Less than a year into my concealed carry experience, I have a simple answer to the “what” part of this question. My M&P Shield in 9mm is pretty straightforward for now, with the only modification being Talon grips (so good). It’s light, thin, and my skinny fingers can get a full grip without any magazine extensions. Most importantly, I enjoy shooting this gun and it seems to enjoy being shot, so it’s a good fit . . .
“Why” I carry comes down to several different factors, but they’re all centered around greed. Greedy people are everywhere and they want what you have. Maybe someone feels like they’ve been oppressed and want what they feel entitled to, or perhaps it’s someone in D.C. who wants more power and is willing to chip away at our rights to obtain that power. Heck, maybe I’m greedy for wanting to protect my family and everything my wife and I have worked for.
The fact is, I love my life and the people in it, and if someone wants to try and interfere with that, then we have a problem. I can talk my way out of a lot of things, and I’m skinny and squirrelly enough to run away if need be, but I know there are situations where words and fleet feet are useless, so I carry my gun wherever I can. If it never gets drawn in self defence, I’ll call that a win and go home, where I’ll still be carrying, willing to do what is necessary to preserve my life while hoping that day never comes.