Primary Arms

Talking About Carrying A Gun

A GLOCK 30 .45 ACP pistol and the Lynx Pistol Range Bag.

With the explosion of new gun owners out there, especially outside of circles traditionally associated with possessing firearms, there has been a lot of unique situations and challenges for the budding Second Amendment Radicals among us.

Sure, there’s plenty of practical concerns, like what holster to select, what ammunition to use, and what sort of bag to tote your new pistol around in. Of course, beyond those important factors are ones of a more personal nature, namely letting people in your circle know that you are armed…

Sometimes termed “coming out of the gun closet”, revealing that you are a gun owner, and armed at that very moment, can be quite difficult depending on your social situation and circumstances. Not everyone has the good fortune to be in a community of like-minded fans of individual liberty and the Second Amendment. The whole “reveal” process as it were can be awkward and sometimes even contentious. But, it is something that should be done…

Suggestions For Talking About Carrying A Gun

In this post, when I refer to telling people you have a gun, I mean friends, family, and significant others. Obviously don’t tell complete strangers, nosy neighbors, and people at work. Anyways…

Don’t Tell Them You Own And Carry A Gun

In a circle of friends, family, and trusted associates, it’s sound tactical judgement to inform them you have a blaster on your hip. If the excrement hits the spinning air movement device, you don’t want them being any more surprised than they already are when that GLOCK clears Kydek and it’s pointed at a threat. Sure, a gun drawn “in the real world” is surprising enough, but the whole idea can be tempered even if surrounding people subconsciously know it could happen.

However, it may seem contradictory to recommend that in some social circumstances, it may be best to keep quiet about carrying a gun.

A situation where this could apply would be the prototypical social occasion. Birthday gatherings, holiday occasions where kooky authoritarian relatives (aka your nagging cousins, etc…) come to visit, that sort of thing. Those people really don’t need to know.

It’s only temporary, and the likelihood of something happening is probably low. Maintain operational security. Concealed is concealed, after all. Also let your immediate family know not to talk about “the gun thing” - especially younger kids. It’d be mighty awkward if your young child said (innocently) - “Oh well Mommy/Daddy has a gun just like the guy on TV!”


It’s certainly your inherent right to carry whichever firearm you deem appropriate, and that right isn’t subject to the opinions and wishes of others. You do you. However, it’s not as easy when the people in question reside with you.


Frame The Discussion As One Of Personal Safety

Despite the narrative from the left of so-called mass shooters running amok, and the narrative from the right of cities where the police have been defunded being warzones, we live in a relatively peaceful society. Most people in the United States will never have to deal with a violent encounter. Even schoolyard scuffles are relatively rare.

However, things can still happen. We own and carry guns because of that slight chance of violence. Our homes are equipped with fire extinguishers and sprinklers not because fire is the norm, but because on occasion, homes have been known to catch fire. Much like the red cylinder of funky foam strapped to the wall, our guns are for emergency use.

If you don’t have a gun yet, and are living with a person or persons who have an ambivalent or negative opinion of personal firearms ownership, unfortunately, the discussion gets a little more involved than this article covers.

But, if you’re already one of us Second Amendment Radicals/armed citizens, and someone is in your personal life who doesn’t know about your armed status, you’re going to have to break it to them.

Best thing you can do is leave the political and philosophical side of things out of it. Most people, gun or no gun, aren’t up for a three-hour debate on natural rights and the intent of the Founding Fathers of our nation. Politics and philosophy usually inspire heated discussion, and your original goal won’t be accomplished.

It’s kind of underhanded, but the best tactic is to use the ‘fear factor’ when bringing up the “gun thing”.

Ask them - “What would you do if someone breaks in and attacks us? How long would it take for the police to arrive?”

Bring up the idea that in this situation, it’s likely that some or all the people in the home could be seriously hurt or killed before the police show up. If they show up at all. Remind them that the cops are under no obligation to render aid.

If the conversation veers contentious, then break it off. If the person asks point-blank about a gun in the home, just go for broke and answer in the affirmative. If they’re living with you, or a frequent guest (long-term boyfriend/girlfriend/etc) then it’s probably best to get it out of the way.

One thing to remember - you aren’t asking for permission to keep a weapon on your person or in the home, you’re campaigning for the other parties to accept your decision to exercise your right to keep and bear arms. Truth be told, if the “gun question” gets in the way of a personal relationship, it’s probably time to re-evaluate the status of that relationship, whether it be a friendship or something of a romantic nature.

If All Else Fails, Just Rock It

At the end of the day, the right to keep and bear arms is inherent to us all. The decision to arm oneself is the provenance of that person only. While outside parties are free to express an opinion on the matter, the end decision rests with the individual.

I’ve decided to let you know I’m armed. I own a few pistols, some rifles, and have a bunch of ammunition and accessories. I’m taking responsibility for the safety of my own life, and the lives of my loved ones. If you want to know how it all works, let me know. I’m a gun owner - deal with it.

It’s rude and perhaps a little shocking to the other party, but too bad so sad as the kids say. Again, if someone’s going to break off contact with you over the life-affirming decision to arm oneself, that relationship was ultimately destined to fail.

You’ve made the decision to protect your life - have the courage to stand up and defend that decision and all it stands for.

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