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Old January 18, 2007, 10:22 AM   #1
PinnedAndRecessed
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Armed robbery at church.

Back in the mid 1970s, two men came into the Ridgetop Church of Christ (Ridgetop, TN) during the services. One man had a gun and the other had a knife. They went around collecting the goods and then left. They did not actually touch anybody (as in, to search them).

The men in the congregation felt impotent. The women were crying.

This was before Tennessee had legal concealed carry for civilians.

If you were in church, and if you were carrying, and if such a thing happened, would you confront the men? Would you simply start shooting?

BTW, there was some speculation that the men who robbed the church were the same men who killed "Stringbean" (of Hee Haw fame) and his wife. They are, I'm sure, still in prison.

Last edited by PinnedAndRecessed; January 18, 2007 at 12:17 PM.
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Old January 18, 2007, 10:45 AM   #2
Doug.38PR
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Even though legal in Texas, I don't carry in Church on Sunday when I am in worship. Nothing sinful per se about it, but it's a matter or respect. I think it better to leave work, guns and other concerns outside and have my full attention on worshiping the Lord. 150 years ago when people could freely carry guns openly, they would take their guns off before going to church.

BUT, having said that, if I did decide to wear it for whatever reason, if one of them has a gun I would pull my gun and shoot if I felt I had a clear shot and could kill the crooks without putting other members of the congregation at risk.
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Old January 18, 2007, 10:54 AM   #3
PinnedAndRecessed
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The reason I ask is because I drive about 30 minutes to church through some pretty desolate country. Sometimes I carry a handgun but, the parking lot is also pretty isolated, so I don't leave it in my truck. I'll have it in my backpack/briefcase.

Anyway, last night I had my Glock 17 in my backpack and started thinking about the above scenario. I just wondered what the "trained" among us thinks about shooting with innocents present.
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Old January 18, 2007, 11:01 AM   #4
DesertShooter
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You can NEVER "simply start shooting", especially when there are innocent by-standers! If I was in church and armed, and the bad guys started shooting and cutting people, THEN I would jump into action!

A few years back, a crazed swordsman entered a nearby Catholic Church during Mass. He was not there to rob the congregation, he was just nuts, and started flailing his sword around as he cursed. None of the church members were armed, so the nut was able to injure several of them before he finally ran out of the church. Fortunately, he didn't kill anyone!

Here's one for you! A small police agency (Palos Verdes P.D., CA) decided to hold a training session for all of their supervisorial personnel. The training session was held at a posh hotel in an adjoining city (Torrance, CA), in one of their conference rooms. The posh hotel had a "No guns allowed" policy, so all of the police supervisors were told to go to the training without carrying any firearms. (By the way, the training session was on the "touchy/feely" subject of tolerance).

Well, after the training session had started, a "Ninja" stormed into the conference room. I am NOT kidding....the suspect was wearing an all black "Ninja"-type outfit! At first, the police supervisors thought that the "Ninja" was a part of the training session....that is, until he fired a few shots and announced that he was robbing the place!

One of the police Sergeants stood up and began to approach the "Ninja", but he was immediately shot! Other police supervisors reacted, with more shots fired by the suspect, until they were able to "swarm" the "Ninja" and disarm him. Unfortunately, the Palos Verdes Chief of Police was also hit....and eventually died. The "Ninja" also died after being "swarmed"....supposedly from suffocation!

It was a total fluke! That particular conference room had previously been set aside for a diamond and jewelry dealers convention, but the conference rooms had been switched at the last moment! The "Ninja" hadn't been aware of the switch!

Oh, and the "Ninja" turned out to be the son of a very well-respected Superior Court Judge, and happened to be of Japanese ancestry!

A couple of months after the "Ninja" incident, there was a "command inspection" for all of the police officers that worked at my station. There were 300+ officers that would be standing inspection, and the inspection site was a local high school football field. The Command Staff didn't want ANY officers to have LOADED firearms, nor even have ACCESS to ammo during the inspection! I brought up the "Ninja" incident to my Captain, and ended up being the officer-in-charge of a small ARMED security group that would patrol around the football field. At least we all (security group) didn't have to be "spit & polished"....and nothing bad happened!

This is a crazy world!
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Old January 18, 2007, 01:00 PM   #5
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For some reason this thread is causing severe deja vu for me....
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Old January 18, 2007, 07:45 PM   #6
tony pasley
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I carry and remember Dallas 1999, several robberies of churches in Kentucky and you can go on and on.
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Old January 18, 2007, 07:49 PM   #7
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P&R, . . . as the church pastor, . . . and a CHL holder, . . . I can see both ends of this rainbow, . . . and it is a danged if you do, . . . darned if you don't situation.

I do not carry myself during worship services, . . . I have far too many more important things to address than a possible weapon need (but I do carry most of the other times).

That said, . . . my plan is simple, . . . if robbery is the only game they want to play, . . . they get the goods with no trouble, . . . no problem, . . . no sweat. On the other hand, . . . there are several other CHL holders, . . . and they have full permission to do as they see fit if someone starts shooting or cutting.

Yes, . . . it is a crazy world, . . . but I'm bound some day for a better one

May God bless,
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Old January 18, 2007, 07:56 PM   #8
Ala Dan
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I don't think the LORD would think its disrespectful too protect yourself,
your valuables, and HIS assets. As a matter of fact, he gives us enough
sense in order to use our judgement too do so. I can truthfully say that
I would do what was necessary to protect my family; and the rest of
the congregation from harm. If this meant wearing a concelaed firearm,
then so be it~!

And BTW, yes I would shoot the perp; but ONLY if I had a clear and
unobstructed shot that didn't put any bystanders in harms way.
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Old January 18, 2007, 08:29 PM   #9
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You bet I carry! I have a Galco Ankle Holster which hides my G23, 19, or 26 quite nicely!

I wish every police officer or legal CCW holder would carry in church! Attacks can happen anywhere.
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Old January 18, 2007, 08:36 PM   #10
piratecountry
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If I'm on call, I carry all my gear on me including my CQB, 2 mags and cuffs. The responses range from "I can't believe he is carrying a gun in Church" to "He is on call but still comes to church". If I'm not on call, a J frame sits in my pocket and no one knows. Everyone there knows that I'm a Detective and I bet if something happened, the haters would expect me to do something. I'd feel awful worthless if I couldn't. I take on that responsibility every time I leave the house. For the record, I go to a large Church in a small town where most of the Congregation is pretty well off. Some are plain dang wealthy. I'm one of the few "common people" but I've been going all my life and my Grandfather was a member for 70 years. I go to church to worship God and am not worried about the opinion of others.

As far as a robbery goes, it's pretty far fetched but it could happen. Our offering averages a little less than $10,000 each Sunday. I don't say that to brag but to show what an attractive target it could make. I would rather engage any robbers outside but may not have that luxury.
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Old January 18, 2007, 08:53 PM   #11
robc
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I'm pretty sure my state (MN) allows places like churches to ban guns. I know my church has a sign on the door saying guns are banned from the premises.
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Old January 18, 2007, 09:25 PM   #12
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I have always carried in church. My pastor gave me a hug one day and commented on the pistol that he brushed up against under my shirt. He is also a shooter and gave me a wink and an "attaboy."
The firearm is a hunk of metal and/or plastic. It’s what you do with it that matters. Our Lord knows my heart and has given me the brains to know when/where/why to use force. I too would have the piece ready but not use it if robbery were the only intent. However, if the BG starts pointing his gun at anyone in a threatening manner then I'll take my shot, if possible and given a safe background. I do not want to kill anyone because I do not need the legal grief in my life but given the choices, I will.
As to not being allowed to carry in certain buildings: If it's for personal reasons, I don't go in if they don't like my gun, even if it's a church. I don’t want to give my money to businesses that think guns are “bad’, in most cases. Sometimes, it can’t be avoided, such as with Costco. If there’s no metal detector then what do they know? It’s supposed to be concealed, right?
Desert Shooter, I was living in So Cal when that incident occurred and was very aware of the situation because my parents lived in PV Estates. It was a bad deal all the way around and the topic of much discussion among our shooting community.
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Old January 18, 2007, 09:30 PM   #13
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I carry when I leave the house. The Church isn't in my house so I carry at church. Which according to my wife, I don't do quite enough anymore.

I would fire if I had the shot and believed that lives were in danger. I wouldn't fire to stop a robbery. Only in defense of life.
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Old January 18, 2007, 09:38 PM   #14
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Here in the "Wonderful State of Maryland" Churchville had just the very same thing happen. Maryland doesn't hardly allow for crapola CCWs (protection). I don't rightly know if "church" can be classified as a business to protect cash.
The criminal can conceal carry firearms all day long but the law abiding public cannot except for a very, very few.
Murder rate very high. Violent crime very high.
Maryland: Keeping us safe from ourselves!
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Old January 18, 2007, 10:44 PM   #15
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I carry any time I can.

Shooting when innocents are present: You have to weigh the consequences of inaction against the possible consequences of action. If there's a guy TRYING to kill people and a guy trying NOT to kill people, which of them is the biggest danger to the innocents?
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Old January 18, 2007, 10:55 PM   #16
otasan
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G17 24/7

including at my church in WRJ VT.

Not all of us born-again believers are worldly sheep.

Threaten my brothers and sisters with deadly force, and you'll be before the Lord in a few short seconds.

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Old January 19, 2007, 12:11 AM   #17
PinnedAndRecessed
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Quote:
Threaten my brothers and sisters with deadly force, and you'll be before the Lord in a few short seconds.
I like it!
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Old January 19, 2007, 12:16 AM   #18
Blackwater OPS
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Quote:
Threaten my brothers and sisters with deadly force, and you'll be before the Lord in a few short seconds.
Unless you are armed with something bigger than a handgun, there is at least an 80% chance that won't be the case.
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to purchase a little temporary Safety,
deserve neither Liberty nor Safety."
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and the best DS ever
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Died 11.23.2005
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For those who have had to fight for it, Life holds a special meaning that the protected will never know.

(\__/)
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Old January 19, 2007, 12:27 AM   #19
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Unless you are trained to hit the snotlocker under stress!
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Old January 19, 2007, 08:21 AM   #20
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In all the church shootings there has been......

1) No divine intervention stopping the violent act.
2) No legions of angel to save the day.

In Glock We Trust.
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Old January 19, 2007, 08:40 AM   #21
JoshB
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I carry everywhere I go [except when I'll be drinking] to include church. I have an IWB holster that is easily covered with a jacket or sweater. My pastor as well as his wife both carry and there's a LE guy who may/may not be carrying at the time. If a BG came in, he may soon come to regret it!
Now, considering the close proximity of a large number of people in church, every precaution must be taken to get a clear shot [know your target & what's behind it].
There's two entrances to the sanctuary & I usually sit between them. The LE guy sits a couple rows behind me [I don't know if he sits there for the same reason, but if anything went down, he'd be in a good place too].
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Old January 19, 2007, 02:06 PM   #22
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"Gun free" zones simoly encourage criminal attacks.
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Old January 19, 2007, 02:18 PM   #23
skeeter1
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Not for me

The biggest thing I carry into a church is my shillelagh. I won't pack a firearm into a house of God. If I get robbed, well so be it. I'd never discharge a firearm in a church.

My $0.02.
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Old January 19, 2007, 05:58 PM   #24
Edison Carter
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Be sure your family understands that you will not defend them in "God's House"... anywhere else, BUT NOT THERE. Tell us how they like that.

If you are willing to let your wife or children or an innocent bystander be killed in your church, because you interpret being defenseless as being more "respectful" to God, you are welcome to explain it to HIM.

Personally, that is NOT a burden I want to carry when I meet with the Almighty.

I always believed God helps those who help themselves.
I'll lay down my arms when God sends me an email telling me he'll protect me from the heathen.

EC
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Old January 20, 2007, 12:02 AM   #25
wayneinFL
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I understand having respect for God.

God is omnipresent. If it is disrespectful to carry a firearm to protect yourself and others in church, wouldn't it be disrespectful to carry anywhere else, too?
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