Please understand this about me

I will not seek a fight, and if possible I will avoid one, but if one is forced upon me I will do whatever it takes to survive.

My sidearm is neither a status symbol nor an emotional crutch. I will not reach for it unless out of dire necessity, but if I must use deadly force to preserve my life or that of an innocent person, I will use it skillfully and without hesitation.

The above comes from Tom Givens, of Rangemaster, but was recently discussed on another website (and is a good read).

This is something a lot of non-gun-owning people – and people afraid of (people with/owning) guns – don’t understand about gun-owning people.

The overwhelming majority of us are not out to seek a fight.

In fact yes, most of us want to avoid fights.

But if you bring me a fight – and a fight that if I do not swiftly and decisively respond to likely results in death or grave harm to myself or another innocent person – yes I will respond.

And that’s all it means.

Furthermore, realize that, at least here in Texas, anyone that can legally carry a handgun “out in public” must be licensed. Amongst other things, that means this person has been extensively background checked, fingerprinted, and isn’t a felon. This person has had more vetting than most of the citizenry that surrounds you on a daily basis.

So understand when people like me hear about the University of Houston, in response to the new “campus carry” laws, telling faculty things like “be careful discussing sensitive topics; drop certain topics from your curriculum; not “go there” if you sense anger; limit student access off hours”, it makes me sad and confused.

These people are supposed to be academics, but they demonstrate a lack of research, knowledge, understanding, and empathy about the issue and people involved. Not just because they keep talking about “open carry” (check the laws; there is no legal open carry on Texas college campuses), but because who are they afraid of?

The only people that would be allowed to (concealed) carry on campus are licensed individuals, who again are extensively background checked, fingerprinted, not felons, not drug users – try saying that about your average college student. In fact, try saying that about your average college professor! A little digging around (and someone please correct me if I’m wrong), but from what I can find about the hiring practices of Texas universities, criminal history is only used when hiring for security-sensitive positions. So that seems that a UH professor could be a felon, a drug user, a deadbeat mom, at some point in their life perhaps committed to a mental institution, subject to a restraining order, and who would know any of that? But if you have – and wish to keep – a Texas Handgun License, you can’t be any of those things.

Who should be afraid of whom?

Are such-licensed individuals people you should be afraid of? Aren’t non-criminal, drug-free, mentally sound, good people the sort of thing our society desires? How will presence and existence of such good people cause you harm? Why should it give you fear? Can you articulate a sound reason for your fear? Note that it’s not unreasonable to be afraid; it’s the difference between having a rational fear or being afraid of the boogeyman.

And then why are you not afraid of your other students? Have you not seen the endless cell phone footage of students in high school classrooms that have zero respect for their teachers, physically accosting the teachers and the teachers unable to do anything about it? There are no guns, just empty hands. Why are you not afraid of any and all of your students? Can you articulate a sound reason for this lack of fear?

It’s funny how a lot of people say “I don’t carry a gun, because I don’t live in fear”. Well, the above behavior speaks to the contrary.

I don’t carry out of fear – I carry out of an acceptance of reality. Just like I keep a fire extinguisher in my home because I understand fires can happen. Just like I wear a seat belt when I’m in a car because I understand brakes can fail. Just like I have insurance because stuff happens. I suppose you don’t do these things tho, because you don’t live in fear.

I don’t carry a gun because of you. I don’t carry a gun to intimidate. I don’t carry a gun to try to “get my way”. I don’t carry a gun for political reasons.

I carry a gun because I love my family, and if someone seeks to cause them harm, I will not allow it.

I will not seek a fight, and if possible I will avoid one, but if one is forced upon me I will do whatever it takes to survive.

My sidearm is neither a status symbol nor an emotional crutch. I will not reach for it unless out of dire necessity, but if I must use deadly force to preserve my life or that of an innocent person, I will use it skillfully and without hesitation.

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