The Case for Home Security and Family Protection
Install an Alarm System, Own a Dog, and Take Advantage of Second Amendment Rights.
Just last weekend I attended a CHL (Concealed Handgun License) class at The Arms Room in League City, so naturally, any regulatory information that I leaned and discuss in this article relates specifically to Texas laws. A few states might be more lenient, but many do their best to put a stranglehold on the 2nd Amendment.
Why is home security and family protection so important? Home ownership has long been considered the American dream, although Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have somewhat taken the reality out of the equation. But regardless of whether you own or rent, you and your family have the basic right to be secure and safe in your domicile. Straight up, bottom line; it is your responsibility.
But the Police Protect Me, Right?
Regardless of where you live, the local police motto is likely some variation of To Protect and Serve. It is a very pretty motto, but when you talk to the average honest cop (and yes, most of them really are), he or she will tell you they are really first responders.
What does this mean? When your door gets kicked in at 1:00 AM, you can call 911 all you want, but by the time the officers arrive, its possible that major damage, chaos, and even loss of life will already have taken place. Not the cops fault, not the 911 operators fault; its your fault unless you are proactive.
Home Protection Strategies
There is no single thing to do to ensure home safety; rather, there are a number of things that will encourage the bad guys to give your home a pass. Here are a few:
- Use that alarm sign. When you sign up for ADT, Protect America, Brinks, or some other monitoring service, you usually receive a yard sign as part of the package. Plant it in a very visible area.
- Own or adopt a dog. Not only will keeping a dog as a pet make you live longer and minimize stress (I read that somewhere), a barking dog will discourage burglars. I adopted a rat terrier and he may be small, but he kicks some serious butt.
My vet tells me that small terrier breeds have inordinately large jaws and teeth. Even if you dont want to get a dog, put a water bowl on the back porch; it is a helpful illusion.
One interesting thing I learned at the CHL class if you have a trained attack dog and are not home to say, down boy, you are in the wrong if the dog attacks a crook. So just get a loud, protective pooch; no attack training.
- Install motion-detector lights on your driveway. Although it is a no-brainer to have a porch light, a motion-activated spotlight will help protect your castle.
- Beef up your entry door. It is a simple job to install a deadbolt extension. Front door home invasions are becoming more common all the time. This one step will give you valuable time to reach your gun.
- Own one or more guns. Liberals might not like it, but the constitution gives you the right, as a responsible citizen (not a felon), to own a gun. The Lautenberg Amendment prohibits persons who are subject to protective or restraining orders as a result of domestic violence, or who have been convicted of misdemeanor crimes involving domestic violence from owning guns.
Keep in mind that owning a gun is a huge responsibility. They must be easily accessible but locked down at all times that you are not personally controlling their access.
Best Guns for Home Defense
This is often a confusing area for people not acquainted with the concept of proactive home defense. The evening news often highlights gang-bangers doing a drive-by using 9mm pistols. Vintage hard-boiled detective movies like to feature .38 snub-nosed revolvers.
In my opinion, neither of these are good choices for protecting your home. You are going to be concerned with two things here accuracy and stopping power. A shotgun is a good choice, but you shouldnt limit yourself to that.
Why? A shotgun is unwieldy compared to a handgun. But if you have sufficient reaction time, it is hard to miss your target. Personally, I keep a .22/.410 Savage over & under handy. A .410 might not be the most powerful load, but it is hard to miss the target; especially aiming through a dark living room at a crashed entry door.
A handgun is essential; thats what the CHL class is about. It is important to educate yourself on your state laws when it comes to defending your home and family. I would recommend (and this is only my opinion), owning nothing smaller than a .40 caliber pistol.
Personally, I carry the Glock model 27. The grip is short enough for a comfortable carry while the .40 cartridges pack a wallop. All too often, a .22 will just irritate a crack-head. The idea here is to STOP the crack-head.
Legal Implications Self-Defense is Hollywood Nonsense
Weve seen it a million times on TV; someone mugs a citizen with a knife or gun. The victim whips out a licensed pistol and discharges it, incapacitating the crook and protecting himself and his date. The Hollywood version is that it is a case of self-defense and the hero goes home, is rewarded by his appreciative date, and has happy dreams.
Um, no. Shoot the bad guy; go to jail. You are still going to be charged and prosecuted; likely you will even sued by the gang-bangers family. Owning a gun is just the first phase of protection. Legal representation is the rest of the story.
My CHL class instructor let us know about Texas Law Shield, a legal firm that specializes in protecting the legal rights of responsible citizens that utilize their second amendment rights. Be sure to check your area for similar representation.
Special thanks to Brian Mobley, Director of Firearms Training, The Arms Room, League City TX.
Articles Others are Reading
- Take the 90 Day P90X Challenge—a Review
- Keeping Your Home Security System up to Date
- Surveillance Cameras for Home Security