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Life Threatened by Loud Music, Skittles or Popcorn? Yes Say Armed Vigilantes!

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(Article changed on February 12, 2014 at 10:56)

 Everyone has heard the expression, "if the only tool you have is a hammer, everything will look like a nail."   As lethal shootings continue to find self-deputized armed citizens in court, the saying apparently applies to "carriers." Once vigilante-style cop wannabas are armed, anyone from a kid carrying Skittles or playing music too loud to someone texting his daughter or throwing popcorn at the movie theater looks like a "bad guy" to be shot and killed.



Paranoid vigilantes running national gun policy by Martha Rosenberg
 

Last spring, anti-gun violence author and activist Heidi Yewman explored the psychology of carrying a gun in a widely read online diary called "My Month With a Gun." Yewman, author of Beyond the Bullet decided to buy and carry a Glock 9mm handgun because she "wondered what would it be like to be that good guy with a gun. What would it be like to get that gun, live with that gun, be out and about with that gun."

Procuring a gun was easy. "The whole thing took 7 minutes. As a gratified consumer, I thought, 'Well, that was easy.' Then the terrifying reality hit me, 'Holy hell, that was EASY.'   Too easy. I still knew nothing about firearms," wrote Yewman. Both the gun dealer who sold Yewman her Glock and a policeman she randomly asked for help in ascertaining if there were bullets in the chamber, knew she was walking around with a lethal weapon she knew nothing about. Hey, this is America!

Soon owning the Glock changed Yewman's actual thinking. "Before I had a gun, I would go to sleep thinking about what I'd make for dinner tomorrow or how to help my son on a project or remind myself to pay a bill I'd forgotten. With a gun, all I thought about were the sounds I heard at night. I would lie awake thinking: 'Is someone breaking in? How fast can I get to the gun? Will they hear me? How much time do I have before they get to my bedroom? What if they go to my son's room first? Will I shoot them in the face or heart or stomach?'"

Seeing trouble because you are armed is a new and deadly theme seen in recent gun violence. In the last year, gun owners have killed their own family members, new neighbors, stranded motorists and an Alzheimer victim thinking them "intruders."

Curtis Reeves, a retired police officer accused of killing Chad Oulson and wounding his wife Nicole at a movie theater in Wesley Chapel, Florida apparently thought his life was threatening by another patron texting and throwing popcorn. Defendant Michael Dunn discharged his concealed weapon nine times allegedly killing 17-year-old Jordan Davis because he felt "threatened" by loud music. Dunn did not mention seeing a weapon to his fiancée after the shooting, according to court testimony, nor did he even report the shooting to police. Chalk one up to civilian justice!   George Zimmerman, of course, was threatened by murdered teen Trayvon Martin even though it was Zimmerman who had the gun. And almost every week armed road ragers shoot at other motorists because they feel "threatened" when cut off in traffic.

Are you DONE ASKING for sane gun laws? Force them! Join the thousands making the TELL AND COMPEL pledge.

 

Martha Rosenberg is an award-winning investigative pubic health reporter who covers the food, drug and gun industries. Her first book, Born With A Junk Food Deficiency: How Flaks, Quacks and Hacks Pimp The Public Health, is distributed by Random (more...)
 

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Stand Your Ground is nothing but a license for vig... by Martha Rosenberg on Wednesday, Feb 12, 2014 at 11:34:26 AM
You obviously haven't read the statute.  You ... by Stuart Chisholm on Wednesday, Feb 12, 2014 at 4:12:35 PM
Heidi, (like many second fetishists) forgets the ... by Julian Lobato on Wednesday, Feb 12, 2014 at 11:37:34 AM
You spin things into propaganda as usual. Stan... by Bill Johnson on Wednesday, Feb 12, 2014 at 2:01:17 PM
Trayvon acted in self-defense. ... by Kim Cassidy on Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 2:18:50 AM
EXACTLY. That is what is always missing from this ... by J. Edward Tremlett on Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 7:38:45 AM
Yes, JET, you are perfectly right. And another th... by Kim Cassidy on Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 8:36:18 AM
Why are these tough guys so threatened by Skittles... by Martha Rosenberg on Wednesday, Feb 12, 2014 at 4:21:27 PM
Not trying to be a tough guy. Just a sensible guy... by Bill Johnson on Wednesday, Feb 12, 2014 at 7:34:49 PM
BJ is lying through his teeth. Again. "George only... by J. Edward Tremlett on Wednesday, Feb 12, 2014 at 10:48:43 PM
In terms of the map of the shooting, that's the wr... by J. Edward Tremlett on Wednesday, Feb 12, 2014 at 11:20:10 PM
The fact remains that Martin attacked Zimmerman.&n... by Doc McCoy on Thursday, Feb 13, 2014 at 9:13:55 AM
No one should. it's clear that is what happened. B... by J. Edward Tremlett on Thursday, Feb 13, 2014 at 10:18:34 AM
Missing from your analysis is the fact that Jeante... by Doc McCoy on Thursday, Feb 13, 2014 at 6:42:08 PM
Perhaps. But I suspect he was spooked enough befor... by J. Edward Tremlett on Friday, Feb 14, 2014 at 12:15:00 AM
They don't care about the facts or how violent Tr... by Bill Johnson on Thursday, Feb 13, 2014 at 5:55:13 PM
Does anybody bother to tell you how wrong you are ... by Kim Cassidy on Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 2:27:54 AM
I'm not lying. Your map simply does not match cou... by Bill Johnson on Thursday, Feb 13, 2014 at 5:39:35 PM
"Your map simply does not match court testimony. J... by J. Edward Tremlett on Friday, Feb 14, 2014 at 12:19:05 AM
"H ow dare you suggest I would lie about this cas... by J. Edward Tremlett on Friday, Feb 14, 2014 at 12:19:36 AM
All you are doing is personal attacks and it accom... by Bill Johnson on Friday, Feb 14, 2014 at 12:45:59 PM
No, BJ. I am debating you. And I am not going to e... by J. Edward Tremlett on Friday, Feb 14, 2014 at 11:26:14 PM
you lie too. Are you capable of carrying on a deba... by Bill Johnson on Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 11:34:37 AM
Nope! My points are backed up by facts and common ... by J. Edward Tremlett on Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 3:18:49 PM
People like you are always so sure of yourself... ... by Kim Cassidy on Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 2:22:45 AM
I'm not wrong. And no one has proven otherwise de... by Bill Johnson on Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 11:32:34 AM
"I'm not wrong. And no one has proven otherwise de... by J. Edward Tremlett on Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 3:20:43 PM
The author seems to be advocating "sane gun laws"... by jon cranor on Wednesday, Feb 12, 2014 at 7:22:41 PM
When a gun is drawn on a Brownie scout selling coo... by Dennis Kaiser on Thursday, Feb 13, 2014 at 6:45:16 AM
I'm sure the little brown thug was asking for it. ... by J. Edward Tremlett on Thursday, Feb 13, 2014 at 7:32:43 AM
Looks to me like someone who's pro-gungrabbers....... by MadAngel on Thursday, Feb 13, 2014 at 9:48:41 AM
I am sorry to see the bias in this article, and in... by Kim Cassidy on Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 1:43:59 AM
Nobody SHOULD buy a gun, or anything, on impulse, ... by Kim Cassidy on Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 1:46:59 AM
Lastly, Stand Your Ground, when not perverted by o... by Kim Cassidy on Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 2:07:41 AM