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JHotz
2005-Nov-19, 01:17 AM
What is the best philosophy on home self-defense?

I would like to discuss the pros and cons of each.

Hand to hand training.
Handgun
Shotgun
Assault rifle
Chemical spray like CS or Mace
Tazer
Knife
Club
Electronic intrusion detection and police notification system
Under 25 lb small yappy dog (Yorkshire Terrier)
30 to 50 lb dangerous but probable not lethal dog (Pit bull)
Over 60 lb deadly dog or pack of dogs
Cheap house that nobody would break into.

I welcome your thoughts and comments.

Ilya
2005-Nov-19, 01:56 AM
Very much depends on the laws in your locale. In Virginia it is legal to shoot people on your property. In New York it is legal only if they are in your house (you shoot him as he climbs in the window and he falls outside -- you are guilty of manslaughter). In Massachusetts law requires you to run away from an intruder -- you are only allowed to use deadly force if you have no avenue of escape. British law is so rabidly anti-gun, people have been known to go to jail for scaring an intruder with a TOY gun. Don't think it applies in Kansas, though :)

It also depends on the type of criminal common in your area. If most break-ins are teenagers trying to be tough, a mid-size dog is probably your best bet. If it is professional burglars, then the best thing is electronic intrusion detection and police notification system, possibly aided by a loudly yipping small dog (to ensure police will hear SOMETHING, should the thief defeat the security system). If your greatest fear is crack junkies, I'd get a .45 and aim to kill. You do not want him to sue you after you only wound him! And if what you fear are specific individuals who want to kill you personally for something you do not wish to divulge, then sell the house and move as far as you can.

Psychotic killers and break-in rapists are so rare compared to more common kind of criminal, I would never tailor the security to them. If one happens to attack your house... well, you can not be ready for everything.

Eoanthropus Dawsoni
2005-Nov-19, 02:21 AM
A shotgun is the best home defense weapon.

MrClean
2005-Nov-19, 02:35 AM
12 gauge pump shotgun cut to legal limits (varies by state) with skeet shot. If you do have to fire, you will elliminate anything standing in front of you, however, the shot will not go through two layers of 1/2 inch sheetrock from 5 feet (reportedly, I haven't tested it). However, the sound of you jacking a shell into the chamber after announcing that you have a gun is also reported as being the highest part of the deterent. Everyone knows that sound and everyone knows NO good is closely following it.

Now as to penetrating the walls. I have shot squirrels with the 7.5 shot and watched as they were thrown by it only to run up trees and cuss me out. Then again, I've hit squirrels with 4 shot and it only goes through one side of the skin, squirrels are tough. But the light 7.5 shot doesn't have the kintetic energy necessary after going through one layer of sheetrock to get through another. I'm assuming that this is after dispersement, pointblank would probably just go right through. With a handgun, you have ability to get it around quick, but the bullet will travel straight through a wall without hardly slowing down, you could hit bystanders. At college we had a guy that decided to end it all with a 357. The bullet went through his head and the walls of two houses before lodging in the siding of the third house. You really have to worry about killing someone else on the other side of the perp.

As far as legality, the saying goes 'It's better to be judged by twelve than carried by six'.

Other than that, remember Rule Number 13 of The Seven habits of Highly Succesfull Pirates.

Do Unto Others!

TheBlackCat
2005-Nov-19, 02:36 AM
Hand to hand training - Probably useless, if someone was serious about breaking in they are probably armed

Handgun - Probably good, easy to store somewhere safe so your kids can't get it but easy to wip out in an emergency

Shotgun - good as a weapon, but the only place safe to store it would be hard to get to in an emergency relative to a handgun. They are also harder to wield.

Assault rifle - same as shotgun, only worse. If your robber found this before you did it would be very bad

Chemical spray like CS or Mace - cheap, effective, relatively safe to leave lying around, easy to use, generally legal without any sort of permit, non-lethal (especially good in case someone tries to use your own weapons against you), and relative to guns are not very problematic if discharged accidentally (you may have to air out your car or apartment for a while, but there won't be any permanent damage). Modern ones usually come with invisible UV dye that can be used to identify the person later. However, if you aren't careful they can be nearly as dangerous for the person using it as the target. I have a bunch of these scattered around my apartment, but I have been trained to use them.

Tazer - you never want to be close enough to a robber to be able to actually use one of these, so basically useless

Knife - same as tazer, only more dangerous for you. It does have the benefit of being useful for something other than defense. I have a knife, but would never use it for self defense.

Club - Same as a tazer

Electronic intrusion detection and police notification system - probably the best. The police can be on their way before you even know what is going on. Also protects your house when you are not home, which none of the above items do. You also would be less likely to have to face the intruder yourself. Probably good to have this as the primary means of defense, then have a gun or mace as a backup

Under 25 lb small yappy dog (Yorkshire Terrier) - useless, any intruder could just kick it and it would be out of the fight.

30 to 50 lb dangerous but probable not lethal dog (Pit bull) - probably won't stop a determined thief, but might stop a novice or drunk person

Over 60 lb deadly dog or pack of dogs - see above. Any really dedicated thief will likely be armed with at least a crowbar, and more likely a gun, so a dog wouldn't be able to get close enough to do any damage. Would work on less experienced intruders, though.

Cheap house that nobody would break into. - I think you are underestimating thieves. A good thief can afford to pick the best targets, but others are more oportunistic vulture types that will steal anything they can find.

JHotz
2005-Nov-19, 02:45 AM
A shotgun is the best home defense weapon.I see several problems with a shotgun.
It is very large and less than ideal for the confined quarters of a house.
Difficult to discretely store.
Requires both hands, awkward to hold flashlight, open doors, turn on light, negotiate corners.
Most likely to be wrestle away from you.
Sever recoil makes assessment of you first shot and follow-up decisions slower.
Somewhat limited capacity of bullets.
May be difficult for smaller weaker people to use.
As with all lethal the potential for lethal accidents is there.

The advantages of a shotgun include
Very lethal, incapacitating even to armor vested individuals
Scattershot increases likelihood of hitting target
Can double as a club
Very intimidating

Eoanthropus Dawsoni
2005-Nov-19, 02:52 AM
As I mentioned in another thread, I sell quite a few guns to people for home defense. My recommendation to my customers is that they buy a shotgun.

Any handgun is lethal, but unless one is using something of very large caliber, one can not count on stopping a bad guy before he does some serious damage. Handguns also require some practice, and a stray shot can quite easily pass through several walls and endanger other people.

A shotgun has much more power so is therefore much more likely to stop an attacker. It is also easier to make a good hit on target, and with most shotgun ammunition there is much less chance of a stray round hitting a neighbor. A shotgun also carries a very large psychological advantage. Even most crazy people know not to mess with a shotgun (One should never assume that the sound and sight of a shotgun will be enough to stop a bad guy, so if one is in a situation which requires self defense one needs to be ready to shoot).

If a person can not bring themselves to use a gun, then I recommend a large dog. Bad guys do not like to mess with large dogs.

JHotz
2005-Nov-19, 02:53 AM
It also depends on the type of criminal common in your area.
Psychotic killers and break-in rapists are so rare compared to more common kind of criminal, I would never tailor the security to them. If one happens to attack your house... well, you can not be ready for everything. Good idea to consider you threat specificaly for you situation.

Superluminal
2005-Nov-19, 02:55 AM
If you are comfortable with firearms, pistol or shotgun are what I'd recommend. Espescially if you live in a populated area. Their limited range would lessen the danger to your nieghbors. Studies of police and self defence shootings indicate that most shootings are in the range of about 10 feet or less. An assalt rifle or hunting rifle could penatrate walls and the round could travel a consideral distance. Also, don't get a gun unless you are sure you can shoot someone. Several people have been killed by their own weapon after being disarmed by an intruder.

Stregone
2005-Nov-19, 03:16 AM
Dobermans are great dogs in general, and excellent guard dogs.

JHotz
2005-Nov-19, 03:31 AM
Hand to hand training - Probably useless, if someone was serious about breaking in they are probably armedIf they are armed there is a good chance it is your gun they found. Hand to hand is something you always have with you. It works in the dark if you know how to grapple. Can be less than lethal. However real fighting requires real practice. Most people do not want to engage in full contact sparring and grappling to just prepare for a potential intruder.

Handgun - Probably good, easy to store somewhere safe so your kids can't get it but easy to wip out in an emergencyI think the keep away from kids\easy access is a huge problem.

Shotgun - good as a weapon, but the only place safe to store it would be hard to get to in an emergency relative to a handgun. They are also harder to wield.

Assault rifle - same as shotgun, only worse. If your robber found this before you did it would be very badYea but a fifty round clip!


Chemical spray like CS or Mace - cheap, effective, relatively safe to leave lying around, easy to use, generally legal without any sort of permit, non-lethal (especially good in case someone tries to use your own weapons against you), and relative to guns are not very problematic if discharged accidentally (you may have to air out your car or apartment for a while, but there won't be any permanent damage). Modern ones usually come with invisible UV dye that can be used to identify the person later. However, if you aren't careful they can be nearly as dangerous for the person using it as the target. I have a bunch of these scattered around my apartment, but I have been trained to use them.It temporary nature may necessitate a backup like a club.


Tazer - you never want to be close enough to a robber to be able to actually use one of these, so basically uselessYou may not have a choice on the closeness. There are tazer guns as well.


Knife - same as tazer, only more dangerous for you.If you were to rely on it you would need some training.
It does have the benefit of being useful for something other than defense. I have a knife, but would never use it for self defense.Never say never, you may not have a choice. If an aggressor reaches out to you you can slash at his hands to limit his capacity to hurt you.


Club - Same as a tazerI strongly disagree. A club is easily lethal and disabling. Consider these points. Club can disarm an opponent with a knife fairly safely and even with a handgun you still have a good chance. A club is a very versatile and functional weapon. From the large wrench to chair leg to the bat. Handguns can double as very effective short clubs if he grabs you shotgun barrel you can pull it in tight an turn to get it back then crack him on the head.


Electronic intrusion detection and police notification system - probably the best. The police can be on their way before you even know what is going on. Also protects your house when you are not home, which none of the above items do. You also would be less likely to have to face the intruder yourself. Probably good to have this as the primary means of defense, then have a gun or mace as a backupExpensive and intrusive to have. I fear the police and there guns on a false alarm as much as I fear an intruder. If they surprise the intruder you could become a hostage.


Under 25 lb small yappy dog (Yorkshire Terrier) - useless, any intruder could just kick it and it would be out of the fight.I have seen many people try to kick a small aggressive dog and it never works. The dog can move faster than you kick. Though the do is not a real threat it occupies the intruders attention and as any mailman will tell you is a real hassle.


30 to 50 lb dangerous but probable not lethal dog (Pit bull) - probably won't stop a determined thief, but might stop a novice or drunk person.

Over 60 lb deadly dog or pack of dogs - see above. Any really dedicated thief will likely be armed with at least a crowbar, and more likely a gun, so a dog wouldn't be able to get close enough to do any damage. Would work on less experienced intruders, though.I agree completely. There is no dog alive that can stand up to a halfway competent armed human. If the guy knows what he is doing he could handle any pack of dogs without being bit as well. Of course the issue may be to raise the alarm or discourage him in the first place. A rotteweiler bark pretty discouraging.

JHotz
2005-Nov-19, 03:41 AM
Any handgun is lethal, but unless one is using something of very large caliber, one can not count on stopping a bad guy before he does some serious damage. Handguns also require some practice, and a stray shot can quite easily pass through several walls and endanger other people.I agree with you that training is more important for the handguns effective use. I find the unwieldy nature of the shotgun a large negative. You must take a hand off of this two handed weapon to open a door, turn on a light or hold a flashlight. If you meet the intruder coming around a corner he is much more likely to wrestle a shotgun from you. What happens when you trip in the dark with the shotgun?
A shotgun has much more power so is therefore much more likely to stop an attacker. It is also easier to make a good hit on target, and with most shotgun ammunition there is much less chance of a stray round hitting a neighbor. A shotgun also carries a very large psychological advantage. Even most crazy people know not to mess with a shotgun (One should never assume that the sound and sight of a shotgun will be enough to stop a bad guy, so if one is in a situation which requires self defense one needs to be ready to shoot).All very valid and solid arguments in the shotguns favor


If a person can not bring themselves to use a gun, then I recommend a large dog. Bad guys do not like to mess with large dogs.Bad guys hate any dogs and the small ones are less are cheaper to keep.

JHotz
2005-Nov-19, 03:44 AM
12 gauge pump shotgun cut to legal limits (varies by state) with skeet shot. If you do have to fire, you will elliminate anything standing in front of you, however, the shot will not go through two layers of 1/2 inch sheetrock from 5 feet (reportedly, I haven't tested it). However, the sound of you jacking a shell into the chamber after announcing that you have a gun is also reported as being the highest part of the deterent. Everyone knows that sound and everyone knows NO good is closely following it.
I can imagine many scenarios where shooting through walls would be highly advantageous.

Eoanthropus Dawsoni
2005-Nov-19, 04:09 AM
I agree with you that training is more important for the handguns effective use. I find the unwieldy nature of the shotgun a large negative. You must take a hand off of this two handed weapon to open a door, turn on a light or hold a flashlight. If you meet the intruder coming around a corner he is much more likely to wrestle a shotgun from you. What happens when you trip in the dark with the shotgun?

A shotgun is not unwieldy, it is in fact a very easy weapon to use effectively. Someone wrestle it away? Possible but not probable.

And it is very easy to fire a shotgun with one hand.

Gullible Jones
2005-Nov-19, 04:22 AM
Uhh... I think I ought to put in here that a pit bull definitely qualifies as lethal.

JHotz
2005-Nov-19, 04:34 AM
Uhh... I think I ought to put in here that a pit bull definitely qualifies as lethal.Only if you are a small child. I have not heard of any lethal pitbull attacks on full grown adults. Pit bulls are easily lethal to most any other dog. They lack the size to knock down an adult and attack its vital areas.

JHotz
2005-Nov-19, 04:47 AM
A shotgun is not unwieldy, it is in fact a very easy weapon to use effectively. Someone wrestle it away? Possible but not probable.If it is not unwieldy why do police use a pistol as their primary weapon? Because the holster would be friggen huge.
I agree that it is easy to use.
Consider the person not trying to so much wrestle the gun away but to press into you while avoiding the muzzle. This puts you in a wrestling match and he has just as strong a grip on the gun as you do. With a hand gun you can shoot the person in close if you keep it at you hip. You still have the other hand free to defend the gun or gain distance.


And it is very easy to fire a shotgun with one hand.If it is so easy to aim and fire with one hand why does it have a grip under the barrel for you second hand to grab? Do you at least agree that they take two hands to chamber a new round? I understand the automatics can be less than 100% reliable.

Stregone
2005-Nov-19, 04:49 AM
Uhh... I think I ought to put in here that a pit bull definitely qualifies as lethal.
I dunno, pitbulls aren't as dangerous as they are stigmatized. They are kind of small for a guard dog, and a properly raised (not abused or neglected, plenty of human socialization) is actualy very friendly with people. Other dogs is kinda iffy though. Dangerous pitbulls are ones that the owner leaves chained to a tree outside most of the day, with little contact with humans. Those pitbulls are dangerous to everyone, not just an intruder. As would any dog treated like that.

Halcyon Dayz
2005-Nov-19, 05:17 AM
Is America such a dangerous country that this is an issue?
And if so, why?

Eoanthropus Dawsoni
2005-Nov-19, 05:30 AM
If it is not unwieldy why do police use a pistol as their primary weapon? Because the holster would be friggen huge.



You started a thread about HOME defense, not police work.

Cops wear pistols or revolvers so that they can be ready to deal with unexpected situations. When cops anticipate that there might be shooting or other deadly violence, they use their shotgun or perhaps a rifle. Any cop who knowingly goes into a situation where there is an expectation of deadly violence, armed only with a hand gun, is a fool. Quite possibly a dead fool. That point is one of the first things I used to teach rookie cops when I was a training officer.

And as I said, it is very easy to fire a shotgun with one hand. But it is not very likely that one would have to do that.

Metricyard
2005-Nov-19, 05:38 AM
I agree with you that training is more important for the handguns effective use. I find the unwieldy nature of the shotgun a large negative. You must take a hand off of this two handed weapon to open a door, turn on a light or hold a flashlight. If you meet the intruder coming around a corner he is much more likely to wrestle a shotgun from you. What happens when you trip in the dark with the shotgun?All very valid and solid arguments in the shotguns favorBad guys hate any dogs and the small ones are less are cheaper to keep.

Need two hands? Not a problem (http://www.outdoorsuperstore.com/store/products/productDisplay~ATI~SHOTGUN+FLASHLIGHT+MOUNT~produc tID~317822.htm)

I have to go with the shotgun. A handgun, while still a good choice, has to be aimed somewhat accurately. A pistol is an aim and shoot weapon. You just can't try and shoot from the hip, unless practiced. A shotgun just has to be close. Point and shoot.

I think it takes more than just firearms/selfdefense training. You've got to plan for just such an ocation.

If an intruder is close enough to wrestle you for a firearm or club, you messed up. An intruder has the advantage. He can hide in a dark corner and wait for you. You have no idea where he is. Going in blindly is not a good or safe idea. He'll see you before you see him. Best to hold your ground and make noise. And a good pull on a shotgun is a good way to get anyones attention.

SolusLupus
2005-Nov-19, 06:49 AM
Is America such a dangerous country that this is an issue?
And if so, why?

o.O You're serious?

I live in Texas. The crime rate down here is very high. Not so high that you need to be 100% careful all the time, but high enough to mean that I'd want some form of personal defence at home.

The most crime down here has to do with burglary. However, other crimes, such as murder, are highest down here (it's partly why Texas is really big on the Death Penalty).

Home Defence is something that's always necessary; unless you live in, like, Dakota, where you don't have to worry about the other, oh, say, 5 people living in the same state :P

genebujold
2005-Nov-19, 07:43 AM
Wow. Where to begin? So much disinformation out there, much from Hollywood.

My best friend is currently a school teacher. He used to be a cop, 5th degree blackbelt in the Army as a special task force MP, then 12 years as a cop in California, during which one of among many duties was teaching residents how to improve their home/personal defence.

Truths:

1. Hand to hand training takes years (and many thousands of dollars) for it to be effective. IF you're more skilled than the average individual. Besides - they're usually armed and you're not. Unless you're considerably better trained than you, you're dead. Do, however, take a basic self-defense course. You'll never learn to counter someone who's studied any sort of matrial for any length of time, but it will help you to counter the unexpected while you resort to your other resouces.

2. Assult rifle, handgun, shotgun, gun period - unless you're CARRYING it on your person, most intruders are inside before you have time to get to where it's stored, much less unkey the lock, etc. Furthermore, most intruders aren't interested in you, and are very interested in avoiding you! Thus, self-defence might not even be your primary concern. Finally, every weapon except yourself can be turned against you.

3. Electronic intrusion detection and monitoring. Actually not a bad thing, as most of those caught for breaking and entering these days are because they tripped alarms.

4. Dogs. Their bark is worse than their bite. Heavy, agressive-sounding dogs and cassete tapes of their barking scare away most intruders. Pit-bulls are silent, thereby allowing the intruder into the house, and unless very well trained (and thus highly dangerous to your own children and neighborhood kids), are highly unreliable.

5. Cheap house that nobody would break into. Actually, lower to middle-class houses are broken into more often on a per-house by price bracket that more expensive houses. Cheap houses are simply cheap targets. Burglers know they're probably not alarmed.

6. City, county, state, and federal laws. Fortunately, in the US, if an intruder is coming at you inside your own home, you're free to fire without serious repucussion. Then again, you have to take him out before he takes you out while ensuring it's not your neighbor's grandmother sleepwalking into the wrong house because of her Alzheimer's.

7. Non-lethal weapons work for a short period of time, and I've seen no less than four policemen required to overpower a man who'd been maced by all four policemen. Tasers - not bad, but there are a lot of lawsuits out there. If they can't steal your paintings they'll steal your equity because of how you ruined their lives.

8. Getting back to guns, shotguns are far more involved in home gun deaths on a per-type than others, simply because they're so lethal. A small-caliber handgun with simple controls that's always kept either on the person or in a locked box is best - but ONLY if the individual is fully proficient in it's use. Fortunately, this only requires weeks of practice, not years, such has martial arts.

9. Shotguns, revisited. One person remarked, "it is very easy to fire a shotgun with one hand." I'm a 207 lb man who can bench press 250 lbs. It is NOT easy, much less easy, to fire a shotgun with one hand. I shoot both skeet and trap regularly, and used to waterski (VERY strong grip strength). Perhaps they scale El Capitan regularly, but my experience says it smacks of mere Hollywoodism.

Bottom Line:

I called my friend and ran these things through and here's what he came up with:

1. Post the security system monitoring stickers. Burglers rarely hit houses that are monitored when they can hit houses that are not.

2. Dogs that bark loudly and often are the best deterrant. They're also a pain in the neck. If you're not a dog-lover, don't waste your time and vet bills.

3. Intrusion detection systems run as low as $300 with installation for monitored IR motion detector systems with panic buttons and a very loud siren. Just three rules: 1) never set it off intentionally; 2) always pay your monitoring fee (or set it up via automatic withdrawal); and 3) always have a backup.

4. Trim you hedges. High plants are great hiding places for burglers.

5. Never tell your neighbors when you're going to be out of town. Instead, pick a trusted, disinterested third party. Don't have the neighbors pick, up your mail. Use a mail hold, instead (through the Post Office).

6. Do have ONE (your most trustworthy) neighbor pick up your newspaper, but simply tell him/her, the day you're leaving, about when you'll be back.

7. Put 911 on Speed Dial. Sure - "9" "1" "1" ia

genebujold
2005-Nov-19, 07:51 AM
[QUOTE=genebujold]Wow. Where to begin? So much disinformation out there, much from Hollywood.

My best friend is currently a school teacher. He used to be a cop, 5th degree blackbelt in the Army as a special task force MP, then 12 years as a cop in California, during which one of among many duties was teaching residents how to improve their home/personal defence.

Truths:

1. Hand to hand training takes years (and many thousands of dollars) for it to be effective. IF you're more skilled than the average individual. Besides - they're usually armed and you're not. Unless you're considerably better trained than you, you're dead. Do, however, take a basic self-defense course. You'll never learn to counter someone who's studied any sort of matrial for any length of time, but it will help you to counter the unexpected while you resort to your other resouces.

2. Assult rifle, handgun, shotgun, gun period - unless you're CARRYING it on your person, most intruders are inside before you have time to get to where it's stored, much less unkey the lock, etc. Furthermore, most intruders aren't interested in you, and are very interested in avoiding you! Thus, self-defence might not even be your primary concern. Finally, every weapon except yourself can be turned against you.

3. Electronic intrusion detection and monitoring. Actually not a bad thing, as most of those caught for breaking and entering these days are because they tripped alarms.

4. Dogs. Their bark is worse than their bite. Heavy, agressive-sounding dogs and cassete tapes of their barking scare away most intruders. Pit-bulls are silent, thereby allowing the intruder into the house, and unless very well trained (and thus highly dangerous to your own children and neighborhood kids), are highly unreliable.

5. Cheap house that nobody would break into. Actually, lower to middle-class houses are broken into more often on a per-house by price bracket that more expensive houses. Cheap houses are simply cheap targets. Burglers know they're probably not alarmed.

6. City, county, state, and federal laws. Fortunately, in the US, if an intruder is coming at you inside your own home, you're free to fire without serious repucussion. Then again, you have to take him out before he takes you out while ensuring it's not your neighbor's grandmother sleepwalking into the wrong house because of her Alzheimer's.

7. Non-lethal weapons work for a short period of time, and I've seen no less than four policemen required to overpower a man who'd been maced by all four policemen. Tasers - not bad, but there are a lot of lawsuits out there. If they can't steal your paintings they'll steal your equity because of how you ruined their lives.

8. Getting back to guns, shotguns are far more involved in home gun deaths on a per-type than others, simply because they're so lethal. A small-caliber handgun with simple controls that's always kept either on the person or in a locked box is best - but ONLY if the individual is fully proficient in it's use. Fortunately, this only requires weeks of practice, not years, such has martial arts.

9. Shotguns, revisited. One person remarked, "it is very easy to fire a shotgun with one hand." I'm a 207 lb man who can bench press 250 lbs. It is NOT easy, much less easy, to fire a shotgun with one hand. I shoot both skeet and trap regularly, and used to waterski (VERY strong grip strength). Perhaps they scale El Capitan regularly, but my experience says it smacks of mere Hollywoodism.

Bottom Line:

I called my friend and ran these things through and here's what he came up with:

1. Post the security system monitoring stickers. Burglers rarely hit houses that are monitored when they can hit houses that are not.

2. Dogs that bark loudly and often are the best deterrant. They're also a pain in the neck. If you're not a dog-lover, don't waste your time and vet bills.

3. Intrusion detection systems run as low as $300 with installation for monitored IR motion detector systems with panic buttons and a very loud siren. Just three rules: 1) never set it off intentionally; 2) always pay your monitoring fee (or set it up via automatic withdrawal); and 3) always have a backup.

4. Trim you hedges. High plants are great hiding places for burglers.

5. Never tell your neighbors when you're going to be out of town. Instead, pick a trusted, disinterested third party. Don't have the neighbors pick, up your mail. Use a mail hold, instead (through the Post Office).

6. Do have ONE (your most trustworthy) neighbor pick up your newspaper, but simply tell him/her, the day you're leaving, about when you'll be back.

7. Put 911 on Speed Dial. Sure - "9" "1" "1" is quick, but "8" "1" is quicker.

8. Vary your internal lights. Always very your routine.

9. When driving, try to vary your route and routine. Be unpreditible.

10. Always reconcile with your mate.

Well, there's more, but this'll do for now.

- Gene'

Moose
2005-Nov-19, 03:02 PM
It seems to me that home security shares some principles in common with computer security.

The idea isn't to harden your home so as to prevent the worst-case scenario: the crack-crazed psychopath who isn't thinking in terms of his/her own safety, the sort that requires an entire precinct of cops to bring down.

Home defense is mostly about defeating the little guy, the punk looking for stuff that can be pawned for drug money. This sort of crook is surprisingly dangerous if surprised and/or confronted, because they're likely to be operating without any sort of plan or preparation and will be panicky as a result. This is the sort of person who will go for the softer targets. The sort that will avoid dogs, is looking for signs of an undefended, unoccupied house (or one occupied by the elderly that can be easily cowed).

The ounce of prevention...

The idea is to make your home look ready. Evidence of the presence of a dog (such as a chain and/or doghouse in the yard), alarm stickers in the windows, unostentatious NRA bumper sticker on the car. Evidence of participation in neighborhood watch and/or block parent type programs, and suddenly, homes a few blocks down the road are looking a lot more tempting than yours. That's good enough.

In any case, a truly determined and skilled intruder is going to get in. The idea isn't to stop someone from making off with your plasma TV or whatnot. This is specifically what homeowner's insurance is for. Material goods are replaceable. Your family's lives are not. So, the idea is to specifically avoid confrontation with an intruder. John Wayning is a good way to get someone you care about killed.

genebujold
2005-Nov-19, 03:29 PM
Great post, Moose - very well said.

I like the sticker I saw one time that read:

WARNING: This home has been successfully defended against intrusion twice already, and with the practice my reflexes and aim are improving!

I also liked: Our home is protected by our two children, Rex and Killer. They're usually very hungry when we're away all day.

And my favorite: Please feel free to enter and take whatever you want. It's not worth crap, but my insurance company doesn't know that. Just leave signs of forcible entry so the police report looks right.

Eoanthropus Dawsoni
2005-Nov-19, 05:09 PM
The goal of gunfire for home defense purposes is the immediate incapacitation of an attacker. Any firearm can produce a lethal wound, however there is a wide difference between a lethal wound and immediate incapacitation.

Gunshot wounds incapacitate through a disruption of the central nervous system. This can be accomplished through either direct physical damage to the brain or spinal column, or by depriving the brain of oxygen through bleeding. In order to produce this damage the round must have enough mass and velocity to penetrate through several layers of clothing and five or six inches of tissue and bone, and it must have enough frontal area (larger frontal area means more bleeding) to cause damage as it passes through the body. Tissue damage may also result not by direct contact with the projectile, but through the shock wave that passes through the tissue in the area immediately around the wound.

Small caliber wounds can be lethal if they produce enough blood loss. However this rarely occurs quickly. It may take several minutes to several hours for fatal bleeding to occur and during that time an attacker can do fatal damage to their victim, before they bleed to death themselves. Small caliber bullets can produce immediate incapacitating damage to the CNS, but the chances of this happening are not sufficient to bet one's life on the odds. The bullet would have to pass through the entire torso or neck of an attacker and penetrate the bones of the spinal column, or perhaps strike the head and penetrate a vital area of the brain.

In the hand gun calibers, 9mm +P and .38 Special +P ammunition would be at the very, very low end of suitability for adequate self defense, and even those would probably require multiple hits. Personally, I would not rely upon them. A well placed .357 round can do the job, but it should be a heaver 158 grain bullet, flat nose or semi hollow point. The lighter (and faster) ammunition may not have enough mass to accomplish adequate penetration.

Moving on upwards, most .40 and larger calibers are suitable for home defense but we are still within the range in which multiple hits might be required to accomplish immediate incapacitation of a bad guy. A gun owner who is competent with their hand gun and practices with it at least a couple of times a year can probably rely on their hand gun for home defense. However once we get into the larger calibers, we run the risk of a missed shot passing though a few walls and hitting someone next door. Pistols also require regular attention. If bullets are kept in a magazine too long, the spring may lose it's ability to feed the weapon. Pistol owners should have at least two magazines and every couple of months remove the bullets from one and load them into the other (or better yet, fire them on the range). A revolver doesn't require much care and can sit loaded for years and still work when needed. However if that happens it implies that the gun owner is not practicing with the gun and that is not a good thing.

Rifles are not a good choice for home defense. Most rifle ammunition will pass through the body of the bad guy and possibly through a few walls. This presents a danger to neighbors, and any bullet that passes through the bad guy is wasted energy (although a high velocity round will often cause a lot of shock wave tissue damage).

For home defense a shotgun is superior to a hand gun or rifle because it will produce far greater trauma to the attacker, is less likely to penetrate walls and hit third parties, and is much easier to operate effectively. Shotgun ammunition carries considerable energy at close range, but looses velocity quickly. This is good because that means that an on target hit will cause a lot of trauma and a miss will not likely carry enough energy to pass through to the neighbor's house.

Most bird shot will not have enough mass to penetrate deep enough into the body of a bad guy to do the damage needed to stop an attack. BB rounds would probably do the job, but buckshot is much better. A normal 2 3/4 inch 12 gauge #00 shell will contain nine pellets, with a combined frontal area of .77 square inches. That will cause a tremendous amount of tissue damage and result in rapid blood loss. Although #00 buckshot is the most commonly used defense round, #1 buckshot is even better. A shell will contain 16 pellets, with a total of frontal area of 1.13 square inches. The #1 individual pellet mass is somewhat less than #00 and therefore has less tissue penetration, however it is still quite sufficient. Also, the #1 shot is even less likely than #00 to carry it's energy beyond the bad guy and do damage to unintended targets. Unfortunately #1 buckshot is not easy to find, so most people use #00 (which is certainly adequate for the job).


Typical number of projectiles fired without reloading:

Revolver: 5 or 6
Pistol: 7 to 15
Rifle: 5 to 30
Shotgun 12ga. #00 shot: 45
Shotgun 12ga. #1 shot: 80

TheBlackCat
2005-Nov-19, 06:50 PM
If you hit someone in the heart, they will die. There is no need to wait for blood loss. The brain is no the only instantly lethal area.

I don't know about everywhere, but at least in my home town the police will check on your house several times a day when you are on vacation if you ask them to.

JHotz
2005-Nov-19, 08:13 PM
Cops wear pistols or revolvers so that they can be ready to deal with unexpected situations.So you are saying a shotgun is inappropriate for unexpected situations.
When cops anticipate that there might be shooting or other deadly violence, they use their shotgun or perhaps a rifle. Any cop who knowingly goes into a situation where there is an expectation of deadly violence, armed only with a hand gun, is a fool.I do not see that many shotguns you on the cops TV show.
Quite possibly a dead fool. That point is one of the first things I used to teach rookie cops when I was a training officer.I used to train the instructors in arrest techniques, gun retention, self-defense, ect for the Kansas Highway Patrol academy. I was offered a contract to train cadets but I could not make the commitment because I was fighting professionally at the time. A shotgun is to cumbersome to put away when the situation defuses, it becomes impossible to cuff, use CS, tazer, or a baton. When you see an office with a shotgun he has other offices around to perform the duties.


And as I said, it is very easy to fire a shotgun with one hand. But it is not very likely that one would have to do that.I believe you have experience handling a gun. I do not believe you have experience in dealing with intruders. If an intruder hears you chamber a round in you shotgun he may start shooting through the door. I you are trying to look around without alerting him a shotgun makes this more difficult. If he surprises you in you bedroom you will probable not be able to get it out and pointed at him. If you end up in a struggle his knife or handgun will probable get you first.

JHotz
2005-Nov-19, 08:19 PM
If an intruder is close enough to wrestle you for a firearm or club, you messed up.If you are overly triggerhappy and shoot you kid going to the bathroom you have also messed up.
An intruder has the advantage. He can hide in a dark corner and wait for you. You have no idea where he is. Going in blindly is not a good or safe idea. He'll see you before you see him. Best to hold your ground and make noise. And a good pull on a shotgun is a good way to get anyones attention.Unless he responds by shooting.

JHotz
2005-Nov-19, 09:17 PM
This assumption that there are only a few kinds of home invasions and that they all call for the some resolution is false. People may be in your home for all different reasons.

I have experience several home invasions. Lethal force was not appropriate in any of them.

When I was about 7 I heard a commotion in our living room. I got out of bed and went to see. My father had my stepbrother, who did not live with use, pinned on the floor and my mother was calling the police. My brother had been beaten in a bar fight and had come to get on of our guns to return. Lethal force was not the appropriate action. The guns in fact were why the intrusion occurred.

When I was 20 and living on my own in town someone opened my unlocked door and slammed it shut. I could see the silhouette through my open bedroom door. The individual pulled was looking out the window and pulled a 22 automatic handgun and chambered a round. I yelled at him and it turned out to be an idiot I had know in high school. Lethal force would have been a disaster.

When I was 23 there were four guys waiting for me at my girlfriends house. One of them attacked me and in an inconclusive tussle he broke and fled. I went with several of my friends to his house. He would not open the door and we left without incident. He called me at work and said he was coming by my house with his gangster friends and they were going to kill me. I was home alone when they pulled up to my house. I stood in the door and showed them my MAC-11 with a 48 round clip hanging out of it and the drove on.

I would like to add that firearms are more likely to create a greater and more severe danger than they will ever prevent. Far more people are shot in accidents or by someone they know, in the heat of passion, than are saved by the appropriate shooting of an intruder.

Gillianren
2005-Nov-19, 10:50 PM
I won't have a gun in my home. Ever. You're far more likely to kill a friend/family member than an intruder. In fact, it strikes me that that's a very good argument against having a weapon that will kill instantly. Wouldn't you rather merely wound your child?

Wolverine
2005-Nov-19, 10:55 PM
I would like to add that firearms are more likely to create a greater and more severe danger than they will ever prevent. Far more people are shot in accidents or by someone they know, in the heat of passion, than are saved by the appropriate shooting of an intruder.
I strongly disagree. Such claims are usually attributable to a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine in the 1980s which suggested that handguns were 43 times more likely to injure or kill a family member than an intruder. Problem being, of the 43 deaths presented in the study, 37 were suicides; as noted by Guy Smith: "Of the remaining deaths, the deceased family members include felons, drug dealers, violent spouses committing assault, and other criminal activities."

Firearms are tools, nothing more. Ownership requires planning, responsibility, training, and diligent practice. Those not up to the task shouldn't purchase or own any.

Eoanthropus Dawsoni's advice is spot on: shotgun. Beyond that, I'd suggest extensively reading the works of Jeff Cooper, Massad Ayoob, and similar experts in regard to home and personal defense with firearms.

JohnD
2005-Nov-20, 01:20 AM
All,
I posted this here before, but it has been wiped. Why?

To repeat myself, congratulations to Eoanthropus Dawsoni, for an object lesson in ironic deception. When you translate his nom-de-Internet you will see why he is an arch hoaxer.

Eoanthropus Dawsoni = Piltdown man

John

JHotz
2005-Nov-20, 01:39 AM
Firearms are tools, nothing more. I agree
Ownership requires planning, responsibility, training, and diligent practice. Those not up to the task shouldn't purchase or own any.What would you suggest as a minimum of time devoted to gun care, training, ect/


Eoanthropus Dawsoni's advice is spot on: shotgun. Beyond that, I'd suggest extensively reading the works of Jeff Cooper, Massad Ayoob, and similar experts in regard to home and personal defense with firearms.Would you agree that one of the things thieve are looking for when they break in are guns?

JHotz
2005-Nov-20, 01:42 AM
I won't have a gun in my home. Ever. You're far more likely to kill a friend/family member than an intruder. In fact, it strikes me that that's a very good argument against having a weapon that will kill instantly. Wouldn't you rather merely wound your child?Do not forget that popular culture if full of gunplay that children love to imitate. It is often the child who gets the gun and shoots someone else. Some would say it is the parent’s fault for not locking the guns away but kids are very crafty and all it takes is one mistake.

LurchGS
2005-Nov-20, 04:39 AM
Do not forget that popular culture if full of gunplay that children love to imitate. It is often the child who gets the gun and shoots someone else. Some would say it is the parentís fault for not locking the guns away but kids are very crafty and all it takes is one mistake.

Children can easily be trained to not play with guns - so long as you don't store it in the toy box.

I have 2 handguns, a rifle, and a shotgun - and two boys. I had the guns first. I never locked them up, and I still don't.

if somebody breaks into my home, he is by definition a threat to the well being of my family. As such, it's my duty (or my wife's if I'm not home, or she gets to the gun first) to make sure said intruder becomes a non-threat. If that means pulling the trigger, so be it. Cuz if I pull the trigger, I'm damn sure not shooting at the ceiling.

-----

my fingers aren't cold nor dead yet

genebujold
2005-Nov-20, 05:57 AM
There's been a lot of nonsense written here by otherwise intelligent (but apparently inexperienced or mislead) people and it needs to be addressed to prevent someone from being killed.

I joined the NRA in 1990. I'd been shooting guns since I was 9, including handguns (revolvers and semi-autos), shotguns, hunting rifles, target pistols, etc.

During my decade+ long stint in the military, I qualified expert on all weapons during recurring requals, including the M-8, M-9, M-16A2, and shot in practice and combat. I've had distance, close-in, and hand-to-hand combat training, through both the military and my best friend, who was a California sheriff with duties in corrections and a background in the Army as both an MP (military police) and special forces.

I currently own three weapons. A .380 ACP, a .44 Magnum, and a .410 shotgun, but use only the .380 for self-defence at home (in my belly pack - the other two are unloaded and locked in a gun cabinet). I have a concealed carry permit and teach gun and hunting safety courses.

There are a lot of self-appointed "experts" running arround, and most of them cite names commonly found in popular handgunning and self-defense magazines. They, the names, and the sources sound nice, and the advice has a ring of truth to it, but it's simply wrong. Sorry if this breaks anyone's bubble, but the NRA is NOT the ultimate authority on home defense, particularly for the lesser experienced. While they do advocate gun safety, they primarily excel at what they do, which is advocating gun use and securing gun ownerships freedoms.

Spouting advice suitable for someone of my background and experience could very well get a novice killed in a close encounter of the criminal kind.

Please stop. Instead, take a look at the gun death statistics and do the following:

1. If you intend to use a gun for self defence in your home, realize it's a last-ditch weapon.

2. Have a safe room with a switch-lock inside (key lock on the outside), solid wood (not the usual interior doors), extended screws for mounting the hinges. Ensure the same room gives is without windows. Ensure the most likely avenues of entry aren't between where you normally spend your time and your safe room. For this reason, most MBR closets make the best safe rooms, but it may also be a hall bath or closet.

3. If you have kids, lock the guns in a combo gun box. Your kids might be well-trained, but one day they'll bring home neighbors' kids who're not.

4. Store the box in your safe room.

5. If you have a spare phone, and can plug it in your safe room, do so.

6. Handguns are close-in weapons, suitable down to point-blank range, if necessary. Shotguns are short-range weapons, suitable from near point-blank range to between 20 and 100 yards, depending on the load.

7. ALL weapons are last-ditch resources. Higher-priority resources include posting alarm system stickers on your windows or a sign in your yard, using an alarm system, having larger, deeper-sounding dogs like German shepherds, manually activating the alarm system, escaping the house or to your safe room, calling 911, and if all else fails, pulling the trigger.

8. Your brain remains your highest-priority weapon. If you use it well, you'll probably avoid the vast majority of situations where a weapon would have been required.

JHotz was correct, and it would be wise to heed both his experience and his advice. He did what was right by using his head rather than reaching for a handgun. While guns can indeed be a useful tool in the hands of one who is trained, they nevertheless remain dangerous weapons. JHotz's actions correctly avoiding escalating any further conflict, but there are additional actions he could have taken (listed above) which would have increased his and his family's safety.

Never forget this cardinal rule - guns in a close-in fight often become equally available to both sides. You must avoid this at all costs, and be both prepared and capable of keeping your weapon from your intruder. If you're not capable of doing this, it's generally better to not have a gun in the first place than it is to run the risk of loosing it to your attacker.

Wolverine
2005-Nov-20, 02:33 PM
What would you suggest as a minimum of time devoted to gun care, training, ect/
It would be a poor approach to place a "time limit" on the above. Safety considerations are of paramount importance. Learning, practicing and mastering the fundamentals span different times for different people.


Would you agree that one of the things thieve are looking for when they break in are guns?
Absolutely, which is why a quality gun safe should be a top priority.

Wolverine
2005-Nov-20, 02:38 PM
There are a lot of self-appointed "experts" running arround, and most of them cite names commonly found in popular handgunning and self-defense magazines. They, the names, and the sources sound nice, and the advice has a ring of truth to it, but it's simply wrong. Sorry if this breaks anyone's bubble, but the NRA is NOT the ultimate authority on home defense, particularly for the lesser experienced. While they do advocate gun safety, they primarily excel at what they do, which is advocating gun use and securing gun ownerships freedoms.
The NRA is a lobbying organization, yes. They frequently cite errant or misleading statistics, particularly in the area of defensive gun usage (e.g. Lott, Kleck). Skepticism should be employed when perusing their materials (much of which are political). The classes/training they offer though are quite good.

Wolverine
2005-Nov-20, 02:42 PM
Some would say it is the parentís fault for not locking the guns away but kids are very crafty and all it takes is one mistake.

It most certainly is the parents' responsibility, and the law. Those whose children get their hands on firearms by improperly storing/securing them are criminally negligent.

JHotz
2005-Nov-20, 06:27 PM
It most certainly is the parents' responsibility, and the law. Those whose children get their hands on firearms by improperly storing/securing them are criminally negligent.Cold comfort to someone who looses a child that way.

JHotz
2005-Nov-20, 06:30 PM
Children can easily be trained to not play with guns - so long as you don't store it in the toy box.

I have 2 handguns, a rifle, and a shotgun - and two boys. I had the guns first. I never locked them up, and I still don't.

if somebody breaks into my home, he is by definition a threat to the well being of my family. As such, it's my duty (or my wife's if I'm not home, or she gets to the gun first) to make sure said intruder becomes a non-threat. If that means pulling the trigger, so be it. Cuz if I pull the trigger, I'm damn sure not shooting at the ceiling.

-----

my fingers aren't cold nor dead yetI think you have watched to many Diry Harry Movies. Life is just not that simple.

Wolverine
2005-Nov-20, 07:00 PM
Cold comfort to someone who looses a child that way.

It wasn't intended to be comforting. Someone whose negligence results in the death of a child should be prosecuted and incarcerated.

genebujold
2005-Nov-20, 07:17 PM
Cold comfort to someone who looses a child that way.

I agree with Wolverine. No government can force parents to take reasonable precautions. They can, however, enact laws which hold parents criminally negligent if they fail in their duties as the adult caretakers of minor children.

The responsibility rests with the parents.

You're right, however, in that if the parents fail in their responsibility, they may very well loose a child.

turbo-1
2005-Nov-20, 07:56 PM
If you don't have children in your home, you might want to have a couple of handguns tucked away in strategic places. I suggest the Walther P38 with hollow-point bullets. The Colt 1911 and its variants are legendary man-stoppers, but they can be hard to handle for a person with small hands. Ditto on some 9mm pistols with staggered high-capacity magazines. My wife can handle a P38 easily and the recoil is modest, so she can practice comfortably. (By the way, if you're not going to learn how to properly handle a weapon and commit to practicing from time to time, don't get one.)

Other reasons to select the P38:
1) They are reliable and quite accurate
2) They are double-action semi-automatic pistols. Just flip off the safety and pull the trigger. You can cock the hammer as if it were a single-action, but you don't have to.
3) They are very easy to break down for cleaning and maintenance
4) Though they have been supplanted about everywhere by more modern pistols, sometimes with greater magazine capacities, these were the preferred sidearms for police work in many locations in Europe for decades. They are now plentiful and inexpensive on the used market, so you can afford to buy a couple of them.
5) 9mm ammunition is plentiful and relatively inexpensive.
6) They have other nice features, like an indicator pin that you can feel in the dark as you thumb the hammer, letting you know there's already a round in the chamber.

genebujold
2005-Nov-20, 08:14 PM
I've thought about getting a P38, but I've shot my .380 ACP so much it's like an extension of my hand. I like the Winchester silvertips as they've never caused a ramp jam.

But I keep my .44 Magnum in the safe room, loaded for bear, and I'm as almost as accurate with it in close quarters as I am with my .380 ACP.

LurchGS
2005-Nov-20, 09:10 PM
I think you have watched to many Diry Harry Movies. Life is just not that simple.

no, it's not. I agree with both you and Gene. My comment was meant to indicate that I intend to use every avenue at my disposal, and firearms are most definately in my choice tree. (I spent my share of time in the military, and quallified expert in .45, 9mm, M16 - as did my wife.)

in fact, our military experience was Coast Guard - which is primary law enforcement (well, was then) as far as things going 'bang' are concerned.

I should have taken the time to expand my comment (was runnign late to a meeting. duh. should have waited)

Gillianren
2005-Nov-20, 11:02 PM
If a parent loses their own child through gun negligence, I have far less sympathy for them than the parents of a neighbor's kid or their kid's friend dies through gun negligence--as in, one parent is perfectly responsible and either locks up their gun or doesn't have one, but their kid goes next door and gets shot by the gun under their neighbor's pillow by their neighbor's kid.

As for teaching kids to avoid guns, there was a study on 20/20 once that showed kids who are perfectly responsible about guns, leaving them alone and all that, when they're on their own are just as likely to play with the gun when they've got a friend around. Peer pressure is an amazing thing.

JHotz
2005-Nov-20, 11:06 PM
no, it's not. I agree with both you and Gene. My comment was meant to indicate that I intend to use every avenue at my disposal, and firearms are most definately in my choice tree. (I spent my share of time in the military, and quallified expert in .45, 9mm, M16 - as did my wife.)

in fact, our military experience was Coast Guard - which is primary law enforcement (well, was then) as far as things going 'bang' are concerned.

I should have taken the time to expand my comment (was runnign late to a meeting. duh. should have waited)You already have a good deal of experience with firearms and probable enjoy the time spent learning about them. This make firearms a better choice for you. I have spent a great deal of experience in hand to hand and regularly enjoy intense sparing and training so of course I favor that. I used to have some guns but lost interest in them over the years. The maintenance and safety issues are just a hassle for me and I prefer not to have them around.

JHotz
2005-Nov-20, 11:11 PM
How many of you get to know you neighborhood and maintain amicable relationships with everyone. It is easy for me, as have four family members who own property on my block. I have a rental on one side but I try to spread some goodwill to every new tenant.

LurchGS
2005-Nov-21, 12:20 AM
As for teaching kids to avoid guns, there was a study on 20/20 once that showed kids who are perfectly responsible about guns, leaving them alone and all that, when they're on their own are just as likely to play with the gun when they've got a friend around. Peer pressure is an amazing thing.

I saw that "study"... as I recall, they left the gun in the play area - actually in amongst the toysl, in fact. That placement gives implied permission to play with it. If they'd put the gun up on a shelf - even in plain site - I contend the children would have been far less likely to play with it.

Another thing to consider is that study put the kids in an unfamiliar play area - they went in not knowing what kinds of toys were there - so anything left in the toy bin is, by definition, a toy. I also contend that if the play area had been their own home, there would have been a greater liklihood that the kids would have turned the gun over to an adult.

JohnD
2005-Nov-21, 12:33 AM
All,
We are not unaware of the gun problem over here in the UK - a police woman has just been shot dead and her companion severely injured by thieves robbing a shop in Bradford. http://observer.guardian.co.uk/uk_news/story/0,6903,1646782,00.html This has been national headline news for the last three days, and will continue to be for some time. How often is that true of a shooting in the US? Even of a police officer? IMHO, more guns=more deaths.

And I respect the advice given here by several posters - genebujold in particular - but read with horror of the situation you are in. I could probably get a licence for a sporting shotgun, but feel there is no need to do so for self defence,and I know no one who would want to do so. My next door neighbour does have a gun - he goes rough shooting for rabbits - but when we were away and the burglars came to our house, he did not even think of getting his gun. Loud voices and lights and they were away over the back fence. We are very lucky not to be in your situation and I would hate to sound preachy or smug.
But read the article on this link http://www.guardian.co.uk/g2/story/0,,1642080,00.html There are dangers in message boards too and in the firearms advice they give.
John

LurchGS
2005-Nov-21, 01:15 AM
John,
For all the flames fanned by the press, losing a police officer over here to gunfire is actually relatively uncommon (especailly when you consider A) how many guns we have, B) how many cops we have)

I respect your view, but personally (of course) I disagree that more guns = more deaths. I am of the belief that 'if everybody's armed, armed robbers will soon become extinct'. This does imply that the general populace is at least moderately trained in their use.

genebujold
2005-Nov-21, 03:29 AM
As for teaching kids to avoid guns, there was a study on 20/20 once that showed kids who are perfectly responsible about guns, leaving them alone and all that, when they're on their own are just as likely to play with the gun when they've got a friend around. Peer pressure is an amazing thing.

Hence my exhortations to either carry on your person or keep them locked up!

Good article, Gillianren.

genebujold
2005-Nov-21, 03:46 AM
All,
We are not unaware of the gun problem over here in the UK - a police woman has just been shot dead and her companion severely injured by thieves robbing a shop in Bradford. http://observer.guardian.co.uk/uk_news/story/0,6903,1646782,00.html This has been national headline news for the last three days, and will continue to be for some time. How often is that true of a shooting in the US? Even of a police officer? IMHO, more guns=more deaths.

And I respect the advice given here by several posters - genebujold in particular - but read with horror of the situation you are in. I could probably get a licence for a sporting shotgun, but feel there is no need to do so for self defence,and I know no one who would want to do so. My next door neighbour does have a gun - he goes rough shooting for rabbits - but when we were away and the burglars came to our house, he did not even think of getting his gun. Loud voices and lights and they were away over the back fence. We are very lucky not to be in your situation and I would hate to sound preachy or smug.
But read the article on this link http://www.guardian.co.uk/g2/story/0,,1642080,00.html There are dangers in message boards too and in the firearms advice they give.
John

Hi, John D, and thanks for your post. It underscores a serious difference in the mindsets between various countries.

Get this:

I've a good friend who did a two-week missions trip in Haiti. He reported that the only requirement for securing one's property was locking the gate. No fence. No lock on the door of the house. Just the gate on the edge of the property. That was enough to deter the criminals there who believed in voodoo, that their violation was enough to bring their own destruction.

I did a report in high school in 1980 that discussed the differences between gun laws in the US and the UK. I was astounded to learn of the differences then, as well as how the crime stats have shifted.

Back in 1980, the UK had far less crime of all kinds than the US.

Yet as the US has actually proliferated gun use, safety, awareness, etc., over the years, as well as cooperation with police, with a corresponding very serious reduction in the the overall proliferation of crime, UK gun policy has resulted in far more crime over the years, and yes, those involving firearms.

The bottom line is that every culture is different. What works for one culture won't necessarily work for another. A great deal of the underlying reason has to do with the underlying philosophy of the general members of the nation.

The human mind is a great, wonderful, and highly capable thing. Yet it differs greatly among the nations, and therein lies our problem. Can we, as individual clasts, come to accept the differences between clasts? People say they can, but when push comes to shove, it's usually the opposite that happens.

Superluminal
2005-Nov-21, 05:17 AM
JohnD, I've often read, in the UK, because homeowners are not likely to be armed. Burglers are more likely to enter a home because there is no fear of being shot.