Right In Your Own Backyard

Over the past several months the town I live in along with a neighboring town has had several robberies/home invasions where the bad guy(or two) approach a person walking their dog or doing yard work and then assaulting them, robbing them or forcing them back into their homes for various not so fun games.

I hear many people say things like I will not let the bad guy win. I refuse to be a prisoner in my own home. My home is a place to relax and I am not going to walk around with a gun on my hip paranoid all the time. Of course, that is a personal choice and I am not going to tell anyone they should or shouldn’t carry a gun(although you probably should), but there are some things to consider when opting not to.

I always find the argument about not being forced to do something by the bad guy an interesting argument. The whole reason I choose to carry a gun is to up my odds of stopping the bad guy from imposing his will on me. I have no idea when and where a bad guy might choose to act out his nefarious plan, so in an effort to be calm, relaxed and in control, I opt for the always be prepared route. I am the most relaxed and unafraid when I am prepared. For me that almost always means I have a gun very close by.

Everyone’s favorite tactical guru has an article on some things to think about.

As for the practicality and comfort of carrying at home. For me carrying at home is one of the most comfortable. I wear my OWB AGirl holster from The Holster Site, a good belt and no cover garment. It is honestly the only time I “forget” I am carrying. I cook, clean, wrestling around with my kiddos, lay on the couch(I never really get to do that much, but…) without giving any thought to the gun. It’s much more of a pain for me when I am out and about. However, it isn’t much of a pain then either.

From my house in a “good” neighborhood I can tell you about more than one crime that has taken place 5 miles away, 20 miles, 60 miles…Currently, Richmond is all worked up over a rash of robberies taken place on and near the VCU campus. One of the students that took our FPF Training course this past weekend is a young 20 year old young lady who attends that campus and lives on the street where several robberies and rapes have taken place. Want to hazard a guess why she was in class?

For me violent crime is not abstract. It isn’t the kind of thing that happens to someone else and it isn’t the kind of thing that happens at night far away from home. It is a daily kind of thing. The kind where one walks out of a grocery store at noon, or is gardening in his own backyard or is walking on a college campus minding her own business.

To be honest I don’t give a flying flip about what I should be able to do or what is fair or any false ideal of not giving the bad guy power. I really only care about what I can do to create a world where I have the best possible chance of A. Avoiding a bad guy situation or B. Surviving it should that not be possible.

Well, I also care that you create that kind of world for yourself to the best of your ability.

If you are on the fence about some of these things, please take the time to really read what Greg and others have to say and then do something positive for your own safety.

35 thoughts on “Right In Your Own Backyard

  1. About 70 miles away a little girl was kidnapped and the body recovered yesterday. A house 5 doors down was the victim of a home invasion. We have had sex offenders living in our neighborhood. Crime is everywhere and in many cases you don’t have to look too far to see it. I’m worried for my wife as she refuses to see it and when she does, expresses this is not the world she wants to live in, so she pulls the wool down over her eyes again. I’ve not been able to get thru to her, she is a sheep of the 10th magnitude. Have you ever had to get thru to someone like that, and how did you do it?

    • Double Tap, yes I have encountered people with that mindset, but none so stubborn as mine own. For reasons I can’t explain everything I believed about guns, violence, and crime made perfect sense to me. Unfortunately, for me the only person who was able to get through and change my mind was a bad guy. It is way I am passionate about being an advocate for people taking responsibility for their lives and safety. Learning the way I did is profoundly unpleasant and totally unnecessary. I am not sure there is anything one can do besides continuing to point out the facts and praying something one says or does will get through.

      My 14 year old is a bit on that side. For me I gave her time and then said we are done. You don’t have to like it, but you will learn to shoot and defend yourself as long as you live here, but that is not going to work with a friend and certainly not a spouse.

    • My younger sisters are this way. It’s a combination of youthful naivety and feel-good liberalism being thrust upon them through years of higher education. I can only hope their mindset changes some once they’re a bit older and out in the real world instead of academia.

      • Being young is a major disadvantage. We are made I think to be hopefully and optimistic. Tough to balance that youthful zest with appropriate caution. I will be thinking good thoughts for them.

  2. It’s the whole idea that your weapon is moments away when seconds count. I encourage my folks to just add putting on their weapon as part of their morning routine. As I put on my watch, load my pockets with wallet, pen, flashlight, knives, phone and change, I put in a spare mag and my weapon in my IWB holster. Every day. Without fail. It stays there until we get ready for bed at night – then moves next to the bed. It’s simply a habit that needs to be cultivated – all IMNSHO, of course.

    Other things move people to action as well. One of the women in my class last weekend was very anti-gun while living at home with her parents. As marriage, 4 kids, and country living have become her life, her attitudes have changed. She home schools, she sees herself as the protector she is – responsible for her young family during the day. This was the Basic Pistol class – .22 cal only. She looks at me and asks: “So would a pistol like this or a .22 rifle stop a mountain lion?” MMMmmmm – no, is my reply. These kitties are in the process of reclaiming their old stomping grounds. More and more folks see them – monthly sightings at least . . . . here . . . . in east central Iowa. I’ve seen one behind my home as well. She and I are talking about something just a tad bit bigger than a .22! :)

    Nice to see your post, I assume you’re going 12 different directions at once and that all is well. Enjoy your day!!

    Bill

    • Bill, I am glad your students have you. You are spot on. As I have said before your posts would have been such a benefit to me in the beginning of my journey and even now I am continually blessed by them.

      I am a tad bit busy, but not so much that I am not enjoying every second!

  3. Amen! I think that one of the most valuable things to come out of the (admittedly awful) encounters with violence I’ve survived in the past is that I was stripped of the self-delusion that “it can’t happen to me”. And I too feel most relaxed and calm when I’m prepared. Because the truth is, violence can happen anywhere, and it always happens when you aren’t expecting it. (After all, if you were expecting it, you’d get out of the way.) There’s been a home invasion robbery/rape and a domestic violence fatal stabbing within blocks of my house recently, and my county’s had seven officer-involved shootings in the past six months (as compared to a norm of one or two a year.)

    Hope all is well in your world!

    • Hi!!! A unique prospective we share. Yours more intense, but a reality neither can tuen away from anymore. A luxury we don’t have…of course ignorance is indeed not blissful, is it?

      I hope you are well too!

  4. Being ‘Old School’, I like to think of Jeff Cooper’s dictum he wrote in Cooper’s Commentaries…
    “If your sidearm isn’t within arm’s reach while you are reading this, you missed the point of API 250!” (his intro course).
    If you keep a gun for self-defense, for goodness sake keep it. Locked away, or unloaded in the nightstand does you no good when the SHTF!
    Do you only use your seat-belt when you think there might be an accident?
    Good to see you blogging – I know how busy you are!
    gfa

  5. My habit of blasting out the door in a hurry and remembering that I left the gun at home when I’m miles away has been much on my mind recently. I seem to go through times when I’m good about remembering to strap on, then I can’t seem to remember for nuttin. Doesn’t help that that I often go into Maryland, where I’m prevented from carrying. Just walking across the railroad bridge to the C&O towpath means I have to take it off.

    • Oh yes, I am in and out of gun free zones way to often. Maryland and DC make me crazy. With all it’s problems I love the nations Capitol, but I hate having to disarm to visit.

  6. I’ve actually had an unexpected benefit of wearing my pistol around the house: it helps with spinal alignment.

    I’m a side sleeper, you see, and I prefer to sleep on my left side — which means my right hip ends up higher than my left. This results in pelvic mis-alignment and lower back pain.

    But apparently my Glock 26 is just the right weight to gently pull my right hip down and slowly re-align my pelvis. Even my chiropractor has commented on the obvious improvement.

    So there you have it: wearing a gun has measurable health benefits!

  7. Great article! Things are appearing to happen in today’s world that formerly did not. I live in a small town (pop, 3000) in a western state,,,open carry as well as concealed here does not require any permit. Over the past several months we have had several breakins, The “odd” thing is…the bad guys came from out of town, some even from out of state! The nearest “big” city is over 130 miles away and that has a pop of 50,000. Seems to me, things are only going to get worse sad to say. So, definately it is time to “lock and load.”

    • Curt, you are right…sadly. The world has always had its issues and in many ways we are better off, but still the bad guy lurks and he is indeed bad.

  8. Well said Lady! And we can no longer ‘ignore’ the facts about crime… It DOES happen near us, to us, to our friends and neighbors. When folks that were anti-gun for over 20 years start calling me about what guns to try and classes, I KNOW it’s getting serious…

    • Old NFO, you know when my anti gun friend are calling me, it’s bad…lol

      Lol, in the actually not so funny way.

  9. AGirl, good post.
    I have lived in a sleepy little town (or so most people would think) on Cape Cod since 2006. During that time just in my neighborhood alone (basically about a 10-house radius) there has been a multi hour standoff with the Cape Cod SWAT team with surrounding houses being evacuated, aggravated gang rape, a drive-by shooting, a woman who hung herself from a tree in her back yard (I know it’s not a violent crime against others but it is still unnerving), the execution of a search warrant by the MA State police as I was getting my daughter on the bus, another neighbor arrested and arraigned for multiple counts of statutory rape, and multiple home invasions and vandalism. My favorite one was a situation that occurred at 4am when I awoke to the sounds of a police dog barking nonstop and a female officer shouting orders to a home invader that she had at gun point on the ground with his face in the dirt on my next door neighbor’s front lawn. The story I heard but was not confirmed was that he tried to get into my house first but could not find a good entry point so he moved next door where he found an open window. My neighbor woke up and hit the guy with a piece of a 2×4 as he was climbing in.
    I did not have the slightest idea how crime-ridden this area was until I took a special citizens police academy course with the local police department. My eyes were thrown wide open. I also learned that a few years ago there were a couple of guys that were breaking into houses at night, rounding up the inhabitants, tie them to chairs, and then one would pistol whip them while the other ransacked the house looking for valuables. On the surface you would never even come close to guessing that my town was like this.
    The moral of the story is that true safety and control is an illusion. It can happen anywhere and at any time. Stay safe by being prepared.

  10. Springfield XD 45, Para .45, H&K USP-9mm, M9, S&W Mod 3913, Sig Equinox 40 cal, Beretta Mod 84, I never leave home without one of these… the bad guys mission is to guess which one and how many spare mags I have. I also am equipped with “Dirtbag radar” so I can spot the dirtbags from 50 meters. This system works well for me.

  11. As a father of two kids, the safest place for my gun to be is on my hip. Plus, they see it there and it just becomes normal. I think that is crucial to raising kids that respect and understand firearms rather than fear or worship them.

  12. Working in Maryland kinda sucks.
    But I do get to see my guns on evenings and weekends.

    I got a buttload of 9mm at the gun show, was thinking about The Range Sunday morning.

  13. Parents and in-laws keep telling us we’re just paranoid when we point out that crime stats where we live are comparable to Detroit. We know better. Chris has been closer to having to draw his gun here than ever.

    I never walk the dog or go outside without a gun, except on my way to work (in a gun free zone). I got a whole new gun and carry rig just so I could carry while walking the dog.

    • Me either Heather. I refuse to walk my dog or run without my gun. There are times when I do not care due to legal restrictions etc., but my quaint little town is getting progressively worse.

  14. My daughter and I have had this conversation. My younger son just takes it in stride that mom and dad carry whenever we aren’t asleep, to walk on our left side, etc… But to sum it up, my 16 year old is….a 16 year old. We have many different talks about safety, situational awareness, gun safety. She chooses not to go to the range with me more often than I’d like, but she does know the basics and how to operate a firearm. Our deal? She got to purchase a recurved bow and practice with it, as long as she can shoot with mom a couple times a month.

  15. It’s getting scarier out there by the minute. There is not a town, city or community that is immune to the increased unrest of the criminal minds. Being alert and prepared will go a long way in hedging our bets against the bad guys.

  16. Hey Girl!
    I was an EMT, years ago and was going out with a cop one evening (A Girl). We left the apartment and within 5 blocks, came across an mva. I had a bad feeling about the scene and didn’t know if she was packing. I had been on quite a few of these calls and wasn’t about to stop. The dinner was great!
    Married now and several years back the Girls were out in the back yard making a snow man. I was working on an electrical problem on the back porch and had my pistol just inside the door. All of a sudden I heard this barking from around the shed. I grabbed the pistol and cycled a round into the chamber. The large dog was barking and headed straight for the Girls. Took it out with one shot base of the neck 30 meters. Well, I called the Sergent and gave him the run down of what happened. A couple months went by and to make a long story short, I got my weapon back (loaded)!
    I have a pistol handy at all times except when I go to work. Government installations don’t allow weapons. So I do my yard work, stay away from the cities and travel secure routes armed. Life is good.

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