Enlightened Conflict

Good guy with a gun myth

December 15th, 2015

 

guns bang
Well.

 

 

I saw an editorial in USAToday the other day <copied below> that stated what I have always felt but couldn’t know for sure because I have never been in the military and I have never been in a gun fight.

 

 

I have always felt the “if normal everyday people were carrying guns they would be able to stop bad people with guns” kind of a semi crazy thought.

 

 

Conceptually I could understand the logic but being a student of history I have read time and time again that in battle first time soldiers, trained for months before combat, either never shoot their gun or empty the entire magazine in the first seconds of engagement.

 

 

Why does this happen?

You cannot train for real combat. You cannot train for being shot at and the thought you may die the next second.

 

 

Suffice it to say, guns or no guns, in Life you don’t know what you don’t know and while you may HOPE you would do the right thing in a situation you do not know for sure until you are actually in it.

 

 

To be clear.

 

professional girl and gunI do believe Americans have the right to own guns <’bear arms’>.

 

I will never suggest ‘taking away’ all guns <although I am not sure anyone truly is>. I would suggest that there seem to be some common sense restrictions on types of guns and ammunition available to every people that may not eliminate all that type of gun violence but would surely limit it.

 

 

Regardless.

 

I don’t want to wrote about gun control.

 

 

I simply wanted to share something I read that seems pretty common sense. It reminds me of what the French Ambassador said to Americans after the Paris terrorist attack when he heard that some American presidential candidates suggested the results of the attack would have been different if France allowed private gun ownership: “Only in the Movies Does Someone Use a Gun to Defend Himself.”

 

 

 

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The editorial was written by James Hatch – member of a Special Missions Unit – Senior Chief Petty Officer James Hatch (USN, Ret.) is the founder of Spikes K9 Fund and a member of Veterans for Responsible Solutions.

11:50 a.m. EST December 11, 2015

Expecting untrained civilians to shoot down terrorists is recipe for more dead innocents.

After the slaughter of 14 Americans in San Bernardino, Calif., when two people armed with high-powered rifles and handguns ambushed unsuspecting Americans in a conference room, United States senator and Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz held a press conference to issue a familiar refrain we hear after every major gun tragedy:

If only there had been a “good guy” with a gun there. Or, as Sen. Cruz put it:

“You stop bad guys by using our guns.”

We heard the same call after the recent tragedy at a medical clinic in Colorado Springs, and after attacks in Paris, where 129 people were murdered in a theater by terrorists armed with guns and explosives. That’s when former presidential candidate and Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich took to Twitter to issue his call to arms:

“Imagine a theater with 10 or 15 citizens with concealed carry permits.”

I know that the political advocates for this “good guy with a gun” mantra like Sen. Cruz and many of the other politicians and lobbyists think that this is a politically expedient catch-phrase to support their own interests.

I doubt career politicians like Sen. Cruz and the rest of the Washington operators have had much experience with gunfights.

In my experience, being the good guy when the bullets start flying is very difficult.

I say that as someone who spent 25 years serving our military. For many of those 25 years, I was a member of a Special Missions Unit.

I’ve been in dark rooms with “good-guys and bad guys” going at it with guns, and let me tell you something:

Gunfights are crazy.

Gunfights are hard.

On my final combat mission, I was shot in the leg with an AK-47 from about 30 feet away and it blew my femur in half.

I hope that was my last gunfight.

Here at home, there are almost 13 million Americans who have a license to carry a concealed weapon. The vast majority of them are responsible, law-abiding and good-hearted people. Many of them want to be prepared to be the good guy, to do the right thing and to save lives.

I hope they never have to face being the target of a dangerous person with a gun. Because it’s hard to make the right decisions.

There are groups of individuals, like me and my fellow Special Operators, both military and law enforcement, who train for years to be good at close quarters shooting: shooting with discernment, keeping your head clear and making snap decisions before you pull the trigger — all while being shot at by the enemy.

special forces gun

And after dedicating their lives to being good operators in those extreme circumstances, even those professionals make mistakes.

Then consider that people like us trained for firefights for years, and that in many states there is virtually no training required for someone to legally carry a loaded, hidden gun.

So think about 10 or 15 people, who are weekend shooters with limited tactical training, deciding to shoot it out with a criminal in a crowded office holiday party, a medical clinic or a darkened theater, while people are screaming and running, and no one knows who or how many of the people shooting are the “good guys” and how many of them are the “bad guys.”

In some cases, can a “good guy” with a gun neutralize the threat and help save lives? Absolutely. But it doesn’t happen very often. It is, for the most part, a myth perpetuated by people who’ve never been shot at.

I am a proud Navy combat veteran. I risked and nearly gave my life in dozens of combat situations in defense of our Constitution. I value the Second Amendment and the right of responsible Americans to own guns for self-defense.

But people need to know that it is a fallacy to believe that the everyday gun owner can be expected to make all the right choices in a dangerous, fast-moving situation like a mass shooting with high-powered weapons.

When the bullets are flying, determining “who’s who in the zoo” is hard.

If the scenario that Sen. Cruz envisions were to ever unfold, we’d have a lot more dead innocents. And it would probably include some of the “good guys.”

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Here is the link to the article: Expecting untrained civilians to shoot down terrorists is recipe for more dead innocents

 

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Enlightened Conflict