Saturday, February 4, 2012

Protect Yourself; A South Carolina Sheriff Has it Right!

With guns, there are always going to be varying views. With sport shooters, there are people who'll shoot anything put in their hands (like me), there’s the long gun crowd, the shot gun crowd, the hand gun crowd and let me tell you, they are avid about their style. It's great fun! Then there are other categories of people. There are people who require firearms in their job, people who collect firearms because they are built beautifully, people who misuse firearms, and people who don't understand and hate firearms for ambiguous reasons.

I just learned of Sheriff Chuck Wright in South Carolina who is encouraging women carry a gun for protection. This is a man standing up for women in my opinion. Read the complete story here.

First, he says, abide by the law. To get the permit, the person must go through a course. That means education. Second, that means through this education, the firearm becomes familiar. Sheriff Wright even recommends the firearms women should carry to protect themselves and provides a situational example.

Sheriff Wright was prepared for anti-gun activists to verbally attack him but he did get a number of thank-you's from people for thinking of their well being. Some did disagree with him of course.

Melonea Marek, executive director of People Against Rape says in asking women to arm themselves against assault, he's blaming the victim. I beg your pardon? How on Earth is asking women to take a preemptive action to protect themselves “blaming the victim?” I've been stalked twice in the past. The first time, the person was harmless, the second time, not so much. He didn't do anything physical to me but did to a friend of mine. Being the kind of person I am, I immediately got help from a number of different sources. I was never armed as it's against the law in Canada, but deciding I wasn't going to be a victim, I took preemptive action to protect myself as best I can. Melonea Marek says a gun is no guarantee, but neither was anything I did. You know what?  I felt safer with the education I received and would have felt far better had I been armed. I would have never needed a gun but it's one of those situations of I'd rather have it and not need it, than need it and not have it. Considering nothing is guaranteed in life, what should I have done if my stalker did attack me?  Lie down and take it? I don't think so. 

Caroline Brewer, spokeswoman for the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence says that people who carry guns are far more likely to be shot. I generally don't believe statistics as they can be manipulated to say anything you want them too. I've done stats classes, my husband is a financial accountant by trade, we've both manipulated statistics as have many other people. It's like saying you're 10 times more likely to be in an accident within a 5 km radius of your home than anywhere else. You know why?!? Because most everything you do is within 5 km of your home! Statistics reports never mention that part.

In Canada, it's tragic if a law abiding citizen uses a firearm to protect themselves against a criminal. The criminal may get charged for what they did, the law abiding citizen will get charged multiple times over for protecting themselves, their family, their property, their neighbours, it's shocking and sad. Ian Thomson is going through this now, his home was firebombed by masked men. Lawrence Manzer is going through this for helping his neighbour against vandals. His gun wasn't even loaded. In Canada, police say if you can disengage, do so and phone them. Fine, great, but that means police, in general, have to react faster than they do. Ian Thomson had to wait 10 minutes before the police arrived and his house was on fire. There are many more cases similar to this. It seems the police and the government would rather punish law abiding citizens than criminals. We're not frightening, we're not bad people, and in general we'll never pull a gun on someone unless they mean to do us harm.

What frightens me about wanting to disarm the population is, for thousands of years, people have been armed and have had the ability and right to protect themselves. For some reason, liberal thinkers want to take that ability and right away. Realists want people the ability to protect themselves by any method possible. Violence will never go away no matter how much law and legislation is put into place. Firearms aren't always the answer by no means, they aren't to be feared, but they are a tool to be used appropriately, like anything else.

We don't live in the world that a lot of these activists see with rose coloured glasses. I don`t wish to be a victim, and I don't wish to be treated like a criminal.  I'm not either of these things. I'm a law abiding, gun owning citizen. I'm no different from anyone else. I wish to live safely, feel protected and not be punished for having the ability and capacity for doing so. I have a lot of respect for Sheriff Wright and so should anyone else who as the ability and capacity to fight for their right to live.

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