General Question

Dig_Dug's avatar

Do you really believe you could take someone's life if you needed to?

Asked by Dig_Dug (4249points) 2 months ago

We all talk about home defense but do you really think you could pull the trigger on another human being even with your own life is at risk? Think about that. What if they only had a knife or baseball bat?

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46 Answers

Acrylic's avatar

Yes, at a total last resort. BTW, deadly is deadly, and dead by baseball bat is no better than dead by firearms or knife.

rebbel's avatar

If you just as much as point at my cat you’re dead.

filmfann's avatar

I own a handgun.
I bought a really big one because if I ever have to pull it out, I want someone to be scared of it. That way, I won’t need to fire it.

chyna's avatar

I guess I won’t know until or unless I am in that position. I hope I can protect myself and not freeze in fear. I do have a hand gun for protection that I do know how to use.
I have a family member that faced this situation. His home was broken in to and he ended up shooting and killing the person. Of course the police looked into it and cleared my relative of any wrong doing. He has said repeatedly that he is mentally okay with what has happened, and I do believe him.
What people aren’t prepared for is the hate and threats that are thrown at my relative for protecting his family.

RedDeerGuy1's avatar

When I was a teenager making cup of soup ramen the neighborhood, young adult, bully started breaking into my apartment. He was opening the living room window where I was boiling water for my ramen. He got a hold of my neck.

So what did I do?

I tossed the hot kettle water in his face, and he promptly left.

I don’t think I could kill anyone, but I sure can kick their ass, with anything available.

Dig_Dug's avatar

@RedDeerGuy1 Did you get burned? That must have been terrifying!

RedDeerGuy1's avatar

No I didn’t get burned. The bully was increasingly becoming more and more bold in his crimes. The only way that I was able to stop him was that I had a massive growth spurt. Around 6’5” he left me alone after I broke his kneecap in a high voltage thingy with wings.

He was determined to be a jerk. We never made amends.

Dig_Dug's avatar

Well I’m very happy about that. How did you cope after that? Or is that too much to ask?

RedDeerGuy1's avatar

@Dig_Dug I started skipping school to defend my little town house.

Jonsblond's avatar

I don’t want to believe I could but I’ll never know unless it happens to me. I’d rather not know.

Call_Me_Jay's avatar

I think I could. I took self-defense classes for a few years and though it was mostly for exercise and fun, I did learn to fight back as long as I could resist. A couple of lessons involved the class piling on one person, with the goal of the “victim” never, ever giving up. Good times.

Regarding literally pulling a trigger, I was in a situation where a neighbor’s drug-addled kid was breaking into apartments and specifically threatening me. I carried an iron bar and mace to get my mail from the front of the building.

I had access to a handgun. I thought about keeping it at hand and imagined the consequences. What if I killed him? That would suck. What if he got the gun and killed me? That would suck more. What if he got the gun and went on the loose? That would be the worst.

In about half a second I pictured all of that. And I knew I wasn’t going to keep a gun around to play action-hero.

JLoon's avatar


To protect my own life, or defend someone else in extreme danger – I know that I could.

kritiper's avatar

Yes. As a firm believer in the rules of proper gun play, if someone threatens you with deadly intent, you take them out as quickly as possible. I don’t have a problem with that. And I won’t shoot them in the leg, either!

LadyMarissa's avatar

I don’t think I could. I fear that I’d hesitate so long that they’d take away my gun & shoot me with it!!! I don’t want to die, but I’ve stopped fearing death & I believe that everything happens for a reason even when I don’t understand that reason!!! I live in a really small town with minimal crime & that might be why I am like I am.

flutherother's avatar

Only as a last resort to protect myself or my family. It’s an unlikely scenario and I won’t be getting a gun anytime soon.

Entropy's avatar

I would not be good at it, but ultimately, yes. In a sufficiently desperate situation, I think I could pull a trigger. Now…could I beat someone up or defeat them in melee….probably a completely different question.

seawulf575's avatar

If I had to kill someone I would. I don’t say that lightly, but with the scenario presented, think about it. Someone is in your home, threatening you and your family. If killing them will make that threat stop, I’m all for it. The alternative is to sit there and do nothing and watch your family get hurt and/or killed, possibly along with yourself. Could you live with yourself if you had the ability to stop your family being killed and you didn’t do it? In my mind, you chose to kill them instead.

seawulf575's avatar

I had a situation many years ago in which I considered trying to tackle a shooter while I was unarmed. A guy opened fire on a car right across the street from my house. I immediately called 911. The guy had an automatic weapon (long story but he legally owned it), and he was trying to kill a guy that took up with the girl the shooter had just broken up with. But he was shooting into traffic to kill the guy in his car. The victim’s car was right behind a school bus. Beyond that (but well within range of the bullets) were elementary school children walking to school. I called the school to warn them of the active shooter and to get all the kids inside as well. But the shooter emptied one magazine, reloaded and started on his second. So many people in danger. I seriously thought about getting across the road and hitting him from behind. I would have shot at him if for no other reason than to draw his fire away from the school bus and kids. But I didn’t own a gun at the time. My neighbor across the street had the same idea, but he had a gun in his hand. Ex-cop. The shot was too far for his pistol but he ran back inside to get his rifle. Before he could get back out the cops finally showed up on the scene and the shooter ended up killing himself.

Yes, when it comes down to it, killing someone is something I believe I could do in the right circumstances.

gondwanalon's avatar

A knife and a baseball bat are lethal weapon.
I can’t kill anyone.
I have a powerful CO2 “Byrna” hand gun that soots paint ball sized balls filled with tear-gas. Looks just like a Glock 9 mm. So powerful that it can put a hard-ball through a flooring backer board at 30 feet.
If someone breaks into our house then I will have no trouble rendering the invader helpless with a steady stream of extreme pain.
Then my wife and I will escape down the fire escape.

longgone's avatar

Ha. No. Don’t tell the intruders.

LadyMarissa's avatar

For me, I have NO family…hence I’d have NO guilt as I’d be the ONLY one dying!!! I brag about how proficient I am at the target range so anyone who knows me thinks I have a gun. Might not help if the person coming through the door doesn’t know me, but I figure that it doesn’t hurt to fib about it & maybe word will get around that I’m a crack shot. Hell, IF I did have a gun, I’d miss the intruder & shoot my next door neighbor & I definitely do NOT want that on my mind!!!

Dig_Dug's avatar

I honestly didn’t want to answer my own question because I really don’t know. I would probably freeze and end up dying with the fully loaded gun in my hand.

I just hope I never have to be in that situation.

canidmajor's avatar

Kill? I don’t know. Maim to stop? Sure.

Lightlyseared's avatar

What makes you think we haven’t already…

Forever_Free's avatar

I don’t think the average person knows this until they are in that position. Every situation is different. Everyone deals with stress and adrenaline reaction differently. There is no answer to this until afterwards.

LadyMarissa's avatar

@canidmajor That’s what I used to think. I was researching to get a gun & the Concealed Weapons Permit. At the time I had a stalker who was unnerving me. I didn’t want to kill him…just stop him until the cops could arrive. I was talking to a gentleman who gave the classes for the CWP & I commented that I did NOT want to kill…just slow down the intruder. He told me right quick that I had best be ready to kill him because killing him showed that I truly feared for my life. If, by chance, he bled to death waiting on the cops to arrive, I’d go to jail for premeditated murder. That’s when I decided I really didn’t need a gun!!! If sufficiently scared, I probably could shoot to kill, but I’m NOT sure of that & I don’t want to murder anyone & spend the rest of my life in jail over someone threatening me!!!

I have 2 good neighbors who have their CWP & both tell me to call them if I’m in danger & they will alleviate the situation. I don’t like that idea either, so I’m praying that I’m NEVER in that situation!!!

canidmajor's avatar

@LadyMarissa Nowhere in my thinking does an actual firearm figure into the scenario. I didn’t take the”pull the trigger” mention in the details literally.

Pandora's avatar

I say it’s likely only because of past experience of feeling rage and deep hated of anyone trying to hurt me. So I would say it’s possible in self-defense. So I would think if you give me a gun and reason to fear for my life, then it’s very possible.

Response moderated (Writing Standards)
janbb's avatar

I suspect my tall stature and intimidating appearance would fend off any attacker. Otherwise, I’m screwed.

canidmajor's avatar

That sharp beak of yours, @janbb, would be pretty formidable…

KNOWITALL's avatar

Yeah I think I could, but the ball bat is more my style. I keep one in my car, too.

Jeruba's avatar

@KNOWITALL, I have a baseball bat in my car too. It landed there somehow and I never took it out. So if someone threatened me when I was by my car, it would be “Excuse me, please wait a moment while I get something out of my trunk,” expecting my attacker to stand politely by while I fished out my weapon of choice.

NoMore's avatar

To protect my wife and family from harm yes. I’d probably be guilt ridden later, but you do what has to be done and you can have the prayer meeting later.

Dig_Dug's avatar

^^ I talk a big game but I’d probably freakout if it ever really happened to me.

NoMore's avatar

Someone needs to be there and protect you then.

Dig_Dug's avatar

Yes I can’t agree MORE!

KNOWITALL's avatar

@Jeruba I keep mine in the mesh behind the passenger seat. A shorter, hard plastic bat. :) My mom always had a ball peen hammer.

mazingerz88's avatar

Yes I think could. Protect family, friends, innocent strangers. Not sure saving animals though. I wouldn’t.

Jeruba's avatar

@KNOWITALL, have you ever used it? Did she?

MrGrimm888's avatar

I would love to live in a different world. Here though. Yes. Without hesitation.

I never pulled the trigger, as a LEO. But I badly injured some people, that had to be nullified. There were a few incidents when I was bouncing, I thought I killed someone. But. They survived. Thankfully…

I’m not a LEO anymore.
Bottom line.
I’ll do anything to avoid a violent physical encounter, as anyone should.
If you are stupid enough to engage me, only one of us is likely to survive.

The situation is everything.

To avoid being tied down, I’d kill as many people as it took. Long story…

Dig_Dug's avatar

@MrGrimm888 I know I would NEVER want to try to get in your way!

KNOWITALL's avatar

@Jeruba She didn’t. I did when a friend and I were being followed one night. They weren’t willing to take us on. :)

tinyfaery's avatar

I tend to freeze when threatened but I am also one of those people that if you do or say the wrong thing at the wrong time I can and will physically attack you, and then I tend to go ape shit, so I think in a specific situation I could kill someone.

Blackwater_Park's avatar

I don’t think many of us know for sure until we are faced with such a situation.

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