Why I have a CCW
I live the Gulf Coast area that has recently been pretty beat up by hurricanes--fortunately, not in New Orleans. But when you see the lines for water, gas, plywood, etc., and people's reactions in time of crisis, a certain realization sets in that a little adversity makes bad neighbors out of many.
I don't carry most of the time (carry laws and the places I work every day would make it impossible anyway), but I appreciate the option of being able to legally protect my wife and my home if it is necessary. I grew up in Illinois, what I "lovingly" refer to as the "gun-hate" state (legislatively speaking), so I fully realize that not everyone has the option that I have.
As a side benefit, it's nice knowing that I can go camping, hiking, etc. and legally carry a weapon for the odd snake or nut-case field traveler.
I waited a few years between the time I did the CCW required training and actually turned in my application, because I fully recognize the consequence of using such force. But it's my wife, my home, my responsibility, to the extent that I am capable. If that is something you honestly aren't comfortable with yourself, you will only put yourself in harm's way by doing the same.