When I was a kid, my father told me a story about a fist fight between a young man and a senior citizen. As he watched the younger guy punch the senior man in the face, my dad decided to stop his vehicle to break up the fight. As he jumped in to restrain the younger man, the senior man began to punch my dad on the back of the head. He found out the hard way this was a father-son dispute. That lesson taught him to stay away from situations that did not involve him. Being a good dad, he taught me that lesson as well.
If we apply that same mindset to people who carry guns, the information obtained is valuable. Too many times people involve themselves in an insert themselves into a situation where they do not understand all of the details involved. Much like my dad’s event, the complexities of a conflict may not be fully understood. Add a gun to the mix, and not much good could happen.
I have read time and time again about beginner gun carriers making mistakes by involving themselves in a conflict because they feel empowered by their gun. Some people view themselves as an extension of law enforcement. A mistake involving a reckless gun carrier could lead to an innocent person getting shot and/or the armed citizen being hurt or arrested. The main problem is misidentifying the situation without fully understanding who is at fault. Stepping up on people without understanding the details about who is the good guy versus the bad guy is a recipe for disaster.
Let us first understand that carrying guns allows us to protect ourselves and the ones we love. It does not give us the right to solve people’s problems or intervene into other conflicts. The rookie gun carrier may then ask, what can I do to help in a situation like this?
The greatest asset to a person involved in a defensive situation that may involve shooting is be a good witness. As the masses flee for safety and are fearful of getting involved, the “good guy” in this case could use a good witness. A good witness is someone who was paying attention to the details and is not afraid to assist law enforcement with a statement explaining what happened.
A good witness positions themselves in a safe area, observes the details and, if warranted, calls 911. If gun carriers could do that in a safe and productive manner, the senseless mistakes would be minimized and the good guy would have a fighting chance in the courts. Your greatest asset could be your eyes – and not so much your gun.
Watch the video below and let us know your thoughts and experiences on this topic.
All opinion articles are the opinion of the author and not necessarily of American Military News. If you are interested in submitting an Op-Ed, please email [email protected].