Locks are for honest people, and are very easy to defeat if you know what you are doing!
A locksmith should be able to help you without damage, or, he or she isnt a very good locksmith!
A friend of mine is a forensic locksmith.... he taught me, in about 10 minutes, how to open ALMOST any lock with the correct tools. Any "locksmith" worth the name should be able to have that thing open in... seconds, practically.
Although.... I've always hated the "locks are for honest people" cliche.... I'm an honest people, you don't need locks to keep me out of your stuff.... that's what it means to be "honest".
Locks are for DISHONEST people who aren't very MOTIVATED!
Still happily answering to the call-sign Peetza.
The problem, as you so eloquently put it, is choice.
He is no fool who gives what he can not keep to gain what he can not lose.
-Jim Eliott, paraphrasing Philip Henry.