The top five things I’m most afraid of…

A friend of mine who is sympathetic to the gun-control cause said to me the one day, “What the heck are gun owners so afraid of that they need all them guns? Like really, what are you so afraid of?”

I thought it was a fair question. Though I don’t think that gun owners are really any more fearful than the average joe. In fact, I’d probably argue the opposite. I think because many of us are familiar with firearms and have actively thought about and prepared for a self-defense situation we are less afraid than the average joe… I don’t want to get too far off topic. But I do acknowledge that there is a perception out there — however baseless it may seem to us — that gun owners are a bunch of scaredy-cats.  So, perhaps to humor my friend, I decided to list the top five things that scare me the most, currently, as a gun-owning Patriot.  Maybe some of it will resonate with you, maybe it won’t.  But I look forward to reading your $.02.

1. Ebola – Yeah, this stuff will kill you! Not in a pleasant, fade-out style death where you get to look all of your loved ones in the eyes from a not-too-uncomfortable hospital bed and tell them how much they’ve meant to you before you slowly and softly cross over into the next world thanks to a cocktail of sedatives and pain killers. Nope, it doesn’t happen like that with Ebola. You become feverish, rashy. Then the vomiting starts. Then the butt vomiting starts. Then the external bleeding starts. Then the internal bleedings starts. Then you die, alone because you’re highly infectious – or around people in spacesuits, either way, a lonely way to go. You probably die from kidney or liver complications, low blood pressure or loss of fluids. Not a good way to go. This scares me.

Why does this scare me so much? Because there’s no way to really stop it. Contain yes, stop no. And the government doesn’t seem to be taking the threat all that seriously.

2. Government – Yes, now that we’re on the subject of government, I should mention that I fear the government. Not [government] tyranny per se. At least not right now. But it’s good intentions. It seems like whenever the government is out to do right by the American people it just makes matters worse. Student loans is a prime example. College isn’t right for everyone, but since the government believes it is, it’s handing out billions and billions of dollars (student loan debt is now at $1.2 trillion) with no real way of recouping the money. Yes, we should invest in young people. But we ought to be a little more selective on who we opt to back financially (Maybe we should conduct drug tests before we hand out student loans?  Seems fair). Just saying.

In a nutshell, I would chalk my fear up to the government ineptitude with respect to our pocketbook. More specifically, the government is actively bankrupting this nation (not to mention the war spending, the housing loans, the health care, etc.). That’s not good. I fear what may happen if things don’t change.

3. Gun control – Yeah. This scares me. No, not background checks so much. But think about what’s going on in New York State right now under the SAFE Act. As the New York Times recently pointed out, state officials are adding folks to a gun ban list in record numbers. 34,000 currently. Why? Because nurses, doctors, psychologists, counselors, social workers, etc. are required by law to report to the state any patient “likely to engage in conduct that would result in serious harm to self or others.”

To put in another way, “The threshold for reporting is so low that it essentially advertises that psychiatrists are mandatory reporters for anybody who expresses any kind of dangerousness,” Dr. Mark J. Russ, director of acute care psychiatry at Zucker Hillside Hospital in Glen Oaks, Queens, told the New York Times.

The federal standard to strip one of their 2A rights, as it relates to mental health, is one who has been adjudicated mentally defective or one who has been involuntarily committed. This lower New York standard creates a system where potentially non-threatening and law-abiding gun owners are at risk of having their lawfully owned firearms seized by state police without having time to go before a judge or a jury of their peers to make a case.

This is scary. Not only in its current iteration, but for what it augurs for the future. This may be only the beginning of how mental health laws are twisted and abused to deny one the right to keep and bear arms.

4. Hardened Criminals – I cover DGUs (Defensive Gun Use) stories enough to know that they’re are some crazy people out there. Bat-shit, ‘I-want-to-smell-your-daughter’s-tricycle-seat, I-want-to-rape-your-dead-grandma, I-want-to-peel-off-your-skin’ crazy out there. They exist. And yeah, that type of evil, which is beyond rehabilitation, is pretty freaking frightening. Don’t get it confused though. While I think there is good reason to fear these miscreants, I don’t live in fear of them. Why? Well, largely because I know how to use a firearm. And I actively train to confront not only the craziest of the crazy, but anyone that knocks on my door looking for trouble. Being prepared to defend oneself and one’s family is a way of life, one that I’m happy to embrace.

5. Apathy – People just don’t seem to care anymore. Hell, maybe they never did. But as angry as some people get sometimes at their political leaders in Washington, D.C. or at the state level, that typically recedes and they just go back to not caring anymore. Or they care, but they don’t care enough to make a difference. Like, in a few weeks, the November elections will be upon us. I now live in New York State. The Empire State. If people really cared here, if gun owners really cared, the 8 or so million of us in New York state would go out to the polls and vote Gov. Andrew Cuomo out of office. We would. If we cared, we would send that feckless, anti-gun dingbat packing. Unfortunately, I predict, it won’t happen. In fact, I bet the anti-Cuomo turnout is shamefully meager. People just don’t care about who’s in charge or what that leadership means for the future of our Constitutional rights. That’s not only sad, it’s scary.

I hope I’m wrong about this, but I’m not going to hold my breath.

***

With all that said, the answer to my friend’s questions about why we need to own all those guns is that it’s a mistake to conflate fear and gun ownership. One doesn’t necessarily drive the other. I own firearms, not because I’m afraid, but because I can. It’s a constitutional right. I also believe in self-defense, as mentioned. And being proficient with a firearm is the optimal means of defending oneself.

{ 21 comments… add one }
  • Briguy January 6, 2015, 10:55 am

    I, like my Buddhist/martial arts commentor, have very little to be fearful of because I know what fear is. I’m referring to this hyperbolic fear that most of you seem to harbor for our Nation and Governance. I am not afraid of how our government is being run nor am I afraid of where it’s going. I know that my government is doing it’s best to help protect us from both foreign and domestic threats, albeit the way it’s going about raises a few flags, yet I don’t believe that there is a nefarious plot; that stuff is for tv shows and conspiracy novels.

    I will say that I do have some concerns but apathy isn’t one of them. Perhaps the reason people don’t care is because there is no reason to. Perhaps that the majority of the population understands that the Government is simply doing it’s best to uphold it’s role. Just maybe you perceive things that aren’t there or seeing connections that have nothing to do with each other. Could it be possible that one of these is might be the truth, rather than the alternative?

    If I had to pick one thing that I’m concerned about, it’s ignorance. Ignorance breeds most of what is going on with our nation and very little else influences that. Take climate change for example. Some would argue that their direct observations of “current” weather would indicate that there is no such thing as global climate change, yet they fail to realize that weather is a by-product of climate. Just because it’s cold and snowing outside doesn’t mean the average temperature of the Earth hasn’t risen. All it means is that through some temporary change in the atmosphere (jet stream or fronts) you’re experiencing that weather.

    Ok rant over!

  • BRASS January 4, 2015, 12:24 am

    How about being forced to live in world without eating utensils and toilet paper?

  • mtman2 January 3, 2015, 8:26 pm

    I do longterm Sustainable Forestry Management, doing most culling and harvesting, by myself.
    My list includes::
    1) widowmakers
    2) spring poles
    3) idiots working behind me
    4) socialists
    5) modern drivers

  • robert burchett January 3, 2015, 7:59 pm

    What scares me to death is that the President has to much power! Maybe one day he will he will use one of his executive orders to take away our firearms.

  • John January 3, 2015, 7:16 pm

    While there may be a lot of things to fear one can’t go through life in fear, you can only prepare for the worst and hope for the best.
    None of us have any control over extraordinary events that may happen tomorrow, next week, and so on.
    I’m not a big fan of FDR but his famous quote that “the only thing fee have to fear is fear itself” still resonate today.
    I am concerned that our elected officials are ignoring the people who elected them and that the great Republician victory of 2014 will mean little or nothing in 2016 if the Republican party doesn’t pull their heads out of their posterior’s.

  • MJB January 3, 2015, 7:13 pm

    Apathy didn’t stop the American revolution, though, I believe there was a majority against it. Point is, you don’t need a majority to overcome obstacles if you are right.

  • skeet January 3, 2015, 11:08 am

    Wow..so many things. I am fearful of a gummit that thinks it can give you all you need..It can also take it all away don’t forget. I am seriously becoming fearful of our police as they have become so militarized.. They will be the ones to take back whatever you have been given. Are all cops bad..no of course not..but they are hiring military type people for a reason..They take orders well usually without questioning them. I WAS a card carrying cop for a while. Got out of it when they kept telling us we were better than the people we were”protecting”. I also fear the middle level gummit “officials” that truly make all the rules. Can’t un-elect them. Also can’t really fire ’em either. Yep I’m an old guy who thinks that your word is your bond.. I also know I have always had the RIGHT to self defense…and realize that when seconds count the police are only minutes away. I think we should be responsible to and for our selves.. Never depending on the so called gummit being there to help us..Yeah..I’m from the gummit ands I’m here to help you.. I know….. an oxymoron but unhappily….so true. I feel a drug dealer is killing people and should be held responsible for people’s death. .Anybody get that?? I’m not talking about the guy selling on the corner either..the ones up higher in the chain should PAY THE PRICE first. And to hold the diatribe to a minimum..I think our children should be taught the truth in school. They know no real history..no usable math. The gummit should get out of education…at least the Feds should. And the thing I fear the most is the apathy the average person shows toward these problems. Let me watch football or be able to go to the mall type people who could CARE LESS about anything else. Apathy is a truly horrific thing.

  • veryconcernedsenior January 3, 2015, 8:42 am

    things i’m afraid of.
    1. Hilary Clinton being elected president
    2. Living out my remaining days in a nursing home.
    3. Hilary Clinton being appointed to anything outher than garbage collection.

  • Russ November 12, 2014, 6:47 pm

    Only thing I’m afraid of is a Tiger jumping out at me in the jungle.

    Oh, and Hillary Clinton speaking in a southern accent.

    (I’m still laughing tg west, thanks.)

  • JS Irvine November 4, 2014, 1:01 pm

    I see Fear as the problem. Fear makes the mind play what ifs and is used to rationalize all sorts of criminal actions.
    Having lived through some very nasty periods in recent history … Vietnam, Oil embargos, Cold War, (the 80’s jk..) , I have chosen to be not afraid of anything. As a Buddhist martial artist, Fear is just a form of ignorance leading to terrible consequences. Best to face whatever it is and move forward, with resolution and courage. Fear can cause grown men to go fetal and suck their thumbs. Fear is the enemy. If you have no fear, you have no enemies.

  • tg west November 3, 2014, 2:54 pm

    The only thing I really fear is a sudden (immediate) debilitating disease (stroke, coronary, etc.) or accident that leaves one with no ability to move or communicate and little hope of recovery. If I got word of 4th stage cancer with 6 months to live, I could tie up all those loose ends that always seem to be dangling. I must be something of a control freak since having NO control over a situation as mentioned is just a nightmare.

    Oh, and Hillary Clinton speaking in a southern accent.

  • BRASS November 3, 2014, 12:34 pm

    I’m scared of agenda driven politics past the waters edge anti-colonialist social justice ends justify the means apologist appeasers elected as presidents who admittedly only care about some of the people and openly make fun of the rest.
    I’m also afraid of the bat shit crazy twits like Nancy Pelosi who support them while prancing down the middle of Pennsylvania Ave with a giant gavel in her hands and a crazed idiot grin on her face, followed by elected lemmings some who are so caught up in the moment they’re not sure who they are or what they are supposed to be doing on behalf of all the people, not just the blinded self interested nit wits who voted for them.
    I’m frightened that there are enough who believe it is in the nations best interest to elect these radical often self admitted Socialists, Marxists and Communists to actually put them in elected office as representatives of all the American people.
    If THAT doesn’t scare you, then YOU scare me. And that is why I spent a career in the Marines, why I’m armed, trained and practiced to defend my nation, family and property should the unthinkable, god please don’t let happen, but it seems increasingly likely to happen…. Happen.

  • GrouchyJohn November 3, 2014, 12:31 pm

    I would respectfully modify your final catagory of Apathy to include Denial.
    Denial might be a part of Apathy but much more dangerous and found much more often. There are way more people with a case of “It Can’t Happen In America” than there are those that “Just Don’t Give a Damn”. Those in Denial refuse to consider that “It” has happened before in many other parts of the world. Despite our Constitutional guarrantees, various parts and members of our government looks at those places and wonders if it can made to happen here. More importantly, they want it to happen here. What the mind can conceive of, the mind can do… it may take a while but sooner or later someone will figure out how to do it. The United States may be the Land of the Free, but only because it is also the Home of the Brave. The general public thinks those of us that are Paranoid are just crazy fools, but you aren’t really paranoid if someone is really and truely out to get you and the last 6 years have proven to me that “someone” really is out to get us. People need to climb out of that River in Egypt and become more proactive before they get plowed under by those that want to protect us from ourselves.

    Reading back over this before I push the submit button, this comment looks to be packed full of cliches. Yeah, there are a number of them. Doesn’t make them false. Nor does it make the facts of what I speak untrue.

  • TPSnodgrass November 3, 2014, 12:27 pm

    I fear politicians, PACS and ANY organization that wants to “limit” ANY of our rights, under the premise of “safety and security”.
    I fear the apathy that has indeed infected the bulk of the electorate, thereby making them sheeple, waiting to be sheared for their wool(taxes), thrown to the wolves of political expediency, or just plain slaughtered.
    I fear the thugs that now permeate an entire culture in our society, they are true predators, because the politicians, PACS and social justice organizations, have obviated the need for personal accountability and responsibility. Nothing is “your fault”, EXCEPT, when I want to exercise MY Constitutionally guaranteed civil rights, and that does include firearms possession of MY choice. Yes, I am legal in my firearms ownership, and I’m not “afraid” of not having a firearm, I’m afraid of those who willingly want to deny ME my rights, in order to insert their ideologies over mine.

  • Rockyvnvmc November 3, 2014, 12:10 pm

    Although I got my first firearm, a .22 cal. single shot rifle, at the age of 11 years and my first 12 ga. single shot shotgun, the following year at age 12 and went hunting with my father, friends and their fathers, at that age, as well as went pistol shooting with my best friend’s father (a Juvenile Detective), even before that and joined the US Army at age 17 yrs. 3 months and 12 days of age. After I was released form the service, I didn’t have weapons around the house, ,mostly due to having young children around the house and having had a cousin who was killed by a friend, whilst playing with his father’s shotgun.
    I changed my tune after being chased down the road, for miles, by a pistol waving lunatic, who took umbrage with my giving him the finger, for tying up traffic, once when I was late for work. I grant that I shouldn’t have thus ‘saluted’ him, but I was stressed, at having a long way to go and running late. He really should have been going the speed limit, which he was clearly capable of, when he followed me for miles, before he finally caught up to me.
    I rationalized, that if persons, such as he, could threaten my existence, then I’d better arm myself, in similar fashion, purely for self defensive purposes. (my giving him the finger would have found me in trouble, had I had a weapon and had the situation resulted in shots being fired, at any rate)
    By this point in time, my children were older and we had moved from OH to SC. We hadn’t had the option of getting a CCW, in OH, in those days, although Open Carry has been on the books forever, up there. On the other hand, shortly following this occurrence, in 1996, SC passed it’s first CCW law and I got in on it, undergoing the requisite training and obtaining my first concealed weapons permit.
    What do we gun owners have to be afraid of ? Our fellow human beings. I have never had a deer, or a rabbit try to hurt me, although a deer is capable of it, should he get close enough to a person and we , recently, had a black bear come up on our veranda, about 1:am, that scared the bejesus out of my wife, when she went out to see what was making the noise. On the other hand, I have been hospitalized for 3 weeks, and laid up in a full leg cast for 4-1/2 months and on light duty for 6-1/2 months due to a physical altercation, with a fellow human being, before. I’d call that severe bodily injury, today.
    I would say prudence is the key word, here. It’s not so much ‘fear’ but the realization that we are responsible for our own safety and the safety of our loved ones. A federal judge determined, decades ago, that the police do NOT have a responsibility to protect the individual citizen, but merely society at large. Shortly thereafter we began to see the plethora of ‘Shall Issue’
    Concealed Carry laws being passed, around the nation. If it’s not the job of the police to protect you, then it’s Your responsibility to protect yourselves.

  • Higherview November 3, 2014, 11:45 am

    You’ve heard the one about the old lady who was pulled over for going too slow. When the officer came to her door he asked if she had any firearms since he noticed she had a CWP. She said “sure, I have my 9mm in my purse, a .357 in the glove box. Another under the seat. In the trunk I have my 20 gauge and my AR with extra ammo.” The cop stand back and says “Jeez lady why so many guns, what are you afraid of?” The little lady looks up at him with her simple grand-motherly smile and says “absolutely nothing sonny, absolutely nothing.”

  • Whyawannaknow1 November 3, 2014, 5:27 am

    In no particular order, I am scared of:

    The average driver in traffic. I drove commercial (Class A, semi trucks) for a while, these people are usually NOT well enough trained or paying proper attention. I handle explosives for a living. It is MUCH safer than driving to work is!

    Man made carcinogenic chemicals & radioactive isotopes. The public health statistics on cause of death in USA over the last century + compared to industrial practices, chemical production and buildup of radiation due to fallout/nuclear industry process pollution should give you the same fears.

    Heart disease.

    Vascular disease (strokes, etc.)

    Emphysema & related lung issues.

    Why these?

    (CDC data for 2011, last year available at this time)
    Heart disease: 596,577
    Cancer: 576,691
    Chronic lower respiratory diseases: 142,943
    Stroke (cerebrovascular diseases): 128,932
    Accidents (unintentional injuries): 126,438
    Alzheimer’s disease: 84,974
    Diabetes: 73,831
    Influenza and Pneumonia: 53,826
    Nephritis, nephrotic syndrome, and nephrosis: 45,591
    Intentional self-harm (suicide): 39,518

    • John Boutwell January 3, 2015, 10:12 am

      Well stated and you have the facts, very few people do that in today’s world.

  • Patrick Ford November 3, 2014, 2:46 am

    Aren’t you glad that its every persons right to be just as paranoid (and wrong) as they desire? Just keep that bug out bag handy and I’m sure you’ll be fine.

    • Claude Moore November 3, 2014, 3:52 pm

      Tell the good people in Stockton California who were told by their police department that they could no longer be counted on to protect them.
      Or Detroit where the chance of getting away with murder is now 80%
      Or have a look http://www.salon.com/2014/06/24/a_swat_team_blew_a_hole_in_my_2_year_old_son/
      and see your police force delivering damaging force to the wrong people!

      Or how about forfeiture laws where the police have a vested interest in taking your property without a trial? http://fear.org/1/
      Remember, everything done by despotic governments over the decades was done legally. Think rounding up Japanese during WW2 for being Japanese, Jews in Germany, Idi Amin of Uganda using his people for target practice, Pol Pot of Cambodia with millions dead, etc. etc.

      The list of government over-reach and abuse is getting quite long. So you can delude yourself into believing that everything is fine. Others prefer to keep watchful vigilance.

    • RiverRat November 6, 2015, 8:57 am

      I’m afraid of gun wrriters like you who write things like “Quite honestly, I don’t have a problem with “smart guns” or “biometric guns,” firearms that only operate when activated by an authorized user. We live in a free society, if there is a demand for smart guns, then by all means entrepreneurs, engineers and manufacturers should meet that demand. In reality, the same could be said for self-driving automobiles or any other emerging technology, if there is a demand, then the market should fulfill it. ” https://www.gunsamerica.com/blog/bill-would-force-gun-dealers-to-sell-smart-guns/ self driving car and gun are apples and oranges, What if your not home and three thugs kick in your door. Your wife grabs your gun and it’s tuff shit for her.. and hackers get into government site .how hard can it be to by bypass the safe gun technology in the criminal world.. Guns America don’t need a blogger giving the antis ammo for dumb crap like Smart Guns .

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