Concealed carry is not for folks who lack good judgment and restraint. Even a right must be exercised responsibly, and carrying a gun is a grave responsibility. If you go armed and act stupidly, you may lose your right to carry, or worse. Follow these ten tips to make intelligent choices and carry responsibly.
Five Dos of Intelligent Concealed Carry
1. Be AWARE—Being AWARE entails being Alert, and Willing, having a goodAttitude, being Ready, and being Even-tempered.
Be Alert. You need to watch your 360, so you can see trouble coming in advance. Action is faster than reaction, so if you see trouble coming, you can stack the deck in your favor. That might mean just leaving.
Be Willing. You need to be willing to do whatever you have to do to survive a lethal force confrontation. You need to be willing to use deadly force if you find yourself in the gravest of extremes. This would be when you believe your life or some one’s under the mantle of your protection is in imminent danger as a result of your being confronted by a person (or persons) who is presenting an immediate and unavoidable threat of death or grave bodily harm.
Have a good Attitude. Be thoughtful, willing to learn, humble, and reasonably friendly. Lawful concealed carry is for the good guys and gals.
Be Ready. A gun will do you no good if you are not ready. Being in a state of perpetual readiness entails being alert and aware, so you can observe what is going on around you. You have to be observant to a level you notice something out of the ordinary. Once you observe something is out of kilter, then you will orient to it in order to rapidly analyze the situation and decide what to do.
Be Even-tempered. You mustn’t be impulsive, angry, or rash. These qualities do not go together with carrying a gun, nor do they go along with thinking clearly or rationally. Remember that we carry a gun for self-defense, not to intimidate or punish.
2. Be Invisible—You do not want to draw unwanted attention to yourself. It is best to go unnoticed. Be polite. It is better to dress plainly dull and boring than it is to dress spicy and exciting. Good people who go unnoticed are less likely to get in trouble. Also, do your best to avoid “hot spots.” These are places where hot-tempered people become butt-heads, such as bars late at night and political rallies or confrontations.
3. Know Your Equipment—If you are not intimately acquainted with your gun, holster, and other accessories, how will you be able to operate it all smoothly and efficiently in an emergency? The idea is to drill and practice regularly with your equipment, so that its deployment becomes second nature. If you are a musician, you get to Carnegie Hall through practice. If you carry a gun, you get to survive though practice.
4. Practice Safe Gun Handling—Guns are dangerous. Always handle them with a focus on safety. That means you should (a) always handle all guns as if they are loaded, (b) never point a gun at anything you aren’t willing to destroy, (c) keep your finger off the trigger in a stable “register” position at all times, unless your gun is on target and you have made the decision to shoot at that moment, and (d) positively know your target and what is around and behind it.
5. Know The Laws—Ignorance is no excuse for the law. Sure, the laws can be confusing, especially in anti-gun-rights, heavily gun-controlled states, such as New Jersey. But you need to know what they are. If you break the law and are caught, you can lose your gun rights.