Editor’s Note: The following is post is from Sammy Reese, a former Marine Corps Artillery Officer and retired police officer from California. He is a part-time range master for the police department he retired from as well as a life-long martial artist and combatives coach.
Check out the last five episodes in this series:
- Ep. 24 Should I Shoot? You Have Legal Justification to Shoot, But Do You Have To?
- Ep. 25 Should I Shoot? Take a Deep Breath
- Ep. 26 Should I Shoot? Do I Assist An Officer Engaged in a Gunfight?
- Ep. 27 Should I Shoot? If You Fail to Train, You May Fail to Fight
- Ep. 28 Should I Shoot? Gun-Free Zones, Problems with the 1911
A Chicago police officer was nearly beaten to death while responding to a vehicle collision. She stated in an interview from her hospital bed that, before she lost consciousness, she thought she was going to die but didn’t want to shoot the unarmed assailant for fear of the backlash it would bring.
The will to survive has been trumped by, “What will it look like on the news?” to the point where an officer would rather get killed than deal with the fallout from saving his or her own life. If this doesn’t make your head spin and your stomach turn, let me add this to the discussion: What if you or your loved one were the one being beaten to death and the police officers on scene let you die so they wouldn’t have to deal with the media, department review and possible criminal charges for doing their job? You starting to get that sick-to-your-stomach feeling yet?
I’ve written at length about when you can legally defend yourself with deadly force, so I won’t do so again. What I will remind you is, regardless of what the news has decided to make a priority, your right to self-defense still exists. With the way law enforcement is being scrutinized, you had better be prepared to defend yourself and family since the cops who show up might be thinking more about liability than saving you. I’m still a law enforcement trainer and the guys and gals coming up now are receiving the best training in the Western world; what we can’t control is their mindset and actions. So I’ll stand by my statement that you need to be prepared to defend yourself and family.
A recent conversation with a friend who has a concealed carry permit took a turn to the butt-chewing when he mentioned he wasn’t carrying that much because of the same fears mentioned above. When I got done ripping him a new one, he told me I was right and he had to remember why he chose to go through all the hoops and training to get the permit in the first place.
We can’t give up on defending ourselves because it’s not popular with today’s biased media. The old macho adage, “I’d rather be judged by 12 than carried by six” could be classified as tough-guy talk, but it is true at least to some degree. If you give up your right and ability to self-defense, there is a good chance of being carried by six of your closest friends.
Keep your training current and your head on a swivel. Avoid confrontations and go about your business in a polite, professional manner. Please don’t leave your gun at home; it’s no use to you back in the safe.
For more critical information on the use of deadly force and other firearms and self-defense topics, visit www.uscca.com/GunsAmerica.