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Wikipedia defines Projection Bias as “a psychological defense mechanism where a person subconsciously denies his or her own attributes, thoughts, and emotions, which are then ascribed to the outside world, usually to other people. Thus projection involves imagining or projecting the belief that others originate those feelings.” Like when a non-gun owner asserts that others cannot be trusted to safely carry firearms because they personally don’t know how or believe themselves capable. Usually we attribute these amazing reasoning skills to the left-leaning anti-gun crowd which is why, as a student at probably the most conservative university in the U.S., I was very surprised to hear this from a classmate today . . .

Guy1: “I think the worst thing you can do is carry a weapon.”

Guy2: “Why? What if you’re attacked?”

Guy1: “Because then you just pull it out when you get angry, you just don’t even think.”

Guy3: “Yeah, you just pull it out to make you feel better, then you end up using it.”

Guy1: “I’m afraid of people who carry weapons, so it doesn’t make sense to carry a weapon because then I become what I’m afraid of.”

I almost went over there and told them that I’m usually carrying when I’m not on campus, and that I’m actively trying to bring about change of policy to allow guns on campus.


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  1. What if MikeB is right? Projection cuts both ways: because we are rational people who don’t pull out a gun and shoot people in line at Wal-Mart, we tend to think that very few people would. But maybe we are a self-selecting group of non-lunatics, and maybe this kid is right? Maybe he shouldn’t be allowed near a gun, because he might fly off the handle.

    • You don’t need projection bias for that–those numbers show up in crime reports. And those reports show over and over that people who legally carry guns are far less likely to commit violent crimes than the average person.

      • Levi: this post is about exploring the whimsy of circular logic. Don’t bring us back o reality us with facts.

  2. Always found it funny that in these supposed bastions of intellectual and academic excellence are where you’ll find the softest minds, weakest spirits, and most revolting humans. I was ecstatic when I finally graduated so I didn’t have to be around these sickening individuals anymore.

    In the end, the only true test is direct violence, like a mugging, home invasion, or attempted murder of one’s self or loved ones. If the person sees what a sheep he was and vows not to be a victim again, then we can say he was just misinformed and brainwashed by our leftist enemies, and he’s maturing as a person. But if he pulls a Goddard and shrinks into cowardly denial, projection, and blame, then we know who he truly is and can treat him as the enemy of freedom, logic, and intelligence that he is.

    So, if we were to be optimistic, we can just say that they’re idiot kids who haven’t been exposed to the real world yet.

    • Alot of folks just haven’t been exposed to positive gun influences. If you grow up in an urban environment, like many left-leaning folks from the coasts, most likely your only exposure to firearms was either seeing one on the hip of a cop, or being mugged with one.
      If you were lucky enough, like me, to grow up in a positive gun-usage household, then of course you’ll implicitly understand the neutral nature of the weapon and be less likely to blame the weapon.
      Based on that, I’ve gotta say that its self-defeating to characterize people who disagree with you as an “enemy of freedom… etc”… What you are really saying is that he is your enemy. Think hard about what kind of mindset you are pulling there. Characterizing someone you don’t know and have never met as an enemy… what does that say about your biases, logic, etc? We aren’t talking about Bin Laden here. Aren’t you making the same mistake as someone who instantly thinks open-carriers are whacko, or that Ted Nugent is a crazy nut.
      My point is, if you’re going to expect people to truly understand where you are coming from, you need to do the same… instead of quickly dismissing their viewpoint as “ignorance”.
      I’ve been able to convince several of my liberal friends, through trips to the gun range, patient discussions, and NO judgement to come around 180 on their views of guns and carry in general. Calling someone a coward won’t do that. It’ll just make us look like jerks.
      The biggest service we can do for 2a? Take an anti-gun friend to the range. Engage them in conversation. Be patient. Its slow, but they will come around to at least being neutral on the issue. If you don’t have any anti-gun friends.. make some. Change things.

      • That’s all well and good on an individual level; I don’t have many anti-gun gun friends, but two family members are anti-gun, and I’ve taken them both shooting a few times. They tolerate it, but they still fall back to MSM propaganda lines at every turn due to deep indoctrination thanks to growing up in NJ.

        Bottom line is, when your rights are at stake, you can’t make the individual effort with everyone. I’m very sure that many German soldiers were good people and some might have even stopped fighting if faced with a concentration camp themselves, but did we fight a “nice” war trying to change their minds? No, we crushed the enemy to stop their atrocities. Look at the Mid East to see what comes from fighting a “nice” war. You don’t have to meet or get to know individuals in an opposing faction to consider them enemies; their stance speaks for itself, no matter how they came to believe in it.

        So if anti-gunners can be shown the light by taking them to the range and breaking their sheep patterns, then great. I still try with my family members; I’m patient with them and fight their rhetoric with logic. But until antis switch sides, they are indeed enemies of the Constitution, and yes, of freedom, since with no equalizer there is no freedom.

        This isn’t some little debate about whether chocolate or vanilla is better, this is a debate for the existence of the right to defend the lives of one’s self and family. If that doesn’t make our opponents enemies, what does?

  3. If we erase all the excess verbiage and distill Guy 1’s comment down to its essence, what we’re left with is “I don’t carry because I’m afraid.”

    Which is great for us. There will always be wolves, so we should be thankful for sheep. I know I am.

    • Could hear your howl three states away. The two anti’s in my extended family have definitely made the right personal choice. They’ve been taught by their milieu that the should routinely fly off the handle emotionally and provide every family holiday dinner with a Keith Olberman-style diatribe. Good they should stick to receiving a periodic downtown nighttime shearing.

    • There will always be wolves, so we should be thankful for sheep. I know I am.

      It’s not such a great thing if the sheep are in the habit of mistaking the sheepdogs for wolves, however.

    • I wonder if it’d be illegal to create a website aimed at educating criminals on which houses don’t have guns?

      Call it “” and have a state by state list of gun control advocates and anti-2A people and their home addresses. I’m sure they wouldn’t mind at all, since it’s evil guns that are the problem, not criminals, so what do they have to fear?

      And people like mikeb would love it also, because the criminals would be safe to go about their nightly escapades without fear of becoming another victim of “gun violence.”

      • They would love this because it doubles as a website for all the houses with guns. Now, you might not have a burglar target you because they see you have guns, you might have an HR bimbo target you when you apply for your next job. “Oops, I must have misplaced his resume”

  4. There are wolves, sheep and sheep dogs, We can’t ask a sheep to become a sheep dog over night, some sheep will always be sheep, it’s their nature. Some sheep don’t even believe in wolves (he was just a product of poor upbringing… or he just didn’t have the access to the better parts of society, etc) And even the sheep dog needs training, maturity, life experience to properly fulfill his role as a guard of the sheep.

    Had I over heard this conversation, and had the opertunity to interject, I would have asked the guy if some people are afraid of the water, does that mean it’s bad to teach anyone how to swim? If some people are afraid of heights, should we ban the manufacture of ladders?

  5. They have been brainwashed to surrender at all costs, even if it costs them life. I wonder if a loved one was being violated in some way if they would consider becoming what they fear, or if they weren’t in the nice safe cocoon of college life any longer. Like in a foreign land full of poor, starving people with little to lose. Or on a subway car at 12 AM with 4 a-holes looking to score a few bucks to go to the club and spend.
    Stay away from them, you might end up having to protect them some day.

  6. To borrow from Jack Palance in “Shane”, my only reply to inane comments like that is “prove it”. There is so little anecdotal evidence to support those fears that I’m amazed when people whip that crap out. I don’t know that any history book I’ve read reports such widespread, consistent violence by gun carrying citizens, even reaching back to the invention of firearms. I’m amazed that anyone died at anyone else’s hands before the invention of guns; how did Cain slay Abel without a Glock??

  7. I wonder who this guy is REALLY afraid of, the guy who carries a gun and points it at everyone because he’s ready to pull the trigger OR the guy who quietly carries his gun hidden in his belt just in case the first guys shows up?

    • Both: the first guy because he’d kill people, and the second guy because he’s a responsible and self-reliant (curse words to any good leftist).

  8. I’m slightly amused, but more troubled than anything, by the several “sheep/sheepdog/wolf” comments posted here.

    No doubt, these commenters take their inspiration and their terminology from the pro-State essay, “On Sheep, Wolves, and Sheepdogs” written by Dave Grossman (

    In this essay, Mr. Grossman extols the virtues of the State and its benevolence by way of sending out swarms of enforcers – which he lovingly terms “Sheepdogs” – to protect us “sheep” from the “wolves”.

    My amusement comes mainly from those adopting that terminology and their failure to see the irony in that which they apparently hold dear.

    Statements that members of the enforcer caste see people as “sheep” – animals that are herded and controlled from birth until death – should be more than a little troubling. “Sheep,” in the political sense, is generally a derogatory term used to identify those who blindly do or repeat anything someone with a spotlight and a teleprompter tell them.

    The idea that those above identify themselves as the “sheepdogs” is the funny part. They apparently imagine themselves to be some noble beast, doing a thankless duty, protecting the sheep from the evils of the world. Look in your closets. If you don’t see a State-issued costume with some shiny things to pin to the chest of it after you’ve put it on, you are not a “sheepdog”. All you are is a sheep with a gun. A real sheepdog will come along some day and show you your real place in the order of things.

    Now the troubling part. To keep using the same terminology:

    Don’t forget – the “sheepdog” works for the Shepherd. The Shepherd is the one who nurtures and cares for the sheep, from birth to death, ruthlessly extracting every ounce of energy and utility from the animals as recompense for his efforts. When there is no more energy or utility to be had from the animal, the shepherd slaughters the animal and harvests its carcass – the final statement that the Shepherd owns the sheep, body and soul, and will do with it as he pleases.

    It’s troubling because, coming from those who visit a pro-gun site and espouse the virtues of freedom and liberty whilst decrying the efforts of [THE OTHER] to strip us of our freedoms, you actually endorse and personify the same mindset that feeds the beliefs of [THE OTHER].

    The only difference between your State worship and the Anti’s State worship is that, while [THEY] may desire a matriarchal Nanny State to nurture and care for us all from cradle to grave by strictly regulating every facet of our day to day lives, punishing us with heavy fines and lengthy imprisonment for even the most minor of transgressions, all you’re endorsing is a paternalistic Father State that also regulates our day to day lives, but punishes transgressions with beat downs and tazers and all the rest.

    Police are not “sheepdogs”. They’re wolves on leashes.

    Enough with the State worship.

    • You might want to read the last paragraph of that essay again. The dog’s job is to at minimum, be aware of what is going on around him and to not be in constant fear. That is how I look at myself. In regards to my family, it’s my job to be aware of what is going on around them, to protect them to the best of my ability, to herd them away from bad places when possible, and to watch for the wolf. I have absolutely no problem calling the police when I see something bad happening, it’s my first responce when at all possible. I’ve called the police several times in my life, with varying response times from 5 minutes to over an hour. I live in a municipality with no local police dept, we rely on the Pennsylvania State police located over 15 miles away. So far, the delay in the police arriving hasn’t been too much of a problem, but on the day the situation can’t wait an hour, then I have to become the “sheep dog”…… or I suppose I could go crawl under my bed and wet myself as I cry at being helpless and unworthy to do anything……………. nah, I don’t see that happening anytime soon.

    • @James, I never mentioned sheepdogs, and I never thought about the essay. What I was thinking about was a line from The Magnificent Seven: “If God did not want them sheared, He would not have made them sheep.”

  9. Guy3: “Yeah, you just pull it out to make you feel better, then you end up using it.”

    Sort of like a condom, huh?

    Blood in the streets, I tell ya!


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