My gun collection moved past my self defense needs years ago.
My initial interest in guns wasn't even about defense and I couldn't tell you the difference between the 2nd and 3rd amendments back then.
Guns are machines and machines have always fascinated me.
I am not absolutely certain when guns became the machine that fascinated me more than other started. At one time it was airplanes and I think that Dad buying me books on military stuff because they included airplanes is what started it.
I'm a hands-on learner and physically handling the guns really helps me understand how they work.
I'd read book after book and looked at diagram after diagram and didn't grok "gas operated" until I was cleaning an M240 in the Army and seeing how the parts interacted.
I was astonished when I got out of the Army that I could just go to a gun shop and buy an example to play with until I understood it. There was a lot of rotation in my collection then as I sampled.
Guns were for punching holes in paper to me at that point. I didn't hunt and I lived in an odd sense of security.
What knocked me out of it?
Rodney King. More to the point, the riots.
Suddenly my Mini-14 and the 30-round mags I'd bought had an application beyond wasting money. I also realized how poor my ten pound Mini-14 was for the task.
That led to it being replaced by a post-ban Daewoo DR-200 and the Daewoo being replaced with AR's.
Still, there are guns in the cabinet with little practical use.
Like all the .25 ACP guns. Like my grampa's .32 revolvers. Like all the milsurp bolt guns.
No gun is completely useless for defense, but some are better than others.
Defense just doesn't drive my purchases.
The XM177E2 clone and the tax stamp that goes with it were driven by a game. I had a character who had that carbine, so I wanted to make one to play with.
The 870 and the Garand are on my list of guns that a person should have, not because I really lusted for them. In fact that 870 hasn't been to the range in nearly twenty years.
Occasionally my collecting leads me to a gun that's got some use. The 1908 Pocket Hammerless in .380 is one such. It rode in my pocket for about a year before being replaced by a smaller .380. But I didn't buy it for defense, I bought it because it appeared to be an upscaled version of the .25 ACP 1908 Vest Pocket I had. That and Tam talking about them.
I had that relationship wrong, it turns out. Browning (PBUH) scaled down the 1903 Pocket Hammerless to .25 then later came back and noticed that the original design would take .380 handily.
All of that is a wordy way to say, I don't buy guns because I am afraid.
I don't buy guns to compensate for my small penis.
I buy guns because they are interesting. I have guns that are FOR protecting me and mine but that's a very small portion of the collection.