The First Five Seconds!

27 Mar 17

“History is never erased, nor forgotten. ‘Regret’ is merely wishing things were different, absent a willingness to act in order to cause a change. By contrast, ‘repentance’ is a sincere admission that you’re going the wrong way, combined with a personal resolve to change direction.

‘Regret’ is a useless emotion that requires no effort and is thus as common as it is profitless. ‘Repentance,’ however, calls for action and is thus rare, and ever dangerous and painful! Even repentance cannot alter history, but it will change the future. ‘Regret’ changes nothing, and, like all emotions, accomplishes nothing.”


Many have described last Thursday’s terrorist attack in London as “impossible-to-stop,” more correctly, “impossible-to-prevent”

Since some terrorist attacks are probably not preventable, the best any civilization can do is to limit the damage, that is, stop the attack via lethal force being applied to the attacker(s) immediately. In any terrorist attack, THE FIRST FIVE SECONDS ARE MORE IMPORTANT THAN THE NEXT FIVE HOURS!

The real questions are:

1) Who is going to do it?
2) Who can get there in time to do it?

The answer is:

Unless there is an armed and trained LEO, soldier, or citizen at the scene when the attack starts, any possibility of limiting damage is lost!

You’re be hard-pressed to find an example where the SWAT Team arrived “in the nick of time!” In most cases in fact, by the time the call goes in, and even the first armed police officers arrive on-scene, the shooting is already long-over, and the attacker(s) has either:

1) Committed suicide
2) Left the area, or
3) Run out of ammunition

When they arrive, police secure the scene, treat the injured, collect evidence, make a report, hold a press conference. Exchanging shots with terrorists almost never happens!

Israeli security veteran and expert, Shlomo Harnoy, recently said about ongoing Islamic terrorist attacks in his country:

“The best solution for stopping an attack is having people who know how to use arms, including civilians”

In Israel, police carry guns at all times, on-duty and off. Soldiers patrolling streets are always heavily armed. Many citizens, most of whom have done army service, carry pistols. Thus, when attacks occur, video footage often shows citizens at the scene the first to draw weapons and take care of business!

The UK is different. Most British police don’t carry guns, even when working. Almost none carry off-duty. Uniformed soldiers are all unarmed. Citizens can’t even own guns, much less carry them.

In CONUS, our police are all armed on duty, but fewer than ten percent carry off-duty. Our soldiers, even when deployed in airports, carry empty guns. On base, soldiers are all unarmed. While in uniform and in public, soldiers, even officers, are all unarmed. Some citizens have CCW permits (available in most states) but well under ten percent of CCW-holders carry guns on a regular basis. And, our landscape is littered with “gun-free zones,” usually all the places you’d want a gun!

In Western Europe (Germany, France, Belgium, Netherlands), police and soldiers are armed while on duty, but not while off-duty. Citizens are all unarmed.

However, if bitter experience has taught us anything, it is that armed heroes, at the scene, are the only ones in a position to significantly limit the damage, as noted above. Be they armed citizens, armed police, or armed soldiers, the day will be saved by their swift, courageous, and decisive intervention, or not at all!

Accordingly, politicians who really want to protect innocent citizens from terrorists should want our police, soldiers (at least officers and S/NCOs), and qualified citizens to be armed in every place and at every time, as there is no other viable deterrent!

And yet, liberals, here and in Europe, want precisely the opposite! They consistently fight to disarm all three groups, and the reason is obvious, at least to me:

They don’t want terrorism stopped!

They know “the more crime you have, the more government you need” They don’t want “problems” solved. Then, no one would need them! They want “problems,” like terrorism, to go on and on, so they can pretend to “be concerned,” as they amass power and privilege unto themselves.

It’s nothing new!

So, you can take the often-repeated liberal refrain, “You’re too stupid to own a gun. You might hurt yourself!”

And rank it right up there with:

“State lotteries will lower taxes”

“We can print our way to prosperity”


“We don’t need heroes”

“If we lived in a state where virtue were profitable, common sense would make us saints! But, since we see that abhorrence, anger, pride, and stupidity commonly profit far beyond charity, modesty, justice, and thought, perhaps we must stand fast a little, even at the risk of being heroes”

Sir Thomas More (played by Paul Scofield) in the 1966 feature film, “A Man For All Seasons”


DTI TTGSW now on-line

26 Mar 17

DTI TTGSW now available on-line!

I’ve decided to make our TTGSW Course (Tactical Treatment of Gunshot Wounds) accessible to more people than just those who are able to attend in person.

So, we’ve put-together an on-line, video version of this Course. It is not exactly the same as being there, but there is much vital information that we can thus get to those who really need it.

This is a stand-alone course, and not part of our existing DTI Operator Series.

However, we’re including this course, at no additional charge, with your annual subscription to the DTI Operator Series.

When you already have an annual subscription to our DTI Operator Series, you have recently been e-mailed a coupon code for this new TTGSW Course

You can otherwise access this on-line version of our TTGSW Course in one of two ways:

1) Purchase the stand-alone TTGSW Course for $100.00 in our Pro Shop:


2) Sign-up for an annual subscription to our DTI Operator Series for $140.00 here:


When you sign up, you’ll be given a coupon code to use for the TTGSW course.

More information can be found at defense-training.com

When you go armed, or not, you may well be confronted with a GSW that you have to attend to immediately and personally!

Our twin goals when treating GSWs in the field are:

1) Prevent needless deaths. Many GSWs are not fatal, but many that ultimately are don’t need to be. When those treating wound(s) are correctly equipped, and know what to do, the vast majority of needless GSW deaths can be prevented.

2) Keep the patient conscious and actively involved in his, and our, welfare. When GSW victims “pass-out” (become comatose), they can’t move, can’t shoot, can’t look after themselves, can’t contribute to the success of our mission. They become a burden, instead of a contributor. We want to keep them awake and “in the fight,” for their own benefit, and ours!



Most Dangerous!

25 Mar 17

Most Dangerous Places:

Right now, I don’t recommend offshore travel, particularly recreational travel, for most Americans. You can experience all the “quality time” you can handle at any number of vacation destinations within CONUS, while exposing yourself to far less risk than will be the case offshore.

But, some places are more dangerous than others:

Our State Department periodically issues “warnings” with regard to certain countries and areas, and my advice is to take them seriously! However, there are some places that have never been on a warning list that are also extremely dangerous!

“Tours,” where you’re with a group of Americans who are readily identified as such, particularly those with a religious theme, and particularly when they go to the Mid-east are to be especially avoided. Christian and Jewish historic sites are dangerous places!

Hotels, restaurants, and night-clubs that cater to foreign tourists are also best avoided, as are tour-busses that are conspicuously identified on the outside!

The foregoing applies, no matter where you plan on going, even to places like the UK and Australia.

Ten most dangerous foreign destinations for Americans are:


However, the foregoing just reflects “data,” and does not take into account specific terrorist targeting of Americans and other Westerners.

My advice is to stay away from any place in the Mideast and all other places where Islamics are in charge, any place in Mexico, all of south and central America, all of west Africa, all of southeast Asia.

Israel is actually pretty “save,” at least in relative terms, so long as you stay away from religious sites. But of course, visiting religious sites is the reason most people go to Israel!

Again, “risk” attaches to everything we do, even doing nothing. The trick is to analyze risk honestly, absent personal bias. Your worst enemy is always your own prejudice!

Finally, don’t underestimate the cleverness and determination of Islamic terrorists! They are in every part of the world. They are relentless and plotting continuously. This grave situation will not improve during our lifetimes!

“One of the most dangerous of erroneous beliefs is that civilization is automatically bound to increase and spread. The lesson of history exactly is the opposite; civilization is a rarity, attained with difficulty and easily lost. The normal state of humanity is barbarism, just as the normal surface of the planet is salt water. Land looms large in our imagination, and civilization in history books, only because sea and savagery are, to us, less interesting.”

CS Lewis


ILEETA, 2017

24 Mar 17

ILEETA Conference 2017, St Louis, MO

Our annual Conference is over tomorrow.

You’ll never find a better group of police trainers than at ILEETA. These men and women are dedicated processionals, doing our best to train our officers to (1) live through their next decade of service and to (2) get out there and take care of business!

My caustically critical comments of the obvious leftist political agenda of the people running one of the video simulators drew much comment!

Seasoned officers, of course, understand the issue completely and came up to me with sincere thanks and congratulations.

I did receive disapproving comments from at least one lawyer who assured me that patrol officers should be able to accurately devine the intent of dangerous suspects and then precisely predict their future behavior (with death being the penalty for being wrong).

Any other view, I was told, “… is not supported by the facts.”

The fact that visibly armed, suicidal suspects “usually” don’t shoot at arriving police is not nearly as comforting to me as it apparently is to him!

Much concern this year about what the 9th Circuit has called “segmenting.”

“Segmenting” permits the micro-analysis of virtually everything the officer did that day, prior to the lethal-force incident in question (which he, of course, didn’t know would happen that day), in an effort to find some detail they can criticize in their depraved enthusiasm for throwing our officers into prison.

They now want to identify “poor tactical decisions” from some earlier part of the day (as if any of these liberal clowns know anything about tactics), and then use that to vilify an otherwise objectively reasonable use of force.

Some metro areas have now adopted similar wording in their written policies.

Once again, liberals/leftists think no use of lethal force by police, or anyone else, is ever necessary. When officers use lethal force, it ALWAYS represents a foreseeable/preventable error on their part, and ALL officers involved thus need to be punished.

Their goal is for all of Western Civilization, but particularly the USA, to descend into chaos. In Baltimore, Chicago, Detroit, Philadelphia, and any number of other metro areas, they have been largely successful! Police departments in those areas, suffering from the “Ferguson Effect,” have virtually eliminated pro-active policing. The result is rates of violent crime that are now off the chart!

Prosecutors are under enormous political pressure to prosecute police. Likewise, police chiefs are under political pressure not to stand behind their officers, but instead throw them to the wolves.

This is the “legacy” of the BHO Administration, and it is going to get much worse!

It is not a good time to be an LEO, as you are a symbol of everything leftists hate. They are still in charge in many places, and they are profoundly malignant!

“When it quacks like a duck, waddles like a duck, has webbed feet like a duck, it’s probably a duck! Thus, when you’re doing a convincing imitation of a duck, during duck season, don’t be astonished when you’re mistaken for a duck!”



ILEETA, 2017

21 Mar 17

ILEETA, St Louis, MO, 2017

We’re into the second day of our wonderful 2017 ILEETA (International Law Enforcement Educators and Trainers Association), this year in St Louis, MO

The vendor area opened today, and I got a chance to see some new stuff:

Action Target is making a ten-pound, gas-operated, hit-sensitive, programmable pup-up target actuator, called the “Auto-Target.” Very handy for a quick set-up for both pistol and rifle training. Action target is the “big kid” in law-enforcement ranges and target equipment right now, but Meggitt, known mostly for military ranges, is making a concerted come-back!

At under $400.00, CZ’s Glock-like P10C is a very acceptable carry-pistol. They’ll sell a lot of them!

I finally got my hands on Beretta’s Glock-like APX Pistol. Modular, like the SIG 320, this pistol gets high marks! Trigger-reach makes it a good choice for the small-handed. Law-enforcement sales are on now. Non-LEO sales start in April. This is now Beretta’s flagship pistol. The hammer-fired 92F will fade-away (the rest of the way) rapidly, as will the hammer-fired PX4.

A clever, but small, device, called the “Mantis,” fits on the rail of any pistol. It contains a gyro that measures movement during trigger operation. It can be used during dry-practice, or during live-fire. It generates several very useful graphic displays, in real time, (on your own ipad) showing muzzle movement, trigger movement, and times. This will be useful is showing new students the relationship between muzzle movement and the point of bullet impact in a readily understandable way. I bought a copy!

At the elaborate MILO video simulator demonstration, many students were lined up to experience it personally. This version of the MILO is 180 degrees, and the student literally “walks into” it, so that the scenario develops in front, to the left, and to the right. Resolution is superb. Sound is superb. Projection onto the screens is from the rear, so the student can move around and never cast a shadow on the screens.

As noted, I watched a dozen students (all ostensible “police trainers”) go through the same video scenario. It depicted a stopped vehicle on a country road, and the narrative indicated that you were in a beat-car and had just stopped this vehicle for speeding. When the scenario started, you were out of your car and standing in the open.

The driver’s-side door opens and a young woman quickly exits, faces you, and it is immediately obvious that she is holding a snubby revolver to her own head. Obviously suicidal, she babbles incoherently while continuing to point the gun at her head as she stands next to the open door.

What happened next, over and over, was disturbing!

Every single student I saw go through the problem drew their own pistol (simulator) and then yelled at the suspect, over and over, commanding her to drop her gun. She doesn’t! Many said, “I’m not going to tell you again!” and then told her again a dozen or more times! The record was sixteen repetitions! This goes on for most of a minute! The suspect suddenly points her pistol at the officer and instantly fires.

Officers (after every single one of them was shot) finally shot at the suspect! They were all then congratulated on their “performance!”

I witnessed the person representing MILO himself run the same exercise, and he did exactly the same thing! A colleague commented, “We just witnessed two people simultaneously committing suicide!”

When it was my turn to run through the scenario, I shot and killed the suspect the instant I saw the gun in her hand!

I was told, “Don’t you think verbal commands are required here?” I replied, “Absolutely not! She was threatening me with a gun, and I was in the open at a range of six meters. No verbalization was indicated, necessary, nor tactically sound!”

Repeating, ad infinitum, verbal commands to drop a gun that are, ad infinitum, ignored, is tantamount to suicide! Yet, today I witnessed officers being trained to do just that!

This is very dangerous!


“Polite Scoiety” 2017

19 Mar 19

“Polite Society” Tactical Conference, 2017, Little Rock, AR

Tom Givens’ now-famous annual “Polite Society” Tactical Conference just concluded. This year, it was in Little Rock, AR at a little-known, but expansive, military training facility I didn’t even know was there!

Over 350 attendees this year, nearly all experienced Operators looking to expand, advance, and refine our tactical skill and knowledge repertoire.

Many live-fire and lecture Classes. I do my best to attend all of them! Also a standard live-fire handgun shooting-skills test in which we all participated. Vicki took first place in the Women’s Division!

On the premises was the largest shoot-house I’ve ever seen! My colleagues, John Holschen and Gary Greco, conducted a popular hostage-rescue exercise there (Airsoft), and many tested their tactical skills therein, including me! Watching from above, I for one, was amazed and discouraged by the way so many aspiring Operators sloppily blundered their way through the exercise, consistently making poor use of cover and getting ambushed time after time! Tactical movement inside buildings, combined with skillful use of cover, is something upon which we all need to brush-up!

My friends, Manny Kapelsohn, Andy Branca (author of the immensely popular book, “The Law of Self-Defense,” which I recommend to everyone), Skip Gochenour, Bill Aprill, Tom Givens, and John Murphy all presented wonderful lectures on the Art of dealing successfully with what we all laughingly call our “criminal-justice system,” while simultaneously living through toxic contacts with VCAs, which we all do our best to avoid. This information is critically important, and I learned a great deal from every one of them.

I hesitate to even mention Instructors, for fear of not mentioning all of them, but all have valuable information to share.

This annual event is one which should be attended by all aspiring Operators! Who naively think we know something about this Art, will quickly, humbly discover there is much left to learn! For one, I do, every time I’ve attended!

Next year’s event will be around the same time, and likely in the same place.

Not to be missed! I recommend attendance to all my students and Instructors.

Get hold of Tom Givens at rangemaster.tom@gmail.com


Operation Tiger, April 1944

15 Mar 17

Our “Unarmed” Forces!

“Operation Tiger” was a code-name given to a large pre-D-Day “dress-rehearsal,” which took place near Slapton Sands, Devon on the south coast of England in April of 1944. It turned into a disastrous tragedy, where nearly one thousand troopers were killed, mostly Americans, via friendly fire and gumptious enemy action.

Mis-communication, poor coordination, poor intelligence, poor planning all combined to doom the operation. When the scope of the catastrophe became fully known the next day, it was all quickly hushed-up, in order to keep the information from the enemy of course, but mostly to bury embarrassing details in order to protect careers of the incompetent.

Some things never change!

In any event, the real D-Day Invasion of 6 June 1944 quickly overshadowed this embarrassing debacle, and it has been largely forgotten ever since.

A squadron of fast-moving German “S-Boats” (sometimes called “E-Boats), slipped past a laughably inadequate British protective screen. S-Boats were armed with torpedoes and 20mm guns.

It was the middle of a War, and S-Boats, based out of Cherbourg, regularly patrolled the English Channel, but no one seemed to be as concerned about them as everyone should have been!

S-Boat crews spotted the low-moving American LSTs (for “Landing Ship, Tank”) and boldly attacked. Two LSTs were torpedoed and sunk. One was torpedoed, but made it safely to shore. One other was damaged but also made it to shore. Many troopers and crew abandoned ship, but downed or died of hypothermia in icy water before they could be rescued.

S-Boats came close enough to the LSTs to fire upon them with their 20mm guns and machineguns.

Conversely, LST crews and troopers had no ability to return fire. It was, after all, only a “rehearsal!”

Two British destroyers were assigned to protect the entire operation, but only one showed-up! Several shots were exchanged with Germans, but no German S-Boats were lost, nor even damaged!

It was not until 1974 that civilian residents of Devon took it upon themselves to erect a memorial to the brave victims of Operation Tiger, since neither the British nor the Americans ever officially displayed any interest.

Success has a thousand fathers. Disaster is always an orphan!

In the after-action report (at the time, highly classified), improvements in communication, coordination, security, and risk assessment were all mentioned, as one would expect.

Then, there was this sentence, buried near the end of the document:

“… making rifles and pistols more generally available to fire on S-boats when they paced close aboard, especially when (mounted) guns could not be depressed sufficiently”

American troopers, practicing amphibious landings, during wartime, in contested waters, were not armed that day! I’m sure some timid bureaucrat, serving under Eisenhower, said the week before, “We can’t let them have guns. They might hurt themselves!”

Lessons, that we naive, gullible Americans painfully relearn over and over:

1) Whenever you’re told, “You don’t need guns,” or “You’re safe here,” or “Protection is provided.” or “You can relax now,” never believe it! Never believe a word of it!

2) Whenever you’re told, “Don’t bring guns,” bring guns!

3) Whenever you’re told, “We’ll provide you with the equipment and training you need,” acquire and bring your own weapons, and seek competent training, outside the “System.”

4) When you set foot in “utopia,” go armed!


More on long-range rifle shooting

13 Mar 17

More on long-range rifles:

In military sniping, our goal is to “manufacture casualties” at long range. Instant fatalities are usually not indicated, nor necessary. Head-shots apply for the most part only to law-enforcement sniping, most of the time at 50m or less.

A 55gr 223 bullet can range out to 1km, but at that range the bullet has barely enough energy to penetrate a single layer of cardboard! Penetration of a single layer of cardboard (without the bullet getting stuck halfway through) is all the “performance” competition shooters care about!

Conversely, for those of us interested only in war-winning skills and equipment, such anemic ballistic “performance” is unsatisfactory! Just because a bullet can physically get out to 1km, or 1.4km for that matter, doesn’t necessarily mean it will be “effective” at that range.

The venerable 308Win is effective at 1Km, no doubt, in still air. But, when the wind starts blowing, the 308 becomes a 600m rifle.

The 6.5 Creedmoor, mentioned in my last Quip, is also effective at 1km, and, even with the wind blowing, one can still hit reliably at that range, unlike the 308. Beyond 1km, the 6.5 Creedmoor’s effectiveness against human targets diminishes rapidly, although it remains acceptably accurate, even in the wind, out to 1.4km.

The 6mm Creedmoor and 6.5 Grendel, as long-range cartridges, are thus suitable for competition only. Accuracy is excellent, but effectiveness is limited to 500m.

For both effectiveness and acceptable accuracy, even in the wind, past 1km, you’ll have to step-up to a 300 Norma, 300WM, or 338Lapua. All are recommended, but ammunition costs go way up, particularly with the 338L (sometimes in excess of $5.00/round). Practice gets expensive!

And, there is the issue of barrel life. Hot cartridges erode barrels quickly!

6mm Creedmoor and 6.5 Grendel barrels are good for no more than 1.2k rounds.

Your 300WM or 300 Norma barrel will also last 1.2k rounds. 6.5 Creedmoor is usually good for 5k rounds. 308 for 8k. No one really knows how long a 338L barrel will last, because no one can afford to shoot it enough to find out, but it is probably no more than 1.2k.

What makes sense for most aspiring long-range rifle shooters is to buy a rifle with one 6.5 Creedmoor barrel and one 300 Norma barrel. Between the two cartridges, trajectory is nearly identical. So you can do most of your practice with lower-cost 6.5 Creedmore ammunition.

ARs in 5.56×45, with chrome or Melonite barrels, will last 30k rounds, but accuracy expectations are less than with sniper rifles.

Heat and friction are barrel-killers! When running full-auto, you can turn your AR into a smooth-bore in a single afternoon. Full-auto is the last thing you want on a serious rifle! So long as your rifle stays relatively cool, it will run fine, and last a long time!


6.5 Creedmoor, the new 300WM?

12 Mar 17

6.5 Creedmoor, the new 300WM?

Friends tell me that the 6.5 Creedmoor’s superiority as a serious, long-range cartridge is becoming generally accepted by the military sniper community.

The cartridge is very usable out to 1400m and is not nearly affected by wind as are thirty-caliber bullets.

Currently, you can buy a box of twenty 6.5 Creedmoor cartridges for $25.00, and most major manufacturers are making their own version. It comes out to $1.25/round

It’s a long, skinny 140gr bullet at just under 3k f/s.

On a bolt-gun from Accuracy International, and other important manufacturers, most serious users are selecting a 5x to 25x scope from S&B or Vortex. The whole package, w/bipod, will run around 9k.

The foregoing represents sniping’s current trend.

Stay tuned!


Follow-up Comments

11 Mar 17

“When you just ain’t got nobody
Since you’ve gone and lost your head
Rigor mortis has set in, Daddy
Jack, you’re dead!”

From “Jack, You’re Dead,” Written by Walter Bishop. and Dick Miles. Most famous rendition was sung by Louis Jordan in 1946

Authoritative follow-up comments on ballistic performance, from colleagues who know what they’re talking about:

“I’m not worried about having a ‘less-than-perfect’ round in my social guns, because I think the same criteria is most important for selecting the brand/type of JHP, as for selecting caliber:

Shot placement!”


“As you note, ‘deanimation,’ as a result of direct injury to the supply agent to the circulatory system, can certainly take many seconds. Forensic pathologists further opine that as long as the brain remains oxygenated, the actor is still capable of cognition, decision making, and action. Assuming zero blood pressure, one must expect that the brain will remain sufficiently oxygenated to allow calculated voluntary action for a minimum of fifteen seconds, an eon in the course of a critical incident!

Similarly, as you note, deanimation in an antagonist as a result of a gunshot is usually voluntary.

In one case I handled, a 6’4″ 220lb who, thanks to his constant workout routine at the local state-provided gym (State Prison) was built like an action-figure doll. He was shot in the upper, lateral shoulder with a single .25 auto round. Witnesses reported that, upon the single shot being fired, this giant fell as if he had been pole-axed!

The one wound that does reliably cause deanimation is a blow to the CNS. Shock/trans-section of the spinal column regularly deanimates from the point of injury downward. The only injury that almost always causes total deanimation is one that effects the 1st/2nd vertebrae.”


“Last year, I inspected handgun bullets, and one shotgun slug, from a shooting in ______ City in which police fired over sixty rounds (at a single suspect, during a single incident), and the autopsy detailed forty-five separate wound paths through the suspect’s body. Suspect was on PCP!

Suspect, with pistol in hand, took eleven steps toward police, while being simultaneously struck by a hail of police handgun bullets, until a shotgun slug, that struck his spine between T6/T7, dropped him to the pavement. Even then, his upper body remained functional, as he retained and tried to point his handgun at police with his right hand, while he held a cigarette between his left index and second finger, with his forearm held vertical from the pavement. It took a 40S&W round to the brain stem to finally stop this threat.

In another recent case, the shootee, shot through his heart with a 9mm, and also hit in the thigh and arm, subsequently walked down a hall, down a flight of stairs, across the stair landing, and halfway down another flight of stairs before he collapsed, and thereafter died. The medical examiner and I, without speaking with one another, both noted in our reports that a man shot through the heart can subsequently remain upright, mobile, and aggressive for thirty seconds, or more!

When I started work in this field nearly forty years ago, hollowpoint handgun bullets only expanded fifty percent of the time. Today, handgun rounds from the major manufacturers expand most of the time, even when they only hit an arm, and the expanded rounds often look like the advertising photos in the gun magazines. We have the FBI to thank for this, as major ammunition manufacturers are all designing their ammo to perform well on current FBI testing protocols.”

Even so, while stopping effects seem to be better now than what occurred a few decades ago, there is still no certainty, and two suspects of the same size and physical condition, hit in the same part of the body, with the same rounds, may well behave dramatically differently.

We must train our students to expect this, and to keep firing accurately, creating distance, using cover and obstacles, reloading, and getting out of the kill-zone when possible, until the threat is stopped, or he chooses to stop!”


“This raises a not-so-subtle psychological and legal question:

When you’ve hit and downed an assailant, regardless of what your bullet(s) did mechanically, but he then partially reanimates, does he still represent the threat of continued lethal assault?

A private citizen’s job is usually limited to protecting himself, while subsequently moving to a safe place, and then notifying authorities to come take definitive charge of things. But, what about this case:

You’ve been aroused by a threatening figure in the doorway of your second-floor bedroom. You’ve been able to confirm that this person has neither reason nor leave to be there and constitutes a threat that demands a lethal response. So, you fire your weapon at him. He is down, but not unconscious. His weapon is on the floor and within his reach.

You’re in a cul-de-sac. The only way out, and to safety, is past this injured suspect. Your current cover is minimal.

It can be argued that you’ve ‘neutralized’ the threat, at least in the short term, but clearly you haven’t. You’re trapped, with no safe way to exit. Even when his flopping around on the floor seems non-purposive, how can you know? And, how can you be sure that in your present position you can make the appropriate response fast enough to save yourself, when it’s suddenly called for?

Should you:

(1) Resume shooting, even with no particular threat that you can specifically describe? Or, should you

(2) Attempt to exit past him, exposing yourself to the risk of getting close to him while he is still at least partially animated?

Or, should you:

(3) Do nothing, continually exposing yourself to the risk of him suddenly resuming his attack?

There is no ‘risk-free’ option! There is no even ‘good’ option.”

Comment: All else being equal, I’d probably execute option one, but afterward a local prosecutor may well take issue!

No guarantees!

“What’s the use of having muscles
When your life hangs by a thread
When you ain’t got no red corpuscles
Jack, you’re dead!”

Again, From “Jack, You’re Dead,”