When gun rights supporters pushed “shall issue” concealed carry legislation through the majority of State legislatures, supporters claimed the move would make mass shootings less likely. CCW (Concealed Carry Weapons permits) would create an “invisible army” of permit-holders who could stop them. In fact, this anti-spree killing concept was The Mother of All CCW Arguments; deployed by lobbyists in Texas following the massacre at a Luby’s Cafeteria in 1991. And yet . . .

Since the enaction of “shall issue” CCW, there have been a number of mass shootings in concealed carry states like Texas, AZ, etc. As near as I can tell, none of them have been ended by legally-carrying armed citizens. Seems to me that in every case the shooting was either ended by the shooter (often by capping himself) or by the cops.

Why is that?

Now it’s true that some of these shootings (VA Tech) occurred in designated “gun free zones” (A/K/A “Victim Disarmament Zones”). But it’s also true that some of them did not (the Giffords shooting was not such a zone, AFAIK, nor was the recent Texas roller rink shooting.)

My guess is that the reason we don’t see these kinds of mass killings being stopped by licensed civilian CCW holders is because (a) people who are most vulnerable (i.e. poor people who live in bad neighborhoods and women who are involved with domestically abusive partners) are the least likely to get a CCW permit and (b) most CCW permit holders don’t carry on a routine basis.

How many mass shootings have been prevented by shall-issue CCW? I don’t know and I don’t even know how it would be possible to know. It would be too much like trying to prove a negative. On balance, counter to the anti-concealed-carry hysteria you see from the gun banners, I think concealed carry laws have had either a beneficial effect, or at worst had no effect on crime rates (which have been falling since the late 80’s or early 90’s anyway – several years before the shall-issue CCW wave started building.)

However, there have been enough mass-shootings in shall-issue states that it’s time to admit that the notion that “it will stop mass killings” is not a valid justification for shall-issue CCW. For all the bloody publicity they garnish, mass shootings are anomalies, freak incidents of human mayhem, the equivalent of bridge collapses or flesh-eating-bacteria outbreaks. Terrible and tragic, but not very common, and not really “preventable” in any practical sense.

I have to admit that I sometimes think that the extreme pro-gunners are the mirror image of the gun banners. The gun banners see guns as the cause of every problem and the gun-rights extremists see guns as the solution to every problem. The reality: complex problems won’t be resolved with bumper-sticker solutions, no matter how attractive or simple or convenient they might appear.

I’m not saying there aren’t valid reasons for shall-issue CCW. I think there are many. But the notion that liberalized CCW will prevent “mass shootings” is not one of them.

64 Responses to Does CCW Prevent Mass Shootings?

  1. I didn’t see any requirements about needing to stop a mass-shooting on my CCW app, or requirement to be a hero :). It said the exact opposite, I could dig up my paper work but to paraphrase “A CCW permit does not make you a cop”.

    If I witness a mass-shooting and my life (or my family’s) is not in danger, I’ll be a good witness but I’m running the other direction. I do remember one of the main predicted benefits of CCW is lower crime rate. I understood that as, people will think twice before breaking into my house or assaulting me on the streets as I may be armed. I still think that is true.

  2. Part of the problem is that when a shooting is stopped it’s not spectacular, and therefore unlikely to make the national news. Still, when I Googled “shooting stopped ccw holder” I got a number of stories detailing what looks like at least four separate incidents of rampages cut short on the first two pages.

    CCW laws can’t stop mass shootings any more than CPR lessons can stop heart attacks. But in both cases someone in the right place at the right time can prevent some innocent deaths.

  3. James: That may be, but I can’t be the only person who, upon hearing about a mass shooting in a state that has CCW, asks himself “why wasn’t this stopped by a concealed-carrying civilian?” Certainly part of the problem is “the dog that didn’t bark”, that is, a shooting that gets stopped after 1 or 2 people are shot isn’t as likely to make national news as one where the shooter keeps on shooting. But I’d be willing to bet that the other part of the problem is simply that most Americans, even those with CCW permits, don’t carry on any kind of regular basis.

    • “But I’d be willing to bet that the other part of the problem is simply that most Americans, even those with CCW permits, don’t carry on any kind of regular basis.”

      Martin, I think you’re absolutely right on that. I usually hear that between 2% and 4% of the population carries concealed when the law allows them to. With 96% of the population not carrying I think we can safely call CCW “rare”. As you correctly observed in your main post mass shootings are rare. So for a CCW holder to stop a mass shooting we need the intersection of two rare events.

      • So for a CCW holder to stop a mass shooting we need the intersection of two rare events.

        I think you’re right on the money here. But then we should also be candid enough to admit that at least some of the benefits of CCW were oversold. You have no better proof than the video Robert posted at the top of this article (BTW, Thanks, Robert.)

  4. “But I’d be willing to bet that the other part of the problem is simply that most Americans, even those with CCW permits, don’t carry on any kind of regular basis.”

    It would be interesting if a formal poll were taken of CCW holders to gauge exactly how many actually carry on a regular basis, and their reason for not doing so.

    I have a CCW and do not carry. It is simply too much of a pain in the @ss.

    • Van, I’m in the same boat. Problem with a survey is twofold: First, there would be “selection bias”, i.e. lots of CCW holders would not take the survey so their answers wouldn’t be included. Second, when it comes to matters of personal security, people are notoriously evasive, for multiple reasons, so you couldn’t really count on the answers being accurate (even in an anonymous survey.)

      • I carry all the time, because one doesn’t have the luxury of choosing the time and place when trouble rears its ugly head.

    • “I have a CCW and do not carry. It is simply too much of a pain in the @ss.”

      Next time, try a holster.

      Oh, this was way too easy.

    • It’s getting easier and easier to carry these days with small self defense guns being the new darling of the industry. There are tons of pocket .380s that totally disappear and even some pocket 9mm now.

      When I don’t want to be bothered with carrying I pocket carry

      • It’s not the discomfort that gets me. It’s the number of extra laws I have to remember on a daily basis to avoid being an accidental felon.

  5. Not carrying on a regular basis is part of it. Consider that even in a heavy carry state a bare fraction even has CCW permits and of those only a few carry with regularity.

    So there is the rarity angle. There’s just very few carriers. And as J says even if there was a civilian carrier they may not go all “Die Hard” provided that they and theirs are secure. On the other hand they might, it really depends on oprotunity.

    Which touches on the last part. CCW may not notably reduce the odds of a mass shooting succeding, but it will improve the odds of the CCW holder him or herself (and those with him) surviving the incident.

    And goes back to the aspect of carry your weapon and get good training on how to use it. It won’t do you any good if it’s not within arm’s reach.

  6. Joe Zamudio helped subdue Jared Laughner. He was carrying at the time, but said he didn’t shoot because he couldn’t risk hitting anyone else.

    His actions prevented Laughner from extending the tragedy.

    • Hadn’t Loughner already been subdued by the crowd, while attempting to load a new magazine, though? Had Zamudio shot Loughner while he was in the midst of his spree, his CCW would have been relevant, but IIRC Zamudio never drew his weapon and arrived on the scene after the shooting stopped. IOW the weapon was irrelevant.

      • “As near as I can tell, none of them have been ended by legally-carrying armed citizens.”

        I guess you didn’t specify the CCW holder had to use their weapon to stop him. From what Joe Zamudio says, he put his hand on his gun and ran to where Laughner was, then assisted in tackling him.

        • If they didn’t use a weapon, then what is the relevance of the fact that they were CCW permit holders?

          Again, go back to my original point which was that stopping mass killings was one of the features used to sell state legislatures on shall-issue.

        • Its relevent because Joe had a gun, heard the shots fired, and went to stop the event with the intent of using his gun if necessary. All in an attempt to engage the shooter on even terms.

          If he hadn’t be able to lawfully carry, would he still have attempted to engage the shooter unarmed?

          Id say that makes pretty good reason to argue CCW as a means to potentially end a mass shooting before more people are killed, because that’s exactly what Joe set out to do.

        • +1 I can’t imagine your average unarmed man would be running toward the sound of gunfire to help…when you add a firearm to the other side of the equation, it seems a little more likely

  7. It does seem as if mass killers intentionally seek soft targets where they are quite sure there will be little or no armed resistance. So it’s theoretically possible that the answer to “how many have been prevented” is zero, since the person contemplating such acts simply went through a target selection list until they came up with the one that would be least risky to strike.
    I all but ignore the pragmatic “halo effects” supposedly conferred on society by the notion that there may be people discreetly armed who can act as immediate responders to the threat. They may or may not be real, but I think their effect may be forever impossible to quantify.
    I focus more on the moral aspect – that the State does not have the right to tell you that you have to act like a good little sheep and choose between fleeing or cowering when confronted with violence. That if you so choose (freely) you may equip yourself with the tools to make a stand in defense of self and/or others.

  8. In AZ’s most recent rampage shooting there were “armed civilians.” In the interviews with these individuals they were asked why they didn’t shoot Loughner and they all said it had to do with not wanting to shoot people running between them and behind the shooter. Whether that’s the case or they just fled and were rounded up by LEOs during containment I don’t know. There’s a lot of factors involved with overcoming fight-or-flight in those kinds of situations.

  9. From what I read here most CCW holders, myself included, aren’t itching to be John McLean. The weapon is there so we can get out dodge with the highest probability of survival so if it is possible to move away from the shooter that’s what we will do. The only case that most of will draw down on the guy is if we have no escape or we are close enough to be a target.

    • I don’t have a CCW yet (not sure if I’ll get it or not) and I have no intention of being Roy Rogers, but IF I had a CCW and IF Hans Gruber started shooting people while I’m around, then I’d most definitely say “Yippe ki-yay mother F***ER!” Call me crazy, but if I’m armed and in a position where it’s not likely for police to arrive quickly and someone is actively harming others, I’d feel obligated to do something about it.

  10. The problem with these types of crimes is that they are largely unavoidable. When Hinkley wounded president Regan and disabled Brady he did so in a crowd of trained, armed secret service agents. These agents were tasked with protecting the president, and you keyboard cowboys can criticize them all you want, they’re training is far superior to anything you have read in the back of Soldier of Fortune or in the military booklets you bought at the local military surplus store. Some instincts are unavoidable, no one has to tell you to duck and cover, it is a natural instinct when confronted with imminent danger, and critiquing people for attempting to save themselves, especially the children in Norway is deplorable. You can advocate for CHL’s, but you cannot force people to carry when they feel safe. These acts of terrorism are quick and direct, while CCW’s may end the situation quicker than waiting on law enforcement, they cannot prevent from the incidents from happening.

    • Irock,

      ? I didn’t realize we were talking about the secret service, or the Norway murderer on this thread…guess I missed it.

      As to not being able to stop situations, I agree 100% you can’t always stop a fire, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a good idea to have a fire extinguisher around for those fires that can be kept under control until the authorities arrive

  11. It boggles my mind why someone would go through the process of getting a CCW and then not carry. I carry for two reasons – protection of me and my family and because it’s my right.

    Mass Shooting being the rare event that they are I’d imagine the only real way for CCW to have any effect ( – or + ) is for the number of people who can legally carry to actually carry. I’d guess that much less than 1% of the people who can carry do carry with any kind of regularity. Because of this – I’d also guess that the chances of a CCW licencee being in the right place at the right time to have any effect ( – or + ) on the outcome of a Mass Shooting are so slim that you’d probably have a better chance of winning the lottery.

    I don’t carry with the hope that I’ll be able to stop a mass shooting. I carry to protect me and mine. That said – I’d rather have and not need than need and not have.

    Keep in mind that Suzanna Gratia (video) was not carrying because she was a *law abiding citizen* and left her gun in her car per Texas law. Would having her gun available have saved her family? Nobody knows that, but in Suzanna’s words: “it sure as heck would have changed the odds.”

    • I’ll be honest, I had my Concealed Carry License for a few years before I started carrying.

      Being in Ohio there were a number of oddities in the law that made it more convenient to not carry on certain occasions. Some problems in the law have been corrected (the biggest correction restaurant carry where alcohol is present going into effect in about 65 days). I have also gotten more accustomed to carry and gotten a pocket pistol for when other options are to bulky.

  12. Well, here’s the question. Has there ever been a shooting where there was a CCW permit holder who was carrying and the shooting was allowed to continue without interruption until law enforcement showed up?

  13. Remember the Florida school board shooting that resulted in only the suicide of the perp after he fired one poorly aimed shot? A man carrying concealed engaged him and struck him at least once, prompting the end of the mass shooting. Had the CCW holder not been present, probably 6 more people would have been executed. Its all on youtube:

  14. I am an EDC kind of guy. The only time I am not carrying is in locations it would be illegal to carry by AK and Fed law. When I carry, my primary concern is the defense of my family and myself. If presented with the opportunity to end an active shooter’s rampage, then I would likely take it if I was able to keep my primary responsibility of protecting my family. But their safety trumps all other concerns including my personal safety.

    That said, my views might not answer every circumstance.

  15. Now that you all mention it, I have to partially retract one of my statements above: It is rare but it does happen. Right down the road from me at the New Life Church in Colorado Springs a volunteer “security guard” (carrying with a CCW permit) stopped a shooter who was hellbent on killing as many people as possible.

    http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news/14817480/detail.html

    She didn’t kill the shooter, but she disabled him and at that point he decided to eat his gun rather than be taken alive, so IMO it still counts.

    At the risk of being overly pedantic, it can be argued that her CCW permit was irrelevant: Under CO law, a person can carry concealed on private property without a permit as long as they have the consent of the property owner (my first experience carrying concealed was in 1984 – 19 years before we got our “shall issue” law and was a result of exactly such a situation, private property with the consent of the owner.)

    Nevertheless, it does show that a CCW holder can stop a mass shooter.

  16. In the Tucson shooting I think the thought of not wanting to hit all the scrambling people in front and behind the shooter is valid. What good is a CCW when you end up unintentionally contributing to the carnage?

    I think if there IS an answer (only thinking within the “CCW” question) it would be to get more people to carry.

    However, if a crazy guy pulls a gun in public I kind of feel like it’s already too late. In both the Tucson and Virginia Tech cases they both had documented mental issues (VT guy was straight up diagnosed if I remember correctly while Tucson guy was just not acted on by his school) but were able to procure guns through legal outlets. If people with mental issues weren’t allowed to buy weapons legally then these incidents may never have happened.

    But again, we’ll never really know.

    • “If people with mental issues weren’t allowed to buy weapons legally then these incidents may never have happened”

      What kind of fairy dust your snorting? You really think that closing the legal route to a gun will stop crazed people from getting their hands on guns?

      • What kind of fairy dust are you smoking by thinking it’s alright to legally allow mentally unstable people to arm themselves?!

        Not allowing them to buy guns would definitely have slowed them down…and maybe raise a flag for someone to check on them. We don’t allow blind people to drive but a blind guy can still find his way to a car if no one’s paying attention. Not sure why this is hard to grasp.

        If Jared in Tucson had been dealt with appropriately by the college he was going to then maybe he would’ve been taken off the path he went down. If the VTech guy wasn’t allowed to buy a gun legally, was red-flagged when he attempted thus causing a mental health professional to go check in on him or whatever then maybe he would have been intercepted before he did any damage as well.

        Call me crazy all you want but no bullets fired is better than less bullets fired when it comes to the mentally unstable.

        Now I’m not saying that just saying “no you can’t have a gun crazy guy” is all that’s needed. If anything those situations were more about a failure in local mental health institutions and we Americans’ overall ignorance of mental health issues.

        However, if someone who’s been diagnosed with a condition that could potentially lead them to being a danger to themself and others then hell no they shouldn’t be allowed to legally buy a gun!

        • There’s an engineering term, “works on paper”, that applies here. It would be great, in principle, to stop “mentally unstable” people from obtaining guns. The problem comes in when you try to differentiate the “mentally unstable” from the merely “odd”, prior to an Aurora-type event. It’s easy, after the event to say that someone shouldn’t have had access to firearms, it’s a lot tougher prior to the event.

  17. I think the “mass shooting prevention” argument is irrelevant, and in some cases does more harm than good.

    Here in Texas, if I recall correctly, only about 400,000 people have active CHLs (feel free to update/debunk that number). That’s a drop in the bucket compared to even a major city’s population. Not only that, most CHLs I know tend to avoid trouble when possible, and would likely run the opposite direction given the chance to do so safely in a SHTF scenario. Thus I say the argument is irrelevant.

    Furthermore, I watched the Campus Carry debate religiously, and heard the “mass shooting prevention” argument brought up more times than I care to think about. Heck, it was the platform Senator Wentworth introduced the bill on. Obviously the bill failed, but I honestly think the vigilante aspect of the pro-side’s argument (mass shooting prevention) did it in. Frankly, it would have been better to focus on the day-to-day aspects, such as non-trads with families who have to take night classes and walk 15 minutes at night to get to their car (translation: good target to mug). Thus I say the “mass shooting prevention” argument does more harm than good.

    *ahem* sorry. I’ll hop off my soapbox now.

  18. Most private security guards (especially for low risk targets where they are primarily security theater) at churches, concerts, etc. have minimal training, and thus it is not a great leap to argue they are a decent proxy for a CCW civilian’s likelihood to prevent a massacre when present and armed.

    In December 2010 a church security guard (female) prevented a mass killing:
    http://articles.cnn.com/2007-12-10/us/colorado.shootings_1_gunman-security-guard-casings?_s=PM:US

    I get the impression she was a church member/security guard….

    • Jeanne Assam was a Colorado CHP holder and church security volunteer. It was the news media that claimed she was a “security guard,” implying she was in a paid position.

  19. From a tactical point of view, mass shootings are an ambush situation. Anybody close enough to interrupt the shooter at an early stage are also in his line of fire and are probably going to be among the first casualties. Someone close but out of the initial barrage will be hindered by ROE, i.e., he won’t take a shot unless it is wide open. He will also have to take cover before responding. Even if he is bold/stupid enough to stand his ground and wait for the crowd to clear before he takes his shot it will already be a mass shooting. The only situation where a armed citizen will be effective is something like the VA Tech incident where he can set up for a counter ambush and only if the shooter is encountered early on.

  20. The only problem with “shall issue” is that there’s a whole lot of “shall” but not enough “issue.” John Lott is right, more guns equals less crime. There aren’t enough guns being carried in public hands to have reached critical mass. Yet. But we’re getting there.

    The most famous example of a mass-murderer being stopped by citizens was the case of Charles Whitman at the University of Texas. The only reason Whitman didn’t kill a lot more people — he was an incredible shot — was that a lot of everyday Joes ran for their deer rifles and kept Whitman otherwise engaged. In the end, it was a couple of cops and an armed citizen who put Whitman down.

  21. Just by wearing my CZ in a holster when I’m in the front yard garden, (fairly busy, four lane street), weeding or picking beans, I have prevented several mass shootings, three just this month.

    • You laugh, but my neighbor across the street was held up at gunpoint while mowing his lawn. He said “I’m mowing my lawn, I don’t have my wallet on me!” The perp followed him into his house to get it. I now keep ammo for my rifle at hand, and I wonder what I would have done if I’d been home and seen it. Would I have shot him from across the street (easy shot from 100 feet with a model 94)? I just don’t know.

  22. Martin Albright says: “I have to admit that I sometimes think that the extreme pro-gunners are the mirror image of the gun banners. The gun banners see guns as the cause of every problem and the gun-rights extremists see guns as the solution to every problem.”

    +1.

    • @magoo: The reason you can’t understand the solution is because _You_ do not _understand_ the problem.

      As Frank Clarke just said “you can’t stop crazy people from doing crazy things or evil people doing evil things, but why in the world would anyone want to stop good people doing good things?”

  23. I recall thinking that when a private citizen with a gun stopped a mass shooting, it would make national news. Then it happened in California when a man when to a gun shop with a range, rented a gun, and came out to the shop and declared that he was going to kill everyone. He was distracted, an employee drew a .45 and stopped the attack.

    The police later found a list of people that he intended to kill in his car.

    The story was only carried locally and never made the national news, but it can be found on the internet.

    I do not know if the employee had a CCW or not.

  24. I believe the why’s of no CCW present at these locales are simply that most of us don’t go to those locations. I, and most like me, don’t go to Malls, to Democratic impromptu conventions, to Roller Rinks, to Low Rider conventions, and etc. I will not go to an area that forbids my carrying of a firearm. I and most like me are over 40 years old and our play days are over. Someplaces, even in CCW friendly states, are target rich environments just due to the demographics they play up to. Of course I am not a psycholigist by any means, am not even for sure if I spelled it right.

    • @Dan, I agree on this one. Once you start taking a good hard look at your own personal safety, and the safety of your family, there are just some places you don’t go.

      What is it they say? “Stay away from stupid people, in stupid places doing stupid things”, something like that.

      Concealed Carry Licenses aren’t about stopping mass shootings, it is for personal protection and since open carry is so restricted (in some states), concealed carry is about the only way to not “Infringe” on the right to keep and bear.

      I do believe that “gun free zones” do contribute to the mass shooting problem, and if there was a mass-shooter in a place where I was carrying, I would shoot back, until I (and my family) were clear of the situation, but I don’t see it as my job to stop the shooter, in order to protect the public.

      Also, I see the argument of “concealed carry = end of mass shootings” as creating the wrong impresion in the mind of the person carrying.

      Protection of the public is a job for those with a badge.

    • Wow, I wasn’t aware that Roller Rinks, Malls and Low Rider Conventions were such a draw for violent criminal activity. I’m armed at a mall on a regular basis yet have never had to use my firearm to stop the droves of criminals descending on all of the stores. I’ve never even heard of violent activity at any of the malls I frequent. I don’t even consider Democratic impromptu conventions a bastion for violence. The AZ incident is the only one I can think of in recent memory. The last one I believe was in CA when Robert Kennedy was killed. Wow, what a high rate of violence.

      I and my wife are over 40 and our play days still continue. I and most like me refuse to curl up in a ball and stay home because we are over 40 or because their may be danger in the world.

  25. Bottom line: you can’t stop crazy people from doing crazy things or evil people doing evil things, but why in the world would anyone want to stop good people doing good things?

  26. The Tucson case is the perfect example of a situation where CCW holders acted responsibly rather than shooting into a crowd like anti gunners always claim would happen. A dozen armed cops could have done no better.
    Remember, the purpose of ccw is personal defense, lethal force at your command to allow you to respond to a lethal threat. As Gratia Hupp so eloquently puts it, it changes the odds in the favor of otherwise helpless victims. Just about every shooting incident is stopped by the arrival of a gun in the hands of a good guy whether cop or citizen. It’s not a perfect solution, but would seem to be one where more is better.
    Years ago four men attempted to hold up a fast food joint in Alabama. As the customers were being herded into the walk in freezer, possibly to be murdered to eliminate witnesses, one customer with a firearm managed to get the drop on the criminals, shooting all four and killing two. The local paper refused to carry the story, as they didn’t want to encourage that sort of thing.

    • I’d like to address, and add, a couple point to your fine post.
      (Note: all-caps are emphasis, not shouting.)
      1) At the “Tucson Shooting” of Gabby Giffords, the only person with a gun, was the SHOOTER.
      Just like like law enforcement, there was a concealed carry holder “near by”, but neither was actually THERE.
      2) As many have pointed out since the shooting: “The armed citizen ALMOST SHOT THE WRONG PERSON!” (Well this was shouting.)
      They ignore what almost means.
      “I almost got a ticket!” “I almost dropped my plate of food!” “I almost failed that major test!” I almost got pregnant!”
      In each example almost means the same thing: “I DIDN’T”

      Nearly 2 months to the day, after the Luby’s Massacre, 3 gunmen in Alabama entered Shoney’s Family Restaurant in Anniston, Alabama and locked 21 hostages into a walk-in cooler (similar to the incident you mentioned) Postal worker Thomas Glenn Terry’s wife was one of the hostages.
      When one of the robbers pointed his firearm at Mr. Terry, Mr. Terry shot him.
      The robber that was holding the manager at gun point, fired at Mr. Terry and missed.
      Mr. Terry sent that robber to a better place.
      The third gunman ran away when the shooting started.
      Even though these goblins had used their STOLEN guns to murder a manager at one of their earlier robberies a few weeks before their last one, no innocent was hurt at Shoney’s.
      Even though it was only 2 month after the Luby’s Massacre, that everyone is so well aware of, almost no one knows about the Shoney’s NON-Massacre.

      How many knew that the ARMED vice-principal of Pearl High School, stopped that school shooting long before the cops showed up? How did Pearl compare to Columbine’s news coverage, where the 5 SWAT Teams and many, many, other cops kept the children trapped WITH the murderers, until the murderers got bored and killed themselves?

  27. Armed citizens can and do prevent mass shootings. Most armed citizens will not take the cowards way out and run away. CCW is still on infringement on “Shall not be infringed” and it stands in the way of more armed citizens.

  28. Deterrence worked for most of the cold war. Except when it didn’t during the Cuban missile crisis. If you want to view CCW as a means of deterrence (which it is), then you need to recognize that no, it won’t always deter the crazies. Because, you know, by their very nature, they have a skewed world view wherein whatever consequences follow their spree killings is insignificant next to what they are trying to achieve with their demented agenda.

    So if CCW is deterrence only some of the time, then I guess that means it’s a complete failure right?
    Well. Talk to Reagan about that.

    Also. If someone starts shooting at me, you can be DAMN SURE I’m going to draw down on them and send some lead in their direction in an attempt to defend me and mine.

  29. There are two other additional examples that come to mind immediately.

    An off duty cop carrying concealed stopped a mall active shooter in Utah in the Trolley Square incident. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trolley_Square_shooting

    A CCW holder stopped a shooter in a mall in Tacoma WA (no shot’s fired but the guy pulling his gun made the shooter hole up.) http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/localnews/2002975859_mallshooting06m.html

    I’d expect there are more but they tend to not get coverage like the Law School shooting in North Carolina about 8 years ago.

    -Gene

  30. I will only partially agree with poster of this blog. CCW does not prevent “every” or “just about any” shootings. What poster fails to realize CCW was made for self defense and not for “HEROICS IN THE FACE OF DANGER”.
    In other words CCW is intended for self defense and chance of survival with applicable force in the face of deadly danger. I am russian born US Army veteran who have been through two deployments and I am one of the lucky ones to receive not only CCW handgun training but also military CQB training when faced with lethal force, yet still in the face of danger I will do nothing more than try to get away as far as possible from the assaliants in deadly encounter at first just as a person near me without a gun. I will however will apply that force with deadly precision if I see several people being shot on the front of me and if I am faced with no possible other outcome when it comes to the safety of me and people around me.

    To point out I have to say majority of people who have CCW are not trained as much past the basic handgun training, but they still represent a chance for survival at least of one more person in terrorist attack, murder spree, hostage takeover, rape, murder, robbery etc.

    As again I don’t see CCW as failing law. Poster is retarded if he/she thinks that CCW was designed for “INVISIBLE ARMY” or making super secret group of vigilantes who can now brandish concealled weapons and patrol the streets in search of bad guys to shoot and prevent massive killings.

    NO YOU ARE RIGHT that it wont prevent all of the shooting sprees, BUT YOU ARE ALSO DEADLY WRONG if you think this will make people more valnurable or that CCW have no benefit whatsoever. You are right that CCW is pointless if people opt not to apply for it, but thats not the failure of the law. – That is a choice be it for financial reasons or being anti firearm persona. You are right that CCW will not work if a person with CCW fails to bring a firearm on him/her at all times. That is also not CCW failure, that is human failure to choose to carry a firearm and apparently the wrong choice if ending up in deadly encounter.

    CCW at least gives an average person to be able to defend himself/herself against danger that otherwise COULD NOT be avoided by running away (I am sorry, as human beings we can’t outrun bullet except in movies where we apparently can do backflips and cartwheels to get away from assailants). It is better to have even a small chance with CCW that people could opt to have a choice to carry handgun in public place without scaring everyone and being harassed by law enforcement and use it in the face of deathly danger even if failing and being shot in the process trying to defend people.

    ASk YOURSELF POSTER WOULD YOU RATHER BE SHOT KNOWING THAT YOU DID ANYTHING YOU COULD TO DEFEND YOURSELF AND OTHERS FROM MURDER OR RAPE WITH EVEN A SMALLEST CHANCE OR SHOT KNOWING THAT YOU WISHED YOU WAS ABLE TO DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT AND DONE NOTHING?

    .

  31. I find this whole argument, when used to justify or disparage CCW, silly.

    You could use the same logic to say police shouldn’t carry firearms, simply because they are not able to remedy all violent situations immediately with them.  Better yet, many police each year are disarmed and shot with their own weapons, yet I haven’t heard a single police officer boycotting their service weapons, and I suspect most would laugh at such logic.

  32. Hmm…….. I got my CCW for my family and I’s protection. In case someone breaks in or tries to rob/kill us. I don’t go looking to stop mass shootings. I’m not a Cop/Swat/Armed Forces person

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