Topics about guns
Hello all! I just joined the forum and I'm excited to be here. I've got some worries that are laying heavily on my mind, and I hope that somebody can help me out.
Some background: You can read this or skip to the following paragraph and start at gun or no gun.
I am a graduate student. I just got finished with undergrad and will start grad school in a few weeks. Due to a combination of being a military brat, and having gone through ten years of tragedy, strife and pain, now that I'm on my own, I'm looking to sustain myself in a world that is increasingly threatening to plunge me back into a state of tragedy, strife and pain. With my small salary and tiny bit of space, I'm looking to start up some modest preps that will keep me fed, sheltered and content (due to the past ten years of turmoil, I have a very low contentment threshold, safety and warmth is all this gal really needs!). I'm focusing on food and water right now--the katadyn combi filter being in my prepping crosshairs as of now. But there is one prep that has got me all tied up in knots and I don't know where to turn.
I have two options for my preps.
Gun or no gun.
Before you say that "no gun" is out of the question hear me out as I have some factors that weigh against my gun ownership:
I am a grad student, I make money, but not much. Saving up I can maybe afford a gun one day and ammo down the road, a small safe further down the road from there.
I rent--not an apartment--but a room in an apartment. This has two factors associated with it:
No room. I don't even have a real bed to store stuff under, where am I going to hide a gun? I figure my closet, but that seems a little too out in the open...
There are two other grad students here. I haven't really put out feelers for it as I just moved here, but, I don't think they'd be too interested in my owning a gun, even a small one. I just met these folks and the rent is good, I don't want to blow my living situation by bringing up sticky issues that get me removed.
This is an apartment complex full of grad students and little kids. If I have to shoot, there's no guarantee that I'm not going to take out a 5 year old in an effort to protect myself.
With my grad program I'm going to have to spend my summers several hours away at a research station where guns are an absolute no-no (they have housing on the grounds). The gun will have to stay in my room, unattended for 3 months.
Okay, Gun option:
Now, I have looked into going to a near by gun shop to get some info and taking a concealed carry class. But the thing is, in order to get to the gun shop, I have to take 3--THREE--separate buses to get there and those same 3 buses to get back. I suppose this is where a carry permit would really come in handy as I could just slip it into my bag. But still, the idea of walking and bussing all over the place with a gun, freaks the living daylights out of me. I'm freaked out enough by the prospect of walking into a gun shop and asking for a gun--little old me. Now, I know, I'm probably being paranoid, and I truly am the first person to give the benefit of the doubt in terms of race relations (i.e. if a person doesn't like me, I figure its because of something I said or did, long before I attribute it to skin color), even in the south where I'm living, but I'm just a little intimidated by the idea of being the 22 year old black girl who diddy bops into the shop looking for guns and info on the NRA. I'm sure it happens...just not frequently.
Where the double hockey sticks am I going to put it once I get it too my room? It may sound stupid, but keep in mind I am a newbie prepper and I figured it was a good plan to maybe keep it in a small safe in a shoebox, unloaded, with misc. papers covering it so it looks like, at first glance a junk box--the shoebox, decorated and whimsical is to throw off potential snooping roommates (not that they do that, but you never know). I would take other precautions should something happen, like sleeping with my door locked and keeping bells on the knob of the front door (we're n the 3rd floor so the window should be safe). If someone breaks in, I can wake up (I'm a very light sleeper) and quietly load the gun and hide in my closet--if the guy doesn't find me, AWESOME, if he does, then I can protect myself. Sound like an okay plan? At least for a newbie?
Practice. In order to practice, I'd have to take the 3 buses there and back. With a gun. In my bag. And I'd need ammo--when I can't afford too much of it to begin with. I'm not even sure how easily I'd be able to make it to the near by shooting range in the first place with school and the placement of the range being somewhat odd and far. How do I even work that situation out?
Some info about myself:
Now, I have shot a gun before. I was in JROTC in high school and I got the ranking of sharpshooter, with that I took a gun safety class. But those were pellet rifles not hand guns. I also took a hunters safety class. I am not shy around guns...but usually they aren't mine--I even ran up and hugged my dad when he came back from Iraq with his big machine gun strapped to his chest--I'm not afraid of guns...this just gives me the willies for some reason. Probably because unlike those guns for practice and PETA (people eating tasty animals) purposes, or not owned by me, the gun that I will perhaps buy and practice with will be solely for shooting and killing those who threaten my life. This is the sole reason why I did not join the military. I could not consciously put myself in a place where I would have to take the lives of others, even if I'd end up being the one dead, if I didn't--many people, including my father and everyone employed by the USMC in my military town could handle that, I couldn't and so passed on military duty and applaud and pray for those that go for it. The only difference that has me considering a gun now is that I am not willingly putting myself in that position. If I have to take someone's life it is because I am living peacefully and unassumingly and they brought it on themselves. But the idea still bothers me. This could be a determining factor for the advice you offer as I have heard that if you do not feel comfortable with a gun for self-defense, then you should not have one.
You don't have to answer all my questions, you can pick and chose and hopefully enough people will answer the questions to give me something to work with. I just want some definitive answers, some yes's, some no's and some suggestions (encouragement would be intensely helpful as well as I haven't been able to network or find other preppers yet and since this is a college town filled with young people with the devil may care, pie in the sky, won't happen to me mindset, I may not find them too easily):
If you think a gun is not feasible, how do I go about keeping myself relatively safe if things get weird? Should part of my prepping mentality be the acceptance that at some point things will be out of my hands? I kind of like this idea, but what do you think?
If a gun can be had, what are your tips and suggestions for my situation? Where to hide it? Is my idea about the shoebox a good one? Gun safe suggestions? What should I do about practicing?
And a very, very pressing question, if you answer none of the others, please answer this one: With the 2nd amendment in jeopardy, do you think I should run out and get protection asap? I don't want an ak40. Just something to keep me alive if things get weird. I was hoping to focus on food and water, with firearms way, WAY down the line, but now I'm worried I may not actually be able to get my hands on one if I go by that plan. Given the governmental situation: should I buy a gun first then focus on food and water? Or will it be pointless as I can never eat or drink ammo and there's not much point in protecting myself if I'm going to starve and thirst to death, anyway.
Thank you so much for reading this and replying. You're replies will give me a lot of peace of mind, especially after this has been weighing and gnawing at my mind for a while and only got worse with the gun ban frenzy.
God bless you all!
I'm sure that in this forum you will get plenty of advise that you NEED a gun and suggestions on what that should be, but first things first.
You need to start by determining what you are prepping for. I don't recommend that you start by prepping for the worse case - start with what is a bad possibility that is likely to happen.
I have been a "prepper" of sorts for a long time - I keep jumper cables in my truck, I have a smoke detector, I have an extinguisher in the kitchen.
I have been through the "Northeast Blackout of 2003" (only 2.5 days,but it caused a lot of problems) and many short term weather related outages of up to a week. I therefor prep for power outages - food and water, generator, some fuel, alternative home heating and lighting source. I'm pretty well set for a short term outage.
Since the power grid is aging and vulnerable, I am working on longer term answers - learning to depend less on electricity, have water filter, a bit more food, and thinking about some solar ( Pricy but can start with at least a system that will charge batteries, run a radio, a bit of light.)
I am also of the opinion that there could be a financial collapse. This will make it necessary to be even more self sufficient. Planting a garden, canning and preserving food. Less use of energy sources. I think collapse will also lead to civil unrest making guns necessary as well.
For you - woman, in an urban situation, tight budget, possibly unsympathetic room mates - you will have to weigh it all, but if safety is your greatest, most likely need, a gun may be what you need.
Maybe you need new room mates. Maybe you need a .22lr pistol (not ideal for defense, but better than nothing - the ammo is inexpensive making the NECESSARY practicing affordable) Gun locks come with most new guns (and are otherwise affordable) for when your weapon must be unattended. A CWW (if at all possible - don't know where you live) is a good idea, but will be pricy too - classes and fees.
Good luck with your prepping!
Thank you We prep!
It sounds like my prep goals are a lot like yours. I grew up in a hurricane prone area and I know about power outages. I'd say that that, short term, I'm prepping for too. I want to get food, water and warmth for the winter set up.
I'm also concerned about financial collapse and am looking into gardening, canning and such. Until the whole gun situation came to mind, I wanted to focus on food and water--saving a decent amount that would give me some time to set up dependable long term solutions such as gardens. Maybe even hoarding some silver.
In regards to safety of the area, the area is a college town. There don't seem to be any "iffy" areas. It's apartments and small houses for the students in town big spacious houses for the professors at the edges of town. The nearest 'city' is about 1.5 hours away. I'm trying to get a feel for the situation. College students are young and they can get real stupid, real quick. But the thing is, everyone is from everywhere else both nationally and internationally. It seems like you'd have a huge exodus of people if things went bad, leaving the town with actual residents and the few students would couldn't get home--in fact the college may even have busses transporting people to other places. You've given me some things to think about. Because, if there is transportation, I can get to that nearby city and hunker down with some good nun friends and they've got resources in their homesteading and down to earth knowledge--though they are in fact in a rough part of town, but better with some folks than without, especially since they have quite a nice underground bunker. You've got me thinking and planning in ways I hadn't considered before! I looked into the pistol and so far I like the price of the actual gun. However, why isn't it too great for self defense?
I would suggest not buying a gun if the reason for buying is fear that guns will be outlawed. You will always be able to purchase a handgun for defense. You may have to wait a little longer, but the only guns you may have trouble buying soon are assault weapons, and if you're leary of the responsibility of owning a handgun, I can't imagine you getting an AK47. What I'm trying to say is, don't let yourself get all caught up in the frenzy of the gun control issue. I doubt anything will be done for a few months anyhow, so think about it.
You can go to the gun ranges and rent handguns. This way you can find out what fits you best before investing the money.
Matthew 25:42 "for I was hungry and you gave Me no food; I was thirsty and you gave me no drink."
Matthew 25:45 "Then He will answer them, saying, 'Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me."
I'm a newbie also, so take that into account if you read my reply.
To be blunt, I don't think you're emotionally ready. You have too many unresolved questions and I think you would fret yourself into a nervous breakdown if you had a gun in your home. I also think financially it would hit hard. Not just the gun and ammo, but the travel back and forth by bus (which would make me nervous, too). So I would recommend you do some hard thinking. The other possibility would be to purchase a gun and keep it at your parents house (since they seem gun friendly from what you said) until you're in the right head space. That way you know you have a weapon before the govt. screws us all.
I have the same question, but I'm in a better financial situation and I live alone so I can pretty much do whatever I want in my own house. After reading today's headlines about Biden, I finally got up my courage and bought a Mossberg 12ga Bantam. I am going to have to learn how to use it, of course, but at least I will have it. I hope that doesn't sound too hypocritical after what I wrote above. Meanwhile, welcome!
A gun can be used more for than just defense it can also be used for gathering food, even in ubran areas. When you asked about a 22lr not being good for defense is because of the size and power of the bullet, yes it can stop a person if placed properly but that is a hard thing to do by even a experience shooter. I think the first thing I would do is ask myself if it came down to having to kill someone to defend myself or friends could I do it with out hesitation. If the answer is no skip the gun idea and go on to food storage. If yes you have a couple of options, pistols are the hardest to master and do hot have a very long range, shotguns are bigger but easier to learn how to hit close targets with and can be used for defense and hunting, rifles a little harder to master than a shotgun but can also be used for hunting and protection. As far as guns types and calibers that is a personal prefence, what feels comfortable in my hands may not be comfortable for you and harder to use. The best thing to do is try to go to a range and talk to people and try a couple of different weapons out before making a decision.
" The only thing required for evil to prevail is for good men to do nothing." -Thomas Paine
'The true soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because he loves what is behind him.'
If you find yourself in a fair fight, your tactics suck.
Welcome to the board.
First let me say, I am a pro gun guy. However, in your situation, right now in your life I don't feel it benefits you. For you investing in a gun, this just a small portion of the funds req. owning, maintaining
and securing a weapon. I won't disagree though into investing into a less than lethal protection that
you could carry. It would help you defend off unwanted attacks, vicious dogs and rabid squirrels, and
God knows what else!
Ruger makes a pepper spray dispenser that looks similar to a cellphone case on your hip. The premium
model has a blinding strobe light and a 125DB audible alarm. If you do not dispense the spray you can
place it back into the holster for later use if required. FYI, I know that Cabela's sporting goods carries
these for $30. I would check your local laws first before ordering or carrying.
Lastly, I know you are on your own, but NEVER be afraid to talk to your parents. It's great being on your
own, but any prepper will tell you working within one's network is key to survival. Please come back and
let us know what you decide.
Our banks are insured by the Federal Govt. and protected by armed guards. Shouldn't we also protect our Nation's greatest asset, our children?
I say that if you feel you need a gun, go for it.
If cash is hard for you, you can always take a class and get the CWL later once you have the gun.
If you have no experience with pistols and not a lot of chance to practice I would suggest a .357 magnum revolver. You can (and should) shoot .38 rounds out of it. A .357 and a box of .38 rounds will run you about $400 for a lower end gun, or $450-$475 for a good Ruger. A bit cheaper if you buy used. Call around and ask local gun shops and pawn shops if they can meet or beat online prices. If they cant, do not go there. Most will.
The future is never sure. But having a gun protects you against the unknown somewhat.
A .357 revolver is just about the easiest gun to use and can fire two very common types of ammunition, and even more with moonclips. Its also easy to use, just load it, point it, and pull the trigger.
If you would like some suggested brands, let me know. You can also put an add on Armslist, and might get someone willing to meet you near where you live.
Thank you everyone for your replies. I tried to post earlier, but it wouldn't submits, so I'll try again.
Lilredmag--thank you for your advice. being a lonely prepper with all my ideas bouncing around my head make it sometimes difficult to gauge the state of some things. Especially when I can't get good info--I couldn't figure out if all guns would disappear or if just certain types or if they would all disappear tomorrow or ten years from now. I like the idea of taking the time to really think about these things. Your post was comforting in that it helps me to gauge a situation that, while urgent, isn't do or die, now, now, now. While I think I can take a class, visit shops and practice.
Gallimaufry--thanks. your post was comforting as well. It did cross my mind that perhaps I would have a Macbeth "Out spot" situation going on. On the one hand I'm driven to survive and protect myself. On the other hand I feel fear and timidity. I can honestly say that I may very well hesitate which can be far more deadly than stepping aside and giving up for the sake of survival. It's something to think about. Unfortunately, I can't leave a gun at home. My father went crazy after 6 or 7 middle east tours, my brother is 3 time convict with a penchant for steals guns and participates in gang activity and my mother would call the cops on me she'd call the cops if I breathed wrong as she has always been paranoid about the wrong child. So, essentially the gun would have to be with me and nowhere else. You aren't hypocritical for what you aid as everyone's situation is different. That's why I posted here because no one else on the internet seemed to have the same predicament. You're right, I have some long hard thinking to do. I will do it while continuing my research and thanks to your post, I will be able to do it with a little more peace of mind.
Longrifle--thank you for your advice. I really don't think that I could go without hesitation if the time came to use a gun. In fact, for me it would be the absolute last resort--thus my unloaded gun in closet/in emergencies hide in locked closet with gun and pray that no one finds you strategy. So perhaps a gun for self defense really should take a back seat to my food preps. Meanwhile, I will go to ranges, research, stop by the shops and so on. Actually your bringing up gathering food has brought a new perspective I hadn't considered. Perhaps I can work up to self defense via a hunting firearm. See, I would by no means be opposed to a shot gun at some point (when I have my own place, perhaps) for food (I promise not to shoot the innocent little animals, only the guilty ones). I would love, love, love to take up hunting (survival or not, I'm totally into self-sufficiency, and catching my own food has my mouth watering). I could start with a shotgun or rifle and work up to a handgun--or just stick with shot guns.
BBQKingg1--Thank you for your post. You brought up some points that I didn't think too deeply about because while I knew that ammo and guns cost, there are other costs associated with it, including maintenance--it's almost like a pet, it seems.
And thank you, so, so, so very much for your pepper spray suggestion! I just graduated from a tiny rural school where a girl could safely walk from the library to her dorm late at night without too much fuss--especially with the cops making a continues loop through the tiny place. I'm now at a huge school known for its...acts of violence...I've been in the market for some pepper spray and was looking to pick some up this upcoming payday.
I don't think I can talk to my parents (see reply to Gallimaufrey) but I do have a relatively stable uncle I can talk to. I also have some friends (in their 50s and 60s so they have more resources and wisdom) that will be great for networking.
So far everyone it seems that my original plans are back in place I will work on food, water and other "non aggressive" means of survival, while researching aggressive approaching, taking my time to make the right decision.
Das-Sheep--thank you. I will keep all of your suggestions in mind as I do my arms research, especially the prices of ammo, I didn't know it was that expensive (I haven't gotten past the actual gun research yet). You said that I can get the cwl once I have the gun. But wouldn't I need one to take it home? Especially since I'd take the bus--however down the road I may have better means of transportation and housing, but I thought in order to carry a gun in public, even if its hidden, you had to have a cwl.
Thank you everyone for your time and advice. It is a Godsend to release some of these ideas and to get some new perspectives on things. You all have brought up things from different angles I hadn't previously been able to see before.
Thank you and Godspeed!
I would like to read some suggested brands!
And Armslist.com is neat. They've got farming equipment, archery, and fishing stuff too. Thanks for posting it!
A Henry Arms AR-7 is cheap, at around $200. It shoots the .22lr cartridge, which can still be found, and is fairly inexpensive. The best thing is that entire receiver and barrel can be taken apart, and stored in the stock. It makes for a compact package, at just 18" long, 8" high, and 2.5" wide. This could easily be stowed in a gym bag for you perilous 3 stop bus ride home, and equally easy to hide from nosy roomies. 500 rounds of ammo take up very little space as well. Check your local/state gun laws as to what is allowed. If the gun is in one bag, and the ammo in another; that should satisfy the cased and separate clause that most areas have.
A gun shouldn't be your first prepping step. Get right with food, water, and shelter first. I was lucky that I had time to start with the guns first.
River Falls Guy.
I personally would say no to a gun for you, unless you can secure the gun properly and get properly trained in its use. Penetration through walls would be a big problem with other occupants in the same dwelling.
I would serious consider a 12 gauge flare gun....... Now everyone is laughing at me but.
A flare gun with gas or flare in NOT considered a firearm. There is a 12 gauge intimidation factor looking at the big hole pointed at you. Believe me you fire that thing and people will know it and call 911 or come to look.
Check local laws but you can carry it with out a permit.
When not at home store flares separately in a locked box.
Some details about flare guns .
ATF has previously held that devices designed for expelling
tear gas or pyrotechnic signals are not weapons and are exempt from
the destructive device definition. However, ammunition designed to
be used against individuals is available for these 37/38 mm
devices. This "anti-personnel" ammunition consists of cartridges
containing wood pellets, rubber pellets or balls, and bean bags.
When a gas/flare gun is possessed with "anti-personnel" type
ammunition, it clearly becomes an instrument of offensive or
defensive combat and is capable of use as a weapon. Since these
gas/flare guns have a bore diameter of greater than one-half inch,
fire a projectile by the means of an explosive, and, when possessed
with "anti-personnel" ammunition, are capable of use as weapons,
the combination of the gas/flare gun and "anti-personnel"
ammunition is a destructive device as defined in the GCA and NFA.
As a result, registration as a destructive device is required. Any
person possessing a gas/flare gun with which "anti-personnel"
ammunition will be used must register the making of a destructive
device prior to the acquisition of any "anti-personnel" ammunition.
In addition, the gas/flare guns are classified as firearms as
defined by the GCA when possessed with "anti-personnel" type
Each gas/flare gun possessed with anti-personnel ammunition
will be required to be identified as required by law and
regulations (27 C.F.R. section 178.92 and 179.102), including a
serial number. Any person manufacturing the gas/flare gun and the
"anti-personnel" ammunition must, if selling them in combination,
have the appropriate Federal firearms license as a manufacturer of
destructive devices and must have paid the special (occupational)
tax as a manufacturer of National Firearms Act firearms. Any person
importing the gas/flare gun and the "anti-personnel" ammunition
must, if importing them in combination, have the appropriate
Federal firearms license as an importer of destructive devices and
must have paid the special (occupational) tax as an importer of
National Firearms Act firearms.
Further, the "anti-personnel" ammunition to be used in the
gas/flare launchers is ammunition for destructive devices for
purposes of the GCA. Any person manufacturing the "anti-personnel"
ammunition must have the appropriate Federal firearms license as a
manufacturer of ammunition for destructive devices. Any person
importing the "anti-personnel" ammunition must have the appropriate
Federal firearms license as an importer of ammunition for
Talk it over with your father. He is a Marine so he should know his firearms. Daddies ALWAYS like to help their little girls.
I gave my daughter a Grendel .380 ACP while in high school. It cost me $100. She has since graduated from college gotten a very good job and gotten married. Unfortunetly while in college she drank the koolaid and turned liberal.
To store your pistol/revolver, you can buy an old hard back book and cut out the centers of the pages. An old college book shouldn't look out of place in your room. Most people wouldn't even give it a second look.
" Once the pin is pulled, Mr. Hand Grenade is no longer our friend."
The zoo has an African lion, the White House has a lyin' African.
Hi Welcome to APN.
Since your living arrangements are temporary, I would prep like a transient until you can find a more permanent residence. I'd recommend, at your present time, to take advantage of being mobile. You have alot of advantages over people that are stuck in just one area and have no BOL. Meaning, have a backpack loaded with supplies and concentrate on water and food, clothing, and finally shelter. I would also concentrate on being a little more mobile and self-reliant and not depend on public transportation. My advice is to pick up a mountain bike, or a cheap clunker vehicle so that you can get from location A to B. If you eventually find a nice place to live and you have your own apartment, then think about a storage facility to store any preps you wouldn't want your neighbors to see. If things get bad, you could always fall back to your storage facility, they are usually fenced in and may make a good BOL. Just think of the basics first, after that protection in the form of self-defense. This could be in the form of martial arts to pepper spray to a knife or a gun. Keep in mind, in a SHTF scenario, if your able to protect yourself then you could always take whatever weapon your assailant tries to kill you with. Then that weapon and ammo is yours to further protect yourself with.
Based on your situation and mindset, I think that no gun is the answer for now. I applaud you for taking an honest assessment of yourself. Pepper spray sounds like a much better solution for the time being. It fits better into your budget, you don't have the same storage concerns, and (most importantly in my opinion) you would actually use it if necessary.
In the meantime, while you work on other preps, you can continue down the path of learning more about firearms and increasing your comfort level with the idea of using one for self defense. I'm going to include a link to an article I read long ago on the subject of armed self defense. It helped crystallize my thoughts on the issue. Perhaps it will help you as you try to decide whether you should be armed.
NRA certified Home Firearms Safety and Pistol instructor - Range Safety Officer
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