I’m so tired of the strange rangers in our midst who bristle with weapons (plural) all the time and give us a bad name. I even knew someone who insisted on slipping a gun into his belt to walk down to the end of his (short) driveway to meet his kids’ school bus — this in a very, very safe, rural neighborhood.
Off course, I likewise wish more people would get properly trained and carry when appropriate.
Well, the three factors involved with any risk mitigation tactic are 1) the risk you reasonably face (reasonably!), 2) the severity of the injury you’d sustain if the bad thing happened, and 3) the cost of such mitigation (time, money, and effort). This is probably a well-known equation among risk management professionals, but it came to me in a flash today:
(risk)(severity)/cost ==> how armed we are
We can all reasonably assess our risk profile. Key word is reasonably! Not all of us are being targeted by nationally-organized criminal organizations (though I know people who are), but too many of us act as if we are. And of course your baseline risk (the risk of just living where you do) will differ between inner Chicago and rural New England.
The severity of our injury in a situation where we’d be legally justified in deploying our gun is, of course, high.
The cost of going armed — and how armed we go — is the rub for most of us. It requires significant thought and it’s a real pain in the ass for me to gun up when it’s 95 degrees here and humid. But in the Fall, wearing a jacket…not so much. You get the idea. And of course, if you don’t want to dress but one notch up from a homeless addict (“like a hobo” as Tamara Keel puts it), the cost of going armed increases. There’s better restaurants than Applebees, ya know. Not that it can’t be done…
Fasten seat belt: (risk=lo)(severity=hi)/cost=lo ==> buckle up
Violent actors targeting you: (risk=med to hi)(severity=hi)/cost=medium ==> gun up
Walking to the end of your short driveway in a safe, rural neighborhood: Don’t even go there!