Gun advocates have managed to legalize “concealed carry” in every state and recently on Texas campuses so they are ready for “bad guys.”
But how do you know a bad guy? On the first day of Georgia’s “guns everywhere all the time” law, one carrier accosted another in a convenience store–both thinking the other might be a bad guy. Maybe they should have been wearing white hats.
In the last two years in Florida, often called the Gunshine state, men carrying Skittles, popcorn and playing loud music have been mistaken for bad guys and shot dead on the spot. Sorry about that.
Last year, gun owners shot and killed an unarmed black woman, an unarmed elderly Alzheimer’s patient and an unarmed foreign exchange student on their property because they thought they were bad guys. Sorry about that too. Several times a year gun advocates shoot their own family members, thinking them bad guys trying to break into the house.
Another problem is that gun advocates’ definition of a bad guy changes when they get mad. A few weeks ago, a 74-year-old man who police say was lawfully carrying a concealed gun shot another motorist in the face in Warwick township, PA over a road rage incident. In February, Ashley R. Curry was charged with shooting Jamie J. Roland in the abdomen after a road rage incident in Columbia, PA. This month, in Omaha, police arrested Randolph Headrick for shooting at a motorist in another road rage incident. Hey, the motorist cut him off.
Sometimes a boss, doctor or authority figure seems like a bad guy. Last year, Tony DeFrances, a law-abiding citizen and chief technology officer got mad at his company’s CEO and fatally shot him in a Chicago Loop high-rise. Last January, Stephen Pasceri, described as a “churchgoing Army veteran and father of four,” got mad at cardiovascular surgeon Michael Davidson in Brigham and Women’s Hospital and shot him dead. Also last year, Michael Hrnciar, a “law-abiding citizen” who worked at an Illinois chemical business for ten years without incident, decided to ambush and murder a police officer because he got mad. Hrnciar may have been “law-abiding,” but he moved to gun-friendly Indiana from Illinois so he could legally carry a handgun.
Of course when gun advocates get mad, their families and loved ones can also appear like bad guys. This week, a Montana man killed his three children and wife. In the last year, there have been four other instances of men shooting and killing their whole families including Don Spirit who murdered his daughter and six grandchildren at his Florida home last summer.
The truth is when someone has easy access to a lethal weapon, anyone is or can be a “bad guy” if they make him mad.