Mr. Lee pointed out, “We don’t carry the gun because of the odds we’re going to need it today. We carry it because the stakes are our own life or the life of a loved one. That is what we are literally betting on when we bet we won’t need a gun today.”
Over the Independence Day weekend, the odds of my being injured while burning meat were much greater than my being attacked in my own backyard by zombies, terrorists’, or persons of nefarious nature. Since I did not drive my vehicle at all over the weekend, the odds of being involved in a traffic accident were zero. The odds; however, were great for my wife admonishing me for over-cooking the burgers and hot dogs. The odds were greater for the family to consume what was cooked than was the possibility that the open-pit fire would catch something else on fire if it got out of control. The odds were lessened in this respect; however, by the fire extinguisher that was on hand. Let’s just say that the steaks (intended pun) were high and the content of a fire extinguisher does not enhance the flavor of a T-Bone. The odds of my burning a steak were low because of situational awareness (close observation of the steaks while under fire) and conscious cooking while under direct supervision of a few members of the clan who like their steaks medium- well. The odds of being distracted by the hungry masses went up, as did the odds of being burned while being distracted. With head hung low, I have to acknowledge that I did not carry a burn kit with me.
Joking aside, Mr. Lee does bring out a good point concerning odds and stakes.
We live with odds every day from the waking moment until the next waking moment. We live with odds until there are no more waking moments. We even play the odds as to what is beyond the last moment of our material existence.
Over the Independence Day weekend, the odds increased for people being injured or killed by fireworks and celebratory gunfire. The odds of being attacked by a shark went up in North Carolina, as did the odds of sharks having a good meal. In North Georgia, the odds of coming across a bear during a woods-walk increase – simply because I’m in the woods where bears live. The odds of being attacked (and killed) by an alligator skyrocketed for one young man. I’m sure that there are others being injured or killed over the course of the holiday weekend that I am not aware of. The odds that I would read every newspaper in this country (and beyond) to read about who was injured or killed over the course of the holiday weekend are very low to none. The odds of my being run over by a train, or trampled by an elephant, as I write this are pretty much in my favor. The odds of someone responding to this article are maybe two in a hundred; however, the stakes are not high with someone disagreeing with me.
As I look around my “man cave” as I write this, I notice two things; a fire extinguisher by the door and a very-sharp Katana resting in a display case. Odds say that I would have to use the fire extinguisher sooner than the Katana, yet the odds of doing so are very low in both cases. The stakes of not having both of them should I need them are immense. I can say the same thing about the Springfield XDs that resides on my hip; the same can be said about the Mossberg 20-gauge shotgun that resides within arm’s reach.
Should the upstairs erupt with dogs barking insanely while someone attempts to kick in the kitchen door, I can respond quickly with a chosen firearm in my capable hands. The odds of me getting to a safe, unlock it, and retrieve a firearm before an attacker can break through the door are low. I prefer the odds to be in my favor.
Of course, while we are “out and about the English” we can take steps to reduce the odds of being a target of opportunity for criminal behavior. We can also take steps when in the sanctity of our castle to decrease the odds of having to fight off a home-invader(s). Common sense dictates that the judicious use of ammunition requires a tool with which the judicious use can be applied. Even criminals recognize that fact. Some criminals use an empty firearm to intimidate their victims. I, for one, am not going to test the odds that a criminal has an empty firearm; every firearm is considered loaded. I want the bad guy to (rightly) assume that my firearm is loaded and that a meager five pounds or so of trigger pull will send the mail in his direction.
Shortly after I began putting this article together, I had a brief power interruption. What were the odds in that? I don’t know, but if I did not have a UPS (Universal Power Supply) on my computer system, this article may have been lost (although I do admit that I save my work often by using the Ctrl+S feature in my word processing program). The UPS is simply a tool to help prevent data loss. The only stake was that I would be aggravated by the loss of the article and would simply start the article over. I would have second chance to re-start the article and complete it.
I wore Second Chance Body Armor at one point in my life. Thankfully, I never had to test it. I simply felt that my first chance at life might be challenged. Second Chance Body Armor was my first choice in helping keep my first chance at life intact.
The point that I am slowly getting to is that we have one shot at life. We need to use that one shot in a productive manner, even if it means sending one shot in the direction of those who wish to take it from us. In order to do that, we must have the tool, with us, and ready to use at a moment’s notice. The stakes are simply too high not to.