You’ve bought a gun. Maybe even got a permit. Now what?
While I do not advocate mandatory training laws, because there are times when an individual needs to be able to add the ability to protect themselves quickly (ie: wife with a restraining order against an abusive husband). But that in no way means I do not see training as a personal requirement.
This is one messy case: (Please note, there may be numerous relevant details of which we are not privy too. These details may or may not justify the individual’s claims. The advice below is regarding the situation as postulated in this particular article.)
The guy claiming self-defense walks up to a neighbor having a party and making too much noise. But he does so with a gun drawn.
Unlike the Zimmerman case, in which acting as a neighborhood watch member, Zimmerman questioned a supicious individual. This was a direct confrontation initiated by the gun holder.
Walking over to a neighbor with a gun, is pretty much a no no. Even if the situation does not result in shooting; the relationship between you and your neighbor will forever be ruined. You will have to endure that strained relationship until one of you leaves.
The result, man walks over with gun to neighbor. Brandishing the gun. And making the neighbor escalate. All over a bit of noise. Granted, no matter how bad the noise is. A decent pair of firearm hearing protection could have provided an alternative to destroying your life in a questionable self-defense claim.
WHAT DO WE LEARN FROM THIS?
1) Do not create a confrontation.
2) Do not enter a situation in which a confrontation can arise in a “ready” state (ie: ready to shoot). As this places a threat on the other individuals.
3) Don’t waste your life over a minor annoyance. Pursue matters through other channels (ie: local law enforcement and legal system).
4) Do not draw, unless you fear for your immediate well being.
Had this man gone out with a light jacket, gun in pocket, hands in pocket or with a concealed carry rig and politely asked his neighbors “Hi there, the party is really loud. Not trying to stop you guys from having fun, but if you could tone it down just a notch, that’d be great!”
In such fashion the individual could have been ready to protect himself if an immediate threat arose; without triggering alarm and further confrontation brought about by actively wielding a firearm when the situation did not merit it.
Regretfully, this advice was not heeded. And from the description of the case I’d wager that the shooter will find himself facing a murder charge. This guy brandished over noise, and then shot and killed a man. Zimmerman was actively being assaulted. If these facts stand the test of truth over time, than I’d have to support a conviction. This is not the type of firearm we want. We want responsible gun owners.
[DISCLAIMER: We really don’t know, and likely never will, the fullness of the facts involving this case. So if more is revealed. Perceptions and judgments would be altered as well. However, I believe the above advice to be prudent in all situations. Don’t put yourself in a bad situation, don’t come out with your gun pointing, and don’t escalate a minor disturbance to the need of killing.]