From the first post.
I was reading the contingency planning thread, and I realized that some of the posters feel the need to keep firearms in their house for protection. I'm really not trolling, I'd like to understand your point of view better, because this seems foreign to me.
1. Why don't you move to a less dangerous area? It can't be much fun, being constantly on edge that someone is going to invade your house or assault you on the street.
I live in a very non-dangerous area, as things go. Still, things happen, and I find it better to be prepared than not to be prepared. I have smoke detectors for the same reason, although I think a house fire is very unlikely. I wear a seat belt when driving, too. I am not "constantly on edge that someone is going to invade my house or assault me on the street," although somebody did try a little over a year ago. That was not where I live, however, but in New Orleans, a city known for violent crime. I was quite thankful to be armed, and my wife was quite thankful I was armed. I carry as habit, however, so I was not even in New Orleans "constantly on edge that someone was going to assault me on the street."
To be honest, scottish, I do not know anybody
who lives constantly on edge as you describe. You say you are being "honest" and wanting to understand the point of view better, but the way you write does not indicate this to be true. The same goes for your further posting in this thread.
2. Do you regularly practice with your firearm? (I used to shoot cans with a .22 when I was a kid, but that's about the limit of my experience. When I eventually FIRE, I'd like to try some practical shooting if I can find a good range. But I don't have time for another hobby right now.)
Yes, although not as much as I used to, thanks to MMM and not wanting to spend money on ammunition!
3. If you have children or a spouse, how have you trained them to stay out of the way if there's an incident? i.e. so they don't get shot?
Yes. My wife has been through formal training, carries herself, and is pretty good with a pistol. My two older boys are so well trained that they can now shoot in the yard without direct supervision (took years to get to that point). Everybody knows what to do if there is an incident in public or at the home.
Indeed, in the incident I described in New Orleans, my wife anticipated what I was about to do and moved about 4-5 feet away from me, quickly, without me saying anything to her. This is probably what tipped the robbers off that they were about to take rounds and sent them fleeing before I was able to remove them from the ongoing crime stats in New Orleans.
4. How to you plan to deal with the first responders after an incident? Will the police arrest you? Do you have a lawyer ready to call on your phone? Or does your jurisdiction take the view that you're allowed to shoot in your home, so you don't expect to have issues with the authorities?
This is the United States. We literally have 50 separate jurisdictions with 50 separate sets of rules (plus territories). In most of those jurisdictions in the US, the police give you a pat on the back, tell you "Great job," and write up the report. Things might be very different in a more restrictive state, however, like New Jersey, where many self defense actions might be criminal acts. Not every state permits the same level of freedom, so your question is difficult to answer without knowing more about the circumstances.
My state, in the home, says that you may shoot to prevent a violent and tumultuous entry or to prevent the commission of a felony in the home. It's a pretty low standard. It's not a good idea to break into homes in my state if you want to have a long life. Other states may require you to show that your life is in danger and prove that you could not have escaped without shooting (the opposite of what is known as the "castle doctrine"). It really is different by state.
How each situation is handled by the authorities is also different depending on the circumstances. Is there evidence that this was not self defense? Is it clearly self defense?
When I was a police officer, the answer was usually, "NO" we do not arrest, if it appears to be self defense, although I remember that we brought in a woman one time. She had killed a stalker. We had been dealing with reports of this guy finding her after she moved to our jurisdiction to get away from him. She lived in a community behind a fence with barbed wire and a gate, hoping he would not find her and that she would be safe if he did. She did not own a firearm in the home.
One morning he showed up in the dark as she was getting in her car to go to work. He was in camp and had his face painted. He had a large knife.
A officer had earlier suggested she get a firearm. She asked him what type, what sort of ammunition, etc.
When the guy tried to kidnap her, she shot him three times, with the exact model of firearm and ammunition that had been suggested. He expired on the pavement. This woman had NO training whatsoever.
There were enough details in the evidence to show that he was planning a kidnapping and murder that morning, so it was pretty clear what would have happened to her had she been unarmed.
Anyway, we took her in (no handcuffs, kid glove, nice treatment) and had the DA present her case to the grand jury that day. They returned a No Bill, as expected, and we cut her loose. We saw it as preventative, since this was stalker/family/issues and now we could say, sorry, grand jury cleared her.
For the record, we don't have any firearms in the house. In fact, DW can't stand them, so we're not likely to anytime soon.
Your choice. If you are happy, I am happy. So long as you are not using the power of your vote to restrict me and my choices, I am quite happy for you and your wife to remain defenseless, if that is what makes the two of you happy.