The Barbarian

This old guy holding an infant with a toddler sitting in the chair next to him doesn’t look much like a Barbarian, more like a harmless old man. My State Champion wrestler son once said ‘pretty embarrassing to be choked out by a harmless old man’. It wasn’t my fault that he walked head first into a guillotine; I can guarantee it won’t happen again. I was getting a little tired of how easy he double legged me for a take down anyway.

I’m holding my great niece’s new born son. His name is Mason but on the way home one night from meeting him I couldn’t remember his name so I called him Murph. My bride said ‘who’? ‘Murph, you know the little guy we were just holding; that’s Mason you old knot head’. I kinda like ‘Murph’ and actually the nickname has stuck; at least for me.

Shanley and her husband Gabriel and their kids were here at Mountain Home Air Base for a couple of years and we had a great time with them. They have moved on to another assignment and although we miss them we are happy that they are pursuing their dreams.

Their daughter Gracie Ann is in the chair next to me and ‘Murph’. She’s been pretty leery of me until just before they moved but that’s okay; little girls need to be feisty and independent.

What would you do to protect your family and loved ones, or just an innocent bystander? From my experience the law protects the criminal more than it does the innocent. The few times we have retained a lawyer either for criminal or financial issues has served us not at all. The criminal issue ended up going no where and the lawsuit for wages cost us attorney fees without recovering a dime. Neither case bolstered my confidence in our judicial system. Although I can guarantee that if I had taken the law into my own hands I’d be in jail.

Several years ago someone stole my old Ford pickup out of our driveway and drove it to the Lone Mountain cutoff just north of Elko Nevada and left it there; likely it ran out of gas.

Three weeks after it disappeared the police department located it and I went down and paid the impound fees and drove it home. I visited with the deputy there at Elko and confirmed what I already knew to be true. Had I been at home when it was driven out of my yard and shot the guy in the back of the head I would have been charged with murder. Now if I was in front of him and he tried to run over me and I shot him it would have been self defense. Simple enough right; if only it was so simple.

A few months ago I went to a USCCA meeting, United States Concealed Carry Association and although their main focus is to sell you insurance some very interesting points of concealed carry and protecting your property were discussed. The biggest thing that came up is that in any self defense shooting you run a high risk of being charged with murder, then the responsibility of proving your innocence becomes your burden and responsibility.

If you catch someone walking out of your tack room with your custom made saddle at 2 am and you shoot them in the leg you have opened up a can of worms that you may not be able to digest. That pretty much goes with any private property; call the cops. Yeah I know, that’s not very effective in most cases but at least you’re not going to jail booked for murder or assault with a deadly weapon.

Lethal force. That’s another can of worms.

Lethal force does not require a firearm. Surprised? I’m not.

So how can you protect your property and defend and protect your family and not find yourself in jail? It can be a very slippery slope.

First off decide beforehand if you are willing to take someones life for any reason. We live in a world where mental health issues have been multiplied and magnified ten fold from my youth. The amount of killings each week in America alone are astonishing. Gun control is not the answer, educating our youth is a good start and addressing mental health issues is another area that requires a microscopic look.

Training for concealed carry is great but firearms training in its self is also great. Go to your local gun range and under a certified instructor show that you can not only shoot but are competent in handling a firearm. Prove that you are not a nut job with anger issues, if you are ever in a shooting it will weigh in your behalf.

Over 40 years ago we were living in Ashton Idaho and had recently bought a used Grand Torino. Just out of college and enjoying a stable income we wanted a nice car.

Joy, my bride was ahead of me as we drove home in the dark of a November night, I was in our Ford pickup following about a half a mile back. Nate our infant son was asleep in his homemade car cradle in the pickup with me. A Ford pickup with a camper shell passed me just coming up on Archer Idaho. He went around Joy then slammed on his brakes, she had to swerve to miss the pickup. The driver then gunned the pickup and got right on her bumper with their lights on bright. By now I’m accelerating to catch up.

As I was closing the distance between us the driver of the pickup went around Joy once again forcing her off of the road. Before the driver could exit the pickup I came skidding around in front of both outfits. As I jumped out the driver took off and tried to run me over, I was able to avoid being hit; I could see by now that it was a single man.

I checked to make sure Joy was okay, she was shaken and upset but otherwise unhurt. I traded her outfits and got into a high speed chase with this guy. As I pulled up beside him he tried to run me off of the road. I was able to avoid that but short of wrecking our new car I wasn’t able to stop him.

We were approaching where we lived so I pulled into our yard and got to a phone and called 911. The response was less than satisfactory.

We located the guy and took him to court and nothing came of it. His house mysteriously burnt down the night before the case came to court; how convenient. I didn’t burn it down by the way, that would not have been my idea of revenge.

To add to the frustration of the incident a pickup matching the description of his had been reported forcing women, driving alone at night, off of the road. He hadn’t harmed anyone yet, just stood at their window and screamed at them. Just a matter of time though until he got past the screaming part I’m sure.

Two things about that night, one I was running around on a walking cast as I had ruptured the ligaments in my ankle earlier that fall. That cast would have qualified as a lethal weapon had I drug that guy out of his pickup.

Number 2; had I been armed that night he would have never forced anyone off of the road again.

So I ask you once again; what are you willing to do to protect your family?


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