Tag Archives: shooting incidents

Who Killed Tamir Rice?

29 Dec

If you’re not familiar with the story about Tamir Rice, there’s enough information buzzing on the Internet to start a fire right about now. With the holiday season coming up, this unfortunateshiny toy gun situation of a 12-year-old child being killed by a policeman may even get a bit more complicated.

Due to the holiday season, there will be a lot of people giving gifts.

One thing that you know for sure is that some of these gifts will be given to children and teenagers.

Some of these gifts might be handgun replicas, very similar to the toy handgun that Tamir Rice was playing with.

Rice’s toy was replicated to look identical to a real .45. Lately, toy handgun models have been specifically marking these fake weapons to let law enforcement officers know that the replica is a toy.

These markers were created to communicate in a very strong visual way so that no one would be confused and react to a perceived threat.

The markers are there for protection purposes in order to avoid another Tamir Rice incident. By placing a loud orange color on the tip of the muzzle, the toy manufacturers are doing their part to communicate that their products aren’t real guns. However in Rice’s case, the orange part of the toy had been removed, making it harder for police to see the difference.

Author Rick Sapp goes in depth about the dangers of replica guns manufactured to look real and why they could be dangerous in his article “Who Killed Tamir Rice?” on USConcealedcarry.com:

“The audio of that call is available online. ‘There is a guy with a pistol,’ the caller says. ‘It’s probably fake, but he’s pointing it at everybody.’” (Read more at USConcealedCarry.com)

If you do buy a toy handgun for a family member or friend this holiday season, you should be sure to take out time and explain to the children the importance of these additional features and why they shouldn’t be removed.

You should also stress that the toy is something that kids shouldn’t go around pointing at everyone. Teach them to treat the toy as if it were not a toy, and you’re providing a great lesson, maybe one that will lead them to be responsibly armed Americans later on down the line.

Have a face-to-face conversation so that you can be absolutely sure that the child or teenager completely understands what you’re saying. Of course, if you can’t be there in person, it might be smart for you to consult the child’s parents first to see if the gift is really a wise idea in the first place. Many parents don’t want their children to have guns, toy or not.

The important issue is that of using the tragedy of Rice’s situation to make sure that no more children die. Police should never have to encounter a child with what they believe to be a handgun so that they’re forced to respond. Make sure that all safety features remain intact and that kids understand that you should NEVER point a weapon, even a toy, at an officer of the law.

Managing Your Increased Responsibility While Carrying Firearms

22 May

When you consciously make the decision to carry a concealed firearm, you are entering a new state of existence that is quite different from normal non-concealed carrying life. Image

On one hand, being in possession of a firearm leaves you better prepared to successfully defend your own life.

On the flipside, you are not even close to having military or police levels of backup, training, and engagement.

Soldiers and officers are trained and carry weapons for their jobs and as a result, the jobs come with all sorts of protection. They are allowed to do things that civilians are not.

Police are paid to engage, chase, and apprehend dangerous people. They are trained to do these things and hardly ever operate alone. As concealed carrying civilians, it is rarely if ever legal or even a good idea for you to pursue someone.

In the course of their jobs, police officers are sometimes required to shoot people. There are reports on the news every week about a police shooting somewhere and details about the resulting investigation.

In the event of an investigation, officers involved are usually put on paid leave pending the outcome, given access to mental health counseling, and have legal representation courtesy of their police union.

They have far more assistance after a shooting than the common civilian, who can quickly find themselves paying thousands upon thousands of dollars in legal fees. This is before they even have to potentially post a sizable bail.

You cannot operate as a vigilante. Your primary reason to carry a gun in the first place is to stay alive. Focus on doing what keeps you alive and out of prison. Most of the time, this means running or getting away in some form or another.

It is also important to pay close attention to how being in possession of a firearm changes your attitude and perception of your place in the world. Author Cope Reynolds talks about this in his article “Ross Sporting Goods” on USConcealedcarry.com:

“… just because you’re carrying a gun, [it] doesn’t mean that you somehow have new-found powers or that you are any braver or tougher than you were before. If anything, it should probably make you a little more humble.” (Read more at USConcealedCarry.com)

This is an oft-mentioned point that bears repeating. Being in possession of a lethal weapon puts you into a much higher tier of responsibility. You must hold your ego in check and abandon all ideas of machismo and tough guy behavior.

Missing this critical step is nothing short of courting disaster.

Rationalizing Our Decision to Carry Handguns

13 Feb

Our decision to carry a firearm for self-defense is at times, a controversial one. The position on gun rights is often attacked with false statistics and statements aimed at cultivating emotional responses that aren’t grounded in reality.

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It is sad to see people who choose to carry firearms for their own defense demonized and considered dangerous, unstable, or even bad people.

It can be helpful to occasionally refresh ourselves with the reasons for our choice to carry and the positive impact concealed carry can make on our lives.

As author Larken Rose says in his article “Pro-Crash Extremists” on USConcealedcarry.com:

“Seat belts and airbags are designed to do one thing: make it so people can survive car crashes. So do people wear seat belts, or buy cars with air bags, because they want to crash? Of course not. They do those things so that if they’re unfortunate enough to find themselves in a dangerous situation, they’ll have a better chance of surviving it. (Read more about the public desire to carry handguns here)

Individuals who make the decision to get a concealed carry permit, attend classes, and spend many hours choosing the right handgun, ammunition, and carry system are not doing these things to cause trouble. They are engineering their own self-defense system. These are knowledgeable people who are taking responsibility for their own safety and protection instead of relying on luck or the police.

Taking responsibility for oneself is admirable and should be lauded, not treated as barbaric scare tactics or lies.

There are those who say that we wouldn’t need guns if we simply avoid dangerous areas and situations. These people also believe that the police will protect us.

Remember, these types of arguments are not based in reality. All one has to do is pick up a newspaper to see crimes committed across all spectrums of society. Shootings don’t only happen in bad neighborhoods. They happen in gated communities, too. As for the police protecting us, the fact of the matter is that they are not present everywhere 24/7, nor do we want them to be. Most of us cannot afford personal armed bodyguards either.

This reduces our options considerably and again, brings us face to face with the only real option at hand: carrying a firearm for self-defense.

A responsible citizen in possession of a handgun is prevention. If a criminal succeeds in killing someone, there is no cure that will bring them back.

Shooting Drills: The Dozier

30 Jul

There are many shooting drills out there, but the Dozier Drill was created back in 1981 for a very specific reason and due to a very specific occurrence. U.S. Army Brigadier General James L. Dozier was kidnapped for 42 days. The people behind the kidnapping were the Italian Marxist terrorist group called The Red BrigImageade.

Times were different back then, and Dozier was completely unarmed when he was kidnapped.

This was due to the fact that anyone in the US military was prohibited from carrying their firearms in their homes or in the surrounding community.

The kidnapping took place when four terrorists entered Dozier’s home pretending to be plumbers. A political statement was read to Dozier while the terrorists brandished their weapons.

Subsequent to the shooting, Jeff Cooper created the Dozier shooting drill.

Typically during this drill, there are four targets and a weapon is removed from a bag just as it was by the terrorists in the kidnapping to create a stressful situation.

Overall, the drill is meant to engage multiple attackers, and the goal is that in the shooting, the participant will be able to draw the weapon before the terrorist is able to ready his.

Kevin Michalowski explains the drill of the month in his article “The Dozier Drill” on USConcealedcarry.com:

“To add an additional wrinkle or two to the scenario, consider starting with the pistol resting on a bench or barrel a short distance away from the shooter. At the command, the shooter must move to retrieve his or her pistol, simulating the movement to a pistol stored somewhere in the home, before engaging. This also reinforces the idea of moving to cover in the face of a deadly threat.

 

Further changes to the scenario could include arranging the targets differently or marking some targets as “unarmed” or “no-shoot” targets. The Dozier Drill is not designed to turn you into Jason Bourne. It is here to hone your skills in what will surely be a dynamic situation. It brings together the triad Cooper first described many years ago: Diligentia, Vis, Celeritas (accuracy, power, and speed). (Read more about the Dozier drill and shooting here.)

In thinking about it, engaging a shooting with more than one attacker probably isn’t the best thing to do and may not be something that you would need to do at all. However, it does mimic some added stress that is typically seen in the “look-shoot” method. Racing against someone else and against time in general is something that everyone who practices concealed carry should do.

The steps are simple: draw, engage, look at the next target, move the weapon and engage again until all targets have been subdued. It is important to practice all techniques in various shooting situations, but the point is to hope you never have to fall back on this training in real life.

Why Carrying a Firearm Doesn’t Give You Control Over the Actions of Others

15 Jun

ImageWhile we might think that we’ll encounter a criminal in a dark, abandoned alleyway where flying bullets won’t do much damage, this is rarely the case.

One of the problems with violent altercations is that they often happen in public places like highways and city sidewalks.

These places usually have a significant number of innocent bystanders present — people who can be hurt by a conflict who have nothing to do with it.

This is one of the many reasons why it’s important to cultivate a mindset of avoiding conflict. Honing the skills of de-escalation and understanding that we are not responsible for the actions of others is essential.

While we’re not responsible for what others do, we ARE responsible for the way we respond to and handle the offensive and dangerous actions of others.

The first rule of thumb is to not take the actions of others personally. This is an ego-driven reaction and one that infers that we are more important than others. This is a dangerous mindset for anyone, and doubly so for a person in possession of a firearm.

Did someone cut in front of you at the grocery store? Maybe they are late to pick their kids up. Maybe they have other overwhelming problems at home. Is someone being a rude driver? It’s possible they are simply an uncaring person, but maybe they are racing to the hospital where someone they love has been taken after a car crash.

The point is, we are surrounded by the annoying and often dangerous behavior of others every day and we have no way of knowing their personal circumstances or intentions.

Becoming emotionally involved and choosing to let someone know what YOU think of their actions can have devastating consequences.

In his article “Defcon 1: Road Rage” on USConcealedcarry.com author John Caile wrote about an unfortunate situation where a man honked at and flipped off a rude driver:

“Like too many people today, Todd seemed to think it was his job to let another driver know what he thought of his/her driving. As the Monte Carlo passed his SUV, Todd leaned on his horn, stuck his left hand out of his window and flipped off the other driver, setting in motion events that would alter his life forever.                       

As it turned out, the driver of the Monte Carlo had heard the horn, turned his head and saw Todd’s gesture. After running the red light, he pulled off to the side of the road and waited for the line of cars (including Todd) to catch up. He then pulled in behind the other cars.

At the next light, which was red, Todd was stopped behind a car in the middle lane. The right lane was “Right Turn Only” and the Monte Carlo pulled up and stopped on the right hand side of Todd’s SUV. He waved a gun out the window at Todd’s wife, and yelled, “You Motherf—-r! I’ll kill you, and I don’t even care about jail! ( Read more about gun safety and the dangers of road rage here)”

As a person with a concealed carry permit, you are held to a much higher standard than someone without a weapon. It’s your direct responsibility to avoid conflict if at all possible. Run away if need be. At the end of the day your pride is worth far less than someone’s life.