The moral choice.

A blog I frequent had this quote.

People just don't like to see others carrying loaded guns around in public places.
My first temptation is to say "So What?" but I think it goes deeper than that.   WHY is it that people don't like to see fellow citizens carrying firearms in public?

Is it a fear that the person will do something irresponsible?   Is it the thought that a public venue is so safe that being armed is utterly unnecessary?

Perhaps it is neither, but their own realization that they are utterly defenseless and dependent on others for their safety, and would rather remain in denial.    Seeing a fellow citizen, armed is an obvious reminder that life carries risk.    Perhaps it causes them to question their willingness and ability to protect their own lives and their loved ones.


Anyway, the blogger points out that we are always saying that carrying in public is justified by saying that an armed citizen could save the day and, on the other hand, us saying that the unarmed and unwilling are on their own.

She sees a contradiction or a dishonesty, so let me clarify the way I see it.

What we have is the CHOICE.  While it is possible that we would try and help.  It is also possible that we would leave the person to their fate.   I carry to protect my family and my life.   That is the end of my *responsibility*.  Period.  I have no OBLIGATION to step in.

To the people that decide to remain unarmed I say this;

If you choose to be defenseless then you are depending on the intervention of someone else should you need them.   NONE of those people, including the police, have a legal obligation to come to your aid.  Odds are very high that a Policeman will NOT be there when you need them.  Why?  Because criminals are smart enough to wait until there are no police around to break the law.

So what are you left with?  

Either you are willing to take care of yourself or you depend on the mercy of someone else, starting with the criminal, spreading out to the surrounding people and finally waiting on emergency response.  Each step adds additional time and risk.

Psych 101 will teach you about a principle called "the diffusion of responsibility"   That is one of the reasons that people stand around and watch a woman being beaten to death and do not step in.   None of them feel it is their responsibility to respond.  Some of us train to break that habit, but the vast majority do not.

Bottom line.  If you think you can *depend* on anyone else to save you in a bad situation, you are kidding yourself.   If you think the police can arrive in time to thwart the evil intent of a criminal, same thing.

You are in effect saying "If something bad happens today, someone, somehow, is obligated to save me and will do so."

When you tell us to not carry in public, you are in effect asking us to join you in depending on someone else for rescue.

We don't work that way.  We don't think that way.  We would never ask someone to put their life on the line to save us, because we weren't willing to save ourselves.

We see that as an IMMORAL request so the answer will always be "no thanks"