Those are the admittedly shaky facts as they have been presented thus far in the media. Given the media's propensity for screwing things up six ways to Sunday (all those layers of editorial oversight, don't you know), I'm not taking anything for granted here. My personal opinion is that Fasano was tailgating, flashing lights etc. and O'Connell responded by being a major richard-head. He had enough, and pulled over to let Fasano by, and Fasano decided to "teach him a lesson".
Here's the worst part, though, for the 2A community:
O'Connell was licensed to carry the weapons.
That's a big honkin' black eye for law-abiding gun owners right there. It's not so much the shooting - a rich, well-connected guy approached by a significantly larger adversary who has already shown violent tendencies stands a fair chance of avoiding significant jail time. It's the running away from the scene that seals O'Connell's fate. If it was a good shoot - if it were in fact a justified shooting - then he should have called 911, reported it, and waited for the authorities. Instead, he panicked and ran.
He missed the simple fact that having a gun is no substitute for common sense.
I've been involved in exactly one road rage scenario. I was coming back from the range when I came upon an accident at a traffic light. Two cars had collided in the middle of the road, and traffic was going around one of the wrecked cars on both the left and the right. The guy I was behind as we approached the light went to the right; I went to the left because of debris on the side of the road. I made it through the intersection first. He took umbrage at my apparent "cutting" of his place in line and started flashing his lights, swearing out the window, and shaking his fist at me.
Now, mind you, I have a loaded .357 Magnum on my person. I have a gun case with a .45, another .357 Magnum, and a .40 S&W. I still have at least 50 rounds of ammo for each gun. And yet I was scared senseless. I was petrified this guy was going to approach my car and threaten me - I actually started inching out into the intersection to have a clear lane to bolt if needed. The light turned green, I went one way, he went another, end of story.
But having a firearm on me didn't turn me into a badass - it made me realize just how serious I had to take everything. I couldn't hop out of my car and tell the guy to go screw - that's escalating the situation. Even taking the MA angle out of the picture, I have ZERO desire to drop the hammer on another human being, even if they're asking for it. I would much rather run like a frightened bunny than take another's life. Any day of the week, I'll take flight over fight if it's a gun fight.
Having a permit to carry a firearm doesn't make you a tough guy. It's not a license to shoot off your mouth, nor is it permission to let your guard down and be careless because, hey, you have a gun. It's a deadly serious proposition that means you have to man up, put on the big boy pants, and let the loudmouth think he won the battle of wits. You have to be prepared to humble yourself to the jackass that wants to be the center of attention. You have to be ready to walk away, and to hell with what anyone thinks.
Having that gun doesn't make you invincible. It makes you liable. If a fight happens, your best bet is to be in a different time zone. You don't want there to be any chance you could get caught up in the excitement and have to make a life-or-death decision. You need to keep a clear head, one unsullied by drugs, alcohol, or foolish pride. You have to be the better person, no matter what that little devil on your shoulder whispers into your ear.
You also need to know the laws of your state as they pertain to the use of deadly force. You need the number of a good 2A-friendly lawyer. You need to know what to say in the event you are ever forced to use your firearm in the defense of your life (hint: "I would like to speak with my attorney". END). You need to know your rights; you need to know when it's proper to assert those rights (in court, through your attorney) and when not to (when the officer is taking your statement, which, in case I didn't mention it, should consist of nothing more than "I would like to speak with my attorney".)
Training is just as much a mental process as a physical one, and it behooves us as law-abiding gun owners and CCW permit holders to train to avoid confrontations as well as survive encounters.
That is all.