There has been some lively discussion recently after the French terrorist attack. Some are ridiculous, but a few have some valid points. For example, how prepared are you personally to deal with a similar situation.
An UN-armed society
While I believe one of the strategic justifications we saw such a horrible attack was largely based off the fact France is virtually unarmed. Even many of their police do not carry firearms. As strange as that is for most of us to accept, it is part of their culture. So, why wouldn’t we see such a brazen act take place in such a soft target, it makes sense to me from a strategic point of view. You greatly increase your success, while mitigating your risk and that is good planning. While we may want to think the bad guys all live in a cave in the last century to do so would be a major tactical mistake. There is a lot of planning and preparation that went into this attack.
Protect the homeland
The next obvious question is can we expect to see something similar here in our country? While I believe it is possible, I believe it is not very probably. There are a few facts they bad guys have to consider. Fact one, we have some of the best law enforcement in the world, these folks are armed and move to the sound of gunfire. They have to consider this in their planning, not to do so would be very costly. How would they mitigate the effectiveness of our law enforcement? They pick and choose the location along with the time they choose to act, which means we must be eternally vigil. Fact two, we are an armed society, there are countless citizens who “conceal” carry on a daily basis. This is the wild card they will have difficulty mitigating. They cannot predict who, how many or the effectiveness of the response as it relates to their own actions. One armed citizen can through a huge wrench into their gears. For a coordinated attack to be effective they have to reach a point, a critical point where they are in control. If they have to confront an armed response whether from our law enforcement or a private citizen(s) it could severely disrupt their plans, even altering them in our favor.
First responders and???
Now, with that being said are we prepared to respond to a similar attack? I believe our law enforcement stands poised to respond. While I would like to see them better trained (selfish promotion) they have their mission, equipment and training behind them. Along with a command, control and communications that can coordinate quickly with a timely response. The private citizen on the other hand may not be as prepared or may not have consider the type of opponent they face. One honorable mention as it relates to concealed carry is “off duty” law enforcement so my hope is more an more consider the necessity of off duty carry not just for their protection, but our country as well.
Serious concealed carry
For those who carry concealed it is usually a result of exercising their constitutional rights, personal protection or a combination. Many are taking classes that specialize in the art of concealment along with marksmanship; which is great. If you were to take a moment and consider the arsenal the French terrorist had and compare that to what you carry on a daily basis you might seem a little out-gunned. All the more reason to train, but really to consider your equipment. Imagine if you will the videos you saw of people that were close enough to record the cold blooded murder of some of the victims. Theoretically they were close enough to respond with lethal force. You have the element of surprise, but do you have the right equipment? Obviously you cannot conceal a rifle, but your choice of concealment weaponry and support equipment might need to be re-evaluated.
As a rule of thumb, we recommend a minimum of 9mm as the caliber, a minimum of 10 rounds in the primary magazine and depending on your situation and perceived threat, a spare magazine. For some who choose to carry less than a 9mm consider the distance, your marksmanship with the chosen platform and the effectiveness of the chosen round versus one of these terrorists. Would it have been sufficient knowing a failure to neutralize would mean very bad things for you. On top of that, there were three of them, would you have enough ammunition in the primary to negotiate multiple threats. The last thing you want is to have to perform a reload. Then do you carry spare ammunition for those times when you “want” to preform a reload. We should all take a closer look at our equipment, load out and training.
I’ve said it before, but an armed society is a polite society. The benefits of such an armed presence not only acts as a formidable response, but possible deterrent. So, what’s in your holster?
"We shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender." Winston Churchill,