Let me start off by saying I actually really like my bank and the branch I always go to here. The tellers, personal bankers, and greeters generally recognize me, unless it’s a new hire or a time I don’t normally go in. They’re always friendly and offer to help me if I need it. I know most people have a problem with Wells Fargo, but they’ve always been great to me. Banks as a whole are terrible, so take that for what it’s worth.
Now it’s time for me to say the only real reason I am writing this is because Wells Fargo thought it would be “cute” to have every one of their Twitter accounts follow me on Twitter after I made this post: CroiDhubh on Twitter – February 20, 2014. Given how Wells Fargo has been known to close accounts involving anyone having anything to do with firearms, I’m not going to reveal too much of my personal information nor “DM”, as they asked me to do on Twitter. I’m also not going to reveal which branch it was at. They can read this here.
It’s no secret I live in Colorado and it’s no secret I carry every day, all the time, everywhere I can. By “everywhere I can”, I mean anywhere not prohibited by federal law and by “I carry every day”, I mean I open carry 100% of the time. Colorado is an open carry state and the only prohibitions are anywhere you cannot conceal carry under federal law (elementary schools, federally owned buildings, etc) and in the city/county of Denver, because…well…Denver likes to have victims. In this state, a sticker or sign does NOT equal a “gun free” (victim) zone. In order to have a true “gun free” (victim) zone all entrances and exits must be locked except those in active use and have metal detectors on those doors and have an armed security guard on duty.
I may not be a competition shooter, but I do combat handgun training at least once a month and put anywhere between 100 and 250 rounds through each of my own pistols every time I go. If I can, I will do a “casual” range day in addition to my pistol training as well. At one point I was going three times a month, but that’s expensive and the PS4 just released, which I bought…and love…not as much as my wife, but close. Now I’m only doing one to two trips a month.
With that said, since I carry at work and generally only go to the bank on my way to work, I carry. The employees at what has become my main branch have grown accustom to me and know I’m generally a good guy, am chatty and friendly, and try to make it as easy on them as they do for me to do deposits or get information. Today was a littler different, and kind of sent the tone for the rest of my day. Though not necessarily a bad thing.
I go in with my paycheck literally in hand to do a deposit. When I enter in, I’m greeted by one of the banker dudes (for lack of a better term and laziness on my part) welcomes me in as I’m heading over to the table in order to fill out a slip. He happily tells me I don’t have to fill one out and they can do it for me, which I am grateful for and follow him over to the teller counter. I recognize two of the ladies to my left, the one to my right, the personal banker behind the counter and say hi to them. The personal banker has helped me a few times and he’s training a new teller.
The new teller is as great as the others, being chatty and friendly, asking me the questions he’s required to without being annoying, and we all talk about different hings while being in a good mood. I get everything finished satisfactorily, I give my goodbyes, and start to head out. I hear the greeting banker dude tell me to enjoy the rest of my day, and I turn to tell him the same. It’s at this point I see one of the female personal bankers (FPB) coming out of the area they are usually in walking towards the teller area. I’m smiling, waving, and in a good mood telling the greeter, “Thanks, man! You too!” when I see the FPB stop dead in her tracks, take a wide stance, reach behind her with her right arm, slide her arm down and then move her arm back up. Her eyes are the size of dinner plates.
Now, I’m sure some of you out there are thinking, “Well, maybe she was just getting her cell phone or putting her wallet away or something?” That’s fine to consider if you aren’t a firearms person. Anyone who has been around firearms and people who carry firearms knows that motion. I’ve been in the military as military police, I was a police explorer for four years in high school, and I was a police officer as well. Almost my entire family carries as well. I know that motion and I know fear when I see it. This was fear and someone having a firearm ready to act.
I literally just chuckled and said, “Ma’am, that absolutely won’t be necessary. I’m obviously on my way out and my business has finished. Have a good one!” I was still nice and smiled when I said it. She watched me all the way out and didn’t move from her spot. The greeter looked at me and then her, and then me back, but I didn’t elaborate on it.
I am, beyond anything related with firearms, a believer in education and training more than anything else. If I wasn’t who I am, she may very well have ended up having a very terrible day. Her mentality at that moment was, “I have a gun! I must defend us!” What she needs is some force on force training and better education to begin with. With the situational awareness and common sense I was exercising at the moment made it obvious I didn’t need to freak out or attempt to defend myself. I’m glad she didn’t present her firearm in my direction, otherwise I would have responded appropriately.
If you’re going to carry a firearm for protection, you owe it, not only to yourself, but everyone else to have a good head on your shoulders. There’s no reason for her to have start that draw. If she really thought I was a possible threat (with my back to her and walking out), she should have sought out at least concealment if not good cover. Instead, she was out in the open, completely frozen in place with her hand on her firearm and unready to act. If she really felt the need to have the firearm that ready, it should have already been pointed at me while she screamed directions at me and more than likely already firing. She should be glad I’m not one of the bad guys.
Will I continue going to that branch? Hell yes! They generally kick ass and are a great bunch of employees. Just because one lady needs to get her head on straight and get some damn training under her belt doesn’t mean Wells Fargo or that branch is bad. I’ll keep doing what I do since it’s my right. I don’t even have a problem with the fact one of their employees was packing. I am glad they had an employee carrying a firearm. I only hope the lady takes this as an opportunity for herself to realize she needs some schooling on defensive firearms.