Sunday, December 11, 2011

So – Are ya packin’??

My wife and I are at a restaurant having an amazing meal of Serbian food with her brother and his wife before a choral concert. We had traveled from Iowa to Wisconsin and had discussed my training company over the past few days as well as the new Wisconsin carry laws. My sister-in-law looks at me, bends over the table slightly and asks: “So, are ya packin’?”

My response was: “Ya know, that’s something I don’t answer.”

So let’s expand on this question a bit – Are Ya packin’?

The short answer is “yes” – I do “pack” – each and every day, everywhere I go. There are exceptions – I don’t carry in the Post Office when I pick up my mail, in schools of any kind or in those areas my county has determined I can not lawfully carry ( that’s a whole other post I may get into some day). Otherwise, if I have clothing on, I have a weapon on as well (including my home).

However, for those reading this to see if this life-style change is something that they may want to do, there are a number of other factors that come into play as well.

Are you willing to take a life? The only reason to carry a weapon daily is for personal protection – of your self, your family and your community. The act of defense may well require you to take a life – are you prepared to do that?

Are you trained? And that means much more than the 4-5 hour weapons safety course. Do you know your weapon? Your ammunition? How do you carry? Can you draw, acquire and engage your threat smoothly and accurately? How many rounds do you send down range monthly with your carry weapon? When was the last time you went to the range during a rain storm or a snow storm? Would you bet your life and those of your family on your carry weapon and your gun fighting abilities?

The phrase “with great power comes great responsibility” seems to have many parents – from Voltaire to FDR to Stan Lee. However, the truth of the phrase seems self-evident to me. If I, as a citizen, choose to put the power to take a life in my pocket, I have a responsibility to know how to use it to the best of my ability and to continue to grow in that knowledge.

As for sharing on whether I’m “packin” or not – I don’t share that. No one else needs to know. If the whole restaurant knew I was “packin’”, my tactical advantage of carrying concealed is gone. If I continually treat my carry weapon as a conversation piece, it would be easy to get sloppy – maybe take it out and show it off. That is the path to nothing good.

So, my advice – know your weapon, practice as many scenarios as you can find at your range (in all kinds of weather and at all times of the day), know your ammunition, find a carry system that works well for you – and then make concealed carry a part of your life style – for your own personal defense and for the defense of your family and community.

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