Question of the Day at TTAG

By | March 4, 2012

Our friend Robert over at The Truth About Guns has featured the Firearms Code Of Responsibility as their question of they day.  This is great since it will let me get some much needed input from others people.  The debate has been intense and no punches have been pulled.  The comments have not really been all that positive and as a result some would say the code is a waste of time (and some have) but I look at it as a sign that I’ve made people think and as pointers on ways that I can improve it.  So here goes what have we learned:

  1. People think that the prohibition on threatening to use ones firearm includes the times when you are about to use it.  So I will update the code to say “I will only threaten to use my firearm when I feel I will need to use it.”
  2. This one was (in retrospect) too optimistic and perhaps not realistic enough as it doesn’t take into consideration human nature and the situations that we may actually face.  I think that striving for as much emotional control as possible in any situation is a good thing I think I will drop rule #2 altogether until I find a good way to say what I want it too.
  3. No one in their right mind likes the idea of following the law when it gets in the way of their firearms, this is almost universal, but what I know from the people I personally know that 95% of firearms enthusiasts do follow the law, no matter how much they complain about it.  It’s easy to claim otherwise on the internet but if we checked most people we would see they DO follow the law.  So I’m only going to revise it to say ‘I will comply with all regulations regarding my firearm’ to drop the part about agreeing with them, because we’re all law biding citizens right?
  4. Some people think this rule endorses a Hero complex while others (a disturbingly high number) feel that they own nothing to no one and claim they would leave most people to fend for themselves rather than endanger themselves to protect a stranger.  It saddens me that we are either that selfish or that concerned about whether they may be putting themselves at risk when another life is on the line.  I may be too idealistic or these comments may be internet bravado but I can’t abide by this logic.

    Make no mistake Rabbi (aka David Kenik at made the very valid point that involving yourself in another’s business, especially at the point of a firearm, is extremely hazardous.  Once I revise the code I will expound on this topic.  In the mean time the article ‘Heroic Consequences‘ by Rabbi himself is a very good article well worth the read.

  5. A couple people figured #5 was saying it’s ok to start a fight if you are not armed.  This is simply not true but it does seem to create some confusion and I was going to revise it to avoid confusion but rabbi had a suggestion for #6 that covers it much better.  So it’s history.
  6. No one really took issue with this one but Rabbi (again, a man I think I like) suggested an alternate version: “I will do my best to prevent or de-escalate a fight whether I have started it or not.” I think this one covers the intent of the original and covers both #5 and #6 better than the two rules said it before.
  7. A person named Joseph suggests that the method of allowing an unqualified individual to posses your firearms is important.  With the exception of it being forcibly taken from you, there is no difference who or how they get your firearm if they are not qualified to posses it and you didn’t use reasonable methods to prevent them from getting it.  So this rule stays put, as is.
  8. I do need to revise my rules of firearms safety as Jeff Cooper’s are too restrictive and don’t take into consideration some real life situations where you may safely break those rules.  Revision to come later.
  9. It was pointed out that when asked to not carry in a business it’s only natural to resent them for infringing on ones right to bear arms.  This is very true, so while I will keep the bulk of this rule and drop the reference to resentment to reflect that and also drop 9-3 as it is just redundant.
  10. A lot of people surprised me with their intense dislike of people less gun tolerant than they.  Some went so far as to say they would purposefully allow someone to come to harm if they weren’t pro-gun.  Seriously!?!?  I find that ridiculous.  Sure am I going to bend over backwards for a person who dislikes my views?  Probably not.  But I could never condone or allow someone to come to harm (or death) because they disagree with me.  That is not the American way nor is it right.  This is why I really hate to change this rule, just on principle of defying these people who would dare suggest someone is less deserving of life because they disagree with me.  On that not I am dropping this one from the rules as it is redundant and is really covered under #4.  Anyone who dares suggest #4 does not apply to someone because they share a different opinion than you may just be a sociopath and would be one of those unqualified people in #7.  Human life is ALWAYS more important than your opinion on ANYTHING!

I will never start a fight (verbal or physical) while armed no matter how right I may be.

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