When should you shoot…

Or rather – when you shouldn’t. The law in South Africa is fairly clear – your life or the life of someone you are trying to protect must be in immediate danger.

Let’s run through a few scenarios. You hear someone trying to break into your car at 2am. You grab your firearm, lean out of the window and blam! the perp goes down. In this country and in most others including the US, you would go directly to jail. Was your life in danger? No. What should you have done? Call the police and your security company. Try to get a good description of the alleged thief and be a good witness. Why was it wrong to shoot. 1. You were not sure of your target or what was beyond it. 2. This could easily have been a case of mistaken identity (more on that soon). 3. You want to execute someone for stealing your car? Really?

Let’s replay this scenario a couple of different ways. Firstly, let’s pretend your bank has messed up. Your last two car repayments didn’t go through and you’ve been too busy to check. The finance company tried to get hold of you but they have an out of date cell number. The guy you have just shot and killed was legally re-possessing your car. Oops. Enjoy jail for the next 20 years. Sadly there is one even worse than this – and this one is true. A well known rugby player was awoken by the sound of someone opening his car door at 4am. Macho man that he was, he did exactly what the scenario says. He leaned out his window, shot and killed the “perpetrator”.

Who turned out to be his daughter who had an early meeting with her boyfriend. His life is over in so many ways. http://mg.co.za/article/2004-05-24-rugby-player-shoots-and-kills-daughter-by-mistake

Scenario number 2 is more challenging. A lady at home hears someone enter the house at 1am. She grabs her firearm and shoots a rather unsavoury looking man coming in through the door, which she forgot to lock. Again, true story. The old man suffers from dementia and got confused about where he lived. He lived 3 houses down the road.

The thing is this – identify if the so-called attacker has a weapon. If you can, retreat into another room or out of the house altogether. Call the police, call security. Only when your back is literally against the wall. You have no way out and the attacker is clearly armed and clearly intends to do you harm, then shoot. Not a bloody warning shot (what a load of rubbish), but a proper shot, centre mass or Mozambique drill. Double tap chest, single to the head.

If you are out and about and witness someone being attacked by a man with a gun, what should you do? Draw your own and fire of course…NO! As happened recently the man with the gun was a plain clothes ATF agent who had just apprehended an armed robber. You are not a policeman! (unless you are of course). It is not your job to decide which is a lawful or an unlawful attack. In the scenario above the man was killed by an undercover policeman who had a negligent discharge while trying to apprehend the ATF agent! http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/01/nyregion/off-duty-atf-officer-is-killed-intervening-after-robbery.html?_r=1

The main point here is that if you are not 700% sure that this is an unlawful attack – you know the drill – back away, phone the police, be a good witness.

Get Good Quality Training

If you have a firearm, get good training, read some Jeff Cooper books http://www.jeffcooperbooks.com/and always use it as the absolute last resort. Try to think about how to get away first. Once that trigger is pulled you can’t recall that bullet. You are responsible for everything that it does until it comes to rest.

Be sure of your target (I hope these scenarios help you think about that) and what is beyond it.

 

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Post World Cup blues and Crime

Oh Dear! It seems it wasn’t long before the criminals started making up for lost time (literally). They kept a low profile during July because the police were out in force and very visible. We’ve been saying for years that visible policing drops crime and now we have the proof. Crime in the Durban area was down to 10% of it’s previous levels.

Of course this is all in the past now and we have crime back up, with a phenomenal rise in carjackings over the last two weeks.

This is made doubly uncomfortable by the fact that I have to travel out of town again and it is very difficult to get a firearm license now in this country. Not impossible but very difficult.

It’s a good time for me to come clean – I used to be firmly in the Gun Control camp. I’d had enough use of them in the military and as an aviator we had to be familiar with NATO as well as Comm bloc/Chinese weapons. Having been fed the lines from Gun Free South Africa I was swayed by their “statistics” and “research”. But being me I like to try and see the actual research before going out and singing the company song.

The “Real” research began to annoy me. It couldn’t be right. Crime goes down in areas/towns/countries where the normal person has at least one licensed firearm. Studies by Gary Kleck and others show conclusively that despite the claims by gun control groups, guns prevent crime in a very clear way. One study showed that over 90% of crimes were prevented entirely by producing a firearm (without firing) and even when the attackers also had firearms they fled.

Interestingly Gary Kleck started his research to prove that Gun Control cuts down on crime and became a convert in the process. In my search for credible research I also came across some research done by the University of Cape Town here which also shows convincingly that Gun Control has no lessening effect on crime – in fact quite the opposite. So I’m convinced now, that proper responsible possession of a firearm will keep you safe.

Obviously there are some idiots out there who don’t understand when they can use a firearm and what they must do to keep it safe from children etc. (Like Rudi Visagie who thought someone was stealing his car – shot out the window and killed his daughter). Remember you can only use a firearm if your life is in danger – NOT when someone is stealing your car. Unfortunately those of tiny brain will continue to add fuel to the Gun Control Lobby.

I believe strongly in the right to defend myself and my family and if you want that spelled out in a Christian sense read this.

I hope after reading all of this you’ll also understand that there is a way we can chip away at crime. Sadly the government doesn’t see it that way.

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