The amount of force used

Here in the UK if someone attacked another person the person being attacked would defend themselves,but why do Americans find it necessary to use firearms to defend themselves when being attacked by an unarmed individual.

While it’s not always necessary, it’s important to keep in mind that rarely are people equally matched in a fight. If you were attacked, let’s say hypothetically, by having your nose broken and your head repeatedly slammed into a concrete curb by someone younger, faster, and taller than you who is on top of you, it is unreasonable to expect you to either take the beating when you don’t know when it will stop and every slam is a potential death sentence, or somehow get the upper hand when you’re already at such a disadvantage. In such a circumstance it would not be unreasonable, and indeed may be necessary, to use a weapon to equalize the fight.

Don’t bring a knife to a gunfight. If I were attacked without provocation, assuming the attacker to be ethically sane could be a mistake.

Because boxing matches were getting boring.

Also, if you have a gun on you, and you’re having your head slammed into pavement, you may well begin to wonder: will my attacker reach for my gun?

Shoot first - ask questions later. Not a bad survivalist attitude to have where anyone could have a gun. Anyone. Child, mentally unstable, convicted felon- it’s an equal opportunity dysfunction.

If you truly felt your children’s lives were at stake, you might over react in the moment too. And maybe, just maybe, cohabiting with an entirely armed populace contributes to having a hair trigger? Y’think maybe?

In a place where guns are already quite widely available, why would you assume that your attacker is going to be unarmed?

If he turns out to be armed, what do you do? Ask him if he’ll wait while you pop home and get your gun?

(I live in England and I very much enjoy our predominantly non-gun culture, but in a place where there are lots of guns, I might not feel the same)

I think some are confusing method of attack with likely level of harm and it is likely level of harm that matters. If a large trained or experienced individual come after me to kill me with his or her bare hands I’m likely going to die if I meet like with like so it makes sense that I be allowed to use means do defend myself commensurate to the potential level of harm. If some one decides to try and gut me with a kitchen knife why must I only use a knife back? It is not some gentleman’s duel for honor it is an attempt to stay alive.

Appropriate response means ensuring that my attacker will not continue to threaten me or my kith and kin. I will do whatever it takes to guarantee that I am not forced into a “fair fight.”

What happens there in the UK when a woman, say, five feet two inches tall and weighing a dainty 115 pounds is attacked by an unarmed man standing six feet two inches tall and weighing 225 pounds?

Or are all the UK’s contentious individuals more on the small side?

It’s one of those situations where the solution is also part of the problem - similar to road safety - one of the best ways to stay alive in the event of a car accident is to be the person driving the biggest, heaviest car.

Why do Englishmen find it necessary to use firearms to defend themselves when being attacked by an individual armed with a piece of fruit?

So, if you carry a concealed weapon you can go around and provoke people for any reason knowing full well that ultimately you have advantage of premeditation; i.e. if the other guy is actually physically capable, you can just shoot him. And walk free if he’s black.

That’s US, man … the land of not so free and not so brave.

I think we’re both aware that that’s a bit more than what I said. OPs scenario is person #1 attacks person #2, and I followed that through with reasoning of why person #2 may require a great amount of force to ensure his survival.

No, you can’t go around provoking people. There are specific and well defined laws against that.

Agreed. I live in the UK as well and am perfectly happy with our current gun laws, but if I was living in the US, I’d certainly buy a gun.

As opposing to the UK where if you are small in stature, old, female, or sickly you just have to be beaten and respond with a stiff upper lip and a “Cheerio, old sport.”

Actually if you read the law it is very explicit that you can not provoke a fight and then invoke self defense.

UK law doesn’t expect people to simply stand there and take a beating. It’s just that guns are virtually unheard of here.

Why is that a country like Switzerland that not only has high level of gun ownership but actually made it compulsory for their citizens to own firearms has such low percent of gun related deaths.

Why do you get to ask questions but not answer them?

America is a deeply fearful place, this seems to have become more pronounced in the past few years. There is a part of the country that is reeling from a two term black president, the approach of white American becoming a minority and the legalization of gay marriage. Notice that a certain type of American did not just defend Zimmerman for shooting an unarmed youth, but positively reveled in it to the point that they had to slander a dead child.