I am responding to the letter to the editor in the Jan. 20 Laramie Boomerang pertaining to House Bill 114 (Wyoming Repeal Gun Free Zones Act). A resident of Albany County seems to have a “comfort level and sense of security” in many places where the concealed carry of guns is currently prohibited. She states that her sense of security should outweigh an individual’s freedom to “pack heat.”
I would argue that most people I know with a concealed carry permit do not have it simply to “pack heat.” They do so as they do not feel a comfort level and sense of security living in Albany County or elsewhere. They perceive some level of threat to family and self and are simply practicing the right to defend themselves and their loved ones. Many have previously been victims and are now refusing to be a victim again in the future. Prior victims have a right to a “comfort level and sense of security” that was taken away when they were victimized, and they regain their sense of security by “refusing to be a victim” in the future.
Mostly, the police cannot protect you. They show up after someone has been victimized — sometimes they show up for body-bag detail. I don’t think one citizen’s comfort level and sense of security outweighs a rape victim’s right to refuse to be a victim, nor does it outweigh someone’s right to not submit to being a victim of physical assault.
House Bill 114 is not about the right to “pack heat;” it is about refusing to be a victim, protecting loved ones and the right to self-defense against any unforeseen circumstance that would result in major bodily harm or death.
Some citizens’ security comes from being their own “first responders” in hazardous or life-and-death situations. They don’t plan on fires but have fire extinguishers; they don’t plan on injury but have a first aid kit; they don’t plan on accidents but wear seat belts; they don’t plan on being a victim but do carry a gun.