I love Paris. On November 13, 2006 my wife and I got engaged on the Eiffel Tower. In 2010 we went back after a year of unemployment to see more of the city and the French countryside. Our hearts are heavy for a city that means so much to us.
What can we do?
Beth asked me that last night while watching the coverage of the terrorist attacks in Paris. The truth is that as civilians, in a war with no fronts, no battlefield and against an enemy that strikes with little to no warning, there isn’t a thing we can do to prevent such attacks from happening again. It’s not our job. However, as responsible civilians I do think there are a few things we can do to look after ourselves and our loved ones:
1.) Carry a weapon and train with it. You’ve got a hand gun and some mags? Great. Go get trained up and become proficient in the use of that tool. Then, carry it every day.
2.) Stay alert and aware of what’s going around you. Do this for a while and you’ll know when something isn’t right.
3.) You’ve got a rifle and some mags? Even better. See number 1. If you don’t have a rifle and the gear to go with it, go shopping.
4.) Walk out into the world peacefully, but prepared to return fire.
5.) You’re law enforcement? Carry your creds and your weapon off duty. See number 4.
6). Train. Keep training. And then train some more. This will be the best money you ever spend.
7.) If you’re new to this stuff, ask someone you know who has experience. I always encourage people who are seeking knowledge to come out to the range with me and take the first steps into a larger world. I will never say no to someone who wants to learn.
Am I afraid? Sure. It’s only a matter of time before these strikes come home to an American city. This enemy is clearly motivated and willing to attack unarmed civilians, and their eyes are fixed on the US. These few things are the ways that I choose to deal with that fear. If you happen to be in that place when violence breaks out, you will have a choice to make: Do I die cowering in fear, or on my feet at slide lock?
Truly, I hope it’s a choice we never have to make.