Primary Arms

Can I Borrow A Gun?

The question will be asked of you - someone will want to borrow a gun of yours in times of crisis.

With the Chinese flu, the civil unrest that’s been a tragic spinoff of the various protests over the summer, and some political activity or another that I keep hearing about, it’s been a banner year for people getting into the right to keep and bear arms. Whether it’s a sturdy 9mm pistol, or a solid variant of the AR-15, people have been picking up firearms in droves. Lines around the door at gun shops, online retailers selling out of common ammo in less than an hour, and waiting lists a mile long, it’s been crazy.

Alas, there’s been a few holdouts…

Yes - there’s a few people out there who haven’t armed up in these crazy times. Whether it’s someone who isn’t financially able to afford a decent firearm, your strange cousin who thinks only the government should have guns (but yet said strange cousin goes to every anti-police protest like clockwork…), or someone who just hasn’t considered it - there’s people who haven’t made the move to equip themselves with the best self-defense tool ever developed.

Invariably, one or more of them will seek you out, and ask:

Hey, can I borrow a gun?

Knee-jerk answers are easy, especially if the person asking is categorically anti-gun. As a matter of fact - indulge yourself. Don’t let them get off easy.

But wait, I thought you hated guns?

You know, the politician you voted for pushed through a law which says I can’t give this to you unless we go to a gun shop and get a background check - which you’re gonna pay for…and even then you won’t be able to take legal possession of it for a very long time…

Good-natured familial ribbing aside, don’t jump into this situation without some thought. There’s a few things to think about when loaning someone a firearm, especially in a time of crisis.


Experience And Temperament Matter

OK, your pal or relative (you don’t lend firearms to strangers, duh!) is coming to you in desperation. Things aren’t looking too peachy in their shiny named neighborhood. Police are overwhelmed and potentially told to stand down if the situation is politically sensitive. The guy at the front desk of Elysium Ivy Towers On The Bay doesn’t get paid enough to care. So, he’s coming to you, the armed citizen, looking for a courtesy loaner.

Your gut response should, sadly, be - “no”.

Start off the conversation assuming you won’t be lending him a gun, if you even have a spare one to lend him. You yourself might be new to this thing of ours, and you just squared yourself away, hell or high water, with your own weapon.

But, this guy is your pal, or your family member. You’re not gonna let him perish to the mob. His appeasement of the woke brigade only ensures he’ll be eaten last. So you’re considering “yes”


Experience With A Gun

The biggest questions should be:

  • Have you ever handled a firearm?

  • What was it?

  • How long ago was it?

  • What happened when you handled it?

  • Is there anything in your past that could legally prohibit you from owning a gun?

If he handled a gun, and it was only the proverbial “I grew up around guns” .22 LR that his Uncle Bob that he only saw on holidays had, then no go. While a .22 LR goes bang and they are loads of fun to shoot, handling a full-blown AR or 9mm pistol is a different beast entirely. Sorry, dude, maybe you and yours can stay at mine. Bring food.

If he’s shot “real” guns such as 9mm pistols, ARs, etc - then OK that’s a start. Maybe invite him to your home, and with an unloaded firearm, ask him to demonstrate safe handling and go through some dry fire drills. If time and the situation allow, take the potential borrower to the range and do it for real.

Of course the deal-breaker is if said friend or relative has a felony conviction on his record. Assuming the systems of justice are still in operation during a crisis, this could mean problems for you and said borrower if he does something stupid with said gun. He could be your brother, but if he got busted for a bag of coke back in college, it’s a no-go.


OK, the hypothetical borrower passes the smell test. Whether he’s anti-gun or just someone who hasn’t bothered to arm themselves, but yet has fired and operated real-deal firearms, you still have to consider just whom you are lending a potentially deadly weapon to. While yes, as Second Amendment Radicals, we’re fundamentally against government doing background checks, we should still be OK with doing our own research.

Is this guy cool as ice? Could there be a radiological incident and he just kind of shrugs his shoulders and just keeps going?

Or is the potential borrower running around with a short fuse? Does he get into screaming fits over Supreme Court confirmations? Is this person a common drunk? Are they cool with guns but running on a “I wish a motherfucker would” mode?

Then yeah, no. Don’t take the chance. Again, come on over, hang with me. Bring food.

The Right Attitude And Skill Or Desire To Learn

In the end, if you’re gonna be the ultimate mensch and help someone who didn’t prepare and lend them a gun, look for the right attitude and skillset, or at least a desire to learn. If they’re the proverbial ice-water-in-veins type and can pick up the fundamentals fast, it’s worth considering being your pal’s savior. If they’re a ball of tension or just plain all-thumbs, no matter what their “good guy” bonafides are, then no-go. Offer alternatives if the shit is really hitting the fan. Invite them to crash with you - bring food. That sort of thing.

Remember The Legalities

If you decide to help a friend or relative in need and loan them a firearm, remember to double-check the legalities in this situation. Fortunately in most states, lending a gun to any non-felon directly, regardless of friendship or relation, is not a crime. Friend comes over, you cover the basics, friend leaves with gun and some ammo. Done and done.

However, unfortunately, there are some states out there where the mere handling of a gun by an unlicensed person is a crime. Yes, I’m looking at you, New York, New Jersey, etc. Nevermind the attitude of the local Party apparatchiks and assorted hangers-on, flunkies, and garden-variety sociopaths.

Be aware of your local laws before lending someone a gun, even in calmer times.Check for the latest.

Of course, if things have really gone sideways, none of that matters. You do you before the zombie hordes get you. I don’t think Rick did a NICS inquiry on Daryl when him and Merle joined the pack.

If things have gone sideways and you manage to read this, I’m impressed with my own engineering. Go me.


Realistically, You Can Still Help Them Purchase A Gun

Yes, it’s a crazy market out there. Out of stock, backordered, discontinued - it’s a common sight. However, if one is quick to the keyboard or fast of foot to the local gun shop, one can acquire a firearm to call their very own. Strange days are afoot but the engines of industry and commerce are still ticking. The shit has not hit the fan.

The biggest thing I can suggest right now is that if someone comes asking you for a firearm, and financial considerations don’t prevent them from doing so, take them down to the virtual, or real, gun shop - preferably with an attached range, and let them try a few on for size, and take their own first step into the wonderful and wide world of being a Second Amendment Radical. Plus you aren’t lending them something that’s probably been sitting in your safe since around the time nü-metal was fashionable with the popular kids.

I mean, there’s nothing wrong with lending someone an old Bushmaster, but if it hasn’t been function-checked in awhile…

It’s definitely a great opportunity to bring a new convert into the fold, and do a good deed at the same time. So yes, if at all possible - help them get their own firearm. In the long run, they will thank you.

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