent most of my time between our Midtown offices and Wall Street. I was supposed to be in Windows on the World (the restaurant on the top of the World Trade Center) on 9/11. We got low customer response and ended up cancelling the event. I ended up being in Midtown for the main event, and fled from NYC with everyone else.
9/11 was the event that made me realize that evil existed. I “knew” that beforehand. I had read Mas Ayoob’s “The Truth About Self Protection” which is currently out of print, but I can summarize it for you. There are bad people out there. Really bad. No, really, really bad. They see you as food. Don’t be food. I heard the story of Todd Beamer, like most of us. I thought about what it would be like to call my wife and tell her I was going to die, and that there was nothing I could do about that, but that I was going to die on my feet. That really affected me. I can’t help it on a plane, but to be honest, what are the odds that I am going to be on a hijacked plane? But, what are the odds that some mutant is going to try to mug me my wallet? I can’t be defenseless. I decided we needed to get out of New York. We moved to North Carolina, which is much more gun friendly, much less stabby.
Things just got worse when we had my daughter. Don’t get me wrong…I worship the ground she works on. I get up every day and think…”What can I do today to make sure she grows up healthy and happy and self-confident and successful?” And I realized that I had a responsibility not just to myself, but to her. She deserves her own safety, but she deserves to grow up with a daddy. That means I can’t let some mutant kill me.
Long story short. I got my carry permit, as did my wife. I take this seriously. I have spent thousands and thousands of dollars on instruction, most of which I have chronicled on this blog. I became a pistol instructor. The key takeaway: I’ve spent time and money to be proficient as a concealed carry holder. I see that as our duty, if we are going to carry sidearms.
Here is where is comes together. Kathy Jackson, whom I have been reading for 15 plus years since she was a mod on “The High Road”, blogged a post about Practicing for Pregnancy. And it really resonated with me, especially in with the background of the abduction of Hailey Owen. Because in the news reporting, an unfortunate detail leaked out. Hailey’s neighbors saw the abduction, tried to intervene, and failed.
So, put yourself in their situation. You are in your front yard, minding your own business. You see a young girl walking up the street. A pickup truck slows, and opens the door. You hear the driver ask for directions, and when the girl approaches, the driver pulls her into the truck. She is screaming for help. The door slams. And my question is simple. What do you do?
Do you shoot the tires? The driver? What if you hit the girl? Do you do nothing? Call for help?
I know what I would done. I have a plan in place. If I want to, I am 100% confident that my bullets will hit whatever I need them to. Can you say that? If not, what are you doing to fix that?