One of my issues with the gun goons is the whole “I’m a badass” routine. This attitude that says that just because you own a firearm and can hit a paper target at a certain range you’ll be able to deal with an emergency situation in which your gun will be useful.

It’s a thing a lot of young martial artists get as well. The strutting, “I can kick anyone’s ass” feeling you get the first time you face down a couple of people and come out on top. When you conquer fear and your hard-won skills deliver you through a confrontation. It’s heady.

Of course, the big difference is the amount of work it takes to gain one sort of confidence, and the lack of it necessary to get the other kind. If you have a gun your confidence is artificial, certainly nothing you’ve earned. It’s conferred by a single mechanical object, a tool, that may or may not be the best tool for the job.

To be honest, I don’t worry THAT much about concealed carry. I doubt most people need to be carrying a weapon. The vast majority of people will never encounter a situation where it’s going to be of enough assistance to justify it.

I get frustrated when talking to these people because so many of them truly have no idea what it is to carry a weapon into conflict. ANY kind of weapon. You find most people who carry weapons professionally, particularly those who have had to use them, do not tend to agree with the whole “Everyone should be carrying weapons” idea. They’ve seen what happens when weapons are used maliciously or irresponsibly. Their culture is almost always far more respectful of the weapons that civilian culture in general. They understand their uses, and their risks. The guy who buys a gun because he can and struts around with it strapped to his belt who’s had no training at all?

To quote: “That’s about as useful as teats on a toad.” Should they actually NEED to use these weapons in a crisis situation, most of them will fail because they literally have no muscle memory to fall back on. Every action has to be mentally considered before taken. This is a HUGE disadvantage, particularly if one is dealing with “bad guys” who have some relevant experience.

Not only that, but someone openly carrying is an obvious target. If I planned to commit a criminal act and entered a public area, the first thing I’d do would be take out anyone else who’s armed. This serves two purposes. It ends any threat they might pose and adds to one’s armory.

This is the same reason I didn’t practice martial arts in public, especially as I got older. And I certainly didn’t teach in public. We usually worked out in as private a place as possible. No reason to advertise what skills one might have.

Of course, I was taught this crap by a force recon Marine. His rule was that you NEVER gave away any advantage you had. If you had a weapon, it was wiser to conceal it than wave it your opponent’s face. A weapon no one knows you have is far more useful than one they do.

In the end, it’s little more than posturing. And posturing not only makes you look stupid, it might lead someone to believe you’re more of a threat than you actually are, and then where will you be?