I didn't want it to be a non-serious discussion, I wanted to know if anyone thought there was merit in doing so (obviously not). What i didn't expect is it to devolve into personal attacks as things unfortunately tend to do here. I have never and don't have the intention to anytime soon carry a gun for any purpose. While I think people have a right to carry weapons, i do not feel that I posses the maturity to do so. By that I mean that I have not had enough experience to decide whether I would need to pull my gun because someone wants to hurt me or are they simply posturing. The same thing applies for going out into the woods I don't need to be walking around with a gun out because I got scared because I thought I heard something and risk accidentally shooting something/someone that shouldn't be. I have the foresight to see that know but adrenaline and fear tend to cloud judgement. So I don't even consider carrying a weapon.
The sad thing is this post has been up for 2 days and there have been 83 responses most calling me idiot, for simply asking a question but posts that have been up for weeks asking for help have less than 20, some haven't been answered at all. Had I said "hey I just bought a gun and am planning on carrying it what do you think?", those responses would be appropriate. However, I simply asked if anyone does or has considered carrying a gun. Simple curiosity. It's amazing how quickly people are willing to jump in and criticize here yet reluctant to pass out helpful information.
As little as I know I can just as easily jump into threads and say your an idiot for wanting to go back country without x or for doing x. It actually takes some experience and skill to pass out helpful information ( not saying you or anyone here doesn't have it). Last year I tried to make this forum better by writing an article that was meant to start a community effort on building a helpful document. I even said that when I posted it but rather than help build it or even point out what was wrong without, the instant reply was about how I was too inexperienced to be writing something or how I had to have plagiarized it.
I think this was a reasonable question to post, given the current fervor regarding firearms. The passion evident in many of the responses is indicative of this fervor. If the subject had been about carrying some other potentially lethal thing such as for example an ice axe the posts you received in response likely would have been calm objective recommendations as well as a reasonable discussion as to when or whether this might have been useful. Instead you excited a charged response which I find revealing. Here in New Hampshire our legislature is involved in controversy of a similar tenor regarding whether legislators could carry weapons into the Statehouse (passed), whether students can carry firearms on campus and whether to enable permitless concealed carry as well as legislation allowing lethal armed response to perceived threat (passed). For some reason many seem to be agitated about perceived threats to themselves. The New Hampshire Dept. of Fish and Game receives calls all the time from people similarly concerned for their safety wanting to know if they can/should carry guns in the woods for self defense. I'm pretty certain the response from law enforcement generally is to discourage what they see as a dangerous practice that will only add to the problems they have to deal with. Certainly here in New Hampshire the threat from wildlife is virtually non-existent and somewhat laughable which makes the hysteria all the more difficult to explain. I can only guess that contemporary news media that spotlights particularly gruesome and isolated examples of criminal behavior and exploits these at length for their entertainment value have conveyed a certain anxiety and the perception that we are threatened with such behavior. There are even a considerable number who seem to believe, irrationally, that we would be safer if all citizens were carrying firearms. Nothing excites irrationality as much as fear, it would seem. So, thanks for bringing this up. It has been an interesting discussion.
@oisin, A thoughtful, truth-y observation. But a question about taking an ice axe bc skiing (or some other lethal device that is ski related) is an apple to the OP's pistol carrying orange. Another randomized lethal weapon that has little to nothing to do with the task at hand would be a better comparison, but would still be relatively moot unless the OP has Indiana Jones-like throwing abilities. That is to say, the gun can affect someone a lot further away, a lot more quickly.
Other safety concerns in the backcountry are, as the OP pointed out, are not dicussed in a very cavalier fashion on the internet. Including his questions about safety protocols last year.
@lonewolf, your first response was that I hadn't read the whole thread so I didn't know what I was talking about as it was non-serious. At that point I agreed because the discussion had hinted at a gun control debate. I closed with a tongue-in-cheek comment that's winky-ness apparently didn't translate across the interwebz (you tend to ask kooky questions (winkeez-smilerz!)).
But your response was in fact that you didn't mean it to be a silly discussion.
My subsequent post, admittedly a little robust, was to state that I'm not "one of those gun-control ninnies" but rather that your intention has been blurred and if you didn't see any question about guns on an internet ski forum de-volving into a gun control debate, then your vision is not clear enough for someone that ought to be taking aim at anything.
There are two things you don't discuss at the dinner table. Religion and guns. Because it will turn into a heated discussion and end up ruining your holiday dinner.
The forum in general is fine, I suppose you had a legitimate reason for posting it in the bc forum.
But the repeated, uneducated belief or desire by people wondering if they need such a device in the wilderness is what I find trying.
Typically, perhaps not you, the people I find asking that question usually have no business, or at least experience, in the wilderness and in turn are the last people I want carrying a firearm in said wilderness.