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“Two rounds center mass!”
“On the command of THREAT!”
A series of hammered pairs cracks through the air as each trainee fires. After everyone has holstered a single trainee at the end continues to fire round after round until his firearm runs dry and goes to slide lock.
“Nice shooting Tex!”
“How many shots did the range master call for?”
“The range master… how many shots did he call for?”
“Ugh… two I think… I got a little carried away.”
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There is a difference between recreational shooting and defensive shooting. We’ve talked about that before… one of the benefits of practicing defensive shooting is the cognitive training that comes with it.
We use formalized training drills to drive home a couple of things.
First, we want to make sure that the training objective for that exercise has the best chance of happening…. we create the course of fire to highlight that specific training objective. If the trainee goes off the rails and becomes focused on their own objectives they are missing the point.
Second, we use the collective nature of group training to assist coaches and instructors, by looking for specific problems that directed shooting strings can highlight.
A few months back David, who usually runs our Club 2A shoot had instructed his students to do a “dot” drill. This particular drill was designed to have the student focus their energy on firing five shots on a green sticky dot he had affixed to their target. Their goal: to obliterate the dot with specific attention being on a smooth crisp trigger press.
One of the students, upon seeing that his five shots had failed to hit the dot, (he had created a grouping low left of the target) began firing multiple shots after the five initial rounds, in an attempt to hit the sticker. Each shot became more and more erratic then the last. Fortunately Katie, one of our other instructors had seen where the original shots had landed before she “gently” instructed the student to stop firing.
Had she not been able to see the original hits, the diagnostic value in the exercise… the real purpose of the string in the first place… would have been completely lost.
I get that there is a time when we want to just pour rounds down range…. we usually offer that component at the end of a training evolution for really no other purpose than just pure entertainment.
We understand the trainees desire,… sometimes out of exuberance… sometimes because they are flat out pissed off after their last couple of strings…. to just burn some ammo.
We all do it.
Some of us more often out of anger than others.
When we are training though…. seriously training, not messing around… we need to do so with serious objectives in mind.
One of the benefits of training with a group is that RSO’s, instructors, and even fellow shooters are focused on solving singular problems.
When we deviate from the established course of action we might find a temporary solace in the empowerment that comes from self direction, but we loose the benefits that comes from collective training.
There is a time for structured, methodical, even institutionalized training protocols. There is also a time for going out to the desert and blowing the crap out of pumpkins and old refrigerators.
We simply need to remember why we are where we are, and how to benefit the most from the experience.
The other day we had two students come through Artemis for an Art of the Pistol training session. Both were extremely good shooters, and their comfort with firearms became instantly apparent the moment they stepped into our Lab.
We will call them Alpha and Beta
Alpha it turns out was a criminal defense attorney that had spent a good chunk of his life as a competitive pistol shooter.
Beta works for Homeland Security.
Beta definitely had a leg up when it came to communication during an engagement. He had no problem reporting his position, calling for additional resources, and paying attention to his surroundings.
Alpha had no problem hitting whatever targets were placed in front of him… However, Alpha also had a habit he had developed as a competitive shooter…. the moment he was done shooting he quickly removed the magazine from the pistol and locked the slide to the rear.
We counseled him about this while we were doing marksmanship shooting on steel targets, but he did not seem particularly interested in changing his protocols.
I should also mention that Alpha is a CCW holder, and carries his firearm regularly as a self defense tool. He also carries a minimum of 2 extra magazines with him.
We then moved to the VirTra 300.
Alpha was the first to go through a a use of force simulation. As we expected the shooting prowess he exhibited on the steel targets evaporated when he was confronted by an armed assailant.
He forgot to focus on his front sight and instead focused his attention on the threat… the first four shots formed a halo around the threat instead of being true.
Shot #5 hit home and stopped the threat instantly.
As he did with the thousands of repetitions that preceded this instance, he immediately removed the magazine and locked the slide to the rear.
That action proved to be fatal. (Well… not fatal… as you all know, no one is allowed to “die” on our simulators… let’s just say it resulted in him “underwinning” the next engagement.)
“Bad guys always travel in packs”
That is our mantra, and in this simulation it proved to be true.
Bad guy number 2 showed up to see what had happened to his buddy, and saw Alpha standing there with an empty gun, with the slide locked to the rear…
Not the best position to be in when the goblin shows up.
The bad guy engaged and Alpha fumbled, ultimately dropping the magazine and pointing an empty gun at the bad guy.
After the simulation had ended he sheepishly looked at us.
“Well… that didn’t go well.”
“Nonsense… that went perfect according to your training.”
“You’ve trained to be a competitive shooter, and your unload actions are part of that training. The problem is that the bad guys aren’t competitive shooters…. that puts you at a significant disadvantage.”
When we make the conscience decision to use a firearm for self defense, we also must make the same conscience decision to ensure that our training prepares us for that eventuality.
I love competitive shooting… but I don’t like… nor will I tolerate, the development of negative training scars. Some actions we undertake at with our weapons during practice must by design, be administrative in nature. We must be conscience of that fact, and ensure that our actions during those administrative events be just that… administrative.
The development of Mastery of Skill At Arms, is not with out potential peril… we must do everything we can to ensure that we do not instill in us the recipe for our own failure.
One of the ways we ensure this is the understanding of the “why”.
Every action we undertake with our weapon…from how we present, to how we return to the holster, is done with specific reasons. If we don’t understand the reasoning behind the actions, we won’t understand the negative consequences for not using them… or replacing them with another set of actions. We also won’t understand when it might be necessary to abandon them altogether.
Alpha learned the consequences of this in the simulation… thankfully it was in a simulation, and not in an actual use of force event.
I am angry.
I have been watching the news in France as I am sure all of you have been. The fact that two of the victims of the terrorist attack were from Southern California makes it all that much more infuriating.
I am disgusted by apologists… I am disgusted, by tribal politics… I am disgusted by the apes that would claim allegiance to a cause that demands the death of innocents as justifications for its existence.
I am disgusted that the front runner for the nomination of one of the two political parties destined to control the White House, refuses to call the beast by it’s name: Radical Islam.
Samuel Huntington penned the Clash of Civilizations as a non-economic roadmap to understanding geo political conflict a number of years ago.… it turns out he was spot on.
The fifteenth century has declared war on the twenty first… and the twenty first has no comprehension on how to fight it.
I am disgusted that The Moms Against Gun Violence had the temerity to issue a tweet blaming the attacks in France not on radical islam… not even on some vague concept of terrorism….rather they blamed them on… guns.
France is what they want! A utopia, where the average citizen has been disarmed… and voila… has become a nation of targets.
Sunday night a couple of our instructors were analyzing security cam footage taken from one of the hot scenes in Paris.
Four Special Weapons Unit personnel approached a blind corner on a street that had been evacuated. One had a ballistic shield, one had a shot gun, and two others had rifles. As they approached the hard corner shots rang out. One brave officer… the one with the shotgun posted up against the wall as the three others went scurrying back towards their command post.
The shotgunner would attempt of pie out and return fire, but he was left completely alone… and outgunned… by his colleges. Eventually, one of the other officers timidly returned to his post, but again when the sound of gun fire erupted he ran back to his safe area.
One of my good friends Ben spent fifteen years as a member Britons SAS (Their Special Forces)… he told me something interesting as it relates to Europe in general:
He was and is, very proud of his SAS brothers, but he acknowledges that their time behind a rifle pales in comparison to the average American soldier. Not because of the wars we have fought…but because most of the American SF solders he has met started shooting as kids. In Briton that is impossible.
Most of the soldiers coming out of training for the SAS have had at most one year of weapons experience.
This goes for France as well.
Unfortunately the enemy does not have the same naïveté towards weapons as their victims, or what the Mad Moms would hope they would.
They don’t see their weapons as defensive tools… they see them as tools of aggression.
There are wolfs at the door “Mom’s”… they are not interested in stealing from you… they are not interested in assaulting you… they want to kill you.
You can’t negotiate a settlement with someone who fundamentally wants to remove you from the planet.
You can only destroy them.
In a war there are two types of armed response: Counter Force, and Counter Value. Counter Force are military targets, and the industrial complex that supports it. Counter Value are a nice way of saying the enemy’s people.
Radical Islam makes no such distinction… we are the enemy, because we exist, as such we are all “legitimate” targets of their aggression.
Enough… they must become targets of ours… and we must once and for all remove this pathogen from our planet.
Bring your fists to a knife fight.
A few days ago a disgruntled troll decided to seek vengeance for the perceived injustices foisted upon him, by attacking his fellow classmates at the University of California Merced,… with a knife.
It happened to be a large knife, which raises the real concern about unnecessarily large knives being available to the public at large…. yeah… someone has to do something about that… those kitchen tools need to be regulated! For all we know tons of knives are being shipped south of the border to help fuel the drug cartels… (ummm they stab people down there too right?)
What is interesting, is that… literally days earlier, the California Governor signed legislation that specifically prohibits CCW holders from bearing concealed arms on campus.
Since the Goblin is dead (thanks to the Merced Police) we will never know if his actions were spurred on by a realization that there would not be anyone else in the vicinity armed and prepared to stop him.
This does raise an interesting civil liability issue though.
Not so much with a suit against the State… but against private institutions.
A couple of days ago I ran into a past CCW student at the gas station. We spoke briefly, and i asked him if he was carrying.
He proudly nodded.
“Every time I can… well… at least when I’m not a work.”
“Oh? What type of work do you do?”
“I’m a financial planner.”
“Really… why can’t you carry at work?”
“HR says no dice.”
This is not the first time I’ve heard this. “My company policy is weapons free… I can’t carry a gun into my work place.”
What drives this?
In the case of UC Merced it is misguided public policy, codified in odious legislation.
In the case of an HR department… it is usually a combination of institutional inertia, coupled by insurance coverage.
“We can’t allow guns in here! We might get sued if it goes off!”
Guess, what HR… prepare to be sued if an employee, authorized by the state to carry a firearm is denied the ability to carry while at work.
If that plaintiff is injured as a result of an assault, and they were prohibited from having the tools to fight back they will sue for damages.
Normally, while at work an injury sustained is covered by workers compensation. This insurance scheme essentially states that negligence is no longer an aspect of the litigation. As a result, awards to the plaintiff are capped at a lower rate then they would be if the litigant were to bring a case under a tort theory.
As a plaintiff though there is a way out of this scheme… show that the defendant (employer) knew about a dangerous condition and still instructed the employee proceed.
This is destined to happen now with the number of CCW holders across the nation. It is reasonable to assume that there is the possibility that a homicidal individual will walk into a place of business. Failure to take adequate measures to prevent this from happening shows a gross negligence on the part of the employer. Furthermore, preventing someone who has been licensed from carrying a concealed firearm at work is an active measure promulgated by the company to increase the amount of potential risk that the employee may be exposed to.
Having rules or laws that demand that individuals who have taken it upon themselves to take responsibility for their own safety forego the basic tools of self defense while at work will soon not only become an immoral proposition…. it will become an expensive one as well.
Memo to HR… govern yourselves accordingly.
Samuel Ward, writing for Liberals Unite (yeah… that is a real website: you can see it here:
stated that CCW holders do not prevent crime… he states “Most CCW holders won’t even be able to unholster their gun.”
This reminds me of our old friend “Bagdad Bob”. Saddam’s mouth piece who famously stated that there were no American Tanks in Bagdad as the video feed showed American Armor rolling behind him.
Mr. Ward… I would like to introduce you to one of our clients,… for the sake of anonymity we will call him “Mr. P.”
Because Mr. P has a CCW and the presence of mind to draw his gun in the presence of evil, a fifteen year old boy from Downey California is alive today.
Yes. Mr. Ward….a CCW holder defeated a bad guy and saved a young man’s life Saturday night.
Mr. P and his family own a few burger type restaurants in Southern California. Mr. P, lives in Orange County…. a happy accident. You see in Orange County the chances of getting a CCW are far higher than LA County, where his business is.
On halloween, Mr. P was at his restaurant and had stepped outside to talk to one of his customers, a gentleman who happens to be a member of the Downey city council. The two were standing in the parking lot when three young men, literally running for their lives ran down the sidewalk between the busy street and his restaurant.
The conversation between them stopped as they watched the trio in a panicked state run past them, just a few feet away.
Instantly they saw what was scaring them, three adult males, one armed with what turned out to be a sledgehammer handle, were chasing them and screaming insults. Their… ahem.. attire, suggested that these pillars of society were affiliated with a local gang.
One of the kids they were chasing tripped on the curb and careened into the gutter.
To the thug with the sledgehammer handle, this represented a golden opportunity to work on his rudimentary golf swing on the kids head.
After a couple of initial blows Mr. P calmly unholstered his firearm.. (Sorry Mr. Ward, but after reviewing the surveillance video, Mr. P did not seem to have too much difficulty in drawing his gun.).. he then stepped between the carnage and the Councilman and drew down on the thug.
He ordered the goblin to stop, which he did… taking a step toward Mr. P. (There was distance between Mr. P and the thug… with his thumb resting on the safety of his Springfield 1911, he had formed an imaginary line in the sand between himself and the criminal. The punk had stopped his assault on the kid, so shooting him would have been unjustified… if he took another step towards Mr. P, he had already decided that his life would be in jeopardy, and now he would have to use deadly force to stop what would have been an imminent attack.
Fortunately, the bonehead looked into the barrel of Mr. P’s gun and decided that discretion would be the better part of valor, and decided to flee the scene.
Mr. P ordered the Councilman to call 911 and within a few minutes a Deputy from the Los Angeles County Sheriffs Dept. was on the scene, to take statements and make sure that the youth, who had been seriously injured by the couple of blows to the head he had suffered, received medical attention.
No… the Sheriffs Deputy did not handcuff Mr. P and throw him into a squad car.
He did not chastise Mr. P for “getting involved”.
He did not demand to see Mr. P’s firearm and take it into evidence, never to be scene again….
That is the stuff of urban legends.
Mr. P offered the deputy his CCW permit, and told him that he had his firearm on him, in his holster, and the Deputy was quite content with that.
He told Mr. P that he probably saved that boy’s life, and gave him a copy of the police report so that he could follow the OC Sheriffs policy and report this incident to the CCW licensing unit.
The father of the boy thanked Mr. P and told him about his son. His boy is a freshman at Downey high school and earns good grades, he never gets into trouble and by all accounts is just a flat out good kid.
Mr. Ward, I am sorry to have to challenge your world view here, but in your universe you would have more likely than not condemned this young boy to death. He was not being attacked by an evil man with a gun… he was being attacked by an evil man with a stick.
Unless we are prepared to ban “sticks”, this attack could have just as easily happened in the utopia you dream of.
He was saved, pure and simply by a good man who happened to be armed with a…. (gasp)… gun… and had the training and presence of mind to use it.
The fact that Mr. P did not fire a shot, makes the argument against Mr. Ward that much more sweet.
"This is more than a rifle son… this is a part of you.”
This admonition was common in our early days as a country as fathers imparted on their sons the need to not only be familiar with firearms, but also to have a mastery of them.
In the middle of the 19th century this need to become a master of skill at arms began to extend to women as well. Anne Oakley, of Buffalo Bill fame… admonished all women to become as good a shooters as their male counter parts, (at least as good as their male counter parts thought they were). Juliette Lowe, the founder of the Girl Scouts felt the same way about girls having not only access for firearms, but becoming just as skilled in their use as their male counterparts.
Our national heroes… Davy Crockett, Daniel Boone, Audie Murphy, Chris Kyle, have all been shooters. Their heroic status was not because of the gun… that would suggest that Michael Angelo would not have been the sculptor or painter he was without the brush or hammer. The tool is an ancillary device… the hero is the hero because of what he is and what he choses to do. The fact that these American heroes used firearms as part of their pathway to greatness sets the gun up really as nothing more than a totem.
Let’s compare this to another totem: the car.
My dad taught me how to drive a car.
I taught my daughter how to drive a car.
My daughters will ultimately teach their children how to drive a car.
A car is a symbol.
Independence, responsibility, maturity, freedom… these are the positive connotations associated with operating a motor vehicle.
Rage, mayhem, violence, aggression… left unchecked or without the guidance of a parent or mentor, the independence that comes with operating a vehicle can devolve into a grotesque tragedy of narcissism.
My younger daughter lamented to me the other day at breakfast about some of her fellow students. She has watched them play paintball, or shooting video games at the arcade. Without fail, these young students (mostly male, but that is not particularly relevant here) have little or no knowledge of the proper use of the firearm.
Fingers on the trigger when they shouldn’t be, guns awkwardly extended from the body in some odd prepubescent offensive spectacle of non-athletic abilities, or the spray and pray fire method of mowing down all possible threats that present themselves without regard to the consequences of ill aimed rounds.
To someone trained, this display of amateurism is both disgusting and on a larger societal level alarming. Our youth, for countless generations were counseled on the proper use of firearms, and as a result a respect… and yes… a professionalism, developed for even the youngest of shooters.
A young man from 1860 given a vision of a similarly aged young man in 2015 playing a video game with a plastic handgun would be shocked at just how much of a neophyte his counterpart is.
A young person entrusted with a tool that is capable of taking a life should be awed by the responsibility. The key word here thought is “entrusted”.
They did not come by this firearm accidentally, or with little training. The gun was not haphazardly given as a Christmas gift with no context or support for its use.
No… the gun was entrusted to the child from an elder who had schooled them repeatedly in the proper use, care, and skill that is necessary in its ownership.
Only after repeated trips to the range, or afield… as their child’s mental and physical attributes matured was the rite of passage done… the child was given their first firearm.
When Sandy and I first sat down to develop a “tag line” for Artemis we listed things we thought were important, not only to us… but to a body politic that has the recognized right to arm itself. We acknowledged that each of us has a right to bear arms…. but we also realized that we had a responsibility to train.
When it comes to our children we have a responsibility to guide them into mature responsible citizens as well.
When Emotions Control.
As gun owners we are often attacked by the Hoplophobes (Thank you Col. Cooper for coining that phrase) as irrational monsters.
We are just one emotional set back away from suicide, and as such we need to be protected from ourselves, or worse wreaking havoc on the innocent, and need to be sequestered from society.
Those damn pieces of machinery have a unique mystical power that transforms the owner from generally stable, to uncontrollable maniac as soon as the ten day waiting period expires. The fact that the gun owner is in control of numerous other deadly weapons daily (cars, knives, baseball bats, chainsaws etc.) is irrelevant. As soon as something with a trigger is in their hands, their sense of rationalism is lost.
Don’t even get me started with hunters.
These people not only cherish their firearms… they actually use them against innocent defenseless creatures.
So what do we emotionally unstable, armored up, maniacs do when we are attacked, not just as a group.. but as individuals?
We write op-ed pieces.
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What is more fascinating to me is the aggressiveness of the Anti.
As a gun owner, especially as one that has a concealed weapons permit, and is always armed I am the greatest pacifist around.
As many of our CCW students have heard me say, “The Dali Lama looks to me for guidance on peaceful co-existence.”
I cannot allow myself to be controlled by my emotions because… well… I have immediate access to a gun.
But what if I didn’t?
Could I then allow myself exhibit more boorish behavior?
Apart from the lack of social appropriateness, I still have access to deadly weapons… just not ones that use gun powder as a propellant.
A few years back I was hunting in the national forest and as the morning got long I realized that I was probably not going to fill my deer tag that day. I began the long hike back to the truck.
As I approached the trail, wearing my camo, blaze orange vest, and toting my Winchester Model 70 a young man on a mountain bike came riding up.
As he approached he stopped and took his ear phones out.
“Are you hunting?”
“I was, getting too hot now… how are you doing?”
“Well I was doing fine, but now you’ve pissed me off!"
"Why the #$@# are you coming out here and trying to kill these innocent creatures? Dude… you’re just a #$%#$!"
"Get the #$%# out of my way! Isn’t it illegal to hunt in California? I’m going to #$%# report you to the police.”
“I can assure you sir that what I am doing is legal, and ethical. I hope you enjoy your ride. Oh… you may want to consider not wearing those head phones, the reason I didn’t fill my deer tag this morning is that there are a few fresh mountain lion tracks just up ahead. You may want to be careful.”
I then just sort of walked past him and continued down the trail.
So,… let’s deconstruct this. Here I am, alone in the woods with a firearm. Someone stumbles on me… alone… and decides that it makes perfect sense to antagonize me…. I mean… what could possibly go wrong?
The Hoplophopes rely on emotional arguments. Facts, logic, and frankly the entire concept of “freedom and liberty” have little value to them. They are emotionally driven towards a goal and rely on emotional arguments to attain converts to their cause. When potential converts question the validity of their arguments they are demonized.
The results don’t matter… it is only the intention that has value.
Perhaps we could just give them all a participation award and tell them the game is now over.
We will keep our guns, they are not obligated to buy one for themselves.
Since we are all so concerned with emotions, there will be no losers in this political battle, and we will make sure that none on our side declare victory.
We will all ride the rainbow.
The Mighty .45ACP
“I carry a .45 because I only want to shoot the guy once.”
“One shot with a .45 is worth 5 shots with a .380”
“I don’t need to carry extra magazines… I carry a .45”
Many of us that carry .45’s have given that round mythical characteristics.
“Go ahead and stand behind that cinder block wall moron… my .45 can go through the wall, through, dry wall, a 2x4, and still have enough knock down power to finish the fight.”
“I used to carry a 9mm… but I got tired of having to carry thirty two magazines full of ammo, so now I just carry my 1911 with one Wilson Combat with eight rounds of .45ACP.”
Lets dial it back to reality for a bit.
Last week I was at Gunsite in Pauldin Arizona taking their Advanced Vehicle Defensive Tactics Class.
(I brought my 1911, because… well… it is my standard carry gun, and if an angry vehicle tries to attack me, what better to stop it than the mighty .45?)
Our instructors impressed upon us that for certain portions of the class, shooting through the windshield was going to be necessary. Along with that came the knowledge that for the first round to go through the windshield it would be almost impossible to predict where exactly it would land.
The text book states that any round hitting a plane of glass will alter its flight pattern to follow a line perpendicular to the barrier that it penetrated.
Unless it doesn’t.
It also presupposes that the projectile actually makes it through the glass in the first place.
One of the more interesting ballistic anecdotes came during one of our shooting from cover exercises.
We had a steel target set up about ten feet behind a F-150. We took a “cover position” about seven feet in front of the F-150. The side mirrors were collapsed in towards the truck, and our “mission” was to pie out to the left and shoot the steel target through the 3 inch gap between the mirror and the passenger side window. It was a small shooting lane but one that would force us to keep the majority of our body behind cover.
I began my drill and slowly moved into a shooting position. I focused intently on my front sight and pressed the trigger.
Unfortunately, between me and that narrow little opening was the radio antenna.
Focusing as intently as I was on my front sight the antenna completely disappeared.
At least until I shot.
That mighty man killer the .45 ACP, fired from seven feet hit one of the weakest appendages of the vehicle and….. bent it.
Did not break it… merely bent it.
Worse… it caused the round to ricochet.
The antenna altered the flight path a good twelve degrees and forced the round to slam into the windshield.
But the mighty .45 it went through the windshield, through the seats, out the back and still hit the steel right?
The bullet didn't even make it through the glass.
It damaged the window to be sure, but the glass was still air tight after the event was over.
What would have happened had I been shooting a .9mm, or (God forbid), a .380?
Maybe the smaller caliber would have missed the antenna completely.
We will never know.
What we do know is that a “perfectly placed round” may not be a perfectly placed round.
I still love the .45… make no mistake.
But we have to acknowledge that in the world of ballistics, there are a whole lot of variables that can effect flight pattern and terminal performance.
Enjoy the yarns people spin about how their rounds can stop an Abrams Tank… but know your firearm, your ammunition, and the limits of your own performance capabilities.
The Hero and the Modern Man.
A couple of weeks ago I wrote a satirical piece about “victim disarmament zones”.
Unfortunately, there are times that life does indeed imitate art. Last week was such an occasion.
In Oregon a social misfit sought to inflict his angst on the world by attacking and murdering innocents that he deemed in his twisted mind his oppressors.
As is all too often the case, no one was allowed to have the most basic of tools to stop this madman in his rampage. The State had deemed that all who attended Umpqua Community College be unarmed…. even the security guards.
Evidentially the Troll that came to kill people that day did not get the memo.
Yet in this tragedy… a tragedy on so many levels… a hero emerged.
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Chris is a man of massive character.
When the villain arrived, Chris… though unarmed… engaged.
He took multiple rounds, holding the killer at bay while his classmates escaped.
He moved to the sound of violence and embraced it.
He was not a coward, and the fact that he survived the wounds that were inflicted on him is a miracle.
Ares smiled upon him that day.
Chris is a military veteran that left the military and decided to attend college to improve his economic potential to better his family.
Chris now begins the long process towards healing. He may never fully recover physically, but the attitude shown on his face tells me that he has the mental fortitude to withstand anything.
What would have happened if Chris had a gun with him?
I have always said “No one needs a gun…. unless you need one really really bad.” That morning Chris needed one really really bad.
Forcibly unarmed by the State, Chris used the only weapon he had at his disposal… his body.
The other day the New York Times ran the “27 Things that make a Modern Man”.
Number 25 was interesting….
“25. The modern man has no use for a gun. He doesn’t own one, and he never will.”
Sadly, I agree with the New York Times assessment.
The “Modern Man” when confronted with the Slob that wants to take as many victims with him to oblivion, would have no need for a gun.
That is because the “Modern Man” as the New York Times describes him…
Would flee or grovel.
A gun would be of utterly no use to the “Modern Man.”
For the sad truth is: the “Modern Man” is a coward.
Chris is not a “Modern Man”.
The term itself shows transience and relativism. There is no principal to the “Modern Man” because… well… to put it bluntly… the “Modern Man” is anything but a “Man”.
Fortunately… thankfully… in a world that sees more and more “Modern Men”… there are still real men like Chris Mintz.
How would you like a $5000 pistol?
What if it were not a gift… you need to get a pistol, and the only one you can buy costs $5000?
Kinda sucks huh?
That could happen… and we could be the victims of our own arrogance in allowing it to manifest.
The other day I had a unique opportunity to over hear an exchange between two clients.
We had just finished up a Defensive Shooting 101 class. The vast majority of the students had never held a gun before. By the end of the class they had established an appreciation for firearm safety, learned how to check themselves to make sure they were operating consistent with the Four Rules of Firearm Safety, learned how to properly present the firearm, and learned the basics of marksmanship.
Two things had taken place during that class: First,… new shooters were schooled in the importance of safety, Second… they had a good time!
Two other clients that were far more advanced were working on scenarios on another simulator and would occasionally glance over to see what these new students were doing.
I had to take some trash out to the dumpster and overheard the two advanced shooters talking by their car.
“Yeah… well those guys are probably all going to head straight to the gun store and buy a Glock”.
“Another group of gunslingers thinking their badasses.”
Both chuckled as they got into their car.
Let’s think about the economic implications of that.
Imagine you love hamburgers.
I mean really love them.
You have a passion for hamburgers that actually affects your lifestyle. There are others that share this passion to be sure. You’ve met them. You go onto internet forums to communicate with them. You and your other hamburger aficionados have even developed a language and protocol when dealing with hamburgers.
In a sense you have created a culture.
Cultures can either be inclusive or exclusive. Your hamburger culture has members that vacillate back and forth in this dichotomy.
They love to tell non hamburger eaters about the merits of their food choice, and even relish (no pun intended) in taking a new hamburger eater to the restaurant to show them the finer merits of this epicurean delight.
Still, when you see someone just haphazardly order a burger at McDonalds you shake your head. You swear at those that without any thought, just order the #2. Worse,… those that have never eaten a hamburger that are interested in trying one are put off by your patronizing approach to their interest in expanding their diet.
Here’s the thing… the people that make hamburgers… they base the cost on an economy of scale.
If everyone everyday ate a hamburger, the supply of hamburger makers would explode, and the innovation in the hamburger market would expand exponentially. In addition, the cost of the hamburger itself would decrease, as the supply met up with demand.
The reverse is also true.
Imagine if most people chose to have chicken instead.
Now, the hamburger manufacturer has less competition as other producers exit the market place. Their bulk buying also decreases as they no longer need the robust supply they once did. Still, they want to maintain their profit margins… so the twelve hamburgers that sold to generate a dollar in profit is now replaced by two hamburgers that must generate the same profit.
Less choice, less innovation, and a greater cost per unit.
We gun owners must NEVER allow that to happen to us!
We must constantly look to expand our market. We must always welcome… no… actively recruit new members to our ranks. We must not only allow access to our culture, but that culture must, without question be a welcoming one.
Good natured competitive digging is fine, we are human and as long as that approach is not powered by animus there is no harm done.
When we allow ourselves to measure up against the neophyte and draw a conclusion of our own prowess we are both fooling ourselves, and potentially excluding others.
We want,… no… we need… to produce a robust market of new shooters so that existing manufactures, and those that would enter the marketplace to compete with them, produce newer more innovative firearms for us.
We also want those firearms to have a degree of price stability.
I want to purchase a $5000 firearm, because I want the unique quality and craftsmanship of a $5000 firearm… not because it is the only gun available.
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