Saturday, December 15, 2012

Gun control does not solve the problem

I don't hunt. I simply do not like the idea of killing something. Were it necessary to hunt to feed myself and my family, I'd hunt. I do find it fun to shoot but that is not why I am "pro gun". I have a carry permit and carry a gun to protect myself and those around me. It's that simple. It's a dangerous world and there are crazy angry people in it, and I have a right to defend myself. I know how to use it, and I think calmly under pressure. If I find myself in a situation where there is an "active shooter" you can be sure that I'd respond. And I'm not alone - there are thousands like me (like stats?).

The idea of police protection is a myth. The NY Times published a revealing article on the climb in violent crime due to an increase in police response times. They cite a statistic of an increase from 7.5 to 8.4 minutes in the average response time - that's 8.4 minutes until the police show up (14 minutes in Milwaukee, 12-48 minutes in rural Virginia areas! Atlanta took slowest at 11 minutes, 11 seconds in a survey). Start a timer (I'll wait) and see just how long 8.4 minutes is. At the Colorado theater shooting the police showed up in 1.5 minutes. This was too late. Why did no one there defend themselves?

In Detroit, which has suffered from one of the worst economies in the Nation, the police are simply unable to protect the citizens, who have taken to defending themselves. While this is not a good situation, it is a necessary one. When (and where) the police can not defend the population, they must defend themselves and their families. If a person - crazy or not - knows that a location has people who are armed they will choose another location to attempt their crazy killing spree.

We must change our way of thinking. We need to stop this trend of relying on the government to provide and protect us. We are Americans - we have always been self-reliant and courageous. We have always fought hard for what was right and valued our individual rights. Why the people today want to give up their rights for the myth of security is beyond me. But the fact remains, if there were trained, armed people at or near these situations less people would have died. The response time for someone already at the scene is immediate - they are already there and ready to respond.

Gun control is not the answer - it is an ineffective solution to a rare (though admittedly a highly emotional) problem. The recent mall shooter in Oregon used a stolen AR 15. He broke the law twice - once when he stole the weapon and another time when he walked into the mall and began shooting. We have laws in this country about assault and about murder. They're both illegal. Were we to pass a law that makes gun ownership illegal the old mantra kicks in: "When guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns". There is simply no way to prevent the flow of weapons into our large country. See how well our war on drugs [sic] has fared with preventing the flow of illegal chemicals.

I live in a safe area. There isn't much crime in Forsyth County. But I work in Duluth and travel into Atlanta. I feel it my responsibility to be able to defend myself and those around me. I do not have  "cowboy" mentality. I find it very sobering to think that some day I might need to respond with violence. Yet, I believe that all able American's need to be empowered and be held responsible to help make our society a safer place. Arm the citizens and they will be protected.

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