Everyone wants to feel safe, and for many people, a personal security device feels like the right choice. Pepper spray, Tasers and even guns can provide an added sense of safety when you’re out or make it easier for you to sleep at night if you worry about home intruders.
While it’s always a good idea to be prepared, you shouldn’t just buy a gun or other personal security device without doing a fair amount of research and thinking. Let’s take a look at some of the biggest pros and cons to weigh when you’re considering buying your own personal security equipment.
Pros: Immediate Assistance
You don’t have to wait for police to arrive to take action. You can immediately combat an attacker and potentially save your life. An immediate start to self-defense can be the difference between safety and further trouble.
Cons: Devices Promote Action Instead of Avoidance
You should only rely on your personal safety equipment as a last-ditch effort. Your first response in a confrontation should always be to get to safety and get help. Many people might choose to attack instead of escape when they have a device on them, potentially, putting themselves in more danger than necessary.
Pro: Easy to Use
You’ll have to practice regularly enough to maintain a comfort level with your device, but it’s relatively easy for anyone to learn how to shoot a gun or use a Taser without bringing more danger to themselves. When it comes to pepper spray, you have to familiarize yourself with the canister; understand the importance of aim and range; and adjust all these things as the product gets older to be accurate and effective with it.
Con: Higher Risk of Death or Injury
People who live with guns in the home are statistically more likely to die from gun violence. Accidental firearm deaths in the U.S. are higher than any other country, and children between the ages of 5 and 14 are especially at risk. Additionally, if you’re not skilled in handling any personal security device and your attacker is, you could be at risk of losing the battle over your device and it could then be used against you in the scuffle.
Pro: A Greater Sense of Security
You will undoubtedly feel safer with a personal security device on you or in your home. Sometimes, just knowing you have something to help you defend yourself in the event of an emergency or attack can put your mind at ease. This can give you a greater sense of freedom and confidence that being alone or unarmed could.
In some states, you may not be able to carry a Taser or pepper spray without proper certifications or licenses. Just because you can purchase a lot of safety devices online doesn’t mean you won’t be in legal trouble after you use them. Gun ownership requirements also vary state-by-state, so you have to follow proper protocol and ensure you don’t wind up breaking any laws trying to protect yourself. If you’re interested in purchasing a personal security device, do some research online, attend classes, and ask questions in specialty stores, like gun shops in your area, to get a better idea of what you need to do to be a responsible device owner.
There’s also the risk of homicide or assault to consider. Are you prepared to handle the consequences of potentially taking someone’s life or being charged with a crime after an altercation? If you don’t believe you could use your device against another human being to save your own life, these may not be the right options for you.
Other Ways to Feel Safe
Whether or not you decide to invest in a personal security device is up to you. If you happen to live with extreme anxiety, it may be best to also speak with a therapist and learn where your fears come from. Consider empowering yourself by taking self-defense classes. Classes that specialize in self-defense will give you a good idea of what to expect in the event of an attack or emergency. Speaking with professionals in the self-defense field could also give you unique ideas to protect yourself and help you feel secure in a multitude of situations.
Consider all of the reasons you want a personal security device before you buy. Understand the risks, explore alternatives and take the time you need to make a confident, informed choice.