I had a small incident the other day and, while there were no lasting repercussions, it kind of got my attention. Several young men followed me and I don’t think they were up to any good. The following was conducted from their vehicle but I was able to elude them. Since none of the group presented anything like a professional or businesslike appearance, I believe they were going to victimize me in some way—or try to. Everything came out OK, and I am very happy about that. The point to remember is that I did not have a gun.
For 43 years, I have been carrying a concealed handgun with the blessings of society in general and the specific permission of several different sheriffs’ departments. I have undergone considerable training, have the appropriate credentials and am comfortable with the concept of going heeled. I even wrote a book on the subject. Yet, in a hurry to get out of the house and make an appointment, I managed to rationalize away the need to go back and get my gun. That’s right; I remembered that I didn’t have it before I turned the key in the ignition of my truck. But I went without it. This is a very serious error in judgment.
Once you make the decision to carry, you should habitually carry. In many of the mass shootings we have experienced in the past few decades, there was often a moment when a single disciplined private citizen with a concealed handgun might have successfully intervened and saved lives. It is also true that carrying a concealed firearm for a period of time engenders an attitude of self-confidence that cannot be supported when the gun is not there. Just make sure that you have the gun—always. But you should also remember to carry another item and I am not talking about a reload. The other item of equipment that you should have is the modern cellular telephone.
As a certified Curmudgeon First Class, cell phones annoy me greatly. I did OK for decades without one, right? Well, I guess I’m overstating for emphasis a little bit, but I really don’t like the things. However, there is a great deal of legitimate business conducted on these devices. More importantly, they are often useful in dealing with the scenarios that caused you to carry a gun in the first place. Road rage incidents are one example. When a potential adversary in another vehicle sees you making a phone call on your cell, he may rethink his actions and go away. In face-to-face confrontations, the cell phone can influence the way the scenario plays out. But most of all, in the event that shots are fired, quick use of the cell phone can summon emergency assistance in short order. You need one to back up that slick little snubby that just saved your bacon.