Don’t Invite Criminals to Target You and Your guns
Before you put another sticker on your vehicle, stop and consider what type of information you're providing to strangers who see it.
I'm not blazing into any unfamiliar territory with this information. In fact, we've written about this topic before. However, this is the type of information that bears repeating from time to time.
Lots of Guns Stolen From Vehicles —
One of the wisest things anyone can do is avoid conflict, and a big part of this is to consider how criminals choose their targets and locations.
A recent article in from ABC 7 in Denver reiterates the focus of this post. Car burglars target vehicles bearing pro gun or Second Amendment decals and license plates from ‘gun friendly' states because there may be a gun inside. It just makes sense. This is the same reason you don't leave bags or other items where someone walking by the vehicle can see. Car burglars are trying to be as efficient as possible, and want high value items and guns more than anything else.
Part of the issue is that there are various federal and state laws prohibiting legal gun possession inside private businesses and other properties. I can hear it now: “But those are just signs. If it's concealed, how will they know?” or “The Second Amendment is my permit” etc.
My opinion is that if we carry a gun, it should always be on our person. But it’s not always easy. Each person needs to decide whether they carry their gun into a Costco and violate store policy and state any law, or leave it in their vehicle. This decision differs from a schoolteacher who carries a gun, but can’t carry it inside the school where they work. The point is, it’s an individual decision, and while it's always preferable to keep the gun in your possession, there may be a necessity to leave it in the vehicle.
In Vehicle Gun Storage Options —
In these cases, use a secure storage option like a safe hidden and tethered around the seat, or a hidden vault like this one from Console Vault. Can someone defeat these products? Sure, with enough time, tools, and knowledge. But, they are better than the alternatives: lock it in the glove box, leave it unsecure, hidden somewhere in the vehicle, take the gun with you and risk arrest, or leave the gun at home.
Let me pause for a moment and make a distinction between using a product like Console Vault, and a vehicle mounted holster. For the reasons I discuss in this post called Stop Using Your Car as a Holster, I think it’s a flawed method.
Back in 2021, I wrote an article that discussed the sharp increase in vehicle burglaries, and the number of crime scene guns that came from car burglaries. Some estimates are that thieves steal around 600,000 firearms from vehicles annually. It may be a little lower or higher, but no matter the exact number, as gun owners, we need to take seriously the responsibility of not leaving guns inside the vehicle. And when we absolutely have to, using a product that secures it as best as possible.
It's Your Right —
Letting others know you support or oppose the Second Amendment or that you love Glock and hate Sig Sauer, is perfectly within your rights. And people shouldn’t have to hide their political feelings or their love of guns. All of that is true.
But it’s also true that criminals use that type of information to target your vehicle. Right now it seems limited to car burglaries. But we routinely see home invasions where a suspect targets a victim in public and follows them to their home. Car burglars could turn home burglars or home invasion suspects by presuming someone with gun stickers on their vehicle, means multiple guns at home.
Consider that simply carrying a gun doesn’t make you impervious to injury. Criminals shoot and kill cops and they know cops carry guns. So simply carrying a gun, while it may deter some criminals, won’t stop the motivated ones. Could you open yourself or your family to a car jacking because of extremely violent criminals motivated to get a vehicle and a gun? Try defending against 2 carjackers with firearms and your family inside the vehicle.
In Conclusion —
Are criminals carjacking families because of their Taurus bumper sticker? Not that I know of. But putting their logo on my vehicle isn’t worth the risk for me and my family to be the first.
In the end, I’m not telling you that you can’t put gun company decals on your vehicle. Just consider more than its placement before you do.
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Never, ever leave any firearm inside of your unattended vehicle, period, end of story. As a 33+ year veteran of a large Pacific Northwest police department I took dozens and dozens of car prowl reports in which a firearm was stolen. ANY AND ALL of the firearm ‘safes’ or ‘strongboxes’ can be EASILY defeated with a prybar, hammer, or large screwdriver. And unless your firearm ‘prints’, you blab, or you have to pass through a metal detector who in the world is going to know you carry a concealed handgun? P.S. As for gun related stickers, put them on the inside of your garage door so you can admire them but others can’t.
Vehicles are the worst “gunsafes” in the universe. I can get into any semi tractor/ vocational truck made. Easily.
Absolutely agree with this…..and as an employee in a company that had more than its fair share of liberals and now wokesters…..I would worry about my car getting ‘keyed’ while in the parking garage if I had ANYTHING that showed my 2A or my Conservative roots. Not worth it. Not like a bumper sticker is going to convince an “anti-” to become a “pro-“.
I agree with the basic premise of this. I try to avoid going places where I cannot lawfully carry. That’s not always possible, but if going, for example, into a US Post Office where carrying with or without a permit is a Federal FELONY, I’ll leave it in the car for that short time.
Imagine being in a bank, Post Office, or some other facility where lawful carry is made illegal – – and a criminal holds up the place. With the wrong DA in charge, you could get into more legal trouble for using your concealed weapon than the dirtbag who actually came in armed with criminal intent! “I’d rather be tried by 12 than carried by 6” sounds good until you’re the Defendant on trial and about to lose all of your rights if found guilty of a firearm violation. It’s a bad situation, to be sure. I wish it weren’t so, but it is. Again, I agree with the premise and most of the thought, but your mileage may vary.
Agree with all the comments made. Another reason we only fly a U.S. flag on our flag pole. Anything else can possibly give others ideas.
Yes, I’ve gotten several stickers and patches which I decided to not display. Don’t want the bad guys to know or suspect I’m carrying.