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People... this guy is looking for advice only, if you can't help him keep you political opinions to yourself. I'm from Argentina and I feel more safe in N.Y. than in Buenos Aires, like Sandra and Javier said, there are not dead YET!!!, just take a look a the news...
My advice... take a good course on self-defense, and be aware of the simbols written in the walls on the street, specially in mexico,guatemala,honduras,colombia.
Other thing... unlike the States, in central and south america it's a crime to carry a weapon (not only fire arms) for everybody to see, even if you have a permit, the weapon must remain concealed.
The only weapons I carry when I travel even in the States is knives, a 6" fix blade in my belt, a 4" folder in my pocket, and a very usefull one, 1 1/2" blade neck knife.
Police never had a problem when they saw the one in my belt, the other remains in secret, still when you are in the cities you must concelead all weapons.
Somenoe said in the post "weapons kill people" I disagree, people who doesn't know how or when to use it kill other people. Rapist, murderers don't fit in my list of "people", be prepared if you go to Brasil....
Have a nice ride...
I am an American and I carry no firearms unless I am on a hunting trip--I do hunt deer on occasion and I have carried my rifle on my motorcycle.
I notice my Hispanic friends here in the Columbia Basin are very knowledgable about firearms and have them available most times, mostly they say to protect themselves from others from their homeland area. A sad thing related to labor issues I'm told by the sociologists.
I cannot imagine a situation where a traveller would be excused if s(he) was discovered with a firearm.
Not a way to go visiting. I have ridden to rallies in the United States for 30 years and only on rare occasions have I discovered firearms were carrried by attendees. To characterize us motorcyclists as gun toters is incorrect for the most part.
This may be common among certain riders and marques in certain urban jungles, not so much for the rural American enjoying the great landscapes we have.
Sorry to write again, but Matt... you write in you post something like : we need to ask ourself if we are ready to kill somebody... other write "if your traveling with a gun please stay home".
From the posts that I already saw from Kidcalavera, the guy knows how to use a gun... that's not the point. Is not the point, also, if we are ready to kill... nobody is gonna pull a gun for a mere robbery, that is going to extreme... but, i.e. Brasil is not only mere robbery, some of them will kill you just for your shoes, even for the bike, happened in the past and is happening now... so the point is, in a extreme case like that, are you prepare to die?
For a close experience, with a friend of a friend, in '98, Rio de Janerio, Brasil, the robber just kill the guy for a camera, shot before even ask for it, his friend without a gun can't shot back of course, but also wounded. So in my mind always is "better you(the robber) than me"...
I had a few bad experiences in Brasil and Argentina. In Brasil I fought back (I had my gun, never pulled out, because was hand to hand), but in Cordoba, Argentina at 10.25 am on Ruta Nacional 9 going north two guys opened fire at me(I was riding!!) from the side of the road, I shot back...
I understand Kidcalavera, I just hope that he or everybody else that carry a gun could know when to pull it.
Kidcalavera, I can help you with a few tips about Brasil, Argentina, Uruguay, Chile, Venezuela, Ecuador and Peru if you need...
mmaarten: I don't undestand complety what are you trying to say... but anyway, don't take what I said and put it out of the contest... What I said was : Nobody is gonna pull a gun for a mere robbery, thats mean... if someone try to take something empty handed, you have to be real crazy to pull a gun... Everybody should fight back, but with the same amount of force received, Can you imagine what the court will think if you shot a guy unarmed who tried to steal your wallet and he was running?
I did not pull anything out of context. I just showed two very diferent sides
of responsible people that carry a gun.
Let me show an other example:
We all find it terible and in-human that someone gets shot for 50 U$.
But in the eyes of many gun-carying people it is completely normal to
shoot someone only because he wants to take the same 50 U$ from you.
Yes, the robber it at fault because he started it, but does that make the
guy who shot the robber for 50 U$ more human?
What I am trying to show is that the isue is much more complex then you
might think. There are so many "however" and "but if" arguments.
They say: "Gun's don't kill people, people kill people".
That is not completely acurate.
It should be: "Gun's don't kill people, people with gun's kill people"
However (see, there we go) I can understand your point of view. Once I was
mugged by four guy's. I had a "robery-wallet" (with 10 U$) with me, but I did
not give it to them simply because I was angry.
One of the guy's bit me in my arm and that pissed me off so much I started to
fight and I actually tried to kill one of them. Luckilly he got away (and so did
If I would have been carying a gun or even a knife, I would have killed him
and spend a long time in a Colombian jail.
This is the entire isue. No one in their sane mind will use his gun on an other
human. But sometimes people get so angry they momentarily loose their mind.
At those moments it is better to be un-armed or you end up removing
some poor guys lung over a quarter on the pool-table.
Since you do not know when this moment will occur, it is better to never
carry a gun (unless you are hunting or shooting competition)
But like I said before: Everyone has to decide by himself. That is the price of
freedom. Freedom for me to "not carry a gun" and freedom for you to "carry a
I just hope no one mistakes my quarter on the pool-table for his and.....
Hi Maarten ,
Criminals seek an easy target ,they pick out weak people and people who are out of place .They like easy targets ,they do not want to work too hard .
The muggers who attacked you ,ran away when you fought back .If you were a small lady ,what else might they have done to you ?
Sometimes being able to defend yourself and making that obvious to a "would-be" attacker will prevent an attack and /or robbery.
In our modern society criminals will attack ,beat up and kill people just for "kicks" if they think they can get away with it ..
The elderly lady in the example above was able to prevent a robbery because she had a means to defend herself and her property.The robbers were scared of the consequences if they carried on with their burglary .
However a person who wants to find trouble will usually find it ,barfights are barfights and guns , knives ,bottles ,boots and pool cues can all kill a person .It is wrong to differentiate between weapons used in violence.
mmarteen: Hi again... Let me tell first, you were more than lucky to survived in Colombia in a situation like that, I, being ex-cop, and having many years of experience in martial arts, I always think twice if there is more than two against me...That moment of crazyness enough to kill somebody has a legal term used very often, 4 against you is enough to claim self-defense even if you shoot someone, but in the colombian legal system, well...I don't know...
anyway... you were some lucky guy that day. Back to the point, what your are saying is true too, but you opened another door... and that is about training... carry a gun is more than know the gun, how it work and how to take aim, carry a gun means, or should mean that you know the legal consequencies of pulling a gun, and used it...also means that you must know about laws, and most important you have to know yourself.
For my experience, most of the people I know and knew never pulled a gun for something that is no worthy...
Now... back at you story in Colombia, that could be a life or death situation (you could have been stabbed in the fight) in my point of view, in your shoes, I've could used a gun and shot, I prefer be in jail rather the guy 6 ft. under. The point is many people just don't know when to pull a gun, and also, the sense of life-threating situation change from person to person. But I strongly believe that nobody should be in position to restric our ways to feel safer, if we make a mistake we'll pay for it, that's for sure.
"But I strongly believe that nobody should be in position to restrict our ways to feel safer, if we make a mistake we'll pay for it, that's for sure."
Maybe the question is, what do you need to feel safer? Is there a limit? Should there be a limit? Some people need a knife to feel safer, others a gun, still others something more powerful. The size and power could esculate ad infinitum. Perhaps this is the most dangerous thing.
At 5'2" and 105 pounds, I'm what you'd call a small female and against a physical attack could easily be overpowered. I've traveled solo most of my life to dangerous places in the US and so-called risky places in other countries. I'm not unattractive. I don't carry a weapon. I've never been attacked. You would probably call me stupid/crazy. I call myself street smart. It's a skill which takes years of training, intelligence and a highly developed sense of intuition. I've learnt how to avoid potentially volatile situations, and if in them, how to talk my way out, and walk away without physical injury. Perhaps this is something which could be taught to people who feel the need to carry a weapon don't feel so much at risk.
HIf you were a small lady ,what else might they have done to you ?
But does "what they might have done" justify shooting them?
Is "pre-emptive-justice" even a real word?
I partly agree with Loner. it is all about "knowing yourself" and even
more "controling yourself". But Loner is (as he says) an (ex)-police-oficer
and he is trained in handeling situations where guns play a part.
I on the other hand, am not trained in that and I would probably shoot
some-one... and so would (as statistics proof every time) thousands of others.
In my opinion Lorain hits the button: Street-wise. You don't need a gun
to step out of the "victim-role". It is your attitude, body-poisture, gestures.
Some one who is walking with a camera around his neck, hands in his pockets
and eyes to the ground is a victim.
If the same person is looking around with open eyes, hands out in the open
and a poisture that does not sugest submision, he/she would (most likely) not
get robbed because, as Dodger stated before, muggers like easy prey.
I still believe that a gun only 'upps the stakes". If the mugger intents to kill
you anyway, he won't let you get your own gun out in the first place.
If you have any experiance in serious robbing you realize you have no chance
to pull out a gun while a sharp knife is only milimeters away from your eye or
throuth. All you can do is hand over the cash and shoot them in the back as
they run away, but that makes it murder.
In the robbery I discribed earlier I was not that lucky. The guys were totaly
stupid. If they would have pulled a gun or knife I would have been happy to
hand over the 10 U$, but they did neighter and I knew that (They usually
make sure you see the knife or gun).
Ofcourse I was also stupid to react that way.... but hey, remember, I am stupid and naive
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