Most people don’t want to think about bad things happening to them. It’s entirely possible that most people can’t think about bad things happening to them; their brains are wired for “Condition White.” The thought of a violent assault freaks them out. Even so, most people will take some steps to secure their home. The question is: how much security is enough and how much is too much? Burglar bars. Fires. Need I say more? What about people who leave multiple guns around the house? Here are three basic layers of home security that could form the basis for any good—but not overly dangerous—self-defense system . . .
1. Buy high security screen windows and doors
Who don’t people lock their doors? Aside from obliviousness, locking-up their house makes them feel like a prisoner in their own home. It triggers an uncomfortable sense of “childhood lost;” back when I was growing up we never locked our doors. And closed doors cut them off from the wonderful smells, sounds and breezes of the outside world.
While high security windows and doors are a good thing, a burglar-resistant screen door is a more important layer of physical defense. (After good lighting, clearing out house-clinging shrubbery, an alarm sign, etc.)
As you’d expect, there are plenty of choices of screen windows and doors with iron inserts. Yes, well, these portals risk blocking fire fighters ingress during an emergency. High security mesh windows and doors provide an unobstructed view and fresh air. More to the point, a fireman with an axe will be able to penetrate the screen. (I checked with the manufacturers.)
If you have burglar-resistant mesh windows and doors you add another layer of protection when you close and lock the windows and doors behind them. I reckon it’s better to spend money on good mesh and a reasonable door and window system than blow all your dosh on really strong windows and doors—that you leave unlocked or open from time to time.
2. Buy a perimeter alarm
Alarm systems can cost a bomb. I don’t see the need to spend big bucks on security systems with eight zones, interior motion sensors, wifi to your iPhone and a direct line to the local SWAT team. But I do see the need, indeed the necessity, of a perimeter alarm—especially for gun owners.
Most burglars will bolt if an alarm sounds. If they don’t, hoo-boy are you in trouble! Lucky for you there’s an alarm going off telling you to get ready (i.e., tooled-up) for trouble, and implement your home invasion plan. Which you do have.
As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, a perimeter alarm also reduces the chances that you’ll shoot the wrong person. Quote: “It’s OK Dad, it’s just me! I wanted to get a little fresh air!” At 2am. With a new boyfriend hidden from view.
Yes, a dog can be an effective perimeter alarm system. So why not have high security mesh screen doors and windows and good windows and doors and a perimeter alarm system and a dog? See how that works?
3. Home carry
Double Barrel Joe Biden is right about one thing: a long gun is the best firearm for home defense. But the odds of being right next to your safely secured shotgun or rifle at the moment of crisis, or winning a foot race to same, are lower than the chances I’ll forget to put a link to a Swedish model in this post.
So carry on carrying your carry gun at home. Either that or holster a lightweight snub-nosed revolver, perhaps in a pocket holster. They’re comfortable enough for daily wear and could well buy you the time to get to your long gun in an emergency.
You can (and should) add layers to this system, such as locking the door to your bathroom when you shower. (D’oh!) Or putting a Glock next to the shampoo. Just remember that the most important security layers are the ones tripped before you’re in the position where you have to use your gun.