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    Greg and Beth

    the political and personal musings of two
    mountaineers living in west-central Florida
     
    Defensive Display of a Weapon Comment
    Gregory Morris, 5/9/08 9:47:22 pm
    They're changing the laws in AZ.

    This is an interesting topic because more than a few "experts" insist that the tactical advantage of concealed carry should never be given up unless the attacker is going to be shot.

    In theory, I agree it is better to maintain whatever advantage you have for as long as possible, but in practice it doesn't work out as well. There are a few reasons I say this.

    One, because good tactics require you be able to do what is necessary. If I can't draw my weapon without shooting it, then I have placed an artificial constraint on my tactical options. Sometimes you need to have faster access to a gun. If a situation is looking like it might sour, I'd rather have a gun in my hand now, then in my holster where I may not draw it smoothly under stress.

    Two, defensive gun displays happen perhaps hundreds of thousands of times per year. The fact is, showing a gun, mentioning a gun, or cha-chinking your scattergun is often an effective means of ending a bad situation. It has always been effective against the typical criminal. Not 100% of the time, but if you compare these types of DGUs to actual defensive shootings, I'd wager that there are a whole lot more situations where the victim pulled a gun, and the attacker got the hell out of Dodge.

    Three, I have personally displayed a (holstered) handgun to de-escalate a bad situation. Most people don't want to get shot. That holds very true for the abusive boyfriend and the aggressive idiot neighbor.

    Four, and most importantly (IMHO), is that there are situations where a gun is drawn with the intention of firing it, and the attack ends before the trigger is pulled. Legally speaking, that is an incredibly dangerous gray area. It is terrible to have a law in place where you are better off, legally, pulling the trigger in a defensive situation. If I pull a gun to stop deadly attack, and the attack ends before fire, I want to be damn sure I am legally in the right. I'm sure that there aren't many prosecutors in gun-friendly states who would prosecute me in that situation, but it isn't a chance anyone should have to take when defending their life.

    [Comments are closed after a month.]

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