1 Aug 07
Hoot & Shoot, 2007
On 10-12 Aug 07 (Fri-Sun), my long-time friend and colleague, Evan Marshall, is once again hosting his “Hoot & Shoot” event in Midland, MI. I’ll be attending for the first time and also presenting a class.
Like Skip Gochenour’s “NTI,” in PA and Tom Givins’ “Polite Society” in TN, the H&S is designed as a clinic/get-together for instructors of the Art, and students, alike.
Friday evening, there is a mixer and informal meet-and-greet with instructors and attendees. Each attendee will be assigned to one of three groups for a round-robin Course rotation through the weekend. The first Course starts Saturday morning, and there will be another in the afternoon, an another in the evening. Same on Sunday. Lunch and dinner are catered on site.
Instructors are: Evan Marshall, Jim Higginbotham, Ed Lovette, Vince O’Neil, Gary Gudmundsen, and me.
Cor-Bon and Vyse will be there with ideas, tips, and products to demonstrate. Smith & Wesson will also be on hand with guns to show and try.
Live-fire gelatin tests will be conducted, comparing various brands of ammunition.
To join us there, get hold of Evan at email@example.com or 989 832 8888. Web Page is http://www.marshallsshootingcenter.com/hoot07.asp
1 Aug 07
In searching through presidential candidates’ web pages, both Democrat and Republican, it is nearly impossible to find any clear statement of policies and agendas with regard to the continued private ownership of guns by American citizens. Even RNC and DNC web pages are nearly devoid of substantive comment on this issue. What little exists is profoundly muddy and buried deep. Both parties, and all candidates, are obviously fearful of this issue and desperately dodge it any time it rears its ugly head.
Rudy Gulinani’s Web Page features a short video of comments he made before a small, pro-gun group in NH, confirming the right of individual Americans to own and bear guns, as protected by the Second Amendment. At least, he came out and made a semi-clear statement on the subject, unlike other candidates who can find no place for the topic in their speeches, nor in their web pages. However, the DNC’s web page correctly points out that Gulinani, not long ago, was an outspoken, passionate proponent for national legislation that would have virtually eliminated the private ownership of guns by all Americans, and when Gulinani was mayor of NYC, it was (and still is) nearly impossible for any resident of that city (still Americans, last time I checked!) to even legally acquire, much less bear, any kind of gun. I, along with the DNC, am confused!
Mit Romney, while governor of MA, signed legislation that banned the previously-legal possession of murkily-defined “assault-weapons.” Yet, in a recent televised debate he characterized himself as a “supporter” of the Second Amendment. Curiously, on his web page, the subject is completely absent. Even in the “Ask-Mit-Anything” section, you only get to ask “pre-canned” questions, and, once again, neither gun-control in general, nor an explanation for his unprovoked attack upon the very weapons which are probably most protected by the Second Amendment, are on the list!
John McCain makes strong pro-Second Amendment statements under his “Issues” category. The “Issues” category of most other candidates is devoid of the topic. I love what he is currently saying, but, like Gulinani, this is an apparently recent “conversion.” In the past, his support for this issue has not matched his current bravado.
All Democrat candidates, Barak, Hillary, John, Joe , even Bill Richardson, are grotesquely mute on the subject! DNC’s web page had this to say about the subject in PA, although one really has to dig to find it: “With momentum for gun-control at a high level, this may be the best shot Democrats have at establishing gun-control in the state…” So, “establishing gun-control,” whatever that means, is obviously still a DNC goal, albeit currently one of which they are apparently embarrassed!
I fully realize that, during the election season, it will be all but impossible to get a straight answer out of any candidate. On this, and other dicey issues, all will predictably perform a clumsy tap dance and then quickly change the subject, avoiding plain English like the plague! Accordingly, at every opportunity, we need to hold their feet to the fire.
I still believe the best predictor of future behavior is past behavior. For one, I am extremely suspicions and skeptical of sudden “election-season-conversions,” of which nearly all candidates have been guilty, some more than others. When one finds sticking with one side of an issue to be an impossible burden, it is the sign of an unstable mind!
Walter Raleigh said it best:
“Say to the Court it glows,
and shines like rotten wood
Say to the Church it knows what’s good,
yet does no good
When Church and Court reply,
give them both the lie
Tell zeal is wants devotion
Tell love it is but lust
Tell time it is but motion
Tell flesh it is but dust
And beg them not reply
just give them all the lie”
3 Aug 07
News from SIG:
Friends at SIG tell me the new, domestically-manufactured P250 will be shipping in October. The 40S&W/357SIG version will be a thirteen-shooter (12+1, like the current 229). However, the 9mm version will be a seventeen-shooter (16+1), 226-capacity in a 229-sized-pistol! 9mm will go into production first, with 40S&W/357SIG to follow.
I’ll have a copy to test when the first batch, now made entirely in CONUS, becomes available, and I’ll report back.
3 Aug 07
More on the P250
“The P250 has a new trigger, neither DAK, nor DA/SA. It is a six-pound DAO (self-decocking). It is smoother than the DAK and is consistent from beginning to end. There is no stacking. The P250 is modular and simple. Easy to maintain at the user level, easy to keep running at the armorer level, the pistol only has 33 parts!”
Comment: With this new service pistol, SIG has obviously directly targeted LE and military markets. To these end-users, (1) ease of user-level maintenance, (2) ease of parts replacement (armorer level), (3) ease of training, (4) and ease of safe and efficient use are the big selling points.
Thus, consumers like chiefs of police and military units have no use for complicated, temperamental pistols that are difficult to train with, hard to keep running, and prone to NDs. Hence, (1) Manual decocking levers and manual safety levers are out. (2) Assiduous, tedious fitting of parts by a gunsmith is out. (3) Inconsistent triggers are out. (4) Arduous, complicated field-stripping and reassembly is out. (5) Tiny, fragile parts are out.
SIG deserves a lot of credit for fearlessly moving forward on these issues. The P250 will be a hot item when it arrives!
3 Aug 07
Near-incident, from an LEO student, who is a patrol sergeant with a large, rural SO:
“Late this afternoon, I responded to a complaint of an aggressive coyote. Residents reported that the animal was prowling their neighborhood and belligerently confronting homeowners. Upon arriving, I parked my beat car near a local railroad right-of-way, grabbed my Mossberg 590, and proceeded down the siding, figuring I would position myself where the coyote would likely be traveling. I instructed my partner to park in the same place and trace my path, coming up behind me.
Sure enough! I immediately spotted the coyote walking slowly down the siding and away from me. I shouldered the shotgun and brought the sights up onto the animal. Range was forty meters, and I was using Federal ‘Flight-Control’ 00 Buckshot. Well known for tight patterns, I calculated I could take out the coyote, and pellets that missed would expend themselves harmlessly downrange. I had a clear shot, or so I thought!
Just as I tightened up on the trigger, I noticed the coyote looking over his shoulder, not at me, but at something else. I hesitated. Suddenly, at about half the distance between the coyote and me, and on a direct line, my partner burst out of the bushes!
The coyote nonchalantly scampered away, never to be seen again! I lowered my muzzle, returned my finger to register, and took a breath! Partner smiled and waved at me, conspicuously unaware of what nearly happened!
When I confronted him, I related that I had nearly shot him, because he was nowhere near where he was supposed to be. He was surprised and began rationalizing about how he saw neither my beat car nor me, even though I had radioed my exact location a few minutes prior. I concluded the conversation with the admonition that we both needed to improve our communication skills, while we still can!
Lessons: Communication: Just when you explain something as directly and clearly as you think humanly possible, you will discover everyone who heard you hasn’t the foggiest idea of what the hell you’re talking about! One-sided communication is an assassin, and it nearly succeeded here!
Of course, absolute knowledge is impossible, but, to the greatest extend possible, KNOW YOUR TARGET, what is behind it, and what is between it and your muzzle. There is no such thing as ‘friendly fire!’
Target fixation: Common with hunters stalking game, target fixation will prevent you from noticing other important cues. For example, the coyote was looking at my partner the whole time. It was never aware of me. I couldn’t figure out why the animal kept looking over it’s shoulder in my direction, as I was down-wind and quiet. I should have put two-and-two together much sooner than I did. But, I was concentrating so hard upon my quarry, I failed to see other important clues.
No harm done, but important lessons learned!”
6 Aug 07
“The worm that destroys is the constant temptation to seek approval from your critics.”
NM Governor-turned-presidential-candidate, Bill Richardson, who spent considerable state funds building an NRA/Police Range in Albuquerque, all to win NRA’s endorsement, has, thus far, been the only ostensibly pro-Second-Amendment candidate on the Democratic side. In fact, when campaigning for NM governor, Bill was a constant champion of gun shows and gun-show sales of firearms.
Not any more! Now, groveling at the feet of the DNC, Bill has suddenly done an about-face and announced that “we have to close the gun-show loophole,” meaning that gun shows, indeed all gatherings of gun owners, formal and informal, need to prohibited by law.
As probably could have been predicted, Bill has knuckled under to demands of the DNC and, of course, as president would do the same. A bright light has fizzled, sputtered, and gone out!
“In a state of tranquillity, wealth, and luxury, our descendants will forget the Art of War and the noble zeal which made their ancestors invincible. Every corruption will be employed to loosen the bond of union which renders our resistance formidable. When the spirit of liberty, which now animates our hearts and gives success to our arms, is extinct, our numbers will accelerate our ruin and render us easy victims to tyranny.”
6 Aug 07
Today, I handled a new Walther PPS pistol in 9mm. Imagine a G26 that is VERY thin! The PPS is a 9mm, polymer-frame 9-shooter (8+1), designed for concealed carry. Trigger is similar to Glock’s, including a trigger-tab/safety. The pistol is self-dococking (DAO), with a crisp and short reset. No manual safety (which would be a silly redundancy).
The ambidextrous magazine-release “lever” is incorporated into the bottom of the trigger-guard. I’m not sure if Walther’s engineers just wanted to be different, or if they really see an advantage here, but I found the lever difficult to use and would prefer a conventional button.
The PPS retails for $560.00, which puts it in direct competition with any number of other high-quality concealment pistols, like the G26, Kahr-9, SIG 239, S&W M&P Compact, et al.
I really like the pistol’s flatness. I believe it will lend itself to comfortable carry in IWB holsters.
6 Aug 07
LaserMax is currently marketing an extremely small laser unit and attached pressure switch that is designed to quickly attach to rifles via a rail. I have a copy, and I’ve put it on my RA/XCR.
What attracted me to this unit was its small size and the ability to attach it securely and conveniently via a rail. Yes, I know I’ve been a fan of neither rifle rails nor lasers in the past, but I may have been wrong!
I’ll have an opportunity to use this slick LaserMax unit over the next few months. It adds almost no bulk to the rifle and, I may find it useful. It surely is bright and difficult to miss!
LaserMax is an innovative outfit, and they deserve a lot of credit for this innovative product, which they have brought forth in the face of skeptical comments from old guys, like me. I may be compelled to change my mind!
6 Aug 07
Jensen’s has a copy of the new Masada Rifle, produced by Mag-Pul of Boulder, CO. I got a chance to handle it today. It is a gas-piston 223, but 6.8mm, 7.62X39, and 308 versions are planned for the same platform. It features a folding stock, with adjustable length and adjustable rise (for when you mount optics on the top rail and need to raise your cheek weld).
The unit is smooth and snag-free, uses M-16 magazines, and comes in a tan color. First units are supposed to hit the market in early 2008. I’m sure I’ll see them again at January’s SHOT Show in Las Vegas. This rifle is designed to compete with other premium, light, military rifles, like Robinson Arm’s XCR and SIG’s 556.
On the subject of optics, many have asked where they can get their hands on Aimpoint’s new Micro T/1. Jensen’s now has them in stock, along with EOTech and a host of others! Call them at 970 663 5994.
6 Aug 07
“Protest” at DSA in Lake Barrington, IL
The Jackson crowd has been conducting protests at several gun dealers in upstate IL recently, and getting arrested in the process. On 28 Aug 07 (Tues), they plan a protest at DSA’s facility in Lake Barrington, IL.
Of course, protestors will be outnumbered by frenzied media people who will stick a microphone into Jessie’s face every time he clears his throat! They’ll display scant interest in interviewing anyone else.
DSA makes a wonderful product that many of us stake our lives on routinely. They supply rifles and accessories to police departments throughout IL and the entire nation. DSA rifles are on patrol every day.
My friends at DSA will courageously face these bussed-in protestors. They will offer no excuses nor rationalizations for being good citizens and honest businessmen, although they probably won’t be heard, nor even noticed, on the evening news.
All of us, along with DSA, need to stand up to these bullies. We need not apologize for exercising our rights as Americans. Cowering before bullies, as S&W did several years back, never has a good result. You may as well bleed in front of sharks!
“You probably have some habit or practice that I would find disgusting. If your actions do not affect me, I will leave you in peace, especially when I know as little about the subject as you obviously do about firearms. I ask of you the same courtesy. I have owned and carried firearms my entire life. I neither owe nor offer an apology. In addition, I resent being beaten (by the likes of you) with the same stick with which real criminals should be beaten, and are not.”
11 Aug 07
Hoot & Shoot, First Day:
Just completed the first day of my friend and colleague, Evan Marshal’s, Hoot and Shoot Event at his ultra-modern, indoor pistol/rifle range in Midland, MI. Evan has been running his range for several years, and the H&S Event is a way to get a number of instructors and operators together for an annual, small-arms clinic.
Evan lectured us on the deepening War on Terror and on the importance of being constantly armed. He demonstrated a number of concealment options, particularly for second guns.
Ed Lovett and I did a Rifle/Pistol Course, where students transitioned from rifle to pistol, then back to rifle. We also instructed students how to perform brain-stem shots with a rifle, at close range.
Ed than went on to teach a Class on the use of the snubby revolver, and I did a Class on Retention and Disarms.
Mike Shovel was on hand to conduct one of his famous a live-fire, ballistic demonstrations. We fired a number of different brands of pistol ammunition into gelatin blocks, along with 223 and 30 M1 Carbine. All rounds had to penetrate four layers of denim before entering gelatin. Not surprisingly, DPX expanded the most consistently, fundamentally unaffected by the denim. The denim curtailed expansion with conventional, lead-core/brass-jacket bullets.
Ed Lovett did a contact demonstration on gelatin with a snubby revolver. Then, he performed the same test with the muzzle several inches out of contact. The difference was amazing! When in contact, high-pressure gas is blasted into the temporary wound cavity, greatly exasperating tissue destruction. Damage from the contact wound was nearly twice that from the out-of-contact wound. A strong argument for shooting from contact, particularly with a snubby revolver (when one finds himself in a position to do it)
I demonstrated a similar contact shot with my Detonics 45ACP 1911 and 180gr DPX (my carry round). Damage was again extensive, but rebound from the gelatin prevented the slide from completing its cycle. So, the technique has its risks with autoloaders.
Tomorrow is the last day. More later.
12 Aug 07
Hoot & Shoot, Second Day!
Today, we shot a lot of gelatin! We had many gelatin blocks left over from yesterday, and we shot every one of them. All shots (with the exception of contacts) were fired at a range of eight feet.
WW Silvertip (now employing the old, Black-Talon technology) in 40S&W performed nearly as well as Cor-Bon DPX, uniformly expanding in gelatin, after penetrating four layers of denim. Penetration and uniform expansion were consistent at twelve inches. Likewise with 9mm Federal BPLE +P and Cor-Bon PowerBall. All three are excellent rounds!
From a five-inch 1911 (45ACP), hardball penetrated twenty-four inches of gelatin and squinted out the other side! Long, uniform wound channel, but scant tissue destruction outside the wound channel itself.
12ga, Foster slugs also easily penetrated twenty-four inches of gelatin. Through-and-through!
Nine-pellet, 00 Buckshot spread out at between six and thirteen inches of penetration. Extreme destruction of tissue. An authoritative fight-ender!
I fired several rounds at contact distance with my S&W M&P Pistol (40 S&W, w/140gr DPX). I actually buried the muzzle into the denim as far as I could without pushing the slide out of battery. I fired four, quick shots. Amazing destruction! Jets of hot, expanding gas blew into the temporary cavity right behind the bullet, producing colossal shear fractures in every direction. Shards of denim were carried as far as ten inches into the wound channel. The pistol’s muzzle and an inch of slide ended up coated with a heavy film of liquid gelatin. There is surely something to be said in favor of contact shooting with a pistol, even an autoloader!
As always, DPX bullets penetrated thirteen inches, expanded completely, and all came to a stop within an inch of each other.
We also fired several Glaser Safety Slugs into gelatin. Penetration was limited to five inches. One can clearly see small, lead shot blown into, and suspended in, gelatin, but it is difficult to say how destructive the impact really is. In any event, penetration is grossly inadequate, in my opinion.
I don’t like bullets that break up, inadvertently or by design! Little pieces or big pieces, makes no difference! I believe, for maximum terminal effect, bullets need to penetrate adequately, expand consistently, and, most important, remain in one piece during their entire propagation through tissue, not shedding any pieces at all..
I’m looking forward to next year’s event. Our sincere thanks to Evan Marshall a giant in our Art, and his Crew, for this opportunity.
14 Aug 07
The situation in Brazil, from a friend working there:
“Violent crime here is out of control! My company is concerned mostly with car-jackings and ‘virtual kidnappings,’ where VCAs force you off the road, commandeer you and your car at gunpoint, and then force you to a local ATM where you withdraw all the cash you can. As soon as they have cash in hand, most victims are murdered anyway. No witnesses that way. The moment you give them what they want, you’re dead!
And, as one might expect, Brazil’s gun laws are extremely restrictive. Only politicians and bureaucrats are allowed to be adequately armed. For peons, permits-to-purchase take months, sometimes years, to obtain. When one can find guns for sale legally, selection is skimpy. Ammunition is also difficult to come by, so training people adequately is impossible. Interestingly, obtaining guns illegally is easy and inexpensive. East-European Kalashnikovs are for sale everywhere for less than $100.00. As is the case in South Africa, most VCAs show up with AKs, rather than pistols!
CCW permits are impossible for all but the politically connected. Who don’t ‘know someone,’ have no chance (much like NYC and CA, eh?).
My favorite international travel question, which I ask of all our local security teams: ‘With what type of firearm might I want to be familiar? And, where might I find a copy in your vehicle?’
Comment: “Victims,” and lots of them, keep nanny-state politicians and bureaucrats in business and in their cushy jobs. Their utter lack of concern for innocent human life is indeed something to behold!
Restrictive guns laws, as described in the foregoing, are designed solely to manufacture victims. They have no other purpose. “The more crime you have, the more government you need.” It is a formula not lost upon the politically astute and morally debased. In politics, the two go together!
In the interim, we have to look for ways around stupid restrictions, which are, after all, designed only to discourage VBCs and the rest of the unimaginative. There are only two kinds of people in this world: Those who are going somewhere, and those who are going nowhere!
14 Aug 07
More on Brazil, from another friend:
“Having been in Brazil many times, I assure you the kidnapping situation you described is absolutely true. All people we met there had a similar story from someone in their family. Stop at a light, and, before you know it, there is a gun at your head and you’re heading to an ATM, and likely enjoying the last few minutes of your life.
Worse yet, this anarchy is not confined to Brazil. Friends in Ecuador, Guatemala, and Mexico are experiencing the same thing. Columbians have elevated it to an art form! When they kidnap someone, they have computers on-hand to do transactions from credit cards immediately. They make ransom demands of all of the person’s family and friends and clean them out. It happens so fast, the trail is cold by the time authorities become involved.”
Comment: As the USA continues down the slippery slope toward third-world status, owing to our federal government’s conscious decision not to enforce immigration laws, this kind of violent crime will become as common here as it is down south. The kidnapping/hostage/murder of the physician’s family in CT is a sign of things to come. VCAs, including hoards of illegal aliens, who have no reason to fear local authorities, will soon realize (1) how easy and lucrative this crime is, (2) how unlikely it is they’ll ever get caught, and (3) how little is likely to happen to them even when they are!
Once again, we’re all going to have to decide for ourselves if we want to be live Operators, or dead VBCs, and prepare accordingly. You’re on your own!
15 Aug 07
A student comments on ammunition for light, compact pistols:
“I carry a G36 (single column, 45ACP). I shot it at our last Class, and I used different brands of ammunition as the Course progressed.
Full-power, Federal 230 gr hardball worked fine. Less powerful CCI Blazer did not work nearly as well, as a consistently tight grip was required to prevent failures to extract. Cor-Bon DPX 165gr (the “Compact-Gun” load) and Cor-Bon PowerBall cycled the slide with great authority, enough so that I could relax my grip and still depend on the pistol cycling normally.
I could materially feel the effect of having to hold the gun very tight in order to persuade wimpy loads to cycle through the pistol. It is actually more tiring having to consistently put a white-knuckle grip on the gun than feeling sharp recoil. However, the sharper the recoil, the more tendinitis develops in my strong-side elbow.
In the end, it is my recommendation carrying and practicing with full-power loads, particularly with a compact pistol. With heavy use, you’ll need a band-aid or two for abrasions on your hand, but its better than inveterate grip fatigue from shooting low-power ammunition, along with the chronic anxiety that inexorably attaches to an unreliable gun!”
Comment: When tendinitis rears its ugly head more than occasionally, you may be compelled to abandon your compact pistols in 45ACP, 45GAP, and 40S&W in favor of one in 9mm or even 357SIG. At the end of the day, you’ll need something you can live with: something that you can (1) fit into your life, (2) that works reliably, but (3) doesn’t beat you to death!
16 Aug 07
Comment on knives in the UK:
European news media is currently obsessing on “knife-crime” in the UK and other parts of Western Europe. News stories, parroting requiem Marxist dogma, slavishly lament the way violent crime is on the increase, much of it now involving knives, not guns. And, of course, there is the predictable call for all cutting instruments to be banned from private ownership. Steak-lovers are the UK’s newest endangered species! Dining-room cutlery now faces proscription.
In response, nervous UK parents are rushing to equip their children with expensive, Kevlar-lined, “stab-resistant” school uniforms, which are selling briskly!
As in this country, crime-loving politicians piously wring their hands and endlessly engage in self-righteous pontificating, all the while quietly arming themselves and sending their own children, along with heavily-armed bodyguard contingents, to expensive, private schools. As they all but reward violent criminals, they ruthlessly seek to punish (via forced disarmament) good and decent people, who don’t commit crimes. You can count on it. They know no other Course!
The one vice which predictably unites these arrogant neo-Bolsheviks, both here and there, is abject, shameless hypocrisy!
20 Aug 07
The venerable M1 Carbine!
This from a student:
“I dug out an old, Underwood M1 Carbine for a shooting get-together last weekend. When I acquired this gun from the widow of a WWII Veteran years ago, it was filthy, and all I did with it at the time was stash it away and forget about it. The bore was full of grime, and the action was rusty, gritty, and difficult to cycle. After digging it out, I hurriedly gave it the once-over, exposing it to the first lubricant it had seen in, I’m sure, in sixty years!
When I inherited this rifle, I also inherited several thousand rounds of old, badly corroded foreign-manufactured ammunition. Box labels were not printed in any language I recognized. Many rounds were coated in green slime, and some were nearly all black.
I thought I could use the piece as an historical artifact as I talked with young shooters about WWII. I figured I may even get it to function, at least for a round or two.
Well, one-thousand rounds later, with no additional lubrication nor maintenance, and without so much as a single hiccup, the Underwood Carbine was still running just fine, every bit as well as it did in 1942! While no target rifle, at fifty meters it was effortlessly shooting four-inch groups, even with garbage ammunition. Everyone wanted to shoot it!
In any event, I’m sending it off to Colby Adler for a complete overhaul and then off to Robbie Barrkman for the ROBAR treatment, after which it will assume the title of my official “car-gun.” From then on, I’ll be feeding it Cor-Bon DPX. This little rifle has surely earned my respect!”
Comment: Mine too! Kahr and Fulton Armory are both currently making new-production copies of this venerable warrior, but even the old ones are remarkably durable, as we see!
Friend, and firearms historian, Steve Wenger adds:
“Ironically, firms that had not manufactured firearms before the War turned out the best product. Conversely, Winchester Carbines, highly prized by unsophisticated collectors, were never given high marks for quality.”
Short, light, with mild recoil and low muzzle blast, the M1 Carbine is a 100-meter rifle. However, within that range, particularly with DPX ammunition, it is deadly, and a good penetrator. One can do a lot worse!
20 Apr 07
We need to take John Boyd’s advice! This from a friend in new Orleans:
“I’m nearing a merciful end to a month-long stint of jury duty here in our local Criminal District Court. Today’s accused is being held on multiple, first-degree murder charges. New Orleans still proudly claims the title of ‘USA’s Murder Capitol!’
As I sat, patiently awaiting my turn to be examined, I noticed three sheriff’s deputies, all female, all unarmed, surrounding the defendant’s table. Holsters were obviously empty, and none had a Taser, OC, nor even a baton!
The judge wanted nothing in his courtroom that even remotely resembled a weapon, in spite of the conspicuous danger. He doesn’t trust anyone with a gun, even (apparently) himself!”
Comment: In this age of institutionalized insanity, where judges like this one would rather be murdered than admit they’re wrong (and have every other unarmed person in the courtroom murdered as well) we all need reminding of what John Boyd taught us years ago.
With his OODA-Loop model, Boyd reminds us “Reality always trumps expectation.” When there is a conflict between observed reality and your personal map, the problem is with your map, not with reality! Put another way, “Reality is always right!” The trouble with the self-righteous and power-mad (like this judge) is that they are way too proud of their map. Indeed his map is more important to him than is his very life. Because his arrogance is so absolute, death is preferable to repentance!
An inability to repent is a pivotal character flaw, a deadly handicap. Who cannot repent, in effect, says he has never learned anything in his entire life! All true learning involves the pain of repentance. Enlightened seekers of truth accept its inevitability. The arrogant prefer denial, error, and darkness!
22 Aug 07
On contact wounds, from a student who is an ER/trauma surgeon:
“What timing! Your recent Quip discussed the impressive consequences of contact pistol shots into gelatin (w/denim layers). Earlier this week, I personally observed and treated, first hand, the results of such a contact pistol discharge into a living, human thigh.
The wound was accidental and self-inflicted. An unsupervised, clueless, thirteen-year-old boy was handling his uncle’s G23 (loaded w/hardball ammunition). The magazine had been removed, and idiot, of course, assumed the pistol was thus unloaded. For reasons known only to him, the boy pressed the pistol’s muzzle into his upper, inner, left leg, and then pressed the trigger. The FMJ bullet entered four inches below the inner groin and exited on the opposite side of the thigh. The boy indicated that he was exceedingly surprised when pistol thus functioned normally!
After exiting, the bullet struck soft earth and was not recovered. No one else was hurt. As I worked on him, I advised that pointing guns as himself, loaded or unloaded, was probably a habit he needed to lose, if he planned on anything other than a short and unhappy rest of his life!
I work on many GSWs here in the ER, and it is my experience that non-contact, pistol wounds typically produce a small, symmetrical entry wound, and a larger, always asymmetrical, exit wound, when, as in this case, the bullet goes through-and-through.
However, as surgery proceeded for this case, I noted the entry wound was gaping and cavernous, with six-inch, stellate spears radiating from the center. Extensive powder smudging and stippling, along with burned skin edges were noted, also copious disruption/destruction of underlying fat and muscle tissue. Indeed, tissue destruction was far in excess of what is typical for through-and-through, pistol wounds!
The bullet itself nicked the femur and missed the femoral artery! However, the boy (now older and hopefully, at least, slightly wiser), while he will suffer permanent disfigurement and maybe a limp due to abundant, and irrecoverable, destruction of his leg tissues, will live through this one.”
Comment: While, I’m still not at all sure of the extent to which ordnance-gelatin simulates living, human tissue, the differences we observe in gelatin tests, between contact and non-contact pistol wounds, is surely corroborated with this one example.
Pressing your pistol’s muzzle into the body of an attacker prior to firing is a risky maneuver from the standpoint of weapon retention. In effect, you’re handing him your gun! However, when you’re literally wrestling with him anyway, arranging for a contact wound may indeed be a good idea, as I think it safe to say you’re at least doubling the amount of tissue destruction inflicted by each round so fired, a particularly significant consideration when you’re carrying a snubby revolver!
23 Aug 07
More on the subject. This is from a fellow Training Officer with a large PD:
“Two of our patrol officers were just involved (Tuesday) in what was nearly a lethal fight with a robbery suspect in, of all places, a fast-food restaurant bathroom!
Our officer was in foot-pursuit of a single, bank-robbery suspect. The suspect had at least one pistol with him that he had used to threaten bank employees. He ran into a local fast-food restaurant and hid in the restroom. Our fleet-footed officer was right on top of him. When he made physical contact, the suspect stuck his pistol in the officer’s stomach. However, our officer responded instantly by grabbing the suspect’s gun and prevented it from pointing at him. The suspect’s pistol never discharged.
The suspect, large and muscular, bit and fought, trying his best to get back control of his pistol, but was unable to. Our officer was more than a match for him, but both the officer’s hands were occupied, and he was unable to get to his own pistol.
A second officer entered bathroom moments behind the first. Seeing what was going on, he jammed his own service pistol (G22) into the side of the suspect’s head and immediately attempted to fire. The pistol did not fire, because the slide was pushed out of battery far enough to engage the disconnector. The astonished officer, not understanding why his pistol would not fire, abandoned efforts to shoot the suspect, and, using his pistol as a club, savagely beat the suspect’s head until the suspect, by then pleading for the beating to stop, relinquished control of his own pistol and surrendered.
The suspect was taken into custody without further resistance. He suffered several cuts but no serious injury. Our officers are okay, but shaken-up, as you might imagine!
Both these officers have been on the job for less than two years. During my investigation, I apologized to both that, during their academy training, they were apparently never told that their Glock pistols would not fire with the slide out of battery. Indeed, the subject of contact-shooting was scarcely addressed at all. The Academy curriculum is currently being updated/corrected with regard to that.
However, neither officer carried a serious blade nor a back-up pistol, despite the fact that their academy training did extensively address those subjects. I instructed both to get serious blades and back-up guns into their lives straightaway, before something like this happens to them again!”
Comment: We have a grossly inadequate amount of time to train young police officers, and lethal-force training, it seems, is always least important in the eyes of many academy administrators, training administrators, and chiefs of police. For example, in the case of these two officers, the subject of contact-shooting was never even mentioned. The omission nearly cost them their lives!
Had the second officer’s pistol discharged into the suspect’s cranium when he intended for it to, the fight would have almost certainly ended instantly. However, as mentioned in recent Quips, when attempting contact shots using an autoloading pistol, there is always the danger (as in the above case) that the slide will be pushed out of battery, preventing the pistol from firing at all. And, even when the pistol does discharge as planned, there is the danger that bone chips, particles of skin and other bodily tissues, and blood will be blasted into the pistol, preventing it from firing a second shot.
There are several methods for addressing these issues, from physically holding the slide forward with the support-side hand as the trigger is pressed, to withdrawing the pistol, performing a tap-rack-resume, and immediately attempting to fire again, to posthaste transitioning to a back-up revolver and re-performing the contact shot.
All are valid. None are perfect. This issue is one with which Operators need to be familiar, and which academies need to teach, along with knife-fighting and other fight-winning, life-saving skills!
24 Aug 07
Why am I always armed? Why do I train continuously?
This from a friend who works in a prison:
“Today, I had an opportunity to hear stories from several violent offenders, straight from their own lips. All were in excellent physical shape and would (and do!) put up a serious fight in any situation. I know few people could prevail against them with only bare hands. When there is more than one, any one of us would be in serious danger. Put any one of them into regular clothing, and they would blend right in most anywhere.
One inmate revealed the reason he was in the prison was multiple murders. He got high on meth one evening and decided to break into a home. He tied up the terrified (an unarmed) husband and wife, then decided to murder them. With a pocket knife, he sawed on a woman’s neck until he had cut her head off. Before he himself was similarly murdered, her husband heard every one of her screams and gurgles!
He took the victims’ car and headed out of state. On the way, he ran out of gas, so he stopped another car, murdered the unarmed driver (again with a pocket knife), and took that car.
He continued to meet and randomly murder assorted victims, all unarmed, over the next week, seven in three states. Finally, he returned home, married his girlfriend, and became a father! Using DNA analysis, detectives secured a warrant for his arrest two years later.
This is just one prison story, and by no means the worst! This institution alone is chock-full of them.”
Comment: Next time someone asks you why you go armed, tell him this story!
28 Aug 07
We just completed a Concealed-Carry-Pistol Class in MN. Several years ago, MN was extremely restrictive, much as WI and IL are today. It was impossible for state residents to carry concealed legally. Today, the State has one of the best and least restrictive CCW systems in the nation. CCW permits may be obtained by any legal resident who has no criminal history, and there are few limitations.
The intrepid authors of this pivotal legislation were students in my class! They reported this historic CCW statute, that MN residents now take for granted, would never have passed at state level without open and unapologetically enthusiastic support from a number of pro-gun, Democratic state senators and representatives. These courageous Democrats openly broke with the DNC and the state Democratic Committee, who, of course, had (and continue to have) a predictable, knee-jerk opposition to any and all pro-gun legislation.
So, there are indeed audacious, pro-gun Democrats, and they need encouragement!
The 2008 Democratic presidential nominee will almost certainly be Hillary Clinton, and I hope some politicians, like the ones described above, can get to her and explain that, on the brink of victory, she is going to lose this election, and frightened gun-owners voting, not for her Republican opponent, but AGAINST her, on this critical issue, will be the proximate cause!
I’m saying this, mostly to my Democratic friends, of whom I have many. The Party needs to rethink its foolish, self-crippling stance on this issue before it costs them yet another election. Americans today are in no mood to be told they are too stupid to own, and carry, guns!
Both leading Republican contenders have anti-gun backgrounds, and American gun-owners are warming up to neither. Democrats have an decisive opportunity, if they can only get over their blind, unthinking allegiance to hatred and fear of guns and gun-owners.
Any Democrats listening?
29 Aug 07
I was today sent a photo of a young lad in the UK. He was posing with a Thompson Submachine Gun (actually a deactivated model). The lad’s trigger finger is solidly in the “register” position, not wrapped about the trigger as one might expect from an American-television-watching, clueless, modern youth.
As it turns out, this lad is a nephew of one of our UK students who comes over to CONUS every year to train with us. Although I’ve never personally worked with this lad, his uncle has, and, while never actually having fired a shot from a functional gun, the kid already has a solid foundation in correct gun handling!
It is exciting indeed to contemplate that we have positively influenced aspiring warriors, even ones we’ve never met. This lad, along with others his age, using skills gleaned from us, may be called upon to defend the Empire one day, maybe a lot sooner than anyone thinks!
The body of knowledge and skills that we teach resides in a Priesthood that exists both in and out of the military, in and out of law-enforcement. It has been gradually acquired and refined over many years, and at great price! As modern-day Operators, it is our privilege to both live it and teach it. So great an honor is at once our joy and duty!
“The pervasive expansiveness of the (Roman) Empire which we see today did not come about as a result of accident or precipitous good fortune. These Legionaries do not sit around congratulating themselves in the wake of every victory, nor are they idle in peacetime. Rather, they are constantly training and refining their warrior skills, so as to be ready at a moment’s notice. Indeed, they seem to have been born with weapons in their hands!”
Josephus Flavius, 90AD
“The stone soldier grows younger and slimmer each year! Forever-nineteen, he casually holds his rifle and perpetually muses through unkempt hair, cascading down his forehead.”
31 Aug 07
Protest at DSA in IL:
The much-vaunted, press-ballyhooed “protest,” at DSA in Lake Barrington, IL, last Tuesday, organized by the Jackson crowd, and personally attended by Jesse himself, was a flop!
Only a couple dozen protestors actually showed up, after “thousands” had been confidently predicted.
Scraggly, bussed-in, “protestors” were all dirty, tired, bored, and blatantly disinterested. Few stuck around long. The “event” wasn’t even carried on national news. It barely even made the local news! Jackson’s rambling, mumbling speech was disorganized and confused. Several times, he lost his train of thought, finding it difficult to so much as put together a single, coherent, English sentence. He was greeted mostly by yawns and apathetic looks.
So embarrassing was this washout of a protest, it has apparently already become part of Jackson’s repressed memories, as the whole event is conspicuously absent from his Web Page.
The blazing failure of this protest was due to the pervasive non-credibility of the Jackson organization itself (which is old news) and indeed the non-credibility of the entire “gun-control” issue. Americans have waxed weary of all the stale, predictable, intelligence-insulting, endlessly recycled lies about guns and gun-ownership, which have shown themselves to be false time and time again.
More than anything else, Americans want the ability to control their own lives, which includes the ability to effectively, and unilaterally, fight off violent criminals. It’s in our blood, and, to us, all that soothing, leftist rhetoric will continue to sound hollow, tinny, and fundamentally unpersuasive, no matter from whose lips it issues!