Would you (do you) have a gun permit?Jan 12 04:24
If you have a disability (especially if it's visible), the prevailing fear is that some may view us as an easy target. It takes a special kind of idiot to go after someone in a wheelchair, truly (and they deserve what's coming to them), but if it does happen, how do you plan on protecting yourself?
For some folks, they decide to live more safely. If they avoid unlit parking lots, bad areas of the city at night, etc, hopefully they'll be ok. Some even decide to take self-defense classes (there are a lot of good ones for people with disabilities) or they go the lovable animal route and get a big dog (even making it their "helper dog" so the dog is always with them). But what if neither backup plan work? Would you get a gun?
You'd be surprised, but there are thousands of wheelchair users in this country that have conceal and carry permits. To the un-used-to-disability-perspective, this may seem like a scary reality. Is it safe for a wheelchair-user to use a gun? Absolutely, duh. Typically, the rule is that as long as you have the physical ability to handle your gun and have passed the conceal and carry permit test, you can legally carry a gun on your person. But what if you can't physically hold a gun? Are you out of luck?
For James Cap, a C4 quadriplegic from New Jersey, injured 30 years ago while playing high school football, he hasn't physically shot a gun with his own hand for an very long time. But at the same time, he hasn't let that stop him from getting his conceal and carry permit. But it was not an easy process. After a legal battle, he won the right to have his conceal and carry gun permit .
Thanks to his lawyer Edward Kopelson (also a quad), they were able to fight the local police sheriff's decision (who denied the permit). James can still shoot, but uses a Sip 'n Puff mechanism to pull the trigger. After $9,000 grand in legal fees, they were able to get approval for his permit as long as James assured he would instruct anyone who helped him use the gun the proper way to set it up and its basic functions. Read about this 2009 court case
And for a lot of other folks, female and male and of all types of disabilities, they too have gotten their conceal link every gun permits (with most being able to physically handle the gun themselves). Some wear a vest and carry their gun on them wherever they go, and others have holsters right on their wheelchair, and there are several gun models as well that are recommended for wheelchair-users (that do not have intense kick back and other features). Read a good thread on this conversation
How about you? How do you feel about carrying a gun? Does it make you uncomfortable...or do you feel empowered by it? And what do you think about the recent movement to you make it harder to get a gun?
When it comes to guns, opinions are usually black and white. Most people are definitely not on the fence when it comes to this controversial subject. I just hope that whatever you decide, that you always feel safe, and truly are, no matter where you go.
How do you feel safe as a person with a disability? Do you have your conceal and carry permit?
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1. ex-Gooserider | Feb 05 11:55
I think it is morally wrong to have to ask ANYONE's permission for the means to exercise your fundamental human right to be able to defend yourself... I also think that all the recent flap does NOTHING to prevent bad guys from getting guns, all it does is make it harder for good people to protect themselves...
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Tiffiny Carlson is freelance writer and writes the “SCI Life” column for New Mobility. She's also a C6 quad from a diving accident that occurred when she was 14 years old. A lifelong resident of Minneapolis, Tiffiny has been a writer in the disability community for over 10 years and writes for several publications and blogs, as well as her personal blog BeautyAbility. Her work has also appeared in mainstream publications such as Nerve.com and Playgirl.