I listened to Billionaire Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s remarks after the attack at the West Freeway Church of Christ in Texas. I paraphrase, but you can check the video of his remarks for yourself *
‘It is the job of law enforcement to have guns and to decide when to shoot.
You don’t want average citizens to have guns in public. That is the job of the police.’
This was a prepared speech so we have to assume Mayor Bloomberg meant what he said. One mistake is an accident, two mistakes are carelessness, and three or more falsehoods are propaganda. I had hope for Mayor Bloomberg, but, sadly, this qualifies as propaganda. To his credit, Mayor Bloomberg is probably telling us what he knows, but you know things that the Mayor doesn’t.
You know how to defend yourself and your family. I’ve taught beginners to handle firearms. My students have been properly intimidated by the moral weight of the gun. My student’s questions change with time in a consistent pattern.
They often evolve through this chain of thought.
-How do I shoot?
— When can I shoot?
——– When must I defend myself and those I love?
The law says you have may use lethal force when you face a certain level of threat under certain circumstances. With time, most people who carry concealed fall back to the situation where they must shoot. They are beautifully reluctant to harm others. They plan to use a gun to prevent a greater harm, and to do so only when they have no other choice. I’ve seen those decisions fall into place. That is my experience, but we know far more.
Contrary to what Mayor Bloomberg implied, people with a concealed carry permit are more law abiding and less violent than the police. That makes sense when you consider their very different situations. Police and civilians are figuratively headed in opposite directions. Police have to close with a criminal and make an arrest. The ordinary citizen wants to get away from the bad guy. I think police have a much tougher job, but more citizens have contact with criminals every day than do the police. In fact, thousands of honest citizens defend themselves from criminal attack by using a firearm in self-defense every day. Mayor Bloomberg chose to ignore those facts.
You know something else that Mayor Bloomberg doesn’t know. You know how you live. You know who belongs in your home and at work. You know your neighbors, your co-workers, and your customers. You know many of the people you meet routinely on the street. That knowledge gives you an incredible advantage when things go wrong. Because of what you know and who you know, you know the good guys from the bad guys. That helps explain why armed civilians are so much less likely than the police to shoot the wrong person. You saw the problem unfold while the police arrive later and have to figure it out in a hurry. Again, Mayor Bloomberg chose to ignore those facts.
Time is critical when you defend yourself from a violent attack. When we look at the attack at the West Freeway Church of Christ, the defenders had only a few seconds to respond. (The video of the attack is here.) We have an advantage that the police don’t have. We are there when the problem unfolds. The police arrive some 11.1 minutes later, on average. In mass murder attacks, that delay costs about a dozen lives. Mayor Bloomberg chose to ignore the lives we save.
Perhaps I’m being too hard on the Mayor. You have knowledge and experience that the Mayor doesn’t have. Tens of millions of us bear arms every day. In contrast, it has been years, if not decades, since Mayor Bloomberg lived without a paid security detail. Maybe he is telling the truth as he knows it since most of his security detail are former law enforcement officers. In that sense, the former Mayor still lives with police protection. The rest of us can’t afford that, so we do it ourselves.
Mayor Bloomberg hired New York cops to defend him, so of course he wants you disarmed.
I understand that politicians want to give us simple answers, but the world is a complex place. We’ve seen gun prohibition fail time after time. Can we afford a political leader who gets something as simple as self-defense so consistently wrong? I won’t trust Mayor Bloomberg with the safety of my family.
*- I noticed that Youtube has taken down the original video of Bloomberg on Fox news. Please let me know if you can find the original source video.