Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Why I carry.

This past weekend, Sweet Daughterand I traveled to visit some friends, including a young lady 2 years older than SD.

At one point everyone was in our hotel room, and the other girl looked at the locks on the door and asked if they were there to keep the Bad Guys out. I said yes, and that if they didn’t keep the Bad Guy out, they’d at least slow him down enough so that I could get my pistol (pointing to my range bag) and stop him. Then I told her that, as a grownup, it was my job to keep her and SD safe from Bad Guys, and THAT was why I had a gun.

SD’s friend, who is raised in a liberal, Code White world, cocked her head to one side as a new idea entered her head.
“Sweet Daughter!” I called. “Where would you go if I yelled ‘Wolf*!’”

She looked around the room and said “The closet!”

“Behind the bed against the wall is another good choice”, I said. But, since we’re on the ground floor, we have another option. That grown-up (pointing) could open the window and get you outside while I stopped the Bad Guy.”

And I could almost see the lightbulb start to glow over the head of the other girl.

I grew up in a Code White world, and on my way over to the side of taking responsibility for my own safety, I went through this thought process.

Most good parents worth the title often proclaim that they would die to keep their kids safe. This is noble and selfless and good, but at one point I asked myself why I should die to save Sweet Daughter? Why should she spend the rest of her life without her mother? Wouldn’t it be better if the Bad Guy went down instead? I’m willing to die for my daughter, but more importantly, if one of us is going to take a permanent dirt nap, I’d prefer it not be me.

So, yes. If the threat is there, I’m willing to kill for her. And this past weekend, I found out that I was willing to extend that courtesy to other innocents as well.

* “Wolf” is our code name for Bad Guy.


  1. Great post!! My SD turned 14 a couple weeks ago and she wanted to take two of her friends on a shopping trip to the mall (no parents) on Sunday afternoon. They all had Xmas money and gift cards to spend and both the other girls are very trustworthy so we agreed. This was a first for us with the girl, so when I dropped them off I told them I needed them to listen before they left the van. I spoke of the standard safety precautions and then gave them the run down on what to do in the event of an emergency like a shooting. As my daughter left the van she looked at me and calmly said, "Mom, I know exactly what to do and I'll make sure to take care of it". We've taken time to talk about these things just like you mentioned, while at the mall we've looked at escape routes and learned that nearly every store has an exit in the back. I'm pretty sure that the two friends are living in code white homes and this may have been the first time they've heard the precautions I spoke of.

  2. A person may or may not be a pacifist, and I can respect their faith or whatever, in protecting them, but to see someone not defend themselves and their children is despicable.

  3. Most people are amazed that parents are willing to kill to protect their children. That, in turn, amazes me.

  4. What I find extraordinary is training for 'Wolf'. Too many parents in my community won't train their children to 'Stop' when the parent needs to warn of danger that could be avoided with a simple, instantly-and-always obeyed halt to look and wait for instruction.

    I saw one opinion that makes sense to me. Someone unwilling to carry, to be ready to defend family and community, is as responsible for violence and harm to others as the perpetrator. Something along the lines of "if you aren't part of the solution, you are part of the problem." I am of the opinion that Disarmed Victim Zones (shopping malls, government and school buildings) need to be clearly posted. DVZ's attract mass shootings.

    Thanks for sharing this story.

  5. We also started early on the indoctrination in "Stop!", delivered in a Command Voice. Just as she had fire awareness indoctrination from early on, due to our hobby of 18th Century reenacting, where you have kids, long dresses, and open fire in close proximity. (Such as, "Never turn your back on the fire when you're close. Stop, take three steps back, THEN turn around.")

    You can't child-proof all hazards, so you had best do what you can to hazard-proof your kids. Meanwhile the parent can keep an eye out for potential injuries, either unforeseen and therefore untrained by the parent (leaving the kid vulnerable through lack of a plan), unrecognized by the child (even good plans only work if implemented in time), or beyond the kid's ability to avoid singlehandedly (plans are great, but even a firm heart, years of training, and a knowledge of automotive manueverability won't help if there's no place to run when the speeding truck is barrelling down the tight alley).

    Anything short of injury, however, is fair game for experimental failure. Oh, I'll advise SD that, "You know, that's a very good way to fall off that chair," but in the end, it's her choice whether to heed advise or experience consequences first hand.

    I always figured it's my job as a parent to keep my daughter from being injured whilst being an utter failure if I am not willing to let her risk getting hurt.

    Not teaching my daughter the engineer's motto ("The Universe hates you and will try to kill every chance it gets.") while she's young and under my protective reach is just dooming her to a life of permanent and painful consequences once she's out of my immediate protection. (Like when she's a teenager and hits the mall with friends.)

    Shorter Half

  6. That's why I want to invest in my very own "Mall-Ninja" to protect my family. I never leave home without it.

  7. J. Moseley - Would that be model Gecko45 or specops?

  8. I think either model would be sufficient to handle any and all issues that might arise. Especially, when I include the golf cart with the attached Shrike missile system.

  9. Great post - wonderful comments! To friends who ask if I'm afraid to stay alone out in the country when my husband is away, I reply, "I have a shotgun and I know how to use it." They think that's funny until I follow up with, "Remember, ladies, one trigger at a time." Then they're SHOCKED when they realize I AM. NOT. KIDDING!!!!

  10. Good post! It reminded me about how as a kid, my parents had a code word for us as well. My little ones are too young for it yet, but it's on my mind now. Thank you!

    "The Universe hates you and will try to kill every chance it gets." - Geodkyt, I've never heard that before but it's so true. You're the only engineer I've ever conversed with that truly gets it.

  11. Years back when I was doing blacksmithing demos at Medieval Fair, daughter- then about 14- said she was going for a walk, belted on my sword and picked up my spear and off she went. One of the people watching me hammer was kind of amazed:
    "You let her carry those things?"
    "Yeah. I trust her not to stick them in anybody who doesn't need it."
    I couldn't tell if he though I was joking or was so freaked out he couldn't say anything more.

  12. Nancy, you hit on the very reason I carry a gun. I do it because I know, as sure as the day is long, that if someone threatens my children I will kill them dead. I don't say that to boast, or sound like a badass, or anything like that; I hope and I pray that I never have to harm another human being as long as I live. If I go to my grave only ever having fired my guns at the range I will be a very happy man indeed.

    But I will kill if pushed. Causing me to think you are trying to harm my children is the single best way to find out if there is an afterlife. You threaten me, I might try to reason with you first if I think it's at all possible. The kids? Nope. It's on.

    I carry a gun because shooting a bad guy is more humanitarian than bludgeoning them to death with a heavy rock...

  13. Ah, yes, Jay, as they say, there are two kinds of people: Those who have offspring and those who do not.
    As one of the latter I think you guys are sometimes likely to over-react to unlikely perceived threats to yer kids.

    As one who will be sixty years old right soon, and has seen a lot of stuff and read a lot of stuff, I am willing to admit that we are dealing with a Basic Instinct here, and I am not talking about that silly movie.