The Cornered Cat
Living in fear

Too many people live in fear.

I’m not talking about the fear of crime. I’m talking about the fear of understanding crime: understanding that it happens, understanding how it happens, understanding where and when it happens, and especially fear of understanding that violent crime can happen to an ordinary person living an ordinary life on an ordinary day.

Fear, terror, paranoia...

Fear, terror, paranoia…

Most of all, many people live in fear of making the decision to do something about it should they be attacked.

That’s why when we make the decision to carry a gun for ourselves, we so often face pushback and disapproval from people around us. The psychological name for that reaction is simply “projection.”

Because these folks live with a constant, steady, unacknowledged fear — one that they refuse to do anything about — they believe your decision to defend yourself must mean that you live with at least that same level of fear or even more.

When you tell them about your decision to protect yourself, they feel offended because you’ve just dragged their fear out into the open and made it impossible for them to ignore.

That’s why they’ll accuse you of being “paranoid” when you make your choice. If you’re not actually paranoid, they have to accept that they could do something about their fear and not have to feel that way anymore. From their perspective, that’s just not possible. So you must be lying.

2 Responses to Living in fear

  1. larryarnold says:

    I think I understand crime. I live in a small town with about half the national crime rate, and the national rate continues to drop. I also write up the city police reports for the local weekly newspaper, so I know what that crime rate looks like.

    There’s another dynamic at work with the anti-gun folks. I’m concerned with the small minority of people who are violent enough criminals that they will attack a stranger. (I don’t have violent friends.)

    OTOH many anti-gun folks fear that everybody is too potentially violent to be trusted with a gun, the only exception being those issued badges.

    And I’m the paranoid one?

  2. AT says:

    There’s a wonderful article on this subject here:

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