Guns Don’t Kill People, People Kill People

Lethal ForceHow often have we heard that expression?  But it is true?  Have you ever read a story about a gun loading itself, aiming and pulling its own trigger?  I haven’t, all the stories I’ve heard had human intervention.  I could, if I really wanted to which I don’t, kill someone with a 2×4 board, pencil, a knitting needle, my car…as easily as a gun.  It takes a deliberate action to pull the trigger and make the gun go bang.  Living an armed life means being a responsible citizen, someone who walks away when some jerk is trying to start something, someone who apologizes and steps back even if they are right…all to avoid the confrontation.  That is not wimpy; it takes a lot of courage and inner strength to let it go.

It takes a lot of courage to carry a gun.  You know you can defend yourself, but you also know that you may have to seriously injure or kill someone to defend your life.  Guns are not good luck charms; they are, for lawfully armed citizens, a serious self defense tool.  You will never hear me refer to my gun as a “weapon”.  A weapon can be almost anything, a knife, a bat, a pencil, or yes, even a gun…the common thread is the implements are used offensively; they are used to attack someone.  I will never start the fight, and I will not draw my gun to threaten someone.  I will not draw my gun period unless I have made the decision to use it to defend my life or the life of someone close to me.  To me, that makes it a defensive tool, and therefore, not a weapon.

Be responsible. Remember that your firearm is “defensive” not “offensive”.  If you are forced, by the threat of someone else, remember that you are responsible for every round you fire.  Know your target and what is beyond it.  We all miss sometimes, and even Hollow-Points can over penetrate on occasion.  If you can’t be reasonably certain that your shot will only hit the aggressor, you probably don’t want to take the shot.  If you draw intending to shoot and he or she panics and turns to run away, you cannot take the shot, let them go, call the police, be a good witness.

Also, be responsible with your firearm when it is not in your possession.  Don’t leave a loaded gun out of your control where an unauthorized person could come upon it.  That could be someone doing work on your home, or a curious child, or anyone in between.  Do not be responsible for a tragedy.  Do I keep a gun in the night stand?  Sure, at night.  But I also don’t have kids in the house.  If I did, there are lots of small, easy to open gun safes, including biometric safes that you can set to open based on your fingerprints so you can get to your gun in the dark.

Be safe, be responsible and always use your firearm appropriately.

Lynne Finch-Charlesworth

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