Where Will You Need Your Gun?
Many, many people, including some who should know better, mistakenly believe that your home is the most likely place for one to need to use a defensive firearm. To me, this premise is obviously incorrect, so why do so many people believe it?
The answer is simple. Whether you read the newspaper, search the internet, or watch TV news, most of the legitimate self defense stories occur in the defender’s home. Since most of the defensive incidents you become aware of happened in the defender’s home, you begin to become convinced that the home is where most attacks take place. There is a ridiculously easy explanation for why the home is so overrepresented in these reports.
According to various studies, about half of the households in the United States contain firearms. So, when at home, 50% of the US population has access to guns. Conversely, only 3% of the population has a handgun carry permit, so the vast majority of the US population does not have access to firearms when away from the home. Duh….. If you don’t have access to a firearm when attacked, you will not be able to defend yourself with a firearm. So, the only reason the majority of successful defensive gun uses occur in the home is that is the only place most people have access to a gun. Simple.
In fact, you are far more likely to be attacked in a life-threatening manner away from home. Thus, one should be armed whenever one is away from home. That is the purpose of a carry permit and skill with a personal sidearm—the sidearm is the weapon carried away from home. To illustrate, here are some statistics from the United States Department of Justice, looking at Robbery Locations for the year 2007:
Gas station- 2.6%
So, you are almost three times as likely to be robbed on the street than at home, and in the home only accounts for 1 robbery in 6. Similar patterns exist for rape, aggravated assaults, etc. In fact, good locks, an alarm system, and proper lighting can reduce your risk of violent crime at home to very low levels.
Once you leave your home, though, you have no control over such items. The one thing you can control is having your emergency safety equipment with you, so you can respond to emergencies that occur away from home.
Remember, the gun you left at home won’t help you anywhere else.