Thursday, February 3, 2011

Firearms - concealed or open? Both bad

While I dislike fire arms intensely, the arguments about concealed vs unconcealed weapons has taken my eye in recent times. None of it makes sense to me, but definitely the argument that concealing weapons makes it safer for Joe Blogs.

A mate of mine has just sent me a video of a fold-up machine gun. He wants one for Christmas. As often happens with this friend, our views differ. I find this sort of thing quite disturbing.

The argument between concealed vs. blatantly obvious weapons is an interesting one.

Clearly the chances of being mugged with a big Smith and Wesson on your belt are low. However, many firearm pundits argue that allowing concealed weapons make people safer, on average. Their view is that, while openly carrying firearms protects the carrier, it sends the message to would-be muggers that anyone without an obvious firearm is unarmed – the perfect victim. However, if all weapons are concealed, the would-be mugger is unable to separate the persons that are armed from those that are not – thus making mugging anyone more risky.

But, if you are in a location where you are allowed to conceal weapons, and you are the sort of person that feels that they need a weapon for self defense, why would you conceal it? Surely you would want to make your 'protection' as obvious as possible*. Yes, the would-be mugger might be be hesitant to mug someone if he/she was unsure if they were carrying a weapon, but someone who might be carrying a weapon has to be far more attractive to mug than someone that definitely is.

Wouldn't then, it be in everyone who is carrying a weapon's best interest to carry it openly? if so, the mugger would soon enough work out that anyone carrying a gun is carrying it openly, and anyone who is not carrying a gun openly is also not concealing a gun either. Thus making laws that allow concealed weapons on the basis of self defense pointless.

Worse still, the only persons that would have an incentive to conceal his weapon is the would-be mugger - because he would want others to see him as harmless until it's too late.

I’d prefer if people just didn’t carry guns. I'm glad to live in Australia where they are uncommon.

*picture Rambo out shopping – big gun, knives on belt, little daughter sleeping peacefully in a baby bjorn on chest