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Old September 27, 2012, 10:10 PM   #1
StainlessSteel215
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When to be a CWP "hero" and when to check your ego

I'll admit when I first got my carry permit here in PA....I was much younger (23 and I'm 30 now) and a little itchy to carry it certain places because I simulated how cool the "hero" scenario would be. Thwarting a robbery in a convenience store or slowing a Columbine style massacre in a shootout.

But as others have posted on here...the laws are not very forgiving no matter if it was deemed self defense or not.....and you would have to live the rest of your life (possibly in prison) wondering if it was worth taking a life, possibly wounding a bystander, over $500 in a cash register that insurance would have repaid.

Thats the thought process of a more seasoned responsible gun owner. Ive learned that you might very well have to drop your ego in a certain situation, despite having a loaded pistol in your possession. Sometimes its just smart to let it happen as long as nobody's life is in immediate danger. Nowadays, I am more focused on simply protecting my own neck....and obviously my family and friends.

In my opinion thats the only catch-22 to states having loose concealed carry laws.....any nutjob looking to start trouble can escalate a simple situation such as road rage, etc. At that point, the "responsible" gun owner has just become the criminal.

I frequently simulate certain situations in my mind where I would try to de-escalate a situation first and do everything in my power to avoid drawing my pistol....and contemplating how far I would allow a simple fist fight situation where I wouldnt be tempted to pull it out. Carrying guns is certainly a lifestyle commitment and I think its wise to have these questions circling in our minds, so that we arent completely caught off guard in a situation and make a bad mistake.
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Old September 28, 2012, 02:02 AM   #2
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Actually what drives me crazy...

Knew a guy once that went the range every week. Carried a compact.. carried a subcompact, and then a backup knife.. Was always talking about getting ready and trained for the "event".

He died of a heart attack. He focused on a bunch of what ifs and never focused on the most important thing. His health.

Some people here post about running away if at all possible. I wonder how many can actually run.. Does anyone here NOT take their health more seriousuly then the amount of firepower they carry?
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Old September 28, 2012, 02:37 AM   #3
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Quote:
Actually what drives me crazy...

Knew a guy once that went the range every week. Carried a compact.. carried a subcompact, and then a backup knife.. Was always talking about getting ready and trained for the "event".

He died of a heart attack. He focused on a bunch of what ifs and never focused on the most important thing. His health.

Some people here post about running away if at all possible. I wonder how many can actually run.. Does anyone here NOT take their health more seriousuly then the amount of firepower they carry?
I quoted this in its entirety because it bears repeating.

I've lost about 45 pounds this year and made drastic diet changes. My blood pressure has dropped heavily. I did it because I realized after 5 out of 7 years of college, half a decade of sitting in a classroom had wrecked my body. I realized how absurd it was to carry an extra magazine for my LCP without even controlling my calories.
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Old September 28, 2012, 02:40 AM   #4
mete
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Be aware of your surroundings !
Avoid confrontations .Yes running or walking away is fine .
Often the best thing you can do is be a good witness.
If and when someones life is in immediate danger then you may act.

Instead of spending your money on more guns , spend it on getting the best training you can find !! You'll be amazed at what you don't know !
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Old September 28, 2012, 06:59 AM   #5
StainlessSteel215
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Those are very insightful posts guys. Health is certainly #1 and should be at all times. Ive begun running again in my neighborhood and light weight training on my weights in the garage.

I agree Ive seen some pretty insane posts about stockpiles and building an arsenal....and insanely detailed defense plans and I wonder how many of those folks can do a single sit-up or pull-up.

I thank you for helping me focus on health and fitness again, now excuse me while I load up my daily pill box for next week
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Old September 28, 2012, 07:02 AM   #6
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It's something like the Walter Mitty syndrome, isn't it?
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Old September 28, 2012, 11:01 AM   #7
Stressfire
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Quote:
and contemplating how far I would allow a simple fist fight situation where I wouldn't be tempted to pull it out.
You don't. Either you are the victim or you are a fellow combatant willingly engaged in fisticuffs. I, personally, do not feel that I should have to get the tar knocked out of me because my attacker is "unarmed"

Quote:
Be aware of your surroundings !
Avoid confrontations .Yes running or walking away is fine .
Often the best thing you can do is be a good witness.
If and when someones life is in immediate danger then you may act.
This is how I generally carry on while armed. Aware of surroundings, but not hyper-vigilant. If attacked for whatever reason, I will try to get away. If I cannot, I will defend myself by whatever means I have at my disposal that will keep me alive and let me go home. I am long past the age (at 28) and maturity level where barfights would even be a passing thought. I will fight for my life, spilled drinks can be replaced

Per your example regarding the defense of a $500 till - no way would I engage to stop a simple grab for money. If that was all the guy wanted, let the police handle it and give a good description. If the situation becomes violent and my or another's life, safety, and ability to breathe without machinery is threatened, well, that may be a different story.
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Old September 28, 2012, 12:19 PM   #8
StainlessSteel215
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Great posts guys, I really like this community so far and the honest intelligent responses from most
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Old September 28, 2012, 12:30 PM   #9
Fishing_Cabin
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First of all, keeping in, or getting back in decent shape should be a priority for anyone who wants to stick around a while, whether they fear a confrontation, or Medical Murphy throws you a health curveball. Im the first to admit getting back into good shape is easier said then done, since I have been trying to quit smoking for the last year, it is harder to do then to say.

Others have gave you valuable insight already, but if I may I want to bring up something I hope you will take to heart...

Quote:
Originally Posted by StainlessSteel215
When to be a CWP "hero"
Dont get me wrong, Im not trying to pick on you. I know you mentioned in your original post that you have become wiser as you have become older. To me a person trying to set out to be a "hero" is going to get in the middle of any situation trying to attain that desired status, even if the situation does not warrant interference. It also generally doesnt turn out as they planned either.

The best advice I can give, as others have already said is:

Walk or run away if possible.

Dont get dragged in to an verbal altercation that may escalate.

If possible, try to avoid situations where there is a higher chance of something happening if possible.

Be aware of your surroundings, but not be ole "Jumpy Jimmy" that wants to draw on everything.

If needed, be a good witness, instead of part of the problem.

If possible, keep a cell phone handy, and if needed/possible if something happens, notify law enforcement, and if the dispatcher asks, give them detailed descriptions, but do not put yourself in danger to do so, and also pursuing someone is generally not wise either.

Know your abilities, and try to improve them, but also keep that in mind in the rare chance Heaven forbid that you do have to defend yourself.

Simulating certain scenarios are good, but why not step out of the box for a minute. Too many people want to practice the firearms side, but neglect other things. Why not simulate being a good witness, by imagining a person, or one on TV even, and then writing down a description. If your in a use of force situation, and the suspect runs off, one of the first questions asked is??? What did the person look like, and most either dont know or have a vague discription.

I also suggest people take a communications class, like verbal judo, etc, and start using it in life. It helps not only in confrontations, but will also improve communications between you and others in life when there is a misunderstanding.

Last, but not least, understand what the law says about self defense in your area, and remember it.

Also, there is a common link to the majority of the advice above, and it is remove yourself from, or avoid a confrontation if safely possible.

Last edited by Fishing_Cabin; September 28, 2012 at 12:36 PM.
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Old September 28, 2012, 12:37 PM   #10
StainlessSteel215
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Great post Fishing and agreed 100%.
The title of this thread isnt accurate to my current thought process as a carrying gun owner....just using loose language to invite people to come in and weigh in with their experience.

If you re-read my full first post, you will see that although I came into gun possession maybe a bit immature, I am WORLDS apart from that mentality now. Its just a little scary that current laws ALLOW people like that who arent responsible to legally carry. Who knows what sort of damage those people who go out LOOKING for trouble are capable of....

Ill just keep the golden rule in mind which is to be observant to my surroundings at all times, and escape from any situation that I can safely.
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Old September 28, 2012, 12:47 PM   #11
Fishing_Cabin
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Thanks StainlessSteel215,

I did go back and re-read your post, and actually read it a few times before I replied at first trying to make sure I understood. Im glad you have become more matured over time, and its something to be thankful for as well. Forgive me if I didnt convey that previously.

All the best, and enjoy the day!
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Old September 28, 2012, 12:51 PM   #12
StainlessSteel215
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Thanks you too - hitting the indoor range to work the hell out of my new Taurus 9mm tonight after work. As our friend Hickok45 says.....LIFE IS GOOD!
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Old September 28, 2012, 12:51 PM   #13
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Quote:
Its just a little scary that current laws ALLOW people like that who arent responsible to legally carry.
That's a slippery slope you're standing on with that statement. Who is to determine what someone might do or how responsible people are? What are the criteria? In some places the process of owning firearms and/or getting a CCW already costs enough that it could be considered prohibitively expensive for those with low income, how do you deal with the added costs of determining someone's worthiness to carry? If someone isn't responsible enough in your eyes to legally carry, what would indicate they're responsible enough to own a firearm in the first place? Irresponsible people don't always follow the law, what's to stop them from carrying illegally?

See where that goes?
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Old September 28, 2012, 12:53 PM   #14
StainlessSteel215
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I hear ya Sig believe me...there is no perfect answer and I absolutely understand that. We just have to be hopeful that every person who drops off that permit to be signed by the local sheriff has good intentions!
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Old September 28, 2012, 02:16 PM   #15
Glenn E. Meyer
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I suggest that besides thinking about it - one takes classes with significant scenario and FOF segments. That channels your thinking about being a hero.
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Old September 28, 2012, 03:18 PM   #16
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One tried and true cliche I forgot: "When the gun comes out of the safe, store your ego there as a placeholder"
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Old September 28, 2012, 04:28 PM   #17
aarondhgraham
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Dang Stressfire,,,

Quote:
"When the gun comes out of the safe, store your ego there as a placeholder"
Every now and then,,,
You make a heck of a lot of sense!

Aarond

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Old September 28, 2012, 05:34 PM   #18
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Heros often fail.

People who want to be heros often get people around them killed as well.

I am very aware of my surroundings when I carry. Also very aware of my limitations.

Last edited by checkmyswag; September 28, 2012 at 05:42 PM.
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Old September 28, 2012, 05:46 PM   #19
Mr Budha
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Great posts, I'm a new concealed carry permit holder (23 years old) and have also had many of the same thoughts on "being a hero." Now that I'm getting ready to carry I'm beginning to realize truly how much responsibility and self restraint it takes.

Someone had made a comment about the $500 in the register not being worth spending the rest of your life in jail. I agree, and I think for me carrying now, using your cw should be in a situation where lives are truly in danger.
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Old September 28, 2012, 06:12 PM   #20
StainlessSteel215
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Glad to see your eyes are FAR more open than mine were at 23 Budha (when I also got my carry permit). And I'm the one who made the $500 register comment....its not worth spending years in prison, possibly harming others or yourself over such a thing. Be smart and be safe....
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Old September 28, 2012, 06:21 PM   #21
Mr Budha
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Thanks stainless, that comment helps put things into perspective. Especially when you put others around you at risk.
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Old September 28, 2012, 06:42 PM   #22
Nnobby45
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Quote:
Its just a little scary that current laws ALLOW people like that who arent responsible to legally carry. Who knows what sort of damage those people who go out LOOKING for trouble are capable of....
LOL, current laws allow inexperienced people, with plenty of maturing to do, to do lots of things. Start with driving a car, drinking, joining the military, and so on.

Who knows what people like that are capable of? Well, with about 42 states having shall issue CCW, things seem to be working out reasonably well. Having been reading a whole lot about those you're concerned about where ccw is concerned. A lot more inre: to automobiles.

Last edited by Nnobby45; September 28, 2012 at 06:48 PM.
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Old September 28, 2012, 06:56 PM   #23
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I pray that none here will ever have to throw down on another human being, let alone have to actually shoot. Just a deranged individual and mistaken identity but he as convinced that I was the person he had the grudge with and was going to make me pay. Only the fact that I had a 9MM with me that day kept me amd possibly my wife from being seriously injured. I guess it's been about 10 years now but I stopped at this stop and rob to get gas. My wife was in the car and I went in to pay for the gas. On the way in this guy came up and called me by a name, not mine and wanted to fight. I said, "You've got the wrong guy." and kind of laughed it off. When I caame back out to pump my gas he's really going off at me. I take my wallet out, show him my driver's license and say, "You got the wrong guy. I'm not him." He's off to one side mumbling to himself and I finish pumping my gas and go back to the store to get my change. I get back to my car and he comes storming up yelling incoherently that he's gonna kill me and other threats. My wife is freaking out for me to drive away but a car in front of me and another behind me, there's no way I can drive off. He starts pounding on the window and finally I decide that it's time to introduce him to Messers Smith & Wesson.
I'm teling him quite forcefully that, You have the wrong guy so go way. If you try to get into my car I will shoot you." He pays no attention. I tell him several more times and finally it soaks in that not only am I armed, I just might shoot him. He then slowly bcked off, the car in front which could have moved but I guess they wanted to watch the show. No reaction set in until I got home. I started to shake real bad and ended up puking my guts out.
Two things did come out of all this. One, I realize that if I have to, I will be able to shoot should it be necessary. The second thing was my wife said she'd never complain again about me having a gun in the car. I can only hope and pray that I never am in a situation like that again.
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Old September 28, 2012, 07:01 PM   #24
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Sitting here now and looking back on myself then, I'm glad I got my carry permit now instead of then.

A few months back while waiting for my paperwork to clear, I was presented with this situation:

While driving back to my girlfriend's (now soon to be wife) apartment after dinner, a gentleman took offense to my left turn on a green arrow. He thought I cut him off and gave him the finger. Not the case, I avoided hitting him and in the course of talking to Sweet Thing threw my non driving hand up in frustration as I commented on how people don't look before they pull out in traffic. He went around the building and pulled in to the parking lot via the other entrance rather hastily and stood there waiting for me. I didn't see him until he came out between two other cars and confronted me as I opened my door after turning the Jeep off.

I tried to explain and apologize that no, I did not flip him off. He got more agitated. After that it was a simple, "Sir, I'm sorry. I feel no need to continue to continue this conversation." Shut the door, fired the Cherokee back up and went for a drive around town taking several turns in case he followed me.

If I had my permit and was carrying, my reaction would have been the same unless he posed an actual threat.

Me 5 years ago, thinking I was John Wayne Jr. would have probably been some where along the lines of "What the (insert swear word du jour here) did you just say, pilgrim?" and attempted to administer an old school butt whooping.

I'm no hero, nor do I play one on TV. The only time I want my gun to come out of its holster is when I get home at the end of the day so I can put it away.

One does not try to be a hero. Those who try to be one typically end up on the wrong end of the situation. Think George Preppard's character in The Blue Max. He wanted Germany's highest honor for gallantry just to have it, look where that got him. Not a perfect example, but it will suffice. Trying to be a hero gets you shot, stabbed, or facing charges. Possibly some combination of the above.
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Old September 28, 2012, 08:33 PM   #25
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Quote:
contemplating how far I would allow a simple fist fight situation where I wouldn't be tempted to pull it out.
When I started carrying a gun, I relinquished certain luxuries, among which was the idea of getting in fistfights, or fights of any sort.

I've dealt with bullet wounds first hand. They are not like you think. No way do I want to inflict that kind of harm on another human being unless I'm left with no other choice. As such, it's incumbent on me to avoid situations in which I might have to make that call.
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