Can You Put A Price On Home Defense?

I live in South Florida.

To clarify, I live in one of those 50 or so artificial suburbs in South Florida that have sprouted up around the Miami and Fort Lauderdale areas over the last half century or so. There are some constants about these places.

  1. There are more or less distinct neighborhoods for different people. Don’t ask me to make sense of this, it just is and I don’t claim to understand the reasoning behind segmenting people like this outside simple irrational racism.
  2. Most people are safe most of the time. (This is true everywhere in America except New Las Vegas – no one wallet is safe in Vegas).
  3. People can be incredible stupid for the worst reasons.

Where I live is safe. We’re just off US 441 in a clump of apartments behind the commercial part of the road.

My roommate owns three firearms.

Before we moved in together, he owned one firearm, so he claims. He told me he owned an AK-47 type automatic rifle that fired 7.62mm rounds. I don’t care if he was talking a big game or not, that doesn’t matter. Upon moving in, he seemed to have given away or sold the Kalashnikov and bought a 9mm semi-automatic pistol.

This pistol can hold 15 bullets (he loads hollow points because normal bullets don’t pack enough punch, so he says) and will hold one additional round in the chamber bringing the total bullets that can be fired without reloading to 16.

He keeps this firearm loaded, including that extra bullet, under his bed at night.

Upon finding a defect in this firearm, he had to send it to the factory to be repaired. It’s amazing that firearms have lifetime warranties, but cars don’t. You’d think cars and computers, being such important tools to keep the economy going, would have more care taken of them. Before sending the first gun away, he bought another out of fear of not having one in the house to defend himself.

This second firearm, also a 9mm semi-automatic, holds 8 bullets plus one in the chamber. My roommate keeps this loaded, along with his first, repaired, gun, under his bed.

Over the holidays this year, I went out of town. I had a fun with with my friends in Central Florida and talked everything from season’s greetings to politics with them in that amicable way that friends do. Then I get a text message coupled with a picture from my roommate.

“Hey, bro. Look what I bought!”


Oh. Your. Zombie. God. If there is a God or gods in this world, they aren’t looking out for little old me. There it is, he bought a third – THIRD! – firearm. A gorram third!

I asked him if he could afford a shotgun and still pay his rent. He asked me if I could really put a price on home defense.

Yes. Yes I can you overgrown man-child.

Point: you are a white male in a “nice” part of town away from prying eyes. Point: you don’t work in law enforcement, have ever served the military or are in any position requiring a gun. Point: you openly told me you wanted to go to the Middle East and start shooting people at random because you’re scared of the big, bad not white people coming to take your guns away and murder-rape-kill your whole family.

What world do I live in that this is OK? What world do I live in that I’d rather live in the deepest of the Deep, Bible-Beating South than live with you?

I won’t let my nephews or my niece come to my home because I’m worried my roommate left his guns loaded. I don’t like having friends or family over when he’s around because he insists on carrying a firearm everywhere he goes like one of those mentally deficient men who took over a wildlife refuge in Oregon to break their poaching buddy out of jail. I put home defense in South Florida about as high on my list of priorities as a high school student worries about homework.

I lock the door when I go out. That’s about all I need, and that’ll dissuade most people looking for an easy place to hit. I was more worried about the RA in my hall in college finding liquor in my room than I am about someone robbing me (not that I wasn’t old enough, but liquor was against the severely out-dated campus rules of conduct c.1980).

Guns don’t solve problems, guns make problems. I want to move the moment my lease is up. Here’s to me finding a job in some other part of the country and to finding a place to live once I get there.

Until next time,


Can You Put A Price On Home Defense?