First, I never said not
to use VSD! Even though I didn't call it that before, I've used VSD to save my butt more times than I can count... WAY
more times than I've gotten into physical confrontations. What I did
say was that I wouldn't bother using VSD with a home intruder
. Obviously the exact situation will dictate what is feasable and given certain circumstances, I'd use VSD to the point of indicating that the police have been notified or are on their way and that if they don't leave I'm armed and prepared to defend my family. But that's only for a very
few circumstances. "Shoot and ask questions later" isn't (necessarily) my course of action, but skipping the "interview" and escalating directly to Condition Black is perfectly legal and legitimate in a home invasion! Think about the statistics of "hot" burglaries. ("Hot" meaning when people are at home.) The perp has already shown that he doesn't care about you or your loved ones. The perp has already shown a willingness to confront someone, which means a willingness to harm
someone to get what the societally-challenged individual(s) want. And further research/statistics of "hot" home invasions has shown (as previously pointed out by Mr. Miller and Mr. Canna **) that these cases very often turn into brutal sadistic torture of the occupants. Not always, but ask yourself if you are willing to take that chance with your wife and/or child... No, when someone makes the decision to invade a home, they
made the decision and I'm not inclined to stand there and try to "diffuse" the situation with them! I never have and never will tell anyone what my personal safety precautions are in my home. I just offered some suggestions based on things that have been done for others and where we used to live for various reasons... such as living in a not-so-great urban neighborhood and not having the financial ability to move at the time. If you want to insure your family's safety and make the choice (for whatever reason) to not
arm yourself (hey, that's fine, that's valid... not everybody has the same needs, requirements or reasons... I'm not advocating gun ownership for everyone...), then think about the suggestions that were made. If you don't want to hurt/confront a home invader, then the best bet is being in a "safe room" where you can tell the burglar (through a big thick, reinforced door) to go away, the police are enroute. Paranoid? Maybe... Prepared? Definitely... Required? Not necessarily... Advisable? Only you know your neighborhood and/or situation...
Second, it is true that the overall crime rate in Canada is lower than the U.S. overall crime rate. But it is also true that there are areas in the U.S. with lower crime rates, areas in Canada with higher crime rates, and vice-versa. One thing has happened in Britain (and even though it's not as bad in Canada as the U.K., it is still a more common phenomena than in the U.S.) and that is the rate of "hot" burglaries is higher than the U.S. Overall burglaries are lower than the U.S., but the ones where people are home
is higher in Canada and much
higher in Britain! Surveys of incarcerated criminals in these countries give one of the main reasons. (I can't find my data on Canada right now, but with some indulgence, I'll use Britain as the responses were similar.) In the U.S., 74% of the criminals surveyed said that they avoided break-ins where someone might be home because of fear that they would get shot. (IIRC, the Canadian survey was in the ~45% range based on the fact that these criminals felt that there was generally a much lower gun ownership rate in Canada... interestingly enough, the ones responding that they were afraid of meeting armed resistance were from the more rural areas.) In the U.K., over 70%
of the criminals surveyed said that they had "no worries"
about breaking into a house with people home! When asked why, the main reason given was that with Britain's complete gun control, they knew the people generally couldn't fight back!
So, having said all that, I wish everyone a safe and happy household... and if someone does break in and you make the choice to attempt to use VSD and "diffuse" the poor societally-challenged individual's simply misguided attitude... well, no offense, but... I'll send flowers to the funeral.
** In rememberance of Pearl Harbor, I'll try to use the American, rather than Japanese honorary titles today. To all the vets, Thank You.
[This message has been edited by Panther (edited December 07, 2000).]