Tuesday, February 19, 2008

NIU Scenario – What If...?

Illinois is one of the last states to refuse the right of self-defense to its residents by granting law-abiding citizens the right to carry a concealed weapon. What if – just what if – Illinois legislators didn’t have their heads stuck so far in the sand that they cannot see what legislators in almost every other state have recognized – that a citizenry with the right to carry arms is a citizenry that can defend and protect itself.

What if Illinois law allowed carrying of concealed weapons, including in public places – government offices, parks, schools, stores, buildings? What if 10-15-20 students in that hall on the campus of NIU had been armed last Thursday? When the shooter stepped out on the stage with his shotgun and pumped it, how many armed students would have readied themselves to defend the safety and peace of all in the hall?

Yes, the shooter might have gotten off a few rounds, but by then he would have been cut down by a fusillade of bullets. Trained, qualified, skilled, law-abiding, permit-holding citizens know when to shoot and when not to. They know if they can hit the target. They know when not to shoot. They understand their personal liability if they do shoot.

Law-abiding, armed citizens are going to be very careful when they do shoot, because their entire financial well-being is at risk. And they’d better be right to shoot. Just defending themselves or others could bankrupt them.

What’s holding Illinois back? Several years ago this State was only a few votes away from enacting a concealed-carry law. And now? Far, far away. State lawmakers from Chicago have a huge impact in Springfield. You’d think they would WANT concealed carry laws. Why not give their own residents a fighting chance against the gangbangers and other criminals? But no… they want the police to handle it. I guess that’s why we read of killings in Chicago almost every day.

And some of the close-in northern ‘burbs? Skokie? Wilmette? What’s wrong with those folks?

I feel pretty safe out here in Woodstock. I’ve only lived in one city – Richmond, Virginia – where I felt so unsafe that I carried a gun in the car where I could reach it. Richmond was the murder capital of the U.S. at the time, with many carjackings and ATM robberies. My mind was made-up in advance that I was not going to get murdered by a robber or a carjacker.

I’ve been robbed at gunpoint once in my life; I was lucky – all they took was my money and my watch. I had just left a restaurant and got hit in the parking lot. When they only got $6.00, they were not very happy. When I made the report to the cops, I told them I had almost said to the robbers, “Look, I’ve already been robbed once tonight. You’ve got to rob people before they go in restaurants!” The cops said it was good I didn’t say that, because the same two robbers had just robbed a woman a block away, and they only got $5 from her. Two robberies - $11.00 net. They weren’t having a good night. The cops grabbed them 20 minutes later, when they made a U-turn in front of a police car.

When people learn that they do not have to feel unsafe when law-abiding, armed citizens are walking the streets or driving their cars, they will realize that they are better protected as well. When the criminals don’t know who is armed and who isn’t, the criminals are less likely to take the risk that the next victim might be armed and ready to defend himself or herself.

Many police officers and many police chiefs throughout the country support concealed carry laws. They know that law-abiding citizens are not the problem. It's the criminals with guns who are the problem!

Contact your state legislators now. Demand the right to defend yourself. Take a firearms training class. Buy a gun. Buy a good gun; it won’t be cheap. Only buy a cheap gun if your life isn’t worth much. Learn how to use it. And practice often! Know at what distance you can hit the target (and beyond what distance you can’t). Practice in low-light conditions. Find a range where you can practice with lights out. Fire a few rounds without ear protection, so the sound of gunshots won’t panic you.

McHenry County State Rep. Jack Franks said on Monday, “I’m certainly willing to listen to all the potential solutions to avoid any tragedy like this occurring again in the future. I wish I had the solution, but I don’t.” (Northwest Herald, 2/19/08, Page 1)

Yes, Jack, you do have the solution. Concealed-carry in Illinois. Now, will you finally support it?

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

Great idea Gus! Almost as good as your idea on how to stop drive by shootings in Chicago.

http://newsblogs.chicagotribune.com/news_opinion_letters/2006/11/ending_drivebys.html

Anonymous said...

Gus,
I want to know what POLICE CHIEFS and POLICE OFFICERS will support this like you said. Did you go to each police station and talk it over with everyone? I know you said you were a police officer at one time, most likely you could not make it in this field or you would have a cop for years. Being a police officer I could not support this like you said because of people like you who have no clue on what they are doing with a gun. You should stay away from police work. It would be the best for the people of Woodstock and McHenry County.

Anonymous said...

when you were a police officer did you carry a gun? how would you feel if allowed to carry now would you be able to pull the tigger if needed? I think you would just make more problems in the long run of things.

Gus said...

Although my police duty was 30 years ago, my mindset today is the same as it was then. I knew I would never draw my weapon as a threat. If I ever had to draw it, I was prepared to use it. I only drew it twice - on my first duty day, when another deputy and I had to search a restaurant/bar after-hours following a burglar alarm and an open door. The other time was on a domestic call when the suspect dove for a sofa and stuck his hand under the cushions.

Gus said...

To the officer who wrote at 10:15PM, if you would like information about police support for concealed carry, you'll find an abundance of accurate information in the many states that have passed concealed-carry laws. In some cases, police were initially skeptical; then they learned that a trained, qualified, skilled, responsible, legally permitted (licensed), law-abiding citizen was not a threat. Read More Guns, Less Crime, by senior research scholar John R. Lott, Jr., of the School of Law at Yale University, published by the University of Chicago Press. Don't believe only the one-sided negative opinions espoused by northern Illinois heads of law enforcement agencies.

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

Gus,
I have a very hard time saying you were a police officer. You were more a CSO officer. The way you bad mouth WPD in the past and how you talk. You said you pulled your gun twice. I dont feel you should really tell people that because I am sure by the end of that shift you shit your pants. The REAL POLICE dont have to put a number on how many times they pulled their hand gun out on someone!

Gus said...

Actually, police officers know exactly how few times they have ever had to pull a gun on someone. It is a decision not taken lightly by most. Most go through entire careers without ever drawing a gun on duty even once. CSOs do not have full police power 24/7, cannot make arrests and do not carry guns on- or off-duty. No, I wasn't a CSO.

Anonymous said...

Gee Gus, where's the previous blog entry that correctly pointed out that Lee Harvey Oswald was "trained, qualifieid, skilled, law abiding", etc. It looks like it was removed and in additon to being trained, skilled, etc, someone now has to also be "responsible, legally permitted, (licensed)". I suppose you're one of those ancient bleeding hearts who thought JFK was the greatest president we ever had (Marilyn Monroe certainly thought so, although in moments of passion she kept calling him "Bobby"), although family members related to those who were martyred during the Bay of Pigs fiasco would disagree ... and so it seems that responses to this blog are acceptable as long as they are "Gustifically corrrect" and don't contradict your mistaken version of history. Sure, just what we need, more guns in the hands of the people ... Angela Davis and the Black Panther Party spewed this garbage 30 years ago when you were wearing a Grateful Dead T-short, selling shrooms at the corner of Asbury and Haight Streets, snorting parsely, and popping wheelies on your 120 cc police equipped Hardly Davidson. Chief Don Grady, you some kinda' man ... I luv u Snoozer! Robby M.

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

Gus you removed it whats wrong?

gus the butt pirate said...

whats wrong?...... if you leave a comment about the real truth about Gus, he gets pissed off. and "what if...?", what if you were in the front row Gus?

Anonymous said...

I like how he speaks for all police officers. They wouldn't piss on him if he were on fire. I guess I can speak for all of them too.