Calm, Cool and Committed

Three Moms and a Dude

Guns and Fear

on January 19, 2013

I’ve been doing really well containing my views on the gun control issue. I liked a few internet memes, but that was it. As for the heated comments I wanted to shout across the interwebz, I shared them with Hubby and only with Hubby.

Why have I kept *mostly* quiet? I’ve seen the data. Even if I speak the truth, if it doesn’t support your side, you won’t believe me. Heck, you’ll cling to your mistrusts even more.

Tonight, however, after two recent boils over (that sounds like 18th century disease), I’m breaking my *relative* silence. I want to talk about guns.

The other day, The Dude told me he was thinking about getting a gun for protecting his family. I understand The Dude to be a moderate in the gun debate arena, so this got me thinking.

Many people who aren’t hardcore gun nuts are seriously considering buying guns (just little ones, not the big controversial ones) as protection. But is that wise?

Every now and then, I’ll wake up in the middle of the night. Shadows dance across the walls, the street outside is deathly silent and the air is still. Then I’ll hear a noise. Something tiny, something indistinct. The cats, who usually sleep on the bed, are nowhere to be found. I panic, thinking there’s an intruder in the house. I imagine the bedroom door swinging open and a criminal swathed in black charging us. On nights like those, it takes me a little while to get back to sleep, and I spend my waking hours worrying about how my only weapon is the old Snapple bottle on the nightstand.

I’m sure I’m not alone in this fear — others have seen just as many episodes of Law and Order as I have. So would a gun help us?

I am tempted to say, “No.” While a gun might even the score weapon-wise, there are still some distinct differences that put me at a disadvantage. I’m a law-abiding, violence-avoiding citizen. The criminal charging my house is not. He has already abandoned his fear of the law, of government. He’s not afraid of getting hurt. Someone who breaks into a house is not afraid. And he’s prepared to do bad things, not caring who is hurt.

You and I aren’t like that. When the crash of glass wakes us in the middle of the night, we’re not prepared for very bad things. We’re still concerned about our family. We’re acting rashly, hastily to protect our families. We’re not prepared for a confrontation like the bad guys would be. Because of all this, even with a gun, we’re at a disadvantage, despite having the benefit of playing on our home court.

When we throw a gun into the mix, what are we doing? We’re shoving a bullet machine in the face of a lawless, fearless criminal. That criminal will shoot us — without first asking questions, shouting a warning, or being concerned about children on the other side of the bedroom wall.

Even if we make it out unscathed, we’ve given that robber something he’s looking for. Some studies claim more than 600,000 guns are stolen from homes every year. Even though that makes up only 10-15% of “guns used in crimes,” that’s still 10-15%!

I worry that we live in a society where fear feeds off fear. That’s how terrorists work. That’s what they want.

One of the times I slipped and commented on a gun control thread, I said as much — that I want to live in a peaceful society. Someone responded and said “fear is a gift from God.” To that person, I end by linking here — to a site that tells us God doesn’t want us to be afraid.


One response to “Guns and Fear

  1. Mea says:

    Fine, I’ll comment…boy you love controversy…

    I can relate to waking up terrified over a noise, but I don’t pick up a gun because of that.

    I grew up around people who had guns…nbd if you respect them.

    I know someone who was close to our family who stole a gun. He traded it for drugs, and it was found at a crime scene later and returned to the owner after the case.

    Criminals will always be armed, so why wouldn’t we allow law-abiding citizens to be?

    I don’t see any reason for someone needing military-style weapons, like those used in the elementary school shooting.

    I disagree that criminals aren’t scared. What about all the teen and amateur criminals?

    Kids finding guns by accident worries me, in general.

    And, WHY DIDN’T I BUY STOCK IN GUNS OR SOMETHING? I could be rich by now!

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