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Imagined Security Versus Real Safety

October 3, 2018

Every firearms instructor has heard this before. ‘I’d get a gun except I don’t want the government to know that I have it. I’d carry the gun, but I don’t want to get my permit and be on a government list.’ Let’s give people with this attitude the benefit of doubt. Are they safer being armed or unarmed?

I can’t see anything good that actually comes from me being on a government list. In theory, being on a list means that if our government were taken over by a tyrant, then the political enemies of the state could be rounded up. That happened in other countries. It also happened here, and it started our Revolution of Independence from Britain.

2014 crime rate per Washington Post

On the other hand, crime is real here and now. We read about it in our newspaper every day. Fortunately for most of us, violent crime is also rare. It only happens about once per family. In your lifetime, one member of your family will probably be the victim of forcible robbery, aggravated assault or sexual assault according to FBI statistics. Are you safer being armed or unarmed?

Recent FBI statistics showed over a million violent crimes each year.

Crime rates vary up and down by a factor of 10 depending on where you live and what you do. Maybe it will never happen to you because you live a charmed life. I wonder if the rest of your family will be that lucky. It seems to me that you’re betting on luck rather than protecting your family. Is your family safer because you go unarmed? Not according to what I’ve seen.

The FBI reported over 135 thousand rapes last year.

We face different problems protecting ourselves depending on where we live. Some states make it easy to carry a concealed firearm and some states make it effectively impossible to even have pepper spray. That varies by state, county and town. Some jurisdictions in six states won’t let you carry. In contrast, thirteen states have some form of constitutional carry where you don’t need a permit. In those states, you’re allowed to carry a concealed firearm in public if you’re a legal gun owner and obeying the law.



The rest of the states fall everywhere in between. About 30 million people have their permit or don’t need a permit to carry in public. Young people are also carrying at a much higher rate than their parents. Because we carry concealed, you walked past us and never knew we were there.

Some people want a permit, and some people need one. Firearms instructors get students who were threatened and suddenly have to learn to defend themselves. It touches my heart when I meet them. I want these people to protect themselves without going to jail for carrying a firearm illegally.

I’ve given people a crash course in self-defense when they were in a dangerous situation. That training is intellectually focused and emotionally grim, but it is the exception. I want us to learn firearms safely while we have the luxury of time. I want us to learn from other peoples experiences rather than from our own misfortune. People who are armed are much less likely to become victims of violent crime, and I want that to be your experience too.

What should we say to our friends who don’t want to be on a government list? Perhaps they could consider this. Setting aside the issue of crime, is government tyranny more likely if the people are armed or disarmed? Are you protecting your family by giving up your guns, or by having them with you?

We live in an imperfect world.  I’ll go armed to protect the people I love..even though I’m on a list.

I gave you 600 words. Please leave a comment and share this article with a friend. RM


3 Comments leave one →
  1. Ivan permalink
    October 4, 2018 6:42 pm

    My experience has been that even in “shall issue” states, law enforcement is not happy that people can carry, and if there is an event of self defense, you are immediately subject to the full force of the LEOs and can be incarcerated until you stand trial. Also, there are so many places where you CANNOT carry and must leave your weapon in your vehicle, sometimes causing it to be broken into and your guns taken. Then you are in trouble AGAIN for having your gun stolen. I go unarmed now even though I have a permit. I’ve been fortunate so far and am taking the chance rather than being subjected to the lawyers and police.


    • October 4, 2018 7:47 pm

      I’m sorry you had that experience. As a warning to others, where do you live that is so unfriendly to responsible gun owners?



  1. Staying off a Government List- Imagined Security Versus Real Safety

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