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Staying alive

The other day, I linked to a story about a young woman who found herself having to seriously consider how best to protect her physical safety -- and the barriers we have put up to keep her from doing so.

At that time, I said the lesson was "in the end, our own safety is our own responsibility." That was not quite as precisely worded as I should have said.

Let me take that again:

The police, the military, the courts, the government, society as a whole will all try to help you as best they can. They will work to protect you from harm. But in the end, you simply can not place all your faith in them. They are not perfect. They fail -- sometimes spectacularly.

In the end, you have to be prepared to protect yourself. There will come times when you are in trouble, and you turn to those who you have been taught will protect you. Most of the time, they will do just that.

But they might not. And when that happens, you have a choice: you can be a victim, or you can be a survivor.

This was driven home when I saw (and heard) this piece over at Rob Port's superb blog. Listen to that audio, and ask yourself what all the laws on the books, all the judges and police and prisons, all the other factors did for the couple in their own home.

The answer is simple: not a goddamned thing. It came down to one intruder versus a couple in their own home, and the intruder ended up fleeing wounded -- because the couple was prepared to defend themselves.

After the Virginia Tech massacre, I stole one of Bill O'Reilly's catchphrases and asked "who's looking out for you?" My point was that, ultimately, no one is -- so you better watch out for yourself.

These people did. And they lived to tell the tale.

Others don't. And they end up paying the price -- sometimes the ultimate price.

It's not fair, it's not right, it's not pretty.

But it's real.

Author's note: this piece was originally published prematurely, then pulled, slightly polished, and re-published. That is why the first comment is time-stamped before the publication of the actual article.


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Comments (16)

This case flies in the face... (Below threshold)
bobdog:

This case flies in the face of the widely accepted "duty to pee your pants" rule in modern jurisprudence.

Great recording. Good for ... (Below threshold)
Bunker Author Profile Page:

Great recording. Good for them.

Hopefully they will not get screwed by gun-grabber laws.

Good for the 71-year-old ma... (Below threshold)
goddessoftheclassroom:

Good for the 71-year-old man!

When we were reviewing emergency procedure last semester. my student teacher told my students, "The best way not to be a victim is not to act like one."

I'd love to know:

1. If the intruder had a weapon
2. If the homeowner intentionally shot-to-wound or just took his best shot.

(Neither of these questions affects my support of the man--I'm just curious).

Thank GOD we're not like England. If this happened there, the homeowner would be arrested.

My wife and I are growing o... (Below threshold)
WildWillie:

My wife and I are growing older and with that comes feelings of not being secure. I have an alarm system with rapid call. I have the outside of the house well lighted to deter home invasions. I have my piston in the bedroom, my shotgun in my den and another weapon I keep with me. I am not paranoid, just doing what I can to protect my wife and I. Good for this couple. The police cannot investigate until a crime is reported. ww

Jay--Why isn't it fa... (Below threshold)
Gringo:

Jay--
Why isn't it fair? Your life is more important to you than anyone else. To anyone else, you're just a guy. Whoever values something the most is who should be in charge of that thing. This is the beauty of the capitalist system-- that the person who actual values something the most, not the guy who SAYS he does or THINKS he does, gets to be in charge of a thing.

But this goes against the g... (Below threshold)
bill:

But this goes against the grain of liberalism ... it's not what you can do for your country it's what your country can do for you.

Gun control is a ground zero for the liberals simply because of the notion that you expose, only you can protect yourself from harm. Only you are there when that fatful decision must be made, the cops show up later and draw chalk lines.

That is why liberals must get the Second Amendment out of the Constitution, it shows the vulnerability of society and the liberals want you to think cocoon.

Removing your responsibilities to society and yourself has always been the main liberal cause. Liberals, simplified version, raise taxes, fund socialism and gun control.

"It's not fair, it's not ri... (Below threshold)
Joe:

"It's not fair, it's not right, it's not pretty.

But it's real. "

It's also not legal if you live in NY or MA where you have a duty to flee your own castle when invaded. Unless, of course, you're a Kennedy.......

That guy is awesome, you ca... (Below threshold)
D-Hoggs:

That guy is awesome, you can hear him after he shoots the guy he says "awwwl right"!

"the cops show up later and... (Below threshold)
steak111111:

"the cops show up later and draw chalk lines."

That's the truth where i live. NO prevention.

The only gun the cops use here is the radar gun. After all, THAT's where the revenue is....

Um sorry, my comment should... (Below threshold)
WildWillie:

Um sorry, my comment should read "pistol in our bedroom" not piston. I only wish at my age. ww

And I don't understand the ... (Below threshold)
kevino:

And I don't understand the deranged Liberal mind that ignores the basic needs of citizens and pushes for more gun control. There is, yet again, a major push for new gun control laws on the horizon. Democrats, having won in 2006, are feeling frisky, and uber-liberals want gun control on the agenda for the 2008 elections. It's a loser, but they are convinced that this is just the right thing to do.

The Mayor of Boston just attended a meeting of big city mayors to lobby for more gun control. He said that he was very concerned about the fact that states like NH allow people to buy guns too easily and that these guns end up in the streets of Boston. How does he say that with a straight face?

My SO heard a debate last night where liberals are pushing for background checks for private intra-state sales. In other words, all sales have to go through an FFL. These people, apparently, have never heard of the Bill of Rights or at least not the 10th Amendment. Apparently, the words exist on paper, but when it isn't convenient for them, the words just get ignored.

For those who don't know, Jesse Jackson is leading a 25-city protest to lobby for more gun control on August 25th. It's a sure bet that Boston is on the list. CCRKBA and others are planning counter-protests.

"If the homeowner intention... (Below threshold)
Dave:

"If the homeowner intentionally shot-to-wound or just took his best shot."

Better hope he just took his best shot. From what I've been told (in various fora), "shooting to wound" is a good way to get prosecuted, as it can be taken as evidence that you were not truly feeling that your life was threatened, and thus were not justified in use of Deadly force.

Which sounds like crap to me, but when a Police Officer tells me that's what Prosecutors say, I tend to take it at face value. Shoot to kill, then.

In some quarters the preffe... (Below threshold)
Matt:

In some quarters the preffered term is "Shoot to Stop." Shoot to wound implies you weren't serious, shoot to kill implies you were blood thirsty. Shoot to stop implies you intend to use just enough force to stop the assault. If the Perp winds up dying, that was his choice. In most violent encounters you have to take the shot(s) you get, which might not always be perfectly centered. It is amazing how people refuse to stand still when being shot at.

Cops CANNOT protect you at ... (Below threshold)
BillyBob:

Cops CANNOT protect you at home, they can only write up the report and help zip up the body bag with you in it AFTER the fact.

Shoot till the gun is empty, reload, and shoot again aiming for the head. Only then can you be sure an attack will stop.

God Bless the 2nd Amendment and Texas.

Murder rate per 100,000 residents in counties
won by:
Gore: 13.2
Bush: 2.1

I guess gun control works in those liberal counties that voted for AlGore? Nope, it just took away the right to defend ones self.

First, some caveats. I'm pr... (Below threshold)
Veeshir:

First, some caveats. I'm pretty well armed, owning a bunch of guns. I keep one of my automatics in my nightstand and another in my living room (1-bedroom apt), I used to keep my Ruger GP-100 in the living room, but I got a 1911 a few months ago and I had to put that one out. The GP-100 went into the gun locker. So I'm not coming from an anti-gun position, quite the opposite.

I grew up in upstate NY in a not so lovely section of a smallish city, Kingston. The neighbor on our left was a minister and his family (he was the nicest clergyman and perhaps the nicest human being I've ever known), the ones on the right were an old couple. Very old and very nice.

One day the minister opened his door to another indigent looking for food, he ended up tied up and burgled. Ditto on the other side.

Us? We had a dog. Someone once tried to steal a bike off the porch, the dog ran him down and pulled him off the bike. When my mom came out some kid was trying to get away while Zeppelin
was biting at his leg.
We never even locked our doors. Seriously, my mother worked so I would come home from school with nobody there and, like any 7-9 year old, I always lost my key. I mean we never locked our doors and the only problems I ever had were when I was out alone, without the dog. With him? I never had problems.
I used to live with a very pretty, tall, blonde girl. Very Valkyrie looking. We lived in Arlington, VA surrounded by many hispanics. She couldn't go outside alone or she had to run the gauntlet of "hey mama"s and other, far more lewd situations. Not when she took Max the dog with her. Maxhole was a funny, rude dog. When they would start their comments Hillary yelled, "Sic em!", Max would pretend to lunge and they would run away. That really cracked Max up. After that happened a couple times, they learned and left her alone.

I fully believe in guns for self-defense, but there's nothing like a dog to deter burglars and other miscreants. Much better than my friend's bullet-hole-ridden ADT sign.
Although that probably wouldn't work so well if the dog knew the stalker-ex-boyfriend as a regular guest before the stalking.

Although that prob... (Below threshold)
SCSIwuzzy:
Although that probably wouldn't work so well if the dog knew the stalker-ex-boyfriend as a regular guest before the stalking.

Veeshir,
I know my german short hair pointer and staffordshire bull terrier would lay down their lives for my fiancee, but she can't slide them into her purse. :)




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