Losing Perspective

The American Thinker posted an article today with the following headline:

Parents of slain Pizza Hut robber angry that victim used a gun against him

Wow.  I am sorry that Michael Grace Jr., son of Temia Hairston and Michael Grace Sr., was shot during an attempted robbery. But the fact remains that he was shot while committing a crime and possibly endangering someone else’s life.

The article reports:

Hairston and Grace Sr. acknowledged that their son was breaking the law by robbing the business, and said they definitely don’t condone what he did.

“It was an act of desperation, but I do not believe that Michael would have hurt anyone,” said Hairston.

That may be true, but the employee had no way of knowing that Michael would not have hurt anyone, and since Michael was committing a robbery, the employee might have been justifiably concerned for his own safety.

Losing a son is a horrible thing for a parent to go through, but getting angry because he was killed committing a crime does not really make sense. It might make more sense to find a way to help in the community in such a way that fewer children think it is okay to commit crimes.

Facts Can Be Ugly

I have mentioned more than once in this blog that the gun culture of the south is unfamiliar to me. I am rapidly coming to the point where I will apply for a gun permit and get a concealed carry permit. My husband is already there. I don’t like the idea of having to defend myself with a gun, but unfortunately there are people walking around in America who do not respect the property and lives of their fellow Americans. There were four stories cited in the past week that show the need for average citizens to be prepared to defend themselves.

Today The Daily Caller posted an article citing these stories. The first story deals with two men trying to buy a car on Craigslist. When the men arrived to see the car, the man who met them pulled out a gun. One of the men trying to buy the car shot the man in self defense. Had the man wanting to buy the car not been armed, the story would have had a very different ending.

The next story involved an armed robbery attempt of a seafood market in Florida. The seafood market employee pulled out a gun and shot the robber.

In Detroit a man attempted to use pepper spray on a dog that attacked his dog. When the pepper spray had no effect, he shot the dog, saving his dog and possibly himself from injury.

The final story involved a man in Georgia. On Christmas night Antonio Bagley shot a man who attempted to rob him. Had not Mr. Bagley carried a concealed gun, the story would have had a different ending.

Most of us have grown up in a world where we depended on the police to keep us safe. The police do a good job, but they cannot be everywhere at once. Americans have to take responsibility for their own safety. I don’t like this, but I suspect it is where we are and where we will be for at least a while.

The Statistics Are Consistent

Hot Air is reporting today that crime rates have dropped in Detroit since the population started arming itself. Detroit PD chief James Craig has spent the past six months encouraging locals to arm themselves.

The article quotes Chief Craig:

Detroit has experienced 37 percent fewer robberies in 2014 than during the same period last year, 22 percent fewer break-ins of businesses and homes, and 30 percent fewer carjackings. Craig attributed the drop to better police work and criminals being reluctant to prey on citizens who may be carrying guns.

Criminals are getting the message that good Detroiters are armed and will use that weapon,” said Craig, who has repeatedly said he believes armed citizens deter crime. “I don’t want to take away from the good work our investigators are doing, but I think part of the drop in crime, and robberies in particular, is because criminals are thinking twice that citizens could be armed.

“I can’t say what specific percentage is caused by this, but there’s no question in my mind it has had an effect,” Craig said.

This is not a unique situation. Generally speaking, civic minded citizens are the people who obey gun laws–criminals do not. The stricter the gun laws the more defenseless the citizens are. The thought of an armed victim does actually discourage some criminals.

 

In Another Time This Would Have Been A Different Story

Today’s Daily Caller posted a story about a store employee who foiled a robbery. He has been suspended from his job for his heroism.

The article reports:

Don Pitaniello, a 58 year-old Vietnam veteran from Rutland, was closing up shop at Mac’s Convenience Store on Sunday when a man wearing a hoodie and a bandana over his face stormed in wielding a 5-inch knife, the Rutland Herald reports.

“He walked up to the counter, laid the knife on it and said ‘Empty the register,’” Pitaniello told the paper.

“I knew his intentions as soon as he came in,” Pitaniello said. “When he told me to empty the register, I cocked my head and said ‘Really?’”

But Pitaniello had something ready for the man – a .380-caliber handgun hidden behind his back.

The man picked the knife up and waved it in Pitaniello’s face.

Pitaniello replied with words and a pointed gun.

“I told him he better get the (expletive) out of there,” he said.

The would-be robber listened and left.

Though Pitaniello may have saved his own life, he may have lost his job. The Rutland Herald reported that Pitaniello was suspended on Monday.

The store has a policy that employees are not allowed to bring firearms to work.

There was a time in American culture that Mr. Pitaniello would have been hailed as a hero for thwarting a robbery. It seems to me that the owner of the store should be grateful for the fact that the robber was unsuccessful. Have we become so anti-gun that we have forgotten that honest people can use guns to defend themselves and avoid becoming victims?

Smart Gun Laws And Dumb Criminals

On Thursday, the U. K. Daily Mail posted a story about an armed house invasion in Texas that did not go the way the robbers had planned. Three armed men broke into a home and attacked the man who lived there, pushing him into a closet. What they didn’t know is that they pushed him into the closet where he stores his gun. The man they locked in the closet shares the home with his parents. After waiting a while, he took his gun and went downstairs, assuming the robbers had gone. Unfortunately (for the robber), one of the criminals was still in the house. The robber was shot in the shoulder and the leg. There have been other recent robberies in the neighborhood. This incident might cause the robbers to think twice.

The article reports:

Craig Gaddis, who told the paper that he owns several handguns, said he and his neighbors are certain that the home invasions are related.

‘What happened today is exactly what guns are supposed to do – to protect your home and defend your life and your family,’ Gaddis said.

Police say the homeowner who shot the burglary suspect will not be face charges.

Texas has a self-defense law based on the ‘castle doctrine.’ The legislation has a ‘stand your ground’ clause, meaning the person using physical or deadly force against an attacker does not have a duty to retreat.

This story illustrates one of many reasons law-abiding citizens should be able to own guns.

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Something To Keep In Mind As We Debate Who Should Be Allowed To Have Guns

Townhall.com posted a story today about a store owner who stopped a robbery.

The article reports:

Robberies happen far too often, but a robber coming face-to-face with a gun-carrying grandmother is a little more rare.

Ernestine Aldana owns a grocery store near the corner of Muskego Avenue and Becher Street in Milwaukee. On Dec. 14, Aldana was working in the store when a man entered the store and pulled a knife on her.

“I was really scared,” she said.

But as the man reached for cash from the drawer, Aldana pulled a gun from underneath the counter.

“I didn’t think,” she said. “I didn’t remember what was being said. I just took a step back, grabbed the gun and that was that.”

As the gun came out, the man ran away.

Aldana said she and her husband have owned the grocery store for just over two years and have not encountered any problems before this. She said her son bought the gun for their protection, but they never thought they would have to use it.

It is a pretty safe bet that the story would have ended differently if Adlana had not owned the gun and kept it handy. This is the kind of story we need to keep in mind as we listen to Washington discuss laws that will take guns out of the hands of law-abiding citizens, but not out of the hands of criminals.

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