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Vigilantes of the Malls

I'm all for protecting yourself and your property, but this article kind of scares me. Alright, it down right terrifies me.

Apparently, the store owners at several metro-Atlanta malls and shopping centers are arming themselves--with "semi-automatic weapons kept well out of sight, but easily ready". They are tired of the smash-and-grab that's been plaguing the area, and I don't blame them one bit.

But, really, is that safe? I mean, how much do these people know about these weapons they have hidden under their registers? I'm afraid that however much it is, it isn't enough. Guns shouldn't be bought during a period of anger and frustration. It isn't wise. You might do something stupid.

Someone was quoted in the article as saying, "'They should be allowed to have guns by the cash register. There would be less robberies if all the robbers knew there were guns under the cash registers'". I beg to differ. A little. I mean, sure, if I knew the lunatic behind the register who had been held up by me last week was pissed and had a gun, I wouldn't be so excited about going in there. But, if the absentminded one walked away from the counter, well, there it would be, a nice, shiny, new gun, for the taking. And, what could possibly be worse than being held up with your own gun? Not much. Except, maybe, being shot by it.

The article states that "[h]ow many store owners have guns is unclear. Most won't discuss the issue, even off-camera." And, I don't blame them. At least they aren't advertising it. But, I worry about their reaction in a crisis. I think that either someone is going to get shot who did absolutely nothing wrong but fit a profile in the shooter's head, or someone is going to pull a gun on a robber and get themselves killed due to their lack of follow-through, whereas, if they'd not pulled a gun, they'd be out some cash--instead of their life.

I know this seems to go against my "Yay for guns!" attitude that I always seem to have. But, it really worries me when people get guns out of fear and anger. When I got my first gun, I didn't get it because I was afraid. I got it to protect myself so that I would never have to be afraid. I had never been assaulted, mugged, or raped, and I wanted to keep it that way. But, I wasn't angry. I wasn't out to get somebody. And, I'm afraid these people are. I'm all for their right to bear arms, but I just can't help but worry.

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