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AST (After Sean Taylor)-To gun or not to gun?

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Old 12-30-2007, 10:58 PM   #61
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Re: AST (After Sean Taylor)-To gun or not to gun?

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Originally Posted by jsarno View Post
Good post, I agree.
I have a .45 next to bed, but I keep a bullet out of the chamber just to avoid accidental firings.
I firmly think all honest people should have a gun, if intruders were shot and killed every time they broke into a house, I guarantee the amount of break ins would decrease by a substantial margin. You should always protect yourself and your family, but learn / educate yourself on how to use it, and of course, go to a gun range and learn how to shoot it too. No point in having it if you're just going to shoot the wall. Practice makes perfect.
What if it's not an intruder? What if it's your son trying to get back into the house after sneaking out after curfew? The risk of being wrong just isn't worth it. Better ten guilty go free than one innocent die.
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Old 12-30-2007, 11:05 PM   #62
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Re: AST (After Sean Taylor)-To gun or not to gun?

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Originally Posted by onlydarksets View Post
What if it's not an intruder? What if it's your son trying to get back into the house after sneaking out after curfew? The risk of being wrong just isn't worth it. Better ten guilty go free than one innocent die.
First rule of firearms safety: Be sure of your target.

2. All guns are always loaded.

3. Never let your muzzle cover anything you are not willing to destroy.

4. Keep your finger off the trigger until your sights are on target and you have made a conscious decision to fire.

Learn and live by those four rules and above isn't a problem.
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Old 12-30-2007, 11:10 PM   #63
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Re: AST (After Sean Taylor)-To gun or not to gun?

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First rule of firearms safety: Be sure of your target.

2. All guns are always loaded.

3. Never let your muzzle cover anything you are not willing to destroy.

4. Keep your finger off the trigger until your sights are on target and you have made a conscious decision to fire.

Learn and live by those four rules and above isn't a problem.
Sounds great. I'd love to see that in action in the dark by someone who has never fired their gun at a human before. I'm sure it will work out fine.

Look, I'm not saying that nobody should have guns. I'm just saying that going to the firing range a few times a month and memorizing a checklist can't possibly prepare the average person for the stress of this type of situation. It's unrealistic to think that adrenaline and fear are going to allow you to get it right 100% of the time.
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Old 12-30-2007, 11:16 PM   #64
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Re: AST (After Sean Taylor)-To gun or not to gun?

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Sounds great. I'd love to see that in action in the dark by someone who has never fired their gun at a human before. I'm sure it will work out fine.

Look, I'm not saying that nobody should have guns. I'm just saying that going to the firing range a few times a month and memorizing a checklist can't possibly prepare the average person for the stress of this type of situation. It's unrealistic to think that adrenaline and fear are going to allow you to get it right 100% of the time.
I'm prone to agree with that. I mean if its dark and its someone you can't see, and you've got fight or flight kicking in. I mean, I think instincts are going to take over. I think only experienced people with guns or cops could keep their fight or flight rush under control and make a rational decision in such a tense situation. Knowing me, if someone came in who I wasn't expecting I'd just mess them up and not think twice. Hence, why I'll never own a gun. I'll stick with an alarm system. Maybe a tazer. lol
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Old 12-30-2007, 11:29 PM   #65
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Re: AST (After Sean Taylor)-To gun or not to gun?

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Sounds great. I'd love to see that in action in the dark by someone who has never fired their gun at a human before. I'm sure it will work out fine.

Look, I'm not saying that nobody should have guns. I'm just saying that going to the firing range a few times a month and memorizing a checklist can't possibly prepare the average person for the stress of this type of situation. It's unrealistic to think that adrenaline and fear are going to allow you to get it right 100% of the time.
It works all the time with people who seek out the necessary training. I fail to see what's so hard to grasp about that for most people.

An old adage in the military and law enforcement goes, "You will fight like you train."

So, yes, run out to the local gun show, buy yourself "a nine," toss it in the nightstand having barely familiarized yourself with it and yeah, expect disastrous results.

Being proficient with a firearm, and by proficient I mean reasonably accurate, reasonably fast, with the ability to reload and be familiar enough to operate under stress and pressure and in low light environments, is really is not as complicated as it sounds. People who are ignorant about guns generally seem to assume it's an incredibly complex process better left to "professionals."

People roaming down the interstate yacking on the cellphone while propelling a 4,000+ pound vehicle at speeds in excess of 70mph is what scares the crap out of me. Driving a car is equally, if not more dangerous and complicated than operating a firearm. How many people can skillfully control a skidding or sliding vehicle? How many know how to handle a vehicle at high speeds, in slides, or over slippery surfaces? Very few, but I don't hear anyone complaining about that. What is it about guns that really gets people going?

I'm not saying, and have never said, that every last walking moron should be armed to the teeth. Training is necessary, but it's not that unreasonable.

People routinely spend $80,000+ for a four or more year college education that purportedly prepares them for the real world, not to mention graduate school. We'll spend $30,000 on a car and pay attention to all the safety features. We'll have our 16 year old kids take drivers ed and log the necessary driving training time before getting a license.

Why is it when it comes to the protection and safety of yourself and your family from evil people, do we just take it for granted, leave it to chance, or just assume we'll figure it out when we have to?

$1,000 will get you a perfectly decent handgun and 2-3 days of training on how to operate it safely and use it in a tactical or home-defense environment. $2,000 will get you an excellent handgun and 5 days of training from former and current military and law enforcement professionals who actually HAVE had to shoot at a person before. Your "average Joe" spends twice that on a TV so he can sit back and eat Cheetos and be entertained every night. You wouldn't spend the same to properly protect yourself and your family?
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Old 12-30-2007, 11:36 PM   #66
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Re: AST (After Sean Taylor)-To gun or not to gun?

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Originally Posted by mheisig View Post
It works all the time with people who seek out the necessary training. I fail to see what's so hard to grasp about that for most people.

An old adage in the military and law enforcement goes, "You will fight like you train."

So, yes, run out to the local gun show, buy yourself "a nine," toss it in the nightstand having barely familiarized yourself with it and yeah, expect disastrous results.

Being proficient with a firearm, and by proficient I mean reasonably accurate, reasonably fast, with the ability to reload and be familiar enough to operate under stress and pressure and in low light environments, is really is not as complicated as it sounds. People who are ignorant about guns generally seem to assume it's an incredibly complex process better left to "professionals."

People roaming down the interstate yacking on the cellphone while propelling a 4,000+ pound vehicle at speeds in excess of 70mph is what scares the crap out of me. Driving a car is equally, if not more dangerous and complicated and operating a firearm. How many people can skillfully control a skidding or sliding vehicle? How many know how to handle a vehicle at high speeds, in slides, or over slippery surfaces? Very few, but I don't hear anyone complaining about that. What is it about guns that really gets people going?

I'm not saying, and have never said, that every last walking moron should be armed to the teeth. Training is necessary, but it's not that unreasonable.

People routinely spend $80,000+ for a four or more year college education that purportedly prepares them for the real world, not to mention graduate school. We'll spend $30,000 on a car and pay attention to all the safety features. We'll have our 16 year old kids take drivers ed and log the necessary driving training time before getting a license.

Why is it when it comes to the protection and safety of yourself and your family from evil people, do we just take it for granted, leave it to chance, or just assume we'll figure it out when we have to?

$1,000 will get you a perfectly decent handgun and 2-3 days of training on how to operate it safely and use it in a tactical or home-defense environment. Your "average Joe" spends three times that on a TV.


And there are plenty of classes available for little to no money, that are actually very very informative. Most are taught by ex or current law enforcement and military personell. I was a little embarrassed when I took my first home defense class at Shooter's Paradise in Woodbridge, but I learned so much I made my wife go, and I've taken other classes since. I wish the classes and an extensive screening process were mandatory as part of your first firearm purchase.
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Old 12-30-2007, 11:43 PM   #67
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Re: AST (After Sean Taylor)-To gun or not to gun?

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It works all the time with people who seek out the necessary training. I fail to see what's so hard to grasp about that for most people.

An old adage in the military and law enforcement goes, "You will fight like you train."

So, yes, run out to the local gun show, buy yourself "a nine," toss it in the nightstand having barely familiarized yourself with it and yeah, expect disastrous results.

Being proficient with a firearm, and by proficient I mean reasonably accurate, reasonably fast, with the ability to reload and be familiar enough to operate under stress and pressure and in low light environments, is really is not as complicated as it sounds. People who are ignorant about guns generally seem to assume it's an incredibly complex process better left to "professionals."
And I fail to see what is so hard to grasp about "unintended consequences". First, I disagree about how far training can take you. Comparing a gun owner to a police officer is a far stretch. Second, even if it was enough, you assume way too much about what the average person who has a gun will do to educate and train themselves.

The unintended consequences outweigh the benefits in my house. God bless America, because you are free to choose differently. I believe that gun control needs to be smarter, not harder, but the current state just isn't cutting it.
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Old 12-30-2007, 11:43 PM   #68
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Re: AST (After Sean Taylor)-To gun or not to gun?

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And there are plenty of classes available for little to no money, that are actually very very informative. Most are taught by ex or current law enforcement and military personell. I was a little embarrassed when I took my first home defense class at Shooter's Paradise in Woodbridge, but I learned so much I made my wife go, and I've taken other classes since. I wish the classes and an extensive screening process were mandatory as part of your first firearm purchase.
Very true - many of the basic classes are free or cost what amounts to pocket change.

I try to look at the whole situation from every possible angle, but I simply fail to see why people are so averse to the issue. There are many objection, most of which you hear over and over, and I simply don't think anyone of them hold much water.

I'm not going to try to force anyone to do anything they don't want. If someone just wants to say "Listen, I just don't want to own a gun, that's all there is to it," I can live with that. Personal choices.

It does bother me that there is apparently a substantial amount of ignorance and irrational fear, and I do my best to educate those who are willing to listen. I've trained several people to shoot, two women in particular who were extremely opposed to guns of any sort. They both enjoyed the initial training and now shoot regularly simply because they enjoy it as a hobby.
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Old 12-30-2007, 11:53 PM   #69
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Re: AST (After Sean Taylor)-To gun or not to gun?

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And I fail to see what is so hard to grasp about "unintended consequences". First, I disagree about how far training can take you. Comparing a gun owner to a police officer is a far stretch. Second, even if it was enough, you assume way too much about what the average person who has a gun will do to educate and train themselves.

The unintended consequences outweigh the benefits in my house. God bless America, because you are free to choose differently. I believe that gun control needs to be smarter, not harder, but the current state just isn't cutting it.
Like I said, I certainly respect your decision and none of this is an attempt to argue anyone into doing something they don't want to do.

I agree it's possible (not necessary) that there are unintended consequences to owning a firearm.

Can you tell me how that differs substantially from the possible unintended consequences of driving? Or flying? Or having cleaning fluids in a house full of kids? Or having a gas stove? Or having matches? Or walking down the street? You've got the risk of danger and harm to you and your loved ones all around you, all day long, why is a gun so much different?

With respect to comparing a police officer and a gunowner, I staunchly disagree, and feel I'm pretty well qualified to speak on the subject having been a civilian gun owner and a police officer at one time.

As discomforting as this is to many of you, the VAST majority of police officers are absolutely NOT expert marksmen or even close. They are moderately competent, some far worse. I had 80 hours of firearms training in the police academy, which is about 3-5 times what the state required minimum is in most states. In other words I got 80 hours, and most departments get a LOT less. Of that 80 hours, 1/3 was probably spent milling around wasting time and waiting for your turn to shoot.

I can unequivocally state, after being trained in a highly respected law enforcement academy, and having seen hundreds of other officers shoot, that I know more civilians who are better shots than police officers.

The perception that officers have some incredible level of skill with firearms is preposterous and likely perpetuated by ignorant people or the departments themselves.

A 5-day course at a place like Gunsite or Blackwater or any of a dozen schools throughout the country will leave your "average Joe" as prepared or better prepared than the vast majority of officers I encountered, and I'd stake my reputation and a large sum of cash on that.
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Old 12-31-2007, 12:23 AM   #70
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Re: AST (After Sean Taylor)-To gun or not to gun?

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What if it's not an intruder? What if it's your son trying to get back into the house after sneaking out after curfew? The risk of being wrong just isn't worth it. Better ten guilty go free than one innocent die.
Well, it seems like there is a common argument about "the innocent" bystander.
1- you preach gun safety to your kids. They NEED to understand the importance of guns and their role.
2- no one randomly shoots in the dark when they see a shadow, if they do, they should not have a gun...if you think you would, you should not own a gun because you're not fit to have one. A confirmation is needed first. When my wife goes to the bathroom in the middle of the night, I'm not ready to shoot her on the way back to the bedroom. That's common sense, especially if you see her silohette. You should also know the size of your kids, and if you have kids, then you should be a ton more reluctant to pull the trigger until you KNOW it's an intruder. I live in an area with extremely loose gun laws, and no one shoots their wife or kid thinking they are an intruder...it never happens. This is just a comment based on fear of the unknown. The kids out here are taught about gun safety and they are familiar with guns...guess what...there are never any issues. Education is always the key. Fear should never be used in making decision, and that includes gun laws / excuses as to why not to have guns.
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Old 12-31-2007, 12:24 AM   #71
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Re: AST (After Sean Taylor)-To gun or not to gun?

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2- no one randomly shoots in the dark when they see a shadow. A confirmation is needed first.
This would fall under the rule, "know your target and what is beyond it"
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Old 12-31-2007, 12:30 AM   #72
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Re: AST (After Sean Taylor)-To gun or not to gun?

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This would fall under the rule, "know your target and what is beyond it"
I absolutely agree.

I edited my previous comment because there are those idiots out there.
But would you jump behind the wheel of a car when you're 12, not knowing how to drive and expect to have spectacular results? Just like anything you do in your life, it takes practice and understanding.

I've been a gun owner for well over a decade. I am an excellent shot. The gun has never gone off on it's own, nor has it been pulled against someone that it wasn't intended to pull on. You need to respect the gun...if you don't, then trouble happens.
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Old 12-31-2007, 07:54 AM   #73
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Re: AST (After Sean Taylor)-To gun or not to gun?

jsarno, why i admire you for your belief in your second amendment rights, im with darksets. guns are made for one reason, and one reason only. killing. the old wild wild west mentality amuses me. the constitution needs amended so people that need guns have them( military, police) and those who don't, have alot harder access to them. and enforcing the gun laws we have on the books right now. no need for new laws, just use the existing ones
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Old 12-31-2007, 09:23 AM   #74
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Re: AST (After Sean Taylor)-To gun or not to gun?

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Like I said, I certainly respect your decision and none of this is an attempt to argue anyone into doing something they don't want to do.
Likewise, thanks.

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I agree it's possible (not necessary) that there are unintended consequences to owning a firearm.
Laws affect all people, so you can't look at a specific situation to prove the rule. Across the entire population, there is a 100% certainty that there are unintended consequences to owning a firearm.


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Can you tell me how that differs substantially from the possible unintended consequences of driving? Or flying? Or having cleaning fluids in a house full of kids? Or having a gas stove? Or having matches? Or walking down the street? You've got the risk of danger and harm to you and your loved ones all around you, all day long, why is a gun so much different?
That's a strawman argument, but it seems to come up often, so allow me to debunk it. The natural use of any of those other items is non-injurious to anyone. The natural use of a gun (and by use I mean firing it) is injurious.

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With respect to comparing a police officer and a gunowner, I staunchly disagree, and feel I'm pretty well qualified to speak on the subject having been a civilian gun owner and a police officer at one time.

As discomforting as this is to many of you, the VAST majority of police officers are absolutely NOT expert marksmen or even close. They are moderately competent, some far worse. I had 80 hours of firearms training in the police academy, which is about 3-5 times what the state required minimum is in most states. In other words I got 80 hours, and most departments get a LOT less. Of that 80 hours, 1/3 was probably spent milling around wasting time and waiting for your turn to shoot.

I can unequivocally state, after being trained in a highly respected law enforcement academy, and having seen hundreds of other officers shoot, that I know more civilians who are better shots than police officers.

The perception that officers have some incredible level of skill with firearms is preposterous and likely perpetuated by ignorant people or the departments themselves.

A 5-day course at a place like Gunsite or Blackwater or any of a dozen schools throughout the country will leave your "average Joe" as prepared or better prepared than the vast majority of officers I encountered, and I'd stake my reputation and a large sum of cash on that.
First, I still don't agree that "training taking over" is going to get you through this situation 100% of the time in the manner you intended (I found this interesting article that appears to support neither of our positions, or both - I can't tell). The risks just aren't worth it in my house.

Second, the flaw with the "gun safety by training" arguments in this thread is that they focus on the top 10-20% (and I am being extremely generous with that guestimate) of the gun-owning population. Given the amount of training that you have gone through and your background, I have no reason to doubt that you are a better marksman than the average police officer. I would venture to guess that the gun-owners with which you associate are like-minded in their view of the importance of vigorous training.

However, this argument ignores the fact that the vast majority of people who own guns do not take the time to get the training that you describe. If this training were made mandatory, then I might be a little more comfortable with the idea.
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Old 12-31-2007, 09:58 AM   #75
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Re: AST (After Sean Taylor)-To gun or not to gun?

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Likewise, thanks.


Laws affect all people, so you can't look at a specific situation to prove the rule. Across the entire population, there is a 100% certainty that there are unintended consequences to owning a firearm.



That's a strawman argument, but it seems to come up often, so allow me to debunk it. The natural use of any of those other items is non-injurious to anyone. The natural use of a gun (and by use I mean firing it) is injurious.



First, I still don't agree that "training taking over" is going to get you through this situation 100% of the time in the manner you intended (I found this interesting article that appears to support neither of our positions, or both - I can't tell). The risks just aren't worth it in my house.

Second, the flaw with the "gun safety by training" arguments in this thread is that they focus on the top 10-20% (and I am being extremely generous with that guestimate) of the gun-owning population. Given the amount of training that you have gone through and your background, I have no reason to doubt that you are a better marksman than the average police officer. I would venture to guess that the gun-owners with which you associate are like-minded in their view of the importance of vigorous training.

However, this argument ignores the fact that the vast majority of people who own guns do not take the time to get the training that you describe. If this training were made mandatory, then I might be a little more comfortable with the idea.
I think this discussion boils down to a few basic philosophies.

1) Should the government be restricting access to something (anything really) that CAN be used irresponsibliy even though with proper training it WOULD be used properly.
2) It sounds cliche but the old saying that "Guns don't kill people, people kill people" is pretty central to the argument here.

I think a lot of people would rather the government remove the ability of irresponisble people causing harm to others at the expense of the responsible. Others would rather not. I guess it is a fundamental difference of opinion. Neither side is probably right or wrong totally.
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