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Corinne Mosher, a shooting instructor and competitor, shares some thoughts around the responsibility and compromises that
come with the decision to carry a concealed weapon.
In a world where dangerous people feed off of those they deem weak and vulnerable, the goal of a daily defense plan is twofold:
to carry oneself in a way that is uninviting to criminals, and when that isn’t enough, to deploy physical tactics designed to create
an opportunity to escape with your life. It takes vigilance and practice to understand criminal behaviors and recognize what they
look like in real life. Being prepared to defend yourself requires developing a heightened sense of awareness which increases
your ability to hone in on potentially dangerous situations before they become active attacks.
Simply put, if you can “see it coming” you give yourself time to prepare an appropriate response. Then, a good physical
defense requires studying the strengths and limitations of a variety of defensive tools and training yourself to use them
effectively. Here’s the punchline: practicing a daily defense plan requires changes in your mindset and lifestyle. Unfortunately,
everyone has a limit to how much personal comfort they are willing to sacrifice in order to give themselves the best mental and
physical defense against criminal interference.
Carrying a firearm every day can be a figurative, and literal, pain. In the few years in which I have been a Concealed Carry
Permit holder and instructor I have developed the opinion that concealed carry isn’t and shouldn’t be for everyone. Understand
me. While I fervently believe in the constitutional right to own and carry firearms in the United States, the realities of every day
carry can be complicated, uncomfortable and sometimes socially awkward — if you’re doing it right, that is. In order to adopt this
lifestyle, a responsible concealed carrier will spend time, effort and money navigating the ethical, legal, moral and physical
realities concerning the use of deadly force, concealed carry methods and the sometimes complicated maze of carry/no carry
I am writing this article for those who, like myself, have made the choice to carry a firearm every day. We call it Every Day Carry,
or EDC. This does not mean, however, that we don’t make every day compromises in our defense plan. Each day we choose
how and what to carry based on how we perceive risk in our environment, then balance what we should do in order to be the
most prepared with what we are willing to do without making too many uncomfortable adjustments.
While we should be spending more time and effort in learning how to stop a dangerous situation from occurring by practicing
good self-awareness, many well-meaning people skip over mental preparedness all together and head straight to the personal
protection products. To most people “self-defense” means buying a gun, pepper spray or stun gun and calling it good. As an
instructor I have met with many individuals who are looking to purchase a gun for concealed carry in order to feel safer. Instead
of working towards increasing their personal awareness and seeking advanced training in the use of the firearm for concealed
carry, they treat the firearm as if it has magic power to ward off evil simply by being in their environment.
Concealing a firearm can be a challenge. The fact is that no matter what super-tuckable-invisible-no print holster you can find, it
is never truly comfortable to wear a gun and dress around it. So, one compromise that is easy to make is to carry a tiny gun. If
you ask the clerk at any gun shop to show you the most popular concealed carry guns he or she will start pulling out the
smallest guns in the case. I really do believe and preach that the gun you’ll practice with and carry every day is the gun you
should buy, no matter what its size or caliber. However, if there were no limitations and I had to choose one firearm to take to the
fight for my life I wouldn’t take a pistol, I’d grab my rifle.
The only reason we conceal pistols is that it’s legal, easier and less socially awkward than slinging your rifle up and walking
around with it. The only benefit to carrying a small gun is that it is easy to hide. Everything else about that gun becomes more
difficult. Less mass in the gun and shorter grips means that we feel more recoil while having less surface area to achieve good
hold control. Smaller magazines mean fewer rounds. A shorter sight radius means more of a chance of missing your target
through even slight sight misalignment. But, at least we don’t have to change the way we dress… . The end result is maintaining
a certain standard of comfort by limiting our ability to defend ourselves with the best tools. We all do it…myself included.
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