Carry It Like Your Life Depends On It

Over the last few years, I’ve met two types of concealed carry holders: the ones who actually carry and the ones who got the license to say they have the license. Today, I was dispatched to a residence because the homeowner had found a piece of electronic equipment in their backyard. The homeowner believed it was probably stolen and alerted the police. When he came to the door, he was a nice, well dressed, retiree. He had on an insulated Carhartt vest which isn’t out of place in Illinois in December. But, I noticed the tell tale sign he was carrying. At no point did this gentleman ever seem threatening or elude to the fact he was carrying, but I asked him if he always carried his handgun inside his home. “Of course, I do! What the hell good is it going to do me if I need it and I don’t have it?” Those were the words I wanted to hear.

He and I began talking about guns, holsters, carry strategies and some of the inconveniences of carrying a gun all the time. His Ruger LC9 doesn’t leave his side….EVER. His wife had passed almost 20 years ago and so he lives alone with a very watchful and alert dog. His dog is his alarm system and he maintains vigilance inside his home with a loaded handgun. When he goes to the grocery store, he wears a gun. When he goes to the VA hospital, he wears a gun. When he visits his grandkids, he wears a gun. When he goes to the coffee shop, he wears a gun. Do you get the idea?

Later in the afternoon, I was finally getting lunch when a young professional approached me and said that he had seen me on Stop The Threat. As the conversation continued, we talked about guns, holsters, carry strategies and some of the inconveniences of carrying a gun. He didn’t seem to be very enthusiastic about carrying a gun so I asked if he had a concealed carry license. He replied that he did have a license but only carried a gun five or six times a year!! Why? Because it was just too bulky, too heavy, too uncomfortable, too much responsibility and too much trouble. Huh???? I had never met this guy before and I’m guessing he isn’t going to be a member of my fan club any time soon. I asked him why he bothered to get the concealed carry permit when he looked at me (straight faced) and replied that he got it for protection. Who do you need protection from? “Well, all the criminals out there and now we have terrorists shooting up California.” I had to shake my head a little bit and ask what good does that permit do you? Are you going to stop a mugger by showing him that permit? Is a terrorist going to look through your wallet and then run away begging Allah for protection when he finds your permit? Hell no! The guy looked at me kind of funny when I said that the mugger or robber doesn’t care about your permit. The mugger or robber only cares if you are a defenseless victim and that’s what you are without your gun. You’re a terrorist target in a gun free zone of your own making if your gun is home locked up in a safe. It’s a proven fact that criminals, mass shooters and terrorists are looking for victims, not for people who are going to fight back. A lot of gun owners complain about the gun free zones so why are we creating more gun free zones by choosing not to carry?? CARRY THE DAMN THING! You took the time and expense to purchase a handgun and obtain the permit, now train with it and carry it because your life DOES depend on it!

Rich Portwood

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