With a new, Obama-appointed Surgeon General with a long history of anti-gun advocacy, we now see a resurgence of the Prohibitionists’ efforts to have firearms ownership be excoriated as a health and safety risk to Americans.
When I opened my first shooting school to teach armed citizens the use of deadly force in 1981, I very quickly noticed something my predecessors in the private firearms academy business, Jeff Cooper and Ray Chapman and John Farnam, had already seen: in more classes than not, health care professionals were the single most highly represented occupational category among the students. That trend has continued to this day.
It seems counterintuitive to those who don’t understand the real-world dynamics of not only guns, but self-defense. All that’s required to understand it is common sense. Doctors and nurses and paramedics and rehabilitation therapists aren’t like ordinary citizens, who see violence mentioned in their morning paper or on TV, mutter “Tsk, tsk,” and turn the page or the channel. These medical professionals see the results of violent criminal assault upon the innocent, and some of them see it daily!
Because they deal with life and death (or life-threatening illness and trauma) on such a regular basis, doctors and other health-care providers become realists and pragmatists. And when you analyze survival of violent crime realistically and pragmatically, seeing its victims so often, it is logical to very soon come to a realistic and pragmatic conclusion: Not me! Not mine!
I hate it when newspapers get hold of concealed carry permit lists and publish them, but one good thing has come from that: every single time it happens, you see a disproportionate number of the gun carriers are medical people (and lawyers, and judges). The people who deal with reality day in, and day out. There is something to be learned from that.
A great resource is Doctors for Responsible Gun Ownership, at http://www.drgo.us/. Read the recent article by Dr. John Edeen, a Texas MD who compares two homicides which occurred in medical environments, both perpetrators having opened fire with the intent of murdering medical professionals. One was ended by a doc who had his own gun…the other was not. Dr. Edeen’s article speaks for itself. I know Dr. Edeen, and have spoken on a panel with him speaking against the fallacious “gun-free zone” concept, along with gunfight researcher Chris Bird, at the Gun Rights Policy Conference in 2014, available here.
The founder and head of DRGO is my old friend Dr. Tim Wheeler. He, like the large membership for whom he speaks, is a voice of reality.
Dr. Edeen’s voice of reason is found most recently here.
I’m not a doctor. But I’ve heard the beginning of the Hyppocratic Oath translated variously as “First, do no harm,” and also as “First, do no further harm.”
It seems to me that “First, do not ALLOW any further harm to be done to your patients or your fellow caregivers” might be an appropriate modern translation.
Comments are, as always, welcome.