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Old February 11, 2009, 07:43 PM   #1
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To draw or not to draw

I've been told competing viewpoints about when it is prudent to draw my firearm.
Viewpoint1: You should never draw your weapon unless, upon doing so, you are preparing to use potentially deadly force. Anything else is brandishing / doing something that can escalate an action farther than it might very well not have.

Viewpoint2: You are within your rights to draw your weapon if you geniuinely feel threatened. Immediately firing upon drawing your weapon could be viewed as evidence that you "lured him / her in" so you could have a reason to shoot. Drawing your weapon without shooting gives you the possibility of averting an attack without necessessarily having to result to potentially deadly force.

I'd be interested to hear your thoughts. I can see some measure of merit in both.
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Old February 11, 2009, 07:52 PM   #2
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Viewpoint 1: You might be too late, so practice your draw

Viewpoint 2: If you want to shoot something, go to a range
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Old February 11, 2009, 07:52 PM   #3
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I will verbally direct the subject up until my life is in danger then draw and fire unless he turns and runs. Its hard to say you feared for your life when the hole is in the perp's back.
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Old February 11, 2009, 08:09 PM   #4
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If it's a conflict that seems to be getting amped up, I'm doing everything possible to use words and body language to diffuse the situation. Take the high road, apologize, etc etc, whatever it takes to try and slow things down and find a way out. If it gets out of hand where I'm forced to draw, I'm probably going to fire.

If it's a robbery or someone with a weapon and I have space, I could realistically see myself drawing to stop the event, and I would very much hope to do this without shots fired.

This is about a thousand miles from a cut & dried scenario, so it's just about impossible to accurately answer the original question. It really does depend on the situation.

But I will safely say that, yes, I am in the group of people that does believe that certain situations might call for presentation, low-ready or even sighting on target and yet still leave the option of not firing and not going through with shooting someone.

Around these forums, I've seen a lot of very strong, written in stone opinions where there is no such thing as a presentation without shots fired. I don't subscribe to that line of thinking.
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Old February 11, 2009, 08:29 PM   #5
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if i feel threatened enough to draw, then my life is in danger, that means im firing.
that is how i practice too.
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Old February 11, 2009, 08:35 PM   #6
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It all depends. Sometimes you could have the right to kill but it don't necessarily have to. Case in point. A few years back my neighbors girls started scramming, all three of them in their teens. I grabbed my S & W M&P .38 and jumped the fence in a heartbeat finding two men in the backyard. Apparently the revolver did not have a big psychological impact on the intruders. Upon giving a command to halt at a distance of @10 feet, one of the subjects hesitated and kept walking towards me. I believe I could have legally taken this man's life right there.

I opted to do something stupid. While looking at the man's eyes I pointed the revolver a little to the right approx. 1-2 feet without aiming and fired. The man stopped. I told him the next three would go in his chest.

No one got killed or shot, so it was a good ending.
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Old February 11, 2009, 09:23 PM   #7
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In SC, you may draw only if you are in fear of imminent loss of life or severe bodily injury.

Under this doctrine, drawing and immediately shooting would be permitted. However, your first option is to draw, your last option is to shoot.

Remember, the BG has to have:
1. Intent
2. Ability
3. Opportunity
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Old February 11, 2009, 09:59 PM   #8
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I see two common schools of though, which I believe are the ones you are getting at:

1. Draw when intending to shoot, expecting to shoot immediately.

2. Draw when willing to shoot, expecting to have to shoot imminently.

I'm an advocate of the second school, believing it to be reasonable, prudent, and defensible.
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Last edited by Erik; February 11, 2009 at 10:24 PM.
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