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Shifting Responsibility | U.S. PATRIOT NEWS & REVIEWS

Shifting Responsibility

The anti-gun community will stop at nothing to smear and otherwise demonize those American citizens who still believe the 2nd Amendment actually protects an average citizen’s right to keep and bear arms. At least this is the impression that is given by the endless volley of false statistics, misreported court rulings and villainous attacks on anyone who displays even the remotest possibility of disagreeing with their stance. Now they have a new tactic – blaming the victim when a legally owned firearm is stolen.

A recent article in a local newspaper contained the headline “Stolen handgun not properly secured.” Of course, this caught my attention and I had to find out where an unsecured firearm was stolen from. Was it a gun store?  Did a local police department leave the armory open? No, as I read the article I found it was stolen from a private residence during a burglary. The story, which was little more than a cut and paste from the local police blotter, went on to state the house in question had been broken into and the gun and other personal property was reported stolen by the owner.

How was the gun “not properly stored” you wonder? It was reported by the owner that the handgun was stored in a gun cabinet rather than a safe, which then led the investigating officer to list improper storage as a contributing factor in the firearm’s theft.  As a gun owner and law enforcement officer, I have several problems with this report, problems which lay at the feet of both the newspaper and the officer who filed the report.

GunsFirst, who is to say that storing a handgun in a gun cabinet rather than a safe is improper? I own several firearms, including multiple handguns, and not all of them are stored in a safe at all times. At any given time, several of my firearms are stored outside the safe while being cleaned or repaired, in preparation of an upcoming trip or because they simply do not fit.  Plus, I always have at least one handgun outside the safe so it would be readily accessible in an emergency.

Second, it is not a legal requirement in my home state that firearms be locked in a safe – not yet anyway. I agree that all firearms should be secure from unauthorized use and that a safe may be the best means of accomplishing this, especially if you have children; but it is not a requirement and it should not be reported in a manner which implies different.

Third, even if a firearm is required to be “secured,” does that shift responsibility for its theft from the criminal who took it to the owner who was robbed? If you break into my home and steal my valuables am I somehow to blame because I made it too tempting or easy for you to do so? What’s next, will it be my fault because I did not have the latest in state of the art alarm systems installed, or because the safe I do have is not good enough in the opinion of the anti-gun crowd?

Of course, if I stay home 24/7 to protect my valuables I better never use a firearm to do so. That would make me not only the victim of attempted robbery but guilty of protecting myself and my family – both very bad in the eyes of liberals.

Disclaimer: The content in this article is the opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the policies or opinions of US Patriot Tactical.

Tom Burrell

Tom enlisted in the US Marine Corps Reserves in 1987. Following service in Desert Storm, he transitioned to active duty with the US Coast Guard. In 1997 he left the USCG to pursue a position in conservation & maritime law enforcement. Tom is currently a Captain and he oversees several programs, including his agency investigation unit. He is also a training instructor in several areas including firearms, defensive tactics and first aid/CPR. In 2006 Tom received his Associate’s Degree in Criminal Justice from Harrisburg Area Community College and in 2010 a Bachelor’s Degree from Penn State University.
Tom Burrell
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