Mostly, I'm trying to garner information, not arguing a point. The desire to carry is growing stronger lately due to no single thing in particular. And, its not like I'm new to firearms....I've been competing since before I could drive, part of it at a very high level, with too many medals to count and rings far to big to wear. I want to know why people make that choice, what experiences they've had that informed it, and what circumstances they forsee it being necessary for. I've had several close friends who carry. One shocked me when it came up in conversation by saying "you've never seen me unarmed." I had no idea. Later, in a private location, he showed me the derringer that he literally always has on him (often supplemented by a "real gun" on his hip), and I just remember being shocked, not that he carried it or felt the need, but by just how long it took him to get it out....I just can't see it being a viable self defense weapon, and I don't get the point. I've done some defensive pistol training and recently started USPSA at a local club. I'm not "good", because that takes time and training that I haven't put in yet, but I'm not totally green either. Its really been 3 things that make me wonder if its actually necessary or advisable, none of which are informed by the anti-carry stance that anyone carrying just wants to be able to throw bullets at a problem. First is the reports I've read of (sometimes armed) robberies not far from where I live. It happens, and its not all that rare. But, so far, no one has been hurt. The assailants demand some stuff that is, in my case, insured anyway, get it, and run. I carry a good bit of money on me in the form of electronics, but I don't think any of it is worth ending a life over, not when they all erase themselves anyway, and insurance will buy me new models. Second is the self defense training I've taken. If they want some stuff, they'll get it. If they want me or someone I love to go anywhere, the statistics show that one of us won't walk away, and I'm confident that unless they really know what they're doing, my friends, family, and I will. I've done unarmed defenses against handguns and knives, and I know that if the ranges work out, I get small wounds on my hands, and they get a couple gaping holes in their chest. If the ranges don't work out, there are ways to close it. If I use a carry weapon, its down to a race to the trigger when they're already on theirs. Third is the pistol training I have done, combined with self-defense drills done with airsoft pistols. I don't see myself trying to be a hero, and I don't see myself drawing a weapon preemptively. If their gun is already out, its a LOT faster to pull a trigger than to draw and fire, even if you've trained to do it as soon as the muzzle flips forward. But, there are a LOT of people who have concluded differently, and some of them I REALLY respect. I'm trying to figure out what they've seen that I haven't. The reaction against OC, and the talk about fear informing the decision to carry comes from some CCers that I don't respect, and I'll admit it was a bit bating. A little while ago, someone on here said something about not wanting to go into Chicago (I think; might have been Detroit) without an AR (or similar). That's a sentiment I've heard before from people who live OTP (outside the perimeter) talking about Atlanta. And I've lived in or visited all those cities, as well as many others. And I just plain don't get it. That is a strange fear I've dealt with before, and it just doesn't make any sense to me. I feel like I'm missing something, and I was hoping to just get more information before I apply for my license (so I'll have the option to being my USPSA bag into a restaurant after practice instead of leaving it in my car) and, possibly, get something that's actually appropriate to carry rather than my grandfather's .38 special revolver or my huge 1911 with its impossible to conceal magwell. sent from a device without a real keyboard, sorry for things that don't make sense.