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Packing Heat.(27 posts)

Packing Heat.PaulCL
Apr 19, 2001 9:49 AM
I know, we've done this topic before.

I was surprised today to find out that a riding friend of mine, an attorney, carries a .22 caliber pistol on his rides. He is an avid kayaker too, so he carries the gun in a plastic bag.

This "arming" was prompted by two events. First, some "billybob" in a pickup ran him off the road. My friend then, wrongly or dangerously, flipped him the bird. The hick threw it in reverse and chased him around a cornfield -running over his bike in the process. He only escaped by running up a hill and hiding behind a big tree.

IN addition, he has had drunk boaters try to run him over in his kayak. Apparently, they think he's fair game.

I gotta believe that if I get to the point that I must arm myself to ride a bike, I might just quit the sport. It's a sick world we are in when its' OK to kill someone just becuase he or she is vulnerable. Maybe I should start packing....

Just a rant of disbelief.
re: Packing Heat.MrCelloBoy
Apr 19, 2001 10:14 AM
IMHO carrying a loaded weapon is planning on excalating a situation that potentially is already bad. I won't do it. In fact many local club riders have experienced various assaults and we've chosen to take the route of reporting them to the local authorities in the hopes that they'll begin to take them more seriously. A couple have resulted in prosecution, but, unfortunately, the police still generally view cyclists as being in the wrong by nature.

If you're going to pull a gun you'd better be d___ well ready to pull the trigger, or you'll end up getting shot by the person you're defending yourself against. I'm not ready to go to such an extreme.
Guns & BiblesBreck
Apr 19, 2001 10:15 AM
never, as in NEVER, carry a loaded gun and point it at a person unless you fully intend to use it.

just my .02 centavos

I agreePaulCL
Apr 19, 2001 10:56 AM
I would never carry a weapon. Beyond my wife divorcing me for even owning a gun, I could never pull the trigger because some a..hole cut me off. Not meaning to make a pun, but the gun is dangerous overkill. The pepper spray is the best idea I've heard.

Now if some scumball threatened my wife and that's another matter....
It can be an Ugly Subject now-a-daysBreck
Apr 19, 2001 11:49 AM
Yikes, don't mean to over post but am retired and work off the PC & check a few favorite web-sites every now and then ... so this will be the last post for a while, etc.

Having grown up in Texas 40's us kids learned proper gun technique, safety by the time we were ten. Hunting was an OK thing to do them days and no kid ever took a gun to school. Then spent 4 years in the Marine Corp very early sixties and the M-14 rifle was our issue and we were thourloughly schooled in it and the .45 hand gun to the point of taking them down & building back up blind folded, extensive target training, real live ammo dodging while going under barbed wire, bayonet training,etc. This was before Vietnam so never had to use any of it as we were trained to do. Was an aircraft electrician besides so we would have been in the rear and the gruntz up front.

And a gun nutt at one times besides, so ... most anyone familiar with hand guns will tell you that a .38 caliber is considered minimum for protection of life and property. But it still ain't that simple. In a dark environment or even day light it is harder than one might think to take aim, fire, and hit the target with any predictable accuracy with a small caliber hand gun. Weapon of choice for home self-defense, God willing you should ever be in this situation, is a 12 gauge shot gun, my choice being a short barreled double. However most people opt for the so called police riot gun pump & special ammo.

Also one should carefully check the local state laws, be aware of your kids and friends being able to access the weapon and realize while on the road, biking, etc. you never really know the other person's sanity, state of mind, back ground, whether armed and on drugs or not, etc.

All of this is just common sense and the ARA, anti-gun folks, 2nd amendment rights folks, your own back ground and "craziness" at times, egos run amuck, etc. etc. all fit into the equation and the out come is almost always undesirable.

Keep a cool head.
Apr 19, 2001 11:54 AM
...if that scumball threatened your wife or children..what would you do? You don't have a gun.

Anyway, I dont think the guy was talking about shooting someone for cutting him off. That would send you to jail for a while. I think he means if someone is actually trying to kill you. I believe a deadman in a truck in the middle of a field would be enough proof that they were trying to run your ass over, and you were defending yourself. Pepper spray I imagine would be fairly ineffective against a charging chevy.
Guns & BiblesG
Apr 20, 2001 7:59 AM
I agree with this and your other post below. As a gun owner and someone who most people would consider a "second amendment fanatic" and just to the right of militia members, I have for never more than a second considered carrying a firearm while riding. Pepper spray and a cell phone seem more reasonable. I don't even carry a firearm in my car anymore. I'm not willing to put my life or someone elses at risk just because some jackass does something stupid. I'm not going to do anything to escalate a situation-just keep myself calm and move on.
Pepper Spray is just as effectiveOnrhodes
Apr 19, 2001 10:17 AM
I believe that a good old shot of pepper spray is good enough. Just this past Monday we had a guy flip us of for no good reason, so I being the touchy person that I am gave him the samein return. He slammed on his breaks, but just kept going. Because I have been doing this for so long now (12 years) I have learned to beauty of pepper spray. I have yet to have to use it, but knowing it is there makes me feel safe. Lighter, easier to handle, and probably won't get you put in jail.
I agree it is absurd to think that we have to actually go to these lengths to feel safe in our society today. But alas, it is not a nice place anymore. I can't tell you the number of times people have swerved,tossed stuff,cussed,etc in my years of riding. I can tell you though that it happens at least 4-5 times a week.
Four or five times a week? I'd get a complex...Greg Taylor
Apr 19, 2001 11:21 AM
Where are you riding? I live in one of the Pompous A*&hole Capitols of the world, commute daily, and don't get that level of grief...

My heart goes out to you...
I live in New HampshireOnrhodes
Apr 19, 2001 11:47 AM
I live in NH. Yes, quite little rural NH. I also just happen to have to leave from its biggest city. There are a lot of uneducated rednecks up here who think that anything other then their pristine 1980 IROC-Z should not be on the road.
It is also mostly teenagers I woulds say. Some little "gangsta wannabe" showing off for his girl.
What I think it really boils down to is that people cannot stand to take 5 seconds out of their day. How often have you had some one blast past you to make that right turn right in front of you? Why? Because they couldn't wait the extra 5 seconds it was going to take for you to pass that same spot.
People turn into mindless beasts when they get behind the wheel of a car. How many of you have seen Disney's "Mr. Walker" cartoon showing the change that transforms Goofy everytime he gets behind the wheel of his car. When you think of how old that cartoon is too, I begin to realize that unfortunatley we are probably not going to have any radical changes in thought anytime soon.
4-5 times a week refers to the number of times that I get anything from a thrown object to a simple "bird" flipped at me. I just find it aggravating that people can be so narrow minded.
As you can probably tell, this is a touchy subject with me.
New Hampshire rednecks???WCC
Apr 19, 2001 11:57 AM
Heh, you want to see rednecks, take a visit down here. Who do you think eats all these Krytals and Krispy Kremes?
As good as it gets?TJeanloz
Apr 19, 2001 1:23 PM
I grew up at the junction of New Hampshire, Vermont and Massachusettes, and have since ridden in almost every region of the US. I have to say that the drivers of rural NH, VT and MA are the most courteous I have ever experienced. Even New Hampshire, which tends to have the narrowest, ugliest shoulders, has some of the best cyclist/driver interaction that I've seen. The huge advantage that rural New England states have is that there are a lot of roads that don't really go anywhere, and nobody on them is really in a hurry.
I live in New Hampshirejayz
Apr 20, 2001 8:05 AM
well, driving something as cool as a pristine 1980 Iroc can lead some to have an elevated level of macho-ness....thats just the price you pay for driving something as bad-a$$ as that set of wheels!!!

its actually kinda sad that you are not exagerating about that! im in Manch and can relate completely!!!

Pepper Spray is just as effectiveRoofgoat
Apr 20, 2001 10:01 AM
To be able to carry/use pepper spray, our dept/county required us to take a class on it. Included was a session where we each had to take a blast in the face. I remember the night before this class I was thinking how much this was going to suck. Anyway, the first sap was picked and we watched tony take a good hosing. NOTHING HAPPENED! He got some more. Turns out that the can was 1 1/2 yrs old. Remember this when you pull out your pepper recipe, exp date is useful.
I took an inadvertant squirt of Blair's "After Death" Hot SauceE3
Apr 20, 2001 1:49 PM my eyes one time. This stuff contains pure capsaicin, the substance that makes peppers hot. Dear lord, I've never felt so much pain in all my life. I was totally incapacitated for about 5-10 minutes. All I could do was writhe around on the floor of my kitchen.

If pepper spray is similar, then surely it's gonna be effective on most people, unless they're on PCP or something.
I've considered it,...E3
Apr 19, 2001 11:28 AM
...but I've never been in a situation that called for it. So, I resist.

I own the perfect pack gun, a .22 revolving 5-shot derringer. And I could legally pack, as I am a state licensed concealed weapon permit holder. Luckily, I live and ride in a rural area where I've had virtually no problem whatsoever out on the roads.

Yeah, it's sometimes a sick world, but so far I've never felt threatened and, hopefully, never will. If threatening situations start occurring, then I would not hesitate to pack.

If packing, then there's other considerations. The added weight, the prospect of the gun bouncing around, going off, shooting my backside or other important nether regions, shooting out a tire, a rim, a passing motorist, etc.

On a long ride, I sometimes think about how I'd react to a threatening situation out in the boonies. I wonder if I could bluff'em by brandishing my CO2 inflator. They wouldn't know what it was, and it looks just strange enough to pass as a pepper spray device or even as some sort of gun, depending on my acting job.
re: Packing Heat.DINOSAUR
Apr 19, 2001 11:53 AM
We had a thread on this topic last year that became very heated and debated. I believe it was one of the longest running topics on the board.

My opinion only, I am a retired peace officer, and I have the authority to pack a concealed weapon. I don't, when it comes to the time I need to pack heat when I ride, I'll quit riding. I'm afraid I would end up doing something I would later regret and end up being some pretty boys cell mate.

Pepper spray might be a better alternative, however the civilian version does not discharge a strong spray and if you are not careful you can end up spraying yourselve. Also Pepper spray is not effective on all people.

I know I have been piss** off many times by some motorist doing something really stupid that endangers my life. I keep my fingers and tounge in check and after about five minutes my anger subsides. It's better than shooting someone, even though you might be justified and being run through the judicial system. Not to mention the civil liability which could bankrupt you.

I hope the attorney that packs a weapon has a concealed weapon permit.
If he doesn't, he should obtain one.

O.K. I said my peace (pun intended) now I'll bow out. I just glad I'm retired and I don't have to pack a gun and worry about the consequences that goes with shooting, or God forbid, killing someone.
I have a retired cop friend that killed someone in the line of duty and he has never been the same since. I don't belong to the NRA, I'm not a gun nut, I think this whole country of ours is obsessed with guns. Anyone from San Diego County??

As an afterthought, the problem we have is not with guns, it's with the heart of man. We live in a fractured society and I don't think it's going improve, not in our life spand anyway...

End of sermon
Apr 19, 2001 12:13 PM
That's the first question I asked him...yes he does have a permit. He carries it on his bike, while running (a fanny pack), kayaking, and in his car. My friend has had some very bad experiences - all of them when alone. I'm sure he rarely rides, runs,or kayaks alone any more.

Kinda sad. I enjoy riding alone most of the time. His worst attack (the one in the cornfield) was on one of the most highly traveled roads for cyclists in this area. Its' out in the country. If it were in downtown Cincinnati, I might understand.

P.S. I live in Northern KY/Cincinnati area.
re: Packing Heat.Steve H
Apr 21, 2001 5:19 AM
I always enjoy reading your posts and have no doubt that you are right about this issue. I have had three encounters that actually scared me, two of them were vehicles that actually changed into my lane and gave me a choice of a head on or a bar ditch. One was three young men who drove close enough for one of them to lean out and strike me on the part that meets the seat. I thought about my options for protection and, so far, am still using my wits. Some say I am half armed.

Pepper spray is not an option. How do you get home from 30 miles out in 10 or 15 minutes? Some can, I cannot. I have considered a gun, but do not really want to kill anyone. It would be a last resort for the guy or guys that could not be satisfied with one hazing. I do not flip people off or otherwise escalate an incident. There are people who don't need an excuse, and for these, I still consider a gun.

You have had to live with the responsibility of a firearm for most of your adult life and understand all the things that go with it. A gun is for killing people, not winning a point with an idiot in a car. That being said, I still consider having one. These bar ditches don't have much cover in West Texas. Permit or no, I would rather live with my conscience than die because I couldn't get over a barb wire fence fast enough. I do agree with one of the earlier posts that a double barreled shot gun would be the best choice. Strapped to your back, it would probably prevent a lot of the silliness we encounter.
West TexasE3
Apr 21, 2001 4:45 PM
I live and ride in West Texas, not too far from Midland/Odessa. I've had virtually no trouble out on the roads around here.

Conversely, I have been heckled on the roads around Midland/Odessa on a few occasions. Nothing too serious, just obscenities and fingers, which are shocking nonetheless, because I'm not used to it.

Really, I'm darn near a "virgin" compared to many when it comes to violence on the roads.
DriversGroucho Marx
Apr 19, 2001 12:47 PM
Driving brings out the ugliness in everyone.

Just today, my friend who is normally a placid, nice guy, was giving me a ride home in his car. Someone cut in front of him, and slowed down. My bud got angry. And for what? Well maybe we got home about a couple of seconds later, or missed alight, but really, I forgot about it until I read this post. The worst thing about driving is that people lose CONTROL. They don't have to be rednecks; driving just does that to people, just brings out the bad in everyone. I'm not sure why, there must be some sort of phycological reason. Both my friend, and myself ride road bikes, and we have seen first hand how angry people can get when they're even slightly incovienienced while in their cars, but both me and him got angry today at that car that cut us off. Both of us reacted in the very manner that so disgust us.

My theory:
People get as mad as they do, because they are disgusted with where they are really going: NOWHERE.

I take the bus to school every morning. The transit. Some guy pulled the stop cord just as we were approaching a green light at an intersection. The bus stopped to let the man off at this stop, but by then the light had changed to red, and we had to wait. And you know what?! I found myself angry at the guy for making the bus miss the light?! And then I thought to myself: I'm not mad because the bus had to stop; I'm mad because I was on my way to school. (why I'm frustrated with that is another chapter in the same story). It's the destination, figuratively that makes us angry. The pace of life. Why people can't just take it easy, why people feel they have to be so busy all the time, I'll never know.

And you know what, I don't mind the jerk kids so much, because being one, I know they're just out to have a good time. (even if it is at the expense of others, they don't really mean to make you to feel bad, they just want to make themselves feel better.) But its when I see that genuine anger in peoples faces, and hear that genuine rage in their voices, that I really get depressed, and angry myself.

What clap-trap.
Don't get mad, get even!Largo
Apr 19, 2001 6:44 PM
Try working on you memory of license plate numbers. Seriously.
Learn the phoenetic alphabet, and as you are riding along, practice getting plate numbers. with practice, you can get pretty good.
Next time some dumb mf does something stupid, get the plate, and charge their a$$. Take 'em to court.
if you flip off someone, be prepared for the worst, or don't do it.
I don't carry bear spray, but things are a little better up here in canada.
But i have flipped off drivers and had them pull over to get me, only to have them either run back to their vehicle, or apologize when i get my 6'6", 230 lb ass off the bike, and walk their way.
Be safe all.
re: Packing Heat.Skip
Apr 21, 2001 10:26 AM
Just be sure to place all phasers on STUN, and get that license number.
Sometimes I do, sometimes I don't...Cartman
Apr 21, 2001 11:19 AM
I go back and forth. I started off this years riding season by not carying one. An officer involved shooting in my Dept made me re-think the carying option. It felt good not to have to cary around an extra fanny pack w/ the piece. Then, one ride I had a guy we arrest on a regular basis yell at me and flip me off. What a good way, i thought, for a bad guy to get back at me, when I'm out riding and not armed. I began to cary again, but again, I'm re thinking it. It is a pain in the ass. Pepper spray may be a better option, especially to civilians. I'm trained with both, obviously, but for someone who isn't, get some training first.
guns + nutterssteveuk
Apr 21, 2001 2:40 PM
hi I'm in the uk and I sympathise with you people cause we don't have to worry atall about being confronted by a nutter with a gun - unless you piss off the police armed response unit bigtime:)

Anyway I don't want to go into how stupid it is having lethal weapons freely available especially when there are SO MANY total nut heads out there and junkies desperate for some cash but as that's the way you live just now I'd advise RESPONSIBLE people like cops to carry a weapon whenever u can. The bad guys have guns and until you start getting rid of guns the good guys need to pack. It's an arms race right? One side has em so the other side needs em for self defense. Ofcoures you realise that if the bad guys didn't have em you'd have no worries????

That's my lesson over I really just wanted to say KEEP COOL. These guys that get kicks from shouting at you are just sad cases. You distract them from the radio for about 3 seconds then they forget they seen you. It's easy to react when your knackered and your confronted by a yob but maybe 99% of the time a 'no response' from you will make the nutter loose interest and hopefully keep you cool too. If these guys get a bad reaction from a guy on a bike the next one they see they'll probably try to get back at. If it escalates - and it won't/shouldn't if u don't react - then you either fight with everything you got (yer bike/lock) or run like hell. Very few yobs are gonna run after you away from their car. They may want to dameg yer bike though so if going cross country take it with you and make like you just invented a new sport. The guy with the truck got his reaction and flipped. No reaction - no nutter trying to kill you:)

btw pepper spray is illegal here. We guys just use our fists or appologise to each other before anything kicks off.
Ah,mike mcmahon
Apr 21, 2001 3:48 PM
to live in a country that doesn't worship the firearm. The absence of infatuation with the gun is something I have always admired about countries like Britain, Japan, and the Scandanavian countries. On the other hand, I heard a story recently on NPR about guns in the Philippines. If the story is accurate, it really sounds like the Wild West over there.
Apr 22, 2001 1:15 PM
yeah man I heard about that too it's pure hell by the looks of it. And you know it's not just thoses countries you mentioned, most countries in the world don't allow handguns guns I don't think. America is a great country but dangerous as hell. I think you guys would be better leaving the guns to the cops and the Army but someone would have to take out Charlton Heston first right?

It's incredible how peacefully huge populations CAN live together. Dumping the guns would over time change your country for the better but as that's not happening I'd pack a piece because the bad guys have got em:(