Who Should Not Carry a Gun?

With power comes responsibility. With greater power, comes greater responsibility. If you carry a gun, you carry the power of life and death. That’s a lot of power. Such power raises your level of responsibility such that you must be diligent in avoiding social conflicts that could escalate into serious violence.


You must avoid road rage incidents and the like. This is because if you are in a violent physical confrontation, by having a gun on you, you are introducing deadly force into the equation.

Why do we carry a gun in the first place? The common answer is for self defense, and as a last resort in response to an unavoidable threat of imminent death or grave bodily harm. That is the only right answer.

However, if we delve deeper, it becomes clear that we carry a gun so that we don’t have to use it. The more we train, the less likely we are to have to use it. So, we must train so that we don’t have to use it. What other tool do we carry with us that we don’t want to have to use? The gun is unique in that respect.

Sure, we buy insurance and hope we don’t have to use it. In a sense, a defensive firearm is like insurance. You want to have it in the event you need it, but you don’t want to have to need it. It is an emergency rescue tool for the gravest of extremes.

There are some people who should not carry a gun

I’m a passionate gun rights advocate. However, there are some types of people who should not carry a gun, and perhaps even not own one! Permit me to explain.

For one, there are people whose personality, or intellectual deficiencies, or lack of common sense make it impossible for them to understand the grave responsibility that goes along with being armed. Perhaps they get so confused at times that they are unable to pay attention for long enough to learn how to safely operate a firearm.


Then, there are people who lack the necessary judgment and impulse control that would enable them to exercise appropriate restraint when they get hot under the collar.  These people present a risk to themselves and others if they are armed. These people should not carry a gun.

People with severe attention deficit disorder should probably not carry a firearm. They can turn into a danger to themselves or others. Also, people who do not have the necessary intellectual capacity, patience, or character to learn what they need to learn to take on the responsibility of owning a gun should certainly not carry a gun.

People who are violent criminal actors, or who have major anger management issues and very short fuses should not own guns.  Obviously, all efforts should be made legally to prevent psychopaths and sociopaths and criminal personalities from owning guns.

Then, there are clinically depressed people who are at risk of committing suicide.  They should be convinced to give up their firearms temporarily until their depression is well under control.  While they remain clinically depressed, these people should not own guns. 

Ignorance is no excuse. There are people who are so smug or stupid or ignorant that they believe that it is okay to purchase a gun and not take any lessons on how to use it.  There are many people who think they know everything that they need to know about using a gun–just aim at your target and pull the trigger.  The heck with all the complicated and boring stuff!  Wrong! Actually, there’s a substantial body of knowledge that is necessary for you to develop that goes along with responsible gun ownership and concealed carry.        


Carrying a gun is not a game.  Carrying a gun is a serious commitment, and with that commitment, comes grave responsibility. Anyone who is not willing to put the time into learning how to operate and maintain his or her firearm, into to learning about the judicious use of force, including deadly force, and into learning how to effectively conceal their firearm so that it is out of sight, should not carry a gun. 

Hoplophobics. Hoplophobia is an abnormal and irrational fear of weapons such as knives and firearms. It is a true phobia and often, a complex and deep versus a simple phobia. Hoplophobics are people who feel so uncomfortable with firearms that they will never go to the range and practice.

Many of these folks are unable and unwilling to take a human life in self defense even if it means getting raped or murdered. Their belief system makes them morally opposed to self defense. They would rather the State defend them. They live under a dangerous illusion, and they cannot carry a gun, if at all own one without grave risk to themselves and others. They will not learn how to use their gun. They will not develop the mental readiness and preparation for using a gun in self-defense if the situation warrants it.

People who are show-offs and braggarts and who can’t keep their mouths shut about serious and personal matters perhaps should not carry a gun. If they let the world know that they carry a gun, who knows what can happen? For example, I had a neighbor once who wanted to be taken to the range. He came calling one day and asked to see my gun collection. I denied having much of a gun collection which was the truth. In a lapse of judgment, I agreed to take this neighbor to the range. Much to my surprise, this neighbor met me with two of his neighbors and his son in his truck. He was telling those neighbors what a “gun nut” and marksman I was! 


At the range (I should have walked away right then and there!), my neighbor was unwilling and perhaps even unable to focus and listen to instruction.  He just wanted to be allowed to shoot!  Then he wanted to purchase the range gun (an ultra-compact small caliber pistol) at a bargain price so that he could keep it in his bedroom drawer as a home defense weapon!  He wanted to be able to use it to blow off an intruder’s head, especially if the intruder took any members of his family hostage! 

On the line at the range, this gentleman kept fumbling with the gun but wouldn’t pay attention to instruction on how to operate the pistol.  He just couldn’t keep the gun consistently pointed down range.  He kept turning around with the loaded gun in his hand, unwittingly pointing it at the instructor and at the office behind the range. This person was a menace with a gun. 

In another case, I was teaching a basic NRA firearms class at the range. One of the students who registered for the class kept talking about “close calls,” people that were out to get him, and situations in which he had the opportunity to blow someone’s brains out but didn’t.  He limped and carried one of those sword canes with him. 

His affect was stilted and he looked very angry at times.  He never seemed to being paying attention to the instructor. 

He seemed as if he was in another world.  He dropped out of the class after two classes. This was not a person who I felt should own a gun.


He wanted permission to kill people! We don’t give that.

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