All it takes is one person.
First off, I'd like to thank everyone who sent their best wishes and condolences in the past few weeks; it's much appreciated. I'm back to normal blogging, and it seems like it's time to address the elephant in the room: the tragic murders in Aurora, Colorado that were perpetrated yesterday.
For everyone who carries a concealed firearm, it's only natural. You wonder what you would have done if you were in that movie theatre. Run away? Draw your gun? Hide?
There's really no way to tell, and no one can really judge. Even the most badass Special Forces soldier might not like his odds with a small handgun against a rifle-toting madman, clad in body armor, in a dark theatre full of teargas and scrambling innocent people. I don't think it's "cowardly" to choose not to engage the spree shooter, though of course it's better for everyone else if you choose to intervene:
The big thing, of course, is being in a position to make that choice in the first place. Don't leave the gun at home. Don't think, "Well, I'm in a hurry - I can do without my piece today." Don't say, "There's no way anything bad is going to happen at [church/the movies/the mall/wherever]." Don't leave the gun in the car.
Remember that you're in a tiny minority, a legally armed citizen who regularly carries. Most people won't (or can't) carry a gun. I'm reminded of the time that a blackout hit the local supermarket, and I pulled out my EDC flashlight. Everyone looked amazed, dumbfounded, all because I had a flashlight. If you find yourself amidst a mass shooting, I hope there's no bystander effect - in all likelihood, you're the only CCW there. Act accordingly. And remember the first rule.