NFM 4

By M. Carswell

It was an awkward moment to say the least. The deliverymen who just hauled our new freezer into our mudroom noticed several BB guns standing in the corner. They were mostly hidden and all but forgotten, until the time came to remove the old freezer. I saw the men look at the guns, look at me, and then look at the guns again. They were just BB guns, so what’s the big deal, right? . . .

Then again, these were just two 200 lb strangers with low-paying jobs with a fresh insight to exploit: that this house almost certainly has real guns.

It was a careless mistake, and my mind raced: What else were they thinking, and what else did they learn?

This home owner isn’t very tall or strong. His wife is attractive. There’s no dog. They insisted on a Saturday delivery so the house is probably vacant every weekday while they work. Mail from the NRA was on the kitchen counter. That Bible probably means the house is empty every Sunday morning.

Just five minutes in your house can yield a lot of information to compromise you:

Strategic entry points
Valuables
Location of home alarm control panel and sensors
Location of master bedroom

The fact is I compromised myself. I compromised myself even though I subscribe to the “grey man” line of thinking. I’ve made every effort to eliminate all the overt signals that I’m armed. I don’t want to be targeted and ambushed by a team of men intent on seizing my weapons.

But grey man thinking must go beyond the details of how I dress and what I carry. Situations, behaviors, and other people come into play as well.

People you agree with and trust can compromise you in social settings with just a simple question (“Going to the range this weekend?”). And friends who broadcast everything on Facebook are not the friends you should go to the gun range with.

And remember that compromise can come without a single spoken word. A motivated gun thief could consult a map of permit holders. But it’s more likely that he’ll select a person leaving the gun range and follow him (or her) home. With the address confirmed, the thief will bide his time and strike when no one is home.

Be careful out there.

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97 Responses to P320 Entry: Don’t Compromise Yourself

  1. Ahhh, the downfalls of having an attractive wife…

    Seriously though, yeah… really have to be conscious of this stuff, or lest you may become naive, and henceforth, a target. Good reminder. Thanks.

  2. So next time you’ll have it dropped off at the curb and find some strong friends to haul it down to your basement.

    I do my best to vet anybody doing any work in my house, by checking the company’s BBB ratings, Angie’s List ratings, etc. May not necessarily be foolproof, but I never let any company I know nothing about send anyone to my house.

  3. I give everyone I meet the benefit of the doubt, and with that a small modicum of trust. I like to believe that most people, in most situations anyway, act honestly and with no intent to do harm.

    That being said, home carry, people. I try to be as ready as I can be in all cases, and even around my friends I am typically the only one armed and thus the interim provider of security while we’re out together. At the end of the day, you should always be prepared to defend yourself, even if it means beating feet and running if you’re unarmed.

  4. Wow, as if I needed to be any more paranoid about my stuff getting stolen. Yikes!

    I always avoid having stickers, and swag openly advertised on my car. I don’t were those cool shirts they give you when you buy gear. I load the guns into the truck before I open the garage door when I go to the range, and generally dont like people to take pictures when we go to the range or when we go to the ranch to blow stuff up.

    This article has exposed many holes in my own personal security though. Thank you most sincerely.

  5. Good article. Last time I took a taxi to the airport the driver seemed really shady. my gf kept on blabbing to me about how long we’d be gone, hoping the cats are ok by themselves, etc. I kept “reminding” her that my brother from the army would be house sitting the whole time. I don’t know if it mattered but it made me think how horrible it would have been to come home with my entire arsenal/ammo out there on the streets. I have since become more vigilante in that regard.

      • A backhand leaves a mark and can lead to embarassing questions.

        A sack of Valencia oranges on the other hand…

  6. Thanks for the reminder on this. I too recently screwed the pooch when our Terminix guy came in and sprayed the indoors. I had a loaded magazine on the bedroom night stand. I am pretty sure he noticed it. What’s done is done, but I sure was kicking myself for it.

    Social media wise, I write a blog and promote it on my FB page. I find that to be acceptable since most folks who read it are already friends and know who I am and what I’m into. I certainly don’t advertise who I am in the blog itself, but I’m sure if someone was really motivated, then they could figure it out.

    • A loaded magazine? Shit, one of my apartment’s maintenance guys saw a .308 AR that I hadn’t yet put away. Major brain fart on my end, to say the least.

  7. Good write-up. I definitely try to keep the fact that I own guns on the low. I recently purchased my first firearm (firearms, actually) as did my best friend at the same time. We work together, and unlike myself, he decided it would be a good idea to let everyone in the office know we’re strapped. Besides the paranoid thoughts of people coming to take my things now, I have to deal with the real annoyance of coworkers asking me about my guns, “when are we going to shoot?”, and the worst of all, making stupid comments about me shooting things/people.

    While it can prove beneficial for people to know you own and potentially keep them away due to that, I prefer to fly under the radar and not draw any attention to myself.

    Once again, great article.

  8. +1 rev. Fairly good article. I believe you need to project a sense of menace. “Gang dudes- if you break in my home you will DIE. Sometimes you don’t have a choice like when Comcast sends out a gang member looking CONTRACT worker. No need for paranoia. Just be prepared.

    • yeah sometimes I want that guy to know that the last thing he will see if he comes into my house un-invited is the blinding flash from my surefire weapon light, and a sharp pain in his chest before darkness (geez that was kind of morbid sorry guys). The guns go into a safe during the day and I like to believe a delivery driver doesn’t have the hardware he needs to get into that.

      • If it’s a good safe, he doesn’t. . . but he has a hand truck and a delivery van. He can haul it off to someplace where he does have the hardware, and the time, to get in.

        • If the safe is heavy enough the handtruck won’t work, and he’ll never be able to lift it into his van.

          Also you may have the option to bolt the thing to a concrete floor.

        • Mine is bolted into the concrete floor with 4 1/2 inch anchor bolts.

  9. That’s good food for thought. However, I’ve been openly advocating for rights so long that it’s pretty much near impossible for me to put that genie back in the bottle, so to speak. Heck, there are so many people who know where the spare keys to the house, barns, equipment, and vehicles that I’m not sure I could remember even a relatively significant number enough to make a list! 😀

    Unfortunately or fortunately, depending on how you look at it; some of the strangers I encounter know me before I know them. I guess, the reputation precedes the man, as the saying goes. That could be good or that could be bad. 😉

  10. My wife and I had a discussion of what was the right course of action if we say the airbag thieves (see yesterday’s mind of a gun grabber posting) working in front of our house. I pointed out that I would not have gone out with gun drawn because they would must likely have run and then know that we had guns in the house. I would have been ready but not obvious. If you want to maintain good OPSEC your fictional role model should be Michael Westen not Harry Callahan.

  11. I had the HVAC guy (who I know) and his apprentice (who I don’t) in the mechanical room. They had to move some shelves to get at a vent, wondered why the crappy plastic shelf was so heavy, and found 1k of rooskie sitting on the bottom. Not good, but there hasn’t been any fallout so far and that was a while ago.

  12. Talking about security measures reminded me of this scene in Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels. Even a cage at the door isn’t a good substitute if you get sloppy.

  13. Last year a neighbor of ours had a service tech over at their house. She (neighbor) has two work laptops on the kitchen counter. Once he was done, she said thanks and mentioned she was on her way to the store and they both left. he drove around the corner to “finish up paperwork”. Once she drove by, he jumped out his truck, went in thru the backyard, opened the back door he left unlocked and stole the two laptops. The young Au Pair upstairs never heard him sneak in and out of the house (a second potential crime event).

    Yes, be careful about what you say, and cleaning up after a visit by a stranger.

  14. This sounds like a lot of angst over some air rifles and an appliance delivery.

    While living in an apartment, I once came home to find that two guys had been in there cleaning the carpet. My loaded, unlocked 12 gauge had been under the bed the whole time. They didn’t see it.

    • Or they did see it, played with it for a while, and then took pictures of each other scrubbing their nutsacks with your toothbrush.

      Rule 1 for living in an apartment is “No one comes in my apartment without 24 hours notice, and I will be there.”

      • Bada-bing!!! Hilarious. As a full-time practicing dentist I can tell you that some mouths are are host to a wider range of vicious, virulent, dangerous bugs than the ” nether regions”! Most guys would never let their equipment get as broken down and infected as their mouths before they got to the doc. That said, that was still a laugh-out-loud comment!

  15. Mr. Carswell,

    Do yourself a favor and purchase a decent gun safe. Then install it in such a way that it is anchored (through the inside of the safe) to the structure of your home. Finally, keep some black powder in the safe and a sticker on the outside that plainly tells people such.

    This configuration does two things. First, it greatly increases the length of time for a thief to remove the safe from your home. Second, the black powder inside is likely to explode if a thief tries using an angle grinder to cut their way in. If the black powder explodes, at the very least it will ruin the firearms inside the safe. At the best it will cause serious injuries to the thief trying to break in. Those two factors mean 99% of thieves will leave your safe alone and look for an easier target.

    And if you want bonus points, place a motion-activated audible alarm in your room “looking” at the safe. A would-be thief will set-off the alarm before even getting to work on your safe. Very few thieves are going to play the odds and continue their task with an alarm sounding. (Hint: you can purchase stand-alone motion-activated audible alarms that run on 9 volt batteries for something like $15.)

    You should have insurance to cover any losses that would occur if anyone gets beyond all that. And home carry as another poster stated.

    • I’m afraid that in many jurisdictions the black powder scattered in the safe would be called a booby trap and thus a crime. Also, it’s patently unsafe to have loose black powder about.

      • Aside from the fact that loose black powder would be a mess and corrosive, it would degrade from moisture. A container of black powder would be the way to go. Actually a two small containers of black powder near the top and two small containers near the bottom of the gun safe would be the way to go. Just make sure they are plastic containers that would melt when an angle grinder showers them in sparks.

        As for the booby trap aspect, no prosecutor in the world is going to press charges against a person who was responsible enough to purchase and store their firearms, ammunition, and black powder in a safe. Remember, the “victim” would be a thief who was:
        (a) breaking and entering
        (b) stealing
        (c) tinkering with a container loaded with “explosives”
        (d) tinkering with a dangerous container that had a warning sticker
        That said, it might be a wise idea to have a cheap muzzle loader in the house to justify the black powder in the safe.

        • That is some of the stupidest and most irresponsible nonsense I have ever read.

        • in htose cirucmstances if you had a house fire not only would you void your insurance you would be up for massive liablity

  16. Good post. When I bought another gun safe last year, the store salesman suggested that I hire a couple of young guys to hump the damn thing for me.

    Me: “so I should hire a couple of strangers to wrangle a rifle safe, thereby advertising that I have guns in my home?”

    Salesman: “Good point.”

    I bought my safe online and arranged delivery direct from the manufacturer using a bonded delivery service — at no extra charge.

    Concealed means concealed. In every way.

    • I could have killed the jerks who sold me my safe. They delivered it–in a large truck towing a horse trailer, painted in bright colors advertising that they were a safe company. What the FVCK!!!

  17. Security sign, whether you have system or not, and a med to large side dog will go a long way to make your stuff look a lot less appealing.

  18. I remember the dialogue from the Duke’s “Big Jake”

    “Ain’t this a little showy, pa? I mean with that big red box and all the guns out?”

    Big Jake, “Everybody knows what’s in that box, and they all want it. What we’re doing with this ostentatious display is telling them they can’t have it. Why, we might be saving some poor miscreant’s life.”

    Bad guys are generally stupid and lazy. Make them work and let them know that they’ll be combing buckshot out of their eyebrows.

  19. So.. guys with jobs and a record showing them to have been at your home… with a valid reason… makes you nervous? Tell me.. do ALL poor people want to rob you?

    • When poor people rob you, they get 10 years of hard time. When rich people rob you, they get re-elected.

    • When the cable guy has gangsta neck-tats — like the fine young man Comcast sent out to install service after my last move — I’m not going to give him a whole lot of the benefit of the doubt.

      Sure, maybe that teardrop facial tat was his way of expressing sadness about all the unwanted blind puppies that he reads bedtime stores to, while volunteering at the animal shelter — he needs something to keep him occupied between med school classes, you know — but I’m going to go with my gut on this one.

      He’s either a genuine hood-rat thug, or he wants people to think he is a genuine hood-rat thug which is little enough difference.

      But maybe I’m being judgemental. Maybe he deserves a chance. Maybe you have a 16 year old sister you could introduce him to?

    • True story:

      Landlord had a plumber in to redo the upstairs bathroom.

      I wasn’t home but another roommate was in and out all day.

      Plumbers stole a jar of change containing upwards of $300 dollars.

      Several other things went missing. I could kill my roommate for taking off while they were still in the house. Lesson learned.

  20. Years ago, I watched two guys walk up to a pay phone mounted on a concrete wall. Before I could believe it, one of them whipped out a reciprocating saw and took the phone clean off the wall within 30 seconds, it must have been full as both of them had to carry it away. Had they not been phone company employees ( what the truck said anyway….) I would have been concerned more. This got me to thinking about mounting a safe to the floor or wall, to defeat a cutting attack like that, put roller bearings around the bolt between the safe and the floor or wall. The race on the bearing is hardened as well as the bearings themselves, plus the inner race, then you still have to saw through the bolt…… and that is if the outer race does not rotate at some point…. but the inner bearings will rotate when the saw gets there…..

    Something like the below bearing would add a few bucks to an install and you would need 1/2″ longer bolts…. but would increase the time to defeat the anchoring on smaller safes…
    http://www.vxb.com/page/bearings/PROD/1-2inch/Kit7478

    • Your idea is a fantastic way to seriously slow down the cutting process. However, that large gap that those roller bearings create between the back of the safe and the wall make it exceedingly easy to get a crow bar in and simply yank the anchor bolts out of the safe or wall.

      In my opinion the best you can do is snug up the safe to the floor/wall (both is better) as tight as possible and make it as difficult as possible to get a reciprocating saw blade in between the safe and wall/floor. (Note: if there is no room for a reciprocating saw blade, there is no purchase for a crowbar.)

      Like someone else said, thieves want fast and easy. Unless they are professionals that think they are going to score $50,000+ in firearms, almost all thieves will go look elsewhere. If you are still worried, install an alarm system of some kind. Once that sounds, thieves will beat feet.

  21. Have a. Separate insurance. Policy for. Your firearms.

    It’s not hard to do. Although you’d think it was on equal footing with learning quantum physics for the number of gun owners who don’t/won’t do it.

  22. After my tour in Iraq I ended up with an arab blanket that was used to wrap up Ak’s in a cache we found. I now use that very same blanket to wrap up my Ak’s to carry them to and from my truck. The irony.

  23. So this brings up a debatable point; if someone knows you have a firearm, on your person or in your home, does that make them more or less likely to try some crime on you? Is a firearm a deterrent or attractant? Are you more or less likely to be attacked if someone knows you have one? Can’t be both ways all the time.

    • That’s actually a good point. Thinking as a criminal would, personally, I wouldn’t want to rob someone/break in where people are armed. Now having knowledge before hand that there are arms in the home and no one is there, may make it more of a target- however, I live in Georgia, and I can get shot by the guy’s house I’m breaking into neighbors- and I can reasonably assume they all have guns here in GA, and if they know their neighbors well, probably will light me up. This can break down further into what sort of neighborhood your in. The difference could come down to class. A richer neighborhood obviously is more attractive for robbery, and because richer people tend have much more space in between homes, more trees and the people probably don’t know each other well. Or at least not well enough to get involved in an issue going on next door, if they can even hear or see it. Breaking into one of these homes will bring greater value items and less of a chance of being shot. Now middle to lower class blue collar neighborhoods you find neighbors that are much closer, and probably more likely to be pro active in stopping a robbery of their friends house. I know personally if my friend across the streets house is being robbed, I have the firepower, knowledge, OK from my friend to do so, and the law to back me up, to take out the criminal.

    • There are known knowns. Also, there are unknown knowns… not to mention known unknowns, and…..

    • All anecdotal evidence from my own existence has put it squarely in the positive column. We’ve had people who’ve ended up on the farm over the years who have been in and out of prison; various crimes, some serious. None of them have ever given us any issue; before, after, or in-between doing time. We’ve only had one serious attempt at robbery of any sort on the property (probably jinxing myself now). A couple of customers tried a half-assed attempt at armed robbery late at night in the shop. Long story short, it didn’t even get to the demand part. One of the guys began breathing irregularly and sweating so I knew something was up. He then tried to pull a pistol. I wasn’t having any of that and he was just too damned slow. I’ve been told over the years that word spread. 🙂 Out and about, a surprising number of local people already know that I’m always armed (open carry mostly) or have read/heard/seen something or another. They already assume everyone on the farm is armed and we encourage all visitors to be armed so I think that helps too. If I had to pick the one category of criminals that I believe would be dumb enough to try something here, it would be the meth heads. They just don’t seem to fire on all cylinders, real zombies — some immune to deterrence. I try to make an indelible impression with them and move them along quickly. In general, they sometimes give me the heebie-jeebies.

    • Being known to have a gun or guns at home almost certainly would make you less likely to be robbed while you are there, and more likely to be burgled when you are not.

  24. Good article. Last time I moved the movers moved my gun safe. It was empty and no guns were in view for them to see, but I thought at the time these two guys know I have guns now. It’s been over a dozen years since that move, nothing came of it, so I guess I was lucky. A previous move Paul Arpin Vanlines stole a bunch of Disney VHS tapes, first issue and a box of various tools. I put in a claim for that stuff, but it was denied for not being itemized. I had moved the safe myself that time.

    • “Professional movers” hire ex-cons and other shady people who have allegies that prevent them from working in landscaping.

      Keep that in mind when the van company give you the sales pitch. They’re simply a trucking company that hired some people who couldn’t find jobs that didn’t involve lifting heavy boxes and carrying them around.

      A lot of the moving companies, in fact, merely hire day laborers to load and unload their trucks. The drivers are “professionals.” The guys carrying everything you own into your new home? The most you can hope for is that they had a recent wants and warrants check done, and that it was done using their real name.

  25. Any criminal looking to rob someone for guns only needs to find the first truck/car with a Browning deer logo sticker on it and follow it home.

  26. These are men with jobs. They could be scouting for a burglary, but more likely they just want to keep their jobs. And if you get robbed, they know they’ll be the prime suspects and they’re easy to find.

    • Most of the time I would think that would be the case. In some cases the savvy ones would sell the information to others doing burglaries or, more likely, go shooting their mouths off about what they saw in a customer’s home. The loose lipped workers that have access to homes would be my guess as the more common. In the larger cities, I used to always hear guys talking about what odd or expensive things they saw when doing work in various homes.

  27. When people come to my house to fix stuff — I just put out that photo of me with John Gotti. I don’t leave out guns — but I DO leave out brass knuckles, a black-jack, some knives with blood on them and the freezer has a BIG padlock.

    • What about your still wet cement mixer and the town car with heavy duty suspension in the back?

  28. Well I’m moving and will hire help to move my stuff from uhaul to house, but every thing is in boxes, little safes to big square boxes, to not identify what is in the box, simple. Anything I can’t disguise I am the guy that moves it. It my remain in the covered pickup bed until I am alone, then seek it in. Be safe out there and don’t give anybody to much info. especially the g-men!

    • Very smart move. I got my last move picked up by some Israelis, and they would not TOUCH my Mini-14. It was the one gun I didn’t box up beforehand. And it got left in the care of my sister, who I love dearly. It was worth probably $800 with all the improvements I made to it, and also had a Bushnell Holosight on it, as well.

      And she sold it for $200. 🙁

  29. “And friends who broadcast everything on Facebook are idiots who should be avoided.

    Fixed it for you.

  30. Back in 2011, I bought a used Washer from an appliance store that fixed up old appliances, and sold them, and had free delivery. I declined the delivery and brought it home myself. a couple weeks later it started leaking, I called them up, they told me it was covered under their warranty and that they would fix it for free, and instead of hauling it out of the basement and into my truck, I gave…some random person or persons, access to my house to fix it while I was working. They fixed it good, and it still works great to this day…but less then a month after their visit, my front door was kicked in, and around $5,000 worth of my electronics was stolen. My guns were still under my bed, so this isn’t a gun story, but I am now way more careful on who I let into my home. They never got caught…most burglaries get off scott free. But since that day, I have stronger doors with better locks, stickers warming of an alarm on both doors, and every window, I have a dog now, I also have several cameras that record movement and record it to a completely separate & hidden computer somewhere in the house, so even if they clean me out, I will have video of them that I can give to the cops…and of course so I can memorize what they look like and do my own version of justice when I find them.

  31. I’ve always worked on the theory of security through obscurity. I pack the rifle(s) into a hardcase which is padlocked. A security cable secures the case and the locked ammunition cans to the car. The cargo blind is pulled over the case, so there is nothing to see. The safe is bolted to a concrete floor in the spare room, and all the junk in there makes access difficult and hides the safe.

  32. My dad recently did exactly this. He’s a smart guy, but he doesn’t really think about things like this.

    I had to pay a visit to their place after the Comcast installer came in and upgraded their service to cable+VoIP, and he had to go into the basement storage room where I long ago set up their router and network/phone patch panel stuff.

    My dad years ago inherited an old glass gun cabinet from my grandpa, and instead of keeping all of his guns in a nondescript locked cabinet that his expensive hunting rifles are stored in, he decided to keep about four of his airguns, a .300 Savage, and a Nylon 66 in the glass cabinet.

    The weirdo house cleaner is there every friday and looks at them, but probably won’t ever touch them because she’s a hardcore liberal.

    But the Comcast guy? Who the hell knows, and my dad just left those guns sitting in the same old place they always do, in the basement in a glass cabinet, completely unlocked.

    “Who’s gonna take THOSE?”

    It’s not about what’s in plain sight, dad.

  33. my view is go with obscurity unless you have laws making potential access to a minor per se illegal even absent harm.

    The problem with gun safes is the exponential increase with who knows about it with each person who sees it. Lots of people essentially have no more than two unknown persons in their basement per decade. Lots have 50. A maid service means 20 different maids could have been in your basement in 10 years. There are HVAC repair, Washer repair or delivery, electricians, meter readers, plumbers, painters using the utility sink etc etc. If you have a kid there could be 100 different kids in your basement over ten years. If not thieves themselves, these people talk.

    A <$4000 gun safe takes from 15 to 30 minutes (maximum) to get into with a $50 angle grinder by a person who knows anything. If anything about your safe says the word "gauge" it is even quicker.

    There is no one size fits all for gun security.
    Variables include:
    1) laws in your jurisdiction regarding access to children
    2) do you have kids and what age?
    3 Have your kids got any adjustment issue at all. Do their friends?
    4) level of burglary in your jurisdiction. Don't know? you should! there are some nice areas with many times the burglary level.
    5) do you have a general home alarm?
    6) do you have a dog?

    Having a 16 year old at home with some risk factor, even just a lot of friends means you need a top quality safe or series of safes with parts separated. Having a lifestyle where lots of people may see your safe is also a risk. Being out of your home often is a large risk factor

  34. I can’t get behind the “grey man” theory as described in the referenced link. It’s more of a fantasy than a real tactic. I do believe in maintaining a low profile and not advertising. I can tell you every time I see the yellow “Don’t Tread On Me”, Gadsden flag, (or a rebel flag for that matter) I know that person very likely has a gun in the truck/home/concealed carry, and I disagree with that. Why advertise? Why tell anyone anything about yourself you don’t absolutely have to. Why post it on Facebook or announce your beliefs on Twitter? Why bring attention to yourself when it’s not needed?

    So I agree that maintaining a low profile and being well prepared are essential but not how the link describes it. For example, “He always appears to be just a little confused by what is happening around him..”

    You may be competent but why go the extreme opposite? Why invite an attack? It’s no secret that criminals look for weak victims – people who act confused, befuddled or as the link describes, ” The Young Grey Man is dismissed as a wimp, the Older as a doddering old fool.” Again, whut?!? That screams target me. The idea is to avoid situations or conditions where you might be a victim. Your tactics should not put you at greater risk. I tell people it’s more important look competent, be confident, know where you’re going, and maintain your fitness and situational awareness. If you look like someone who knows what they are doing, not to be trifled with, you probably won’t be. If you consistanly look like and act like a victim, you eventually will be.

    Here’s the final point the link/author makes, “Making the other guy waste precious time in assessing the situation is a big part of staying alive.” I could not disagree more. When you are being sized up, the conclusion for “the other guy” should not have to take long to decide, “Nope, that guy seems too risky, he looks prepared.” Not come to the conclusion, “What a wimp, I am going over there and kick his ass.” Sure, your ninja skillz and concealed carry might save your bacon but as anyone who has been in a defensive situation will tell you, they are traumatic, legally expensive and rarely turn out cleanly or as expected.

    Being boastful and drawing attention to yourself is bad. We should all seek to be “greyer” in our lives, but not to the point where we appear weak.

    • Those Gadsden flags, “rebel” flags, Facebook posts, and Twitter feeds are how some of us spot others of like minds with which to network. In my AO, the Gadsden flag is an important way that the uninitiated learn about Liberty and the fight that’s currently on going. I agree with you that it’s not for everyone to “advertise”. However, some have to or the movement to protect rights and restore our republic becomes stunted and the people isolated in pockets. I also agree with you about coming off as an easy mark through the grey man approach. I’d rather seem like a hard target and get passed by than have to demonstrate the fact after being selected as easy. I do use grey man situationally but not as a blanket persona in public. If I were to come off as grey man suggests I should in some places in Cincinnati, Dayton, Columbus, Cleveland, Youngstown, or Toledo, I have little doubt that I’d have much higher chances of being targeted than being left alone. With government entities and agents of government I practically always try to be a grey man.

    • Excellent point. The way to beat surveillance is to be ordinary. Bad guys notice the people who stand out one way or another. If look like everybody else you are less likely to be targeted because they don’t “see” you.

  35. I used to work at a hardware store. One year before christmas we were selling “rifle safes.” I put it in quotes because they were more like cabinets made of sheet metal. Light, thin, flimsy, and no means of bolting them down. I told my boss that they reminded me of the lockers in my high school football locker room, and how me and my teammates used to always break into those lockers with our bare hands (Get a finger in the crease between the door and the frame and muscle the lock). The boss didn’t believe me and said if I could break into the display model that I could go home. Took me under 5 minutes and a screwdriver. I went home. He didn’t stop selling them though. Secure your firearms or risk them disappearing.

    • That being said, they’re way better than leaving long guns in the closet. My cousin was a meth addict for several years and lifted a lot of homes and cars, and told me that just about anything that would delay him any appreciable amount of time was worth it. A lot of thieves are jumpy and in a hurry.

      A quality safe cannot be downplayed though.

  36. That’s what safes and insurance are for. You can only be so cautious and discrete. You can drive yourself crazy worrying about all that stuff. Takes the fun out of gun ownership.

  37. There’s a reason why I vet people who I need to do work around the house. It at least decreases the chance if ending up with some degenerate. But most of my stuff is way hidden/ border line inaccessible unless you know how/ where exactly it is. But that’s just life, right.

    As for being a “grey man”, it’s the way to go. One thing to keep in mind is sometimes if your trying to blend in you can over due it, an thus you stick out. Personally i like Kuhl climbing pants for example, especially since I can wear them and not stick out in the community I live in.

  38. I’d say have a gun safe but then keep your guns elsewhere. Maybe under the bed, or in a hidden safe. Hell, you could even leave a “nice” little note in the empty safe. Expensive surely but probably worth it.

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