President’s Column | “A Good Guy With A Gun”— A Fact, Not A Sound Bite!

posted on October 25, 2022
Charles L. Cotton

A good guy with a gun stopping a bad guy with a gun is not a rare event, regardless of what anti-Second Amendment types would have you believe. We rarely hear of these good guys because legacy-media-outlets-turned-propaganda-mills simply don’t report such events; it doesn’t fit their agenda. This is changing, albeit at glacial speed, with formal and informal journalists using social media like YouTube, email lists, etc., to report the truth. Even when legacy-media outlets feel forced to report on a good guy saving their own and perhaps others’ innocent lives, their reports rarely give much detail. If possible, they point to prior military or law enforcement experience, even if it is decades old, to minimize the impact of an “ordinary citizen” using a firearm to save lives.

A recent example of a good guy saving countless innocent lives occurred at the Greenwood Park Mall in Greenwood, Ind., on July 17, 2022. Twenty-two-year-old Elisjsha Dicken was a good guy with a gun, and he had a lot more than a gun. He had courage, a love for others and a willingness to put his life on the line for perfect strangers. When a 20-year-old would-be mass murderer opened fire on dozens of innocent people in the mall food court, our hero stopped him in a mere 15 seconds! I’m hardly the only person to call Mr. Dicken a hero for his actions. In fact, Greenwood Police Chief Jim Ison said this about Mr. Dicken: “His actions were nothing short of heroic. He engaged the gunman from quite a distance with a handgun, was very proficient in that, very tactically sound, and as he moved to close in on the suspect, he was also motioning for people to exit behind him.”

Mr. Dicken was at the mall with his girlfriend when he heard shots being fired quite some distance away. He directed his girlfriend to safety and then started closing the distance between himself and the murderer. As Chief Ison described, Mr. Dicken directed others to exit behind him as he closed on the threat. As he neared the assailant who was armed with a rifle, Dicken was trying to get others to safety. He could have left with his girlfriend, but he chose to put his life in danger to save others. Apparently, he did so instinctively, because only 15 seconds after the murderer started shooting, he was dead. Mr. Dicken fired 10 rounds, striking the murderer eight times from 40 yards away, under unimaginable stress.

Now let’s talk about Mr. Dicken’s specialized training and combat experience. It won’t take long because he didn’t have any! That’s right, he was just like countless other American gun owners who have no military or law enforcement experience, but who carry self-defense firearms. (Perhaps this is why the legacy media works so hard not to report on this incident.) When asked about his skill with a handgun, Mr. Dicken said that his grandfather taught him to shoot. That’s right: grandpa taught his grandson to shoot and it saved countless lives on July 17, 2022. Remember that, all you moms, dads and grandparents.

So, how did the anti-Second Amendment community respond to Mr. Dicken’s heroic acts? The predominant response was no response—and I mean church-mouse quiet. Fortunately, some did respond, and in so doing, unintentionally revealed the level of violence they are willing to accept to promote gun control. It is as shocking as it is enlightening, folks, so you better pay attention.

Some anti-Second Amendment types have criticized Mr. Dicken for having his life-saving handgun with him in the mall. They would have preferred that he had not been armed. This necessarily means they would rather have dozens of innocent people murdered than have a “good guy with a gun” save the day! Sure, they might claim otherwise, but there were only two ways that incident was going to end. Either the murderer was killed early on, or dozens of innocent people were going to die. People who prefer the latter scenario exist, folks, and they desperately want to control not only the narrative, but Congress, state legislatures, judicial offices and the media.

What can we learn? First, carry a self-defense handgun everywhere you can legally do so. I know a Baptist minister who has a great tag line on an internet forum. It reads, “24/7 or guess right.” That really sums it up. Secondly, obtain all the firearm self-defense training you can afford. There are more than 100,000 NRA certified instructors, so you can find one in your area. Third, train your kids and grandkids in the safe and responsible use of firearms. On July 17, 2022, dozens of innocent people walked out of the Greenwood Mall and went home to their families because Elisjsha Dicken’s grandfather did exactly that. We must all be ready for that day we pray never comes.


Doug Hamlin, Executive Vice President & CEO
Doug Hamlin, Executive Vice President & CEO

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