Friday, December 1, 2017

CWP, 1 December 2017 Anno Domini

Greetings Sheepdogs,

***** Mindset *****

-- Dr. Sherman House

Please read the section under "Graphic Content" in this
month's issue of the Rangemater newsletter,
     This is reality. 
     A couple nights ago my downstairs neighbor called me to help her,
as some one was pounding on her doors and windows.  I got home in about
15 minutes.  She had also called the police, before calling me. 
The Metro Nashville Police hadn't shown up.  She left to stay at a
friend's house.  I waited for the police.  The police never showed up. 

What Really Happens In A Gunfight?

Slaughter of the Disarmed

     Self defense is combat. (Whether you believe
it or not.)  Combat training is dangerous.  If
the training is not dangerous, it is not realistic
combat training.  (Sorry, but that's just true.)
In the Marine Corps, Marines sometimes get injured
and sometimes die in training.  Because it is real. 
So, if you attend a gun school that brags about zero
injuries in the history of their school, you can
rest assured that they either don't do combat training
or they only formed recently.
     If you make peanut butter at home in small
batches, you can maintain zero rat feces in your
peanut butter.  But, if you mass produce peanut
butter, it is impossible to have zero rat feces
in your product.  So, the FDA has standards for
acceptable levels of rat feces in peanut butter. 
If the inspectors test and find the product is
within standards, it is sold for human consumption. 
If not, it is labeled "Not for human consumption"
and sold.  Similarly, any large gun school will
have a certain percentage of incompetents attending. 
Screening for criminal background, as some do,
will not prevent the incompetent from attending. 
So, you get people shooting themselves while
holstering and sometimes worse than that. 
How can you avoid that situation? 
Attend small classes.  Many instructors limit their
classes to 5 persons or less.  Such instructors
are worth finding.  All of the NRA classes that
I have taken have had 5 students or less; in some
I was the only student.

     Any conflict (a gunfight, a divorce, etc.)
should be as short as you can make it.  The
shorter it is, the less hurt you get.  What
happens to the other person is incidental. 
Because your goal is to avoid getting hurt.
     If your goal is to wreak revenge or to mete
out punish, YOU ARE WRONG!  Jesus commanded you
to forgive, to free you from the mental entanglement. 
Not, to be nice to the other person.  God is
not going to be nice to that bad guy.  God is
going to put that bad guy in hell for eternity.
     You forgive the pedophile, but you don't
let him work in the Sunday school nursery. 
Similarly, you forgive your attacker, but you
still shoot him until he stops his attack.
     Forgiveness is not pacifism.  Pacifists
are not practicing Christian theology. 
They're just stupid.

A New Record!
"That nation is surest to live in peace,
that is most capable of making war;
and a man with a sword always by his side,
shall have least occasion to make use of it."
-- John Trenchard

It is our honor and privilege to advance our Art,
and teach it to the worthy, aware, and audacious
who know and understand that victory is the only
reality in the universe!

***** Training *****

13 Common Concealed Carry Mistakes (And How to Avoid Them)

2 simple drills that will make you a better shooter

"Are You Really Ready?"
After almost 28 hours of training with shotgun and
pistol, I can most definitely tell you that I am
nowhere near as prepared as I thought I would be. 

Review of Rangemaster shotgun class

What to Look for in a Firearms Trainer

***** Tactics *****

How to protect yourself during a mass shooting

How to Clear Corners in a Home-Defense Scenario

***** Techniques *****

Head Position: A Misunderstood Basic

History of "Shoot To Reset"

This is why you must carry with a round in the chamber.

***** Gear *****

Shooting Sports USA recommends
5 Great Action Pistols Under $700
starting on page 14.

What Some Clueful Instructors Carry as a Defensive Firearm

10 Essential Criteria for Selecting Your Concealed Carry Holster

5 Best Tactical Flashlights Under $100 [2017]

"Everything there is to know about handheld tactical lights"
(Well, at least everything I’ve come to believe about them. 
In regards to civilian defensive firearms and self-defense.)

     Be careful thinking that because some law enforcement agency or
military unit bought it in large quantities, it must be good,
because they surely know what they are doing.  This is in general false. 
Government agencies are required by law to give the contract to the
lowest bidder.  There is rampant corruption in the government procurement
systems.  (hundreds of Navy Admirals are presently under investigation for
corruption).  The U.S. Army has purchased hundreds of thousands of the
Blackhawk SERPA holsters.  Even though they knew that the
Federal Law Enforcement Training Centers (FLETC) and the U.S. Interior
Department have forbidden these holsters.  Because, continuation of
the motion to release the pistol will fire the pistol; small rocks
or snow can get into the release mechanism preventing the pistol from
being released; inserting the pistol into the holster backwards (which
is the technique taught at FLETC for support hand only presentation)
will cause the pistol (usually a Glock) to get stuck in the holster.

***** Instructors *****

As instructors, we have a grave responsibility

     It's worth your time to go into the gun stores and dry fire and disassemble
and play with all the pistol you can.  So, that when a student attends your
class with some strange pistol, it's okay, because you've handled it before
in the gun store.

***** Pedagogy *****

***** Education *****

The Dump Pouch (Training Blog)

Wound Ballistics -- Practical Issues
     Dr. Williams suggests actually killing a hog. 
Especially if you've never killed anything.  Yes,
he acknowledges that this will be difficult for
city folk. 

***** News, Legal, and Political stuff *****

Chris Cox of the NRA-ILA Speaks with James Yeager
     Legislative realities are ugly.  Because
democracy is ugly.  Because humans are ugly.

If The Supreme Court Takes This Gun Control Case,
Its Decision Will Be Huge

The Marine Corps Now Has Its Own FBI-Approved Concealed Carry Glock

The Wolf and the Lamb (Aesop's Fables)
     A WOLF, meeting with a Lamb astray from the fold,
resolved not to lay violent hands on him, but to
find some plea to justify to the Lamb the Wolf’s
right to eat him. He thus addressed him:
     “Sirrah, last year you grossly insulted me.”
     “Indeed,” bleated the Lamb in a mournful tone of
voice, “I was not then born.”
     Then said the Wolf,
“You feed in my pasture.”
     “No, good sir,” replied the Lamb,
“I have not yet tasted grass.”
     Again said the Wolf, “You drink of my well.”
     “No,” exclaimed the Lamb, “I never yet drank water,
for as yet my mother’s milk is both food and drink to me.”
     Upon which the Wolf seized him and ate him up,
saying, “Well! I won’t remain supperless, even though
you refute every one of my imputations.” 
     The tyrant will always find a pretext for his tyranny.
[Translated by George Fyler Townsend.
Aesop's Fables (p. 15). Amazon Digital Services, Inc.]

Gunmaker Remington faces default as Americans buy fewer firearms
     Blaming Remington's failure on the consumers is
non-sense.  Any corporate failure is due to mismanagement
at the executive level.

***** Survival Tips *****

     Ken Alexandrow of Agape Tactical
spoke to the Tennessee Firearms Association monthly
meeting last night, 11/21/17, at the Golden Corral in
Nashville, TN.  I paraphrase --
Concerning Church Security
     No one rises to the occasion.  That's just a myth. 
They sink to the level of training that they have mastered.
     What does the bad guy fear?  Not death, because he
plans to die (to get his 72 virgins) or thinks he can get
away without dying.  The bad guy's greatest fear is
mission failure.  So, if you make him believe that he will
fail at your venue, he will leave and go to another venue.
     For church security (or generally for security of your
organization) you need to implement:
     Deterrence - The South Carolina mass murderer went
to the College of Charleston, but left when he saw the
armed security guards.  He then went to several churches,
but left each one because a greeter approached him in the
parking lot to greet him.  (He had many racist and white
supremacist bumper stickers on his pick up truck.) 
Anything bad that happens in your church has to come
through your parking lot.  So, that is where you must
intercept it.  Finally, he went to the Emmanuel AME
church which he knew was a gun free zone, because the
pastor had publicly declared his church to be so. 
No one greeted him in the parking lot.  So, he walked in.
[When I was working with the Dowelltown United Methodist
Church, I put up posters all over the area inviting
people to our Defensive Pistol classes and advertised
widely to ensure it was common knowledge that DUMC
was not a gun free zone. - Jon Low]  Don't post signs
indicating that your church is a gun free zone.  That's
just telling criminals that it is safe to prey on
unarmed victims here.  If you're afraid of scaring
off liberals, adopt a don't ask don't tell policy. 
Make sure your security team knows who in the
congregation is armed.  If someone not on the security
team is armed in church, explain to them that we have
a security team.  So, please let the security team
deal with the situation.  If you present a weapon, the
security team might think you are the bad guy. 
(Ken was speaking in the context of mega-churches
where you don't recognize everyone.)
     Detection - There is nothing racist about
profiling criminals.  Shake the prerson's hand. 
Maintain your grip.  Don't let go of his hand. 
With your left hand feel his waist area.
(87% of the American population is right handed and
so will carry weapons on the right side waist line.)
If you feel a gun there, maintain a grip on his right
hand and ask him about the gun. 
     Denial - If you are not happy with his answer,
ask him to leave.  Your church is a private business. 
You can deny service to anyone for any reason. 
If he won't leave, call the police and ask the police
to arrest him for trespassing. 
No, you don't have to post "No Trespassing" signs. 
Just call the police.  The police will arrest him.
     Once the bad guy is in your building, it's
too late, you're screwed.  You're now going to have
a fire fight with a high body count.  Unless someone
immediately stops the attack.
     The only thing that can stop a bad guy with a
gun is a good guy with a gun.  If the good guy is
competent.  Which means training and practice.
     Nothing in the Bible says you have to bow your
head and close your eyes when praying.  The members
of the Emmanuel AME church were killed when they
closed their eyes to pray.  Many pastors have been
killed when they closed their eyes to pray.  Pray
with your eyes open and looking around.

A New Active Killer Trend and Eight Ways to Counter It

Dr Kenji Inaba is a trauma surgeon at the University
of Southern California. He is also the director of
their surgical ICU.
Bleeding from an area that is a junction of an
extremity and the torso (and neck) that is not
amenable to hemorrhage control by tourniquet.

Self Defense in the House of God

Staying Mentally Healthy

***** Basics *****

Free Basic Handgun Safety Course
This FREE 20 minute online course will satisfy
the training requirements for a Virginia CCW
when the optional certificate is purchased
after completion.

Safety First: Basics of Pistol Shooting

Getting a Gun for Self-defense? You Need These Five Things

***** Miscellany *****

     If you would like the lesson plans for my
NRA Defensive Pistol course, send me an email,
and I'll send you the latest version.  Because
it is constantly changing.  Because I am
constantly taking courses to improve my knowledge
of the subject.


Jonathan Low

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

CWP, 8 November 2017 Anno Domini

Greetings Sheepdogs,

***** Mindset *****

"The Thick of the Fight!"

The Test, Ready or Not!

Self Defense Success – It’s All In Your Head


***** Training *****

MAG-20 course (Massad Ayoob Group) JANUARY 27-28, 2018 in Summerville, SC
Armed Citizen's Rules of Engagement
     Even flier at
     Registration at
     at the Palmetto Gun Club

Train For Pain

Gunfighter Logic: 10 Rules for Conceal Carry


Real & Imaginary Dangers of Firearms Training Classes

Skill Set: Simple and Effective
"There are no advanced skills. Responding to a threat
is a matter of being able to apply the fundamentals."
     Simple is always better.  Because it is more reliable. 
Simple is not easy.  Simple things are often very difficult
to do, and require self discipline to cause yourself to

Why you should stop plinking and start training at the gun range
Training means knowing when it is time to seek professional
instruction in order to push your individual limits to get
better, faster and more accurate. A second set of eyes
helps identify weaknesses and target areas of needed
improvement. A quality firearms instructor will give you
new ideas on ways to improve your weaknesses when practicing
on your own. They can help you self-diagnose and
self-correct your mistakes so you can work on improving
your skills outside of class. In other words,
you don’t know what you don’t know. Instructors can help
bring your previously unknown weaknesses to light so that
you can work on turning them into strengths.

Reality Training: Distance and cover
     How would you deal with a hostile bystander?
     You don't dictate the use of force.  The other
guy determines how much force you have to use.

Fact-based Decision Making
     After basic firearms training, people who's training
has moved up through shoot house simulators to force on
force will tell you that when they did their first
simulator it was a mess. They made mistakes and their
hearts pounded, but after a dozen times through the
simulator it became fairly mundane.
     Then when they added force on force training, the
training became much more challenging again. In one’s
first force on force exercises, one becomes more excited
and more agitated, and makes mistakes. You do that for
a while, and you get better.
     What makes people think it takes any less practice
to evaluate circumstances and make a decision while
under pressure, under a compressed time frame, than
it does to make a difficult shot under pressure?
These are both skills that can be learned and practiced.
Some will be better at either or both skills than others,
but everyone will benefit from training and preparation.

Adequate Learning Vs Overlearning: How Many Repetitions Is Enough?

Negligent Discharges During Training — Lessons Learned

Active Shooter Response Training Tip

Concealed Carry Training Mistake: Hollow Points

     For those of you who do not practice,
Proverbs 13:4 ESV The soul of the sluggard craves and gets nothing,
while the soul of the diligent is richly supplied.
Proverbs 10:4 ESV A slack hand causes poverty,
but the hand of the diligent makes rich.
Galatians 6:9 ESV And let us not grow weary of doing good,
for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.

Louis Awerbuck
Muzzle Awareness
Body sizes
Target Selection
Close Quarters

***** Tactics *****

***** Techniques *****

Important information on recognizing threats and trigger control
     May I invite your attention to,
Behavioral Cues to Impending Aggression
Mastering Trigger Control

AR Optics (pertinent to all systems)
Excerpt:  "It all looks great in the showroom" -- Anon

Richard Dimitri explaining the Shredder. 
In section 2 of this article,
A technique worth exploring.  Especially when lethal force
is not appropriate.

***** Gear *****

October 2017 Rangemaster Newsletter
     Paint your front sight a color that will contrast
with your probable targets.
     ". . . a big factor is the bad guy's training,
education, and life experience.  Most bad guys go
through the entire careers without ever running
into an armed citizen on the street.  Only about
4% of the U.S. population has some kind of carry
permit, and I'd bet less than 1% of them actually
carry on a routine, daily basis.  So, when a bad
guy confronts a citizen who is actually armed and
produces a weapon, the resulting mental lag time
for the bad guy allows even an untrained or
minimally trained defender a golden opportunity. 
The one who starts the fight has an enormous
advantage.  In this context, the bad guy started
the incident, but the student starts the fight."

The 2016 LEOKA Report- Studying the Cop Killers
In practical numbers, the Taser is only effective
a little more than half of the times it is deployed.

     Wire mesh goggles never fog up as do plastic
safety glasses.  That's why firefighters and forest
rangers use them.  This is the same technology
we used for fencing masks.

Skill Set: Holster Tips

     The company I work for, ATM Solutions Inc.,
requires us to wear at least level 1 retention
holsters, because we open carry when servicing
the automatic teller machines.  I could not find
an inside the waist band retention holster that
I liked.  Outside the waistband holsters flop
around when you move.  With an inside the
waistband holster, your gun belt holds the holster
tight against your body.  So, I got a Safariland GLS
holster (releases the pistol with pressure from
the middle finger when establishing a high tight grip),
unbolted it from the paddle that it comes with, and
bolted it to my Alien Gear leather holster backing. 
So far so good. 

     My Springfield Armory XD in .45 ACP was
giving me a blister on the inside of my right
thumb at the joint that connects the thumb to
the hand (sesamoid bones).  I'm right handed. 
So, I took a round file, removed a couple
millimeters of the grip and rounded the area
of the grip that was rubbing. 
     Leave the lines from the file.  You don't
want to take fine sand paper and make the
finish smooth.  You want the rough surface for
a high friction grip.  If you have sharp edges
in the surface, scratch them off with your
fingernails.  The plastic is really soft.
     If you don't shoot a thousand rounds in
a weekend in a high intensity course, you
will probably never get blisters. 
     I also got blisters on my brain.

Wash. PD to add suppressors to all service rifles
     134 decibels is still pretty loud. 
Ya, I know decibels are measured on a logarithmic scale.

     My company is constantly posting reports of our
colleagues getting shot (and sometimes killed) to
prevent us from becoming complacent, so I bit the bullet
and bought "soft" body armor.  I got a Safariland Level III set. 
It has lots of adjustments.  You really need someone
who knows what they are doing to fit you with a proper
set of body armor.  (I went to Greene Military and Police
in Nashville, TN.)  Just as your pistol has to fit your
hand.  One size does not fit all.
     Overview of body armor,
     Thoughts for buying body armor,
     National Instutute of Justice, Body Armor,
     Body Armor that Complies With NIJ Ballistic Resistance Standard, 0101.06
     The truth is that once you wear it for a while,
it becomes comfortable and you won't want to leave
home without it.  Just like your pistol.
     You have to wash the cloth carrier every
week at a mininum.  Otherwise, no one is going
to sit next to you.
     My son would buy helmets and body armor at the
gun shows, just to shoot them up to see what happens. 
But, if you're going to wear the armor for protection,
buying at a gun show is not a good idea, because you
don't know how old it is and you don't know what
abuse it has suffered.  Age is directly related to

***** Instructors *****

"Give more than you have to,
charge less than you can."
-- Pat Goodale

To Be A Good Instructor, You Have To Be A Student
     The first time I was in Israel for training,
a group of us were having a conversation and the
lead instructor said "When Imi gave us our black belts,
he said 'congratulations . . . now go learn the next thing'."
     That’s profound right there. The guy that invented
the system, gave him a black belt, then made a point to
tell them to go learn something else.  Expand your
knowledge base.
. . .
     If you do not MAKE TIME to be a student,
you will fall into mediocrity. You will puff
yourself up by telling yourself lies about
how much you know and how the others don’t
know shit.

***** Pedagogy *****

***** Education *****

Concealed Handgun Licensing: Asset to Texas
     Collating conviction data reported by Texas Department of Public Safety,
crime data from the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and census data,
it’s possible to determine relative criminality of handgun carry
licensees to their equivalent non-licensee population. This paper
analyzes Texas carry licensees versus non-licensee Texans over
age 21 to determine relative criminality, and also cites research
enabling a comparison between police officer malfeasance and
carry licensees.
     There are five sections in this report:
• Conviction rates determine relative criminality of each population.
• Carry licensees more law-abiding than police officers.
• Carry licensees are more law-abiding than non-licensees.
• Over 96% FBI crime reduction, if non-licensees were as law-abiding.
• About $10 billion annual savings, if non-licensees were as law-abiding.

Law of Self Defense
Live online session, every Wednesday, at 1PM Central time,

Confirmation Bias: Why You Make Terrible Life Choices
     Why is this article so important to your shooting? 
Because shooting is a high order intellectual activity. 
(At least if you're striving to shoot well and legally.)

Language Lessons: Normalcy Bias

11 Research Based Concealed Carry Tips From Criminal Video Analysis
     Prior to this analysis I would have thought that the vast majority
of assaults and robberies, which is what these scenarios generally
are, would have been one on one.  This is simply not true!
1.    Carry a high capacity weapon, ideally 8 rounds or above.
2.    Be able to access your gun with one hand.
3.    Keep your head on a swivel, checking your 6, the most dangerous area.
4.    Delay your draw.
5.    Obscure your draw.
6.    Do not engage immediately unless you must.
7.    Practice pivoting and engaging threats
8.    Practice gun grappling and one handed engagement within 3 feet
9.    Shoot from cover if available
10.   Practice shooting and moving at man sized target at 3-5 yards
11.   Validate all live training with force on force training

Signs Someone Has a Hidden Gun
     ". . . none (as in zero) of the criminals interviewed used a holster."
     "I always looked at their eyes, face and neck. 
People tense up before they launch and you can see
this as their eyes narrow or squint, their facial
muscles tighten and their carotid arteries in the
neck throb as their pulse quickens." -- Ed Head

***** News *****

Why police use of deadly force does not equate to intend to kill
     Instructors, carefully train your students. 
     "Why did you shoot him?"
     I feared for my life.  I shot him to stop his attack.
     "Were you trying to kill him?" 
     No, I was trying to stop his attack.

Texas man who shot, chased down Texas church gunman was NRA instructor
     The question is, "Why didn't anyone in the church shoot back? 
Why did a Good Samaritan have to rescue the congregation?" 
     Some churches have publicly declared all of their facilities
to be weapon free zones.  Even though Jesus told his disciples
to get swords, and if you don't have a sword,
sell your coat and buy a sword.  Luke 22:36

Lots of interesting stuff at
Crime Prevention Research Center

***** Survival Tips *****

Texas Rangers: Armed Citizen 'Engaged' Killer, Ending Rampage

What Most of Us Don’t Think About When Staying in Hotel Room

Is Carrying a Knife for Self-Defense a Good Idea?
. . . training is a must in order to effectively
use a knife for personal defense, . . .

Women: Reconnect with Your Innate Ability to Physically Defend Yourself

***** Basics *****

How To Make Sure Your Handgun Fits You

How To Use An AR-15

Gun Cleaning

     For rifles, the effective range is the distance over
which the bullet is supersonic.  Rifle bullets come out
of the muzzle at supersonic speed (except for smallbore
rifles firing match ammo, whose bullets are subsonic
from muzzle to target).  This puts the bullet in front
of its shock wave.  So, the bullet is traveling through
calm air.  (And hence laminar flow, at least around the
front of the bullet.  The idea of a boat tail bullet is
to reduce the area of the base of the bullet,
because at the edge of the base is where laminar flow
is lost to turbulent flow.)  When the bullet makes the
transition from supersonic to subsonic speed, it is
traveling through its own shock wave.  This means the
bullet is moving through turbulent air, an unstable
     For pistols, the situation is different.  Some
pistol bullets, such as a standard 230 grain .45 ACP
comes out of the muzzle subsonic [about 850 feet
per second (speed of sound is about 1100 to 1200
feet per second, depending on temperature, pressure,
humidity, and other things)]. 
So, there is never a trans-sonic transition. 
     For those bullets that leave the muzzle at supersonic
speeds, such as most 9mm cartridges, over pistol ranges
(25 yards) the bullet remains supersonic.
     The only problem you could run into would be when
you reload or buy extremely light bullets at extremely
high muzzle velocities.  They could undergo sonic
transition at pistol ranges.  But, you can determine
this, as there are many free online ballistic calculators.
     "Staff, that doesn't make sense.  Won't a bullet
with a higher muzzle velocity take longer to slow to
subsonic speed than a bullet with a lower muzzle
     No, at the speeds we are talking about,
air friction is approximately proportional to
the cube of the speed.  So, the faster bullet suffers
much more air friction, and so loses much more speed.
     A slow moving projectile suffers very little
air friction.  That's why precision air rifles (an
Olympic sport) are so efficient.
     A car traveling at 55 mph is using about half
of the energy from the engine to overcome air resistance. 
(Only half of the energy from the gasoline is converted
to mechanical energy.  The other half is lost as heat.
Electric cars are stupid, because half of the electrical
energy generated at the power plant is lost in the
transmission lines.  Where does the electricity come
from?  Burning oil and coal.)

***** Miscellany *****

     If you would like the lesson plans for my
NRA Defensive Pistol course, send me an email,
and I'll send you the latest version.


Friday, October 13, 2017

CWP, 13 October 2017 Anno Domini

Greetings Sheepdogs,

May God have mercy on the unarmed, for history never does!

Emails to students --

Hi Rick,
     I like police.  I think it is an honorable profession. 
I was a military policeman for a period while in the Marine Corps. 
I like military operators.  I was one for a while in the Marine Corps. 
But their training, perspective, and rules of engagement are
different from that of a civilian engaged in self defense. 
     The policeman cannot retreat.  He has a duty to arrest. 
Pursue and arrest.  He cannot let the suspect go.
     The civilian's primary objective is to escape.  The pistol is
just a tool to overcome anything that may try to prevent your
     The operator in the armed forces rarely generates the order
to kill.  The order always comes from higher authority.  So, the
operator never takes responsibility for the killing.  He's just
following orders.
     The civilian must decide to use deadly force and takes the
responsibility for the use of deadly force.  This is much harder
than what the soldier is doing. 
     The civilian suffers the aftermath, civil law suits,
criminal prosecution, and all kinds of other bad stuff. 
The soldier leaves the country and goes home.  He's not going
to get court martialed for anything he does.  He may even get
a medal.
[Ya, I know there are exceptions to every gross generalization.]

Hi Doc,
     Concerning marksmanship -- the three essential things are: 
     Sight alignment.  Top of the front sight level with the top
of the rear sight.  Front sight centered in the rear sight
notch.  There has to be lots of light on either side of the
front sight post in the rear sight notch.  Otherwise, you
won't be able to center it in low light conditions.  80% of
muggings occur in low light conditions, generally in parking
lots (statistically speaking, Wal Mart parking lots). 
If you are using anything other than fixed iron sights,
you are wrong and must change the sights.  Adjustable sights
are fragile and will move when smashed against a concrete
     Sight picture.  Place the top of the front sight where
you want the bullet to go.  Hard focus on the front sight. 
You have to be able to see the serrations on the front
sight.  If you don't intentionally focus on the front sight,
you will be focused on the target, and your front sight
will wander all over the place, and you'll never notice it. 
And you won't hit what you think you're aiming at.  So,
focus on the front sight. 
     Trigger control.  Touch the trigger. (Because you don't
know where it is, especially in a high stress situation, when
you have grabbed the pistol while lying on your back while
being stabbed, punched, or kicked; and your hands are
covered with blood.)  Take the slack out of the trigger. 
(You can't get an accurate shot, if you yank through the
slack.  You have to take the slack out first.)  Smoothly
press while holding the sights on target.  DO NOT FIRE
THE SHOT!  Just smoothly increase pressure.
The pistol will eventually fire and you will get a surprise break.
I know this sounds like a long and complex process,
but with practice it compressing in time and becomes very fast.
If you intentionally fire the shot, your autonomic nervous system
will cause you to push, flinch, jerk, freeze, etc.  The
surprise break defeats your autonomic nervous system
by letting the bullet get out of the muzzle before your
brain knows that the gun is going to fire.
     Instructors often talk about the front sight epiphany,
when the student concentrates on the front sight and the
bullets magically group tight, right where the student
aimed them.  Or, the surprise break epiphany, when the
student achieves the surprise trigger break and the shots
no longer scatter low left (for a right handed shooter,
because he was anticipating the shot and pushing against
the recoil; low right for a left handed shooter).

Expansion on a previous essay --
    Eye dominance is not correlated to vision acuity.
You might see better with your non-dominant eye.
    Eye dominance is only mildly correlated with
handedness.  You might be right handed, but left eye
    Eye dominance can change under stress.  Matches
induce stress.  Combat induces stress.
    Eye dominance is not necessarily left or right.
It could be 70% left, 30% right.  It could be 50%
right, 50% left.  Or, something else.
    I haven't been able to find any literature in
the peer reviewed journals indicating a correlation
between eye dominance and right or left brain
hemisphere dominance (concerned with high order
intellectual or cognitive things).  [I mention this
because a student asked me.]  Eye dominance is
an optical thing, controlled in the back of the brain.
The high order intellectual cognitive stuff is
controlled in the frontal lobes of the brain.  (But,
I'm not an expert in the field.  I just spent too
much time in the psych department as an undergrad.)
    So, it doesn't necessarily make sense to
shoot left handed because you think you are left
eye dominant.  (Especially if you are ambidextrous.) 
It may make sense to shoot with the eye that has
higher visual acuity.  Or, the eye with less
astigmatism.  You have to get an eye exam to
determine this.  Put a copy of your eye exam in
your journal.
     [When I say eye exam, I mean a medical eye exam
with an ophthalmologist, not an optical exam with an
optometrist.  If you don't know how to interpret the
report, ask your coach.  If you don't have a coach,
contact the Civilian Marksmanship Program, the
National Rifle Association, or USA Shooting to find
a level 3 (or higher) rifle or pistol coach that can
help you.  (Don't expect this help to be free. 
Everyone has bills to pay.)] 
      It makes sense to shoot your pistol with
your more dexterous hand as you firing hand (trigger
finger hand) and to aim with your dominant eye. 
     If both of your eyes are open you will get a
double image.  Close your non-aiming eye for the
fraction of a second when you are actually shooting
to avoid shooting at the wrong image.  Murphy's Law
says that anything that can go wrong, will go wrong,
at the worst possible time.  Which means that in a
high stress situation you will be shooting at the
wrong image.  For right handed shooters, your point
of impact will be way off to the left.  So, close
your non-aiming eye!

***** Mindset *****

NDs (Negligent Discharges)
     Righteous gun-handling is an attitude, more than
a "method" or "practice."  Righteous behavior always
proceeds from principled mental posture,
not a "set of rules." 

Be Clark Kent, Not Superman
When Practicing Concealed Carry

     We always carry because we cannot predict when
a criminal will attack us.  We always buckle our seat
belt because we cannot predict when a drunk or distracted
diver will ram us.  We always keep a fire extinguisher
in the abode because we cannot predict when a fire will
start.  We always shower, floss, and brush our teeth
before going out in public because we cannot predict
who we may run into.  It may be your future ex-wife. 
[Ruthlessly stolen from several country songs.]

Fatal Shooting!
"The percentage of mistakes in quick decisions is
no greater than in long, drawn-out vacillations,
and the effect of decisiveness itself
'makes things go' and creates confidence."
-- Anne McCormick


Age of Terrorism!

***** Training *****

Real-Life Zombie Totally Unfazed When Officer Hits Him Three Times
     "A good reminder that even multiple shots from a
service-caliber handgun regularly fail to stop violent
attackers.  This guy was smoking “wet” (Marijuana
laced with PCP).  I’ve seen a similar lack of reaction
after being shot from totally sober people as well." 
--  Greg Ellifritz

     At a recent IDPA match, Major Ken Sircy
(Cookville, TN Police Department) told us a story that
was originally used as a teaching lesson at a law
enforcement training session at an NRA annual meeting. 
     An off duty cop was eating at a mom and pop restaurant
with a fireman friend of his, when a heroin addict entered
with a sawed off .22 caliber rifle.  The addict pointed
the rifle around telling everyone to get up against the
counter and put their hands up.  The addict then demanded
that the cashier give him all the money.  Not getting much
money, the addict then started robbing the individuals. 
The police officer signaled to his friend that he was
armed and to get away from him when the addict approached
him.  When the addict demanded money from the plain
clothed off duty cop, the cop presented his pistol and
fired two rounds into the addict's high thoracic cavity. 
(The autopsy photos showed a tight group that had
destroyed the addict's heart completely.) 
The witnesses said that after the cop fired,
the two of them just stared at each other for a long time. 
("A long time" in a high stress situation is actually a
short interval of real time.)  The addict then beat the
officer to death with the sawed off rifle.  The addict
then ran out of the restaurant and down the street,
before crashing through a store front window and dying. 
     The point of the lesson was that the officer had
been trained on the range to fire two rounds into the
high thoracic cavity and then holster.  Which is exactly
what he did. 
     The better training would be to continue firing
until the enemy (police call them suspects) is
incapacitated, and then to perform after action drills: 
quick check, final check, and scan.  If the enemy was
still standing and holding the rifle, the correct
action would have been to shoot the enemy in the
crainio-ocular cavity.
    A side note was that no one came to the aid of
the officer during the beating.  So, you can't depend
on anyone helping you, even if your friend is near by. 
The fireman was not a coward.  He had done many
courageous things in the past.  He had just never
prepared for this situation and so froze in shock.
If you don't prepare, you might freeze.  So, get
training and practice.  Visualize such encounters
to get your mind prepared for them.

     This past weekend, 29 September 2017 to 1 October 2017,
I attended the Rangemaster Instructor Development course
taught by Tom Givens et al.
     It was a difficult course.  Just because you paid your
tuition didn't mean you're going to get a graduation certificate. 
Some did not.  There was an extensive written test and two
shooting tests (under serious time limits). 
     I'm going to have to change all kinds of things in my
NRA Defensive Pistol course curriculum, because of things
that I learned in the course.  Which is exactly why I took
the course.
     Setting up a target at the range and shooting at it
to see your lovely tight groups is not practice. 
That's just masturbation.  You are too advanced for that. 
The practice should force you to assess and analyze. 
You should be thinking:  Which ones do I shoot? 
Which ones do I avoid shooting?  Which one do I shoot first? 
Which one do I shoot next?  Which way do I move? 
Where is the cover?  Who do I have to draw fire away from? 
Who do I need to protect?  Who do I not need to protect? . . .
     I love this quote, "I will forget I have a gun unless
it is needed to terminate an immediate deadly threat to me
or someone for whom I am responsible."
     Tom Given has trained thousands of people.  65 of his
students were involved in self defense shootings.  Of those
63 who won, zero were arrested, much less indicted, prosecuted, or
convicted.  Unfortunately, 2 of his students were involved
in lethal force encounters but were not wearing their gun
at the time.  They both died.  Moral of the story?  Always

     Jeff Cooper (Gun Sight) is dead.  Louis Awerbuck (Yavapai) is dead. 
Ignatius Piazza (Front Sight) doesn't teach anymore.
Ken Hackathorn (Aztec) will be retiring soon.  John Farnam (DTI) is older
than I am.  Tom Givens (Rangemaster) got out of a hospital bed to
give us the Instructor Development course.  Now that's dedication. 
     So, make your reservations and take your training now,
before the wisemen are gone.

***** Tactics *****

The Blueprint of a Criminal Attack

Protecting yourself and family during an armed robbery

Using the Element of Surprise as a Personal-Defense Tool

***** Techniques *****

Scanning for Multiple Threats

     Accept your wobble.  If you achieve a surprise trigger break,
you will get good hits, no matter how much your sights look like
they are wobbling.  Yes, actually it is magic.  (Any sufficiently
advanced technology will appear as magic to the ignorant. 
God's creation, the human, is very advanced technology.)

***** Philosophy *****

     If you can't get a loan to buy your house,
find a "manual underwriter". 
     Not having a credit record is a good thing. 
It means you don't borrow money.  You save up for
what you want and you pay cash.  That is the
responsible, spiritually mature, thing to do. 
Some knucklehead in a cubicle looking at your
credit score is not going to understand that. 
Any person who would take the word of some
credit reporting company over the word of an
honorable person (you) is not someone you want
to deal with.  That is not someone you want to
pay money to to do anything for you.
[Ruthlessly paraphrased from Dave Ramsey.]

***** Gear *****

Should You Mount a Light to Your Concealed-Carry Gun?
Don't hang shit on your pistol!
-- Louis Awerbuck

Reviewed: New Handgun Holsters

Shooting glasses 
Randolph Engineering
RE Ranger
     You can adjust where the glasses sit on your face by
moving the piece that rests on the bridge of your nose
up or down.  I'm not describing it well.  You have to get
your hands on a pair to see how neat they are.  Your prescription
lenses go inside.  The outer lenses curve around correctly
so as to be distortion free.  Ya, they are very expensive. 
You get what you pay for in this world.

Pay Attention To Gun Warnings

    Please do not carry a revolver as your primary self defense gun. 
Revolvers are old technology.  They are difficult to shoot because
they have long heavy double action triggers. 
     [Firing modern double action revolvers in single action mode
by thumb cocking the hammer is wrong on many levels.  Thumb cocking
the hammer is an extra operation that takes time.  You never have
enough time in combat.  The trigger weight of a revolver in single
action mode is very light and there is no slack.  Which means it
is uncontrollable in a high stress situation.  If this is not obvious
to you, you lack the experience that would make it obvious to you.]
     They are difficult and slow to load, and difficult and slow to
reload.  When they malfunction, there is no way to clear the
malfunction in real time.  The revolver has many moving parts that
must be precisely timed to work properly (you have to open the action
to see this, not open the cylinders, open the action, it will look
like an old mechanical watch).
    So, if someone tells you that the revolver is a good self defense
gun because it is reliable and simple, he is lying to you, if he
knows what he is talking about; or he doesn't know what he's
talking about.

     Please do not carry an automatic weapon as your primary
self defense gun, e.g. machinepistol, submachinegun, etc. 
Automatic fire in a high stress situation is uncontrollable. 
If you don't believe this, it is because you lack the combat
experience with automatic small arms that would cause you to
understand this.  [My intended audience does not include
Uncle Sam's Misguided Nephews, who burn 1000's of rounds
a day in specialized training.]  Even if you can modulate
the trigger to fire 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 rounds bursts on
demand with an Uzi or M-2 (.50 caliber machinegun)
(slow rate of fire), that's not the same as doing it with an
MP-5 or a pistol version of the M-16 (high rate of fire). 
And doing it in combat is an entirely different world.

***** Instructors *****

Qui docet, discet.
Who teaches, learns.

     Please give your students written documents to
read before the class.  If they hear novel information
for the first time when you say it in class, they
probably won't understand it.  If they have read it
previously, there is a much better chance that the
time they have cogitated on it will help them to
understand the concept when you verbally explain it.
     Your students may not understand what you are
saying because there was environmental noise, you
spoke to fast (because this is the 500th time you've
said it), you mumbled, your accent is too strong, etc. 
The student may not wish to disrupt or slow the class
by asking questions (thinking that they will ask
later, but forgetting to do so), so you have to
handout documentation covering what you said.
     "Oh, but my precious copyrighted material
will be reproduced and distributed, causing me
to lose profit."
     Well, that is just a bad attitude and a bad
business model.  If you don't believe distribution
of your material to be good advertising for you
and that it will enhance your reputation, you may
be too mercenary for the teaching business.

     Jesus said, "I have sent you to reap what you
have not worked for."  Book of John 4:38. 
     This is how God works.  Others will reap what
you have sown.  What you sow may not be ready for
harvest in your life time.  What you taught the
mother, she taught to her daughter.  Who used it
to save the life of the granddaughter.  You were
long dead by then. 
     "Therefore, we can rest in the tasks before us,
not being hoodwinked into thinking that we are
responsible for the outcomes." -- Amy Boucher Pye
     Teach carefully, because as Sara Ahrens says,
your students will do whatever you teach them, no
matter how ridiculous.  Your students will do
whatever they practice, no matter how ridiculous. 
So, make sure they are practicing correctly.

Tom Givens says you must test your students
because it:
1.  forces practice of skills. 
2.  identifies weaknesses (the student has to know what to practice).
3.  verifies progress. 
4.  allows comparison to historical standards. 
5.  induces stress. 
6.  determines timing (How quick can I hit it?  Time vs. distance.  Time vs. size.). 
7.  provides documentation (good for resumes and evidence at trial). 

"The better you know something,
the less you remember how hard it was to learn."
-- Steven Pinker

***** Pedagogy *****

***** Education *****

2018 Tactical Conference
     You can expect this event to sell out
by October 2017.

Northwest Regional Tactical Conference
Fri, Jul 27, 2018, 8:00 AM –
Sun, Jul 29, 2018, 6:00 PM
Firearms Academy of Seattle, Onalaska, WA

Changing Demographics of Concealed Carry Permit Holders Across the United States
     The video presentation,
     For you data geeks, the paper and the slides,
     Women and blacks are the big winners!
1st Black women
2nd Asian women
3rd native American women
     Concealed carry permit holders are way
more law abiding than the general population
(36 times) and more law abiding than police
(10 times).
     Fees, taxes, and required training effectively
prevent poor people from getting permits.  Which
occurs in Democrat controlled areas.

Background checks on private transfers
     Dr. Lott explains how background checks are
really done.  They don't look at middle names. 
They don't look at differences in spellings. 

Mass Public Shootings and Gun-Free Zones
     All mass public shootings occur in gun-free zones.
Criminals may be crazy, but they are not stupid.  The
shootings are not random.  The criminals intentionally
choose gun-free zones.  Many countries are gun-free zones. 
The murder rate goes up after guns are banned,
no exceptions anywhere in the world. 
When concealed carry is legalized the mass shootings
decrease by 2/3rds. 

"So the next time someone tries to tell you that gun
control is about saving lives, look at these facts . . ."
-- Jim Marking

***** Legal and Political stuff *****

The "Say Little" approach
     The videos referred to in the above blog posting are the following:
     Don't Talk to Cops, Part 1
     Don't Talk to Cops, Part 2

Police say three employees of a Cleveland Taco Bell
opened fire on two armed robbers, killing one.

Women Are Driving Force for Millennial Gun Sales

     ATF has released Procedure 2017-1,
which addresses the ATF's interpretation of law
regarding how a federal firearms licensee is
required to handle private party sales between
non-licensed individuals.
     The procedure outlines requirements that a dealer
must satisfy to handle private party sales and what
has to be done if a proposed sale does not
immediately result in an approval on the background
     Individuals who are doing private party sales
that decide to involve a dealer for the transfer and
those who are required to use a dealer for the
transfer (for example, an interstate sale) should
review this new procedure and be familiar with it.
John Harris
Executive Director
Tennessee Firearms Association

     Why do I not teach government regulated courses?
     A gentleman who runs a company that teaches an
alcohol class here in Tennessee told me about one of
his instructors who dismissed his class early (did
not give the students the required number of hours). 
This resulted in a $1000 fine for the instructor and
having to call the 15 students to tell them that
they had to take the class over.
     The government creates disincentives to be
efficient and succinct.  Hence the government
discourages good English and good teaching.

     Andrew Branca says, don't buy self defense
insurance that reimburses after an acquittal.  You
will need the money up front to pay the attorney,
private investigators, expert witnesses, etc. 
Without the money up front, you might lose the case. 
So, reimbursement programs are worthless.
     The NRA claims that their self defense
insurance program reimburses, because they can't
pay for an illegal activity.  This reasoning is
nonsense.  A person is innocent until proven guilty
beyond a reasonable doubt.  So, the defendant has
not engaged in illegal activity until the jury or
judge rules at the end of the trial.  The NRA is
assuming the self defense shooting was illegal
until the court rules that it was legal.  This
is completely backwards.
     The George Zimmerman trail cost the defense
team 1.7 million dollars.  So, you have to have
the money up front to prevent the case from
going to trial.

"War on Guns" by John Lott
$1.99 for the Kindle version

     "You are responsible for every innocent bystander
you hit (or cover) during your lethal force encounter." 
-- Kent Harville
     You can't claim it was an accident (well, you can
claim anything, but no judge will allow it as a legal
theory).  Just covering the innocent bystander is assault.
You may have immunity from civil and criminal liability
by statute in your state for shooting the bad guy in
self defense.  But, you cannot evade liability for
shooting innocent bystanders.
     Solution to this problem?  Practice, so you don't

     When the Founding Fathers wrote and signed the
U.S. Constitution, they had the vivid memory of
overthrowing their government.  The Second Amendment
is to ensure the people always have the ability to
overthrow the government. 
     It has nothing to do with personal self defense,
hunting, sports, collecting, or anything else.
     The militia was not regulated by the government.
The government tried and failed to regulate the militia.
Well regulated militia means a disciplined military force,
as opposed to a mob.

***** Survival Tips *****

"Because we have an armed citizenry,
a dictatorship has not happened in
America.  Anti-gun fools are more
dangerous to Liberty than street
criminals or foreign spies."
-- Theodore Haas (Dachau Survivor)

***** For Beginners *****

How to Use a Semi-Automatic Pistol: Part 1
How to Use a Semi-Automatic Pistol: Part 2

***** Miscellany *****

     If you would like the lesson plans for my
NRA Defensive Pistol course, send me an email,
and I'll send you the latest version.


Jonathan Low

Saturday, August 26, 2017

CWP, 26 August 2017 Anno Domini

Greetings Sheepdogs,

Email to students in the 3 March 2018 A.D. Defensive Pistol course --
Hi Students,
     We're seven months out from our class and we already have questions
that I feel I should answer to everyone.

     Never fire warning shots. 
     A warning shot is not legally justifiable under any legal theory
in any state in the United States.  (Yes, Vice President Joe Biden is an idiot.)
     There is no safe place to fire a warning shot.  Any shot fired into the
air will come down with approximately equal speed as it went up. 
(Gravity is a conservative field.)  400 feet per second is sufficient to
break skin.  Your 1800 foot per second bullet will kill when it comes
down on someone. 
Any shot fired into the ground will ricochet off the asphalt road,
concrete sidewalk, or rock in the ground, and hit someone, maybe you.
     If you fire a warning shot, that's reckless endangerment.
If you hit someone with a warning shot, that's gross negligence.
If you kill someone with a warning shot, that's negligent homicide. 
And these are all best case scenarios.  (Simply presenting the pistol,
without pointing it at the person, without legal justification
is assault in most states.)
     If you had time to fire a warning shot, you were not in
immediate threat of death or grave bodily injury.  So, you lose
your claim of self defense.

     Never shoot to wound.
     Shooting in a high stress combat situation is extremely difficult. 
Hitting your intended target is a low probability event.  Hitting an arm
or leg is a zero probability event.*  That means that you will
almost always miss.  Every miss is destroying property and injuring
innocent bystanders, perhaps killing them. 
     So, you must always shoot to the center of mass of your target. 
There are only two reasonable targets to stop the attack 
[We never shoot to kill.  We always shoot to stop the attack. 
This is very important.  This is what you must say to the police. 
This will play at your trail, if you are prosecuted for your self
defense shooting.] : 
the high thoracic cavity, defined by the nipples and the notch
at the top of the sternum; and
the cranio-ocular cavity, defined by the  eyes and nose. 
(These are from the frontal aspect of the assailant. 
For other aspects, see the lesson plans.)
     If the enemy is behind cover, then the target may be a foot
or an elbow.  In that case, it is tactically correct to shoot to the
center of mass of that target.  Because, whoever inflicts the first
hit will usually win the fight.  Minor injuries can cause a
psychological stop, as opposed to a physical stop.  [Physical
stops require damaging the central nervous system or massive
blood loss.]

     Carrying a firearm without a solid understanding of the law
of self defense is an act of criminal stupidity. 
     Understanding the law gives you confidence. 
Which allows you to move quickly.  And act decisively.
     A lack of confidence will cause hesitation, which will result
in your death or the death of the ones you are trying to protect.

*     Zero probability events happen all the time.  Zero probability
does not mean the event can't occur.  It means the measure
of the probability space of that event is zero.
     "almost always" is a technical term in mathematics.  It doesn't
mean that the complementary set is null.  It just means that the
measure of the complementary set is zero.

***** Mindset *****

Learning Close Quarter Defense | Angel Naves | TEDxOaksChristianSchool
     This video has nothing to do with Close Quarter Defense. 
It's about you making a decision.

"Why High Performers Feel Awkward In Mediocre Groups,
And What They Can Do About It"
". . . most underachievers are seeking an experience, not the pursuit of excellence."
     Please take the author's words to heart.  Aaron is talking to YOU, about
what you are doing in your defensive pistol practice (and the rest of your life).
     The author uses the acronym GWOT which stands for Global War on Terrorism. 
This war was declared by the second President Bush by executive order. 
(Yes, I know that Constitutionally, only the Congress may declare war. 
But, I'm talking reality, not legality.)  I've received written orders that
cite this executive order.  There is also a classified executive order that
we operated under.  To the best of my knowledge every President since has
signed a document to the effect that all executive orders of my predecessors
remain in effect.  They are of course, superseded by new executive orders.
     Did you ever wonder why there are relatively few terrorist attacks in
the United States compared to the rest of the world (Europe and Africa for
instance)?  It's because we kill the terrorist before they attack. 
Such killings are not murder because they are not illegal.  They are extralegal. 
More words to look up in your dictionary, more concepts for you to research. 
Because it is important you understand the world you live in.  Ignorance allows
you to live in bliss, until reality rudely awakens you or kills you.
     "Law enforcement can arrest them.  That will keep us safe." 
     What happens when we arrest them and send them to Gitmo?  President Obama
releases them and they return to their units and kill us in the field.  So, we
end up having to kill them in the field.  The scary thing is that this actually
makes sense to some U.S. citizens and elected politicians. 

"Mindset is the Fairy Godmother of Survival"
     Not exactly an opposing opinion, but I seriously consider clear articulate
thinkers who say that what I teach is wrong.

     If there is any doubt, there is no doubt. 
Pass it by.  Trust your intuition.

***** Training *****

John Farnam on The Nature of Bad Habits

"Push your shooting skills beyond what you think you’ll need"
     You have to be physically fit to run down 44 flights of stairs to escape
the burning building.  But, if your child came to work with you, you have
to be able to carry your child down 44 flights of stairs. 
     You have to have swimming skills to get to shore if your plane ditches. 
But, if you love your spouse, you need to be able to defeat his panicked
struggle and pull him to shore.  Life saving skills are an order of magnitude
more than swimming skills.

"Stick to One Concealed-Carry Gun"
"I've got one kind of concealed-carry gun and
it's carried in the same location that it
has been toted for quite a number of years now.
. . .
Keep it simple."

     Hick’s Law: Reaction time increases with the number of choices.
Hick, W.E. (1952), “On the Rate of Gain of Information”,
Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, Vol. 4, pages 11-26.
(I could not find a hyperlink for this article.)
     So, always wear your equipment in the same place.
     Always execute immediate action when the gun doesn’t go bang.
It will be obvious when something else needs to be done.
     Always shoot to the center of mass of whatever the
available target is.
     The fewer decisions you make, the faster you go.
The fewer options you have to choose from in each decision,
the faster you go.

"Fighting: Technique and Equipment"
When you are not prepared to confront your own death (with a grim smile)
and chose to fight courageously, and die when that is the final outcome,
for values and beliefs that are more important to you than life itself,
then you are, in truth, unprepared and should never consider yourself
'well trained.' -- Ron Avery

On impact weapons
"Swing For the Fence" by Paul Sharp

"Patterns of Training - Frontline Debriefs"

John Farnam on W. I. N.
     What's Important Now (W.I.N.).  Do not perform a diagnoses. 

"Training for Close-Range Defense with Your Concealed Carry Gun"
     In combat (as opposed to training) the signal to initiate
the use of force will be visual, not audio.  So, having your
training partner cause a visual change that signals your action
is reasonable.  For instance, when the flashlight illuminates
the pistol that the target is holding.  If your flashlight is
not bright enough to be seen in daylight conditions, you should
probably get a brighter flashlight. (Or, put something reflective
on the target, so that it will flash when your flashlight covers

"Don’t Fidget With Your Gun, Or You Could Shoot Someone"
     Complacency kills.

"300 Negligent Discharges: Comprehensive Data Science Reveals
Gun Grabbers and Gun Owners are Both Wrong"
     About half the people injured by negligent discharges were not
the person handling the gun at the time. 
     About 1/3 of the people involved in negligent discharges died. 

How to Use a Revolver

***** Tactics *****

     Notice the significant number of law enforcement officers killed
with their own weapon,
     That is why weapon retention training is an essential part of
your training.  I once caught a football only to have a defensive
lineman pull it away from me and run it in for a touchdown.  And I
was hanging on tight and correctly as I was taught.  No matter how
big and strong you are, there is always someone bigger and stronger,
who will rip that pistol out of your hands.  If you give him the
chance.  So, if you're not holding the pistol at arms length to aim,
you have to keep your pistol pulled in tight to your body in a
compressed ready or close contact position.  Holding the pistol
out at a low ready position is wrong, because it makes it easier
for the enemy to take it from you.  Yes, as a matter of fact,
criminals practice disarming techniques in prison.  Prison is higher
education for criminals.

***** Techniques *****

Gunfight Science: Gun Malfunction Busting Tips/Tactics

AIMING IS USELESS (if you move the gun when you fire)

"The Counting Game"
     Try it with your children.

"Scary strangers, children, and boundary setting in the grocery store"

"Managing the Initial Police Contact"

John Farnam on Katrina Gunfight
     You must be able to change techniques
based on the environment.

Staging an emergency cell phone
     Old cell phones that are off contract are still capable of calling 911.
(So, don't let little children play with them!)

Push Me Pull You (long gun technique)

Pay Attention!


***** Philosophy *****

     I often post articles that conflict with what I teach. 
If your gun does not fire, I teach "Tap, Rack, Point In (which
means to align the sights, place the top of the front sight on
the center of mass of the target, take the slack out of the
trigger, and assess the situation)", because I think the
shooting should always be an intellectual decision,
not a programmed reflex response. 
     Gabe Suarez disagrees in this article. 
Please consider his argument.

***** Gear *****

     A former student told me that while test firing his pistol,
a Rorhbaugh 9mm, the slide of the pistol jammed to the rear.
    Yes, you have to test fire your firearms.  But, that's not enough.
You have to stress test them, by doing a training course with them.
Only then will you find out under what conditions they will fail.
Test firing on a square range will not give you sufficient information.
Many, many of my students have determined that certain pieces of
equipment don't work or need fixing to make them work reliably.
     In this case, the Rorhbaugh cannot be reloaded using commonly
taught techniques, and the operator cannot clear malfunctions
using commonly taught techniques, because it does not have a
magazine release button or lever accessible by the firing side
hand.  And worse, commonly taught one handed techniques for
reloading and malfunction clearing won't work with this pistol.
     There are many expensive, finely made pistols that are not
designed correctly for combat use.  As John Farnam says, many
manufactures don't have any operators on staff to field test
their prototypes before they start manufacturing.  (Personal
communication in the context of a holster that he had written
about in one of his quips.)

Why Penetration is too Important to Ignore
Serpa holsters are the most marketed and most poorly
designed holsters on the planet.  Truly, I would say
you are far better off carrying a pistol with an empty
chamber, stuck in your belt holsterless like a common
thug, than using a Serpa.

     Student:  I frequently draw from concealment which
for my everyday pistol means a pocket holster.
You are right. So much depends on type of pants and
if you are standing or seated.
     Jon Low:  A pocket holster is a bad idea on many
levels:  The pistol is not accessible when in a seated
position.  You can't keep anything else in that pocket
because anything can get inside the trigger guard,
which will foul your draw or fire the pistol.  When
seated the pistol is pointed at the person across the
table from you (or worse, at your femoral artery),
which violates our safety rule.  I read a long list
once, but I can't remember all of the other reasons on
that list.
     Inside the waist band holster at 3 o'clock
(or 9 o'clock for left handers) is the best.  Because
it allows you to present from the holster to the
target without covering yourself or anyone around you. 

***** Instructors *****

John Farnam on Middle Finger Negligence
     Instructors, you must watch for this and
prevent your students from doing this.

***** Pedagogy *****

Teaching Tip: Avoid "Pseudoteaching"
     Make sure to read,
in the article. 

Tactical Thought Crime And The War On Derp
Excerpts:  (I paraphrase. -- Jon Low)
     The instructor who says, I don't need to learn anymore because I
am just teaching beginners, is being disrespectful to his students.
(at 18:42)
     I see a huge number of instructors who are woefully unprepared . . .
(at 20:10)
     Teaching beginners is actually the hardest work in the training industry.
(at 23:26)
     Is your life worth defending? . . . Some students have not given
themselves permission to protect their own lives.
(at 30:30)
     You may be the only person who has spoken to the student about
self defense, and self defense with a gun.  You have a high responsibility
to know what you're talking about, and get it right.  Because you may be
the only voice they hear in their mind's ear at 03:00 AM when they are
attacked in the dark by the home invader.
(at 35:00)
     Take classes with the best instructors.  Take the class left handed
if you are right handed.  Take the class with a revolver if you usually
carry a semi-auto.  Observe how the instructors teach you.  So, you can
model their behavior for your students.
     Take the class to learn how to teach better, not to learn how to
shoot better.
-- Kathy Jackson, The Cornered Cat

***** Education *****

     Statistics from John Farnam:
     Having presented your pistol to an assailant,
the odds that you will have to shoot him are 1 in 30. 
     The average American will buy a pistol
and run 7 rounds through it in his life time.
     When a gun shot wound arrives in
the emergency room, only 3% will die.

"How Vision Impacts Your Shooting"

Range Etiquette & Safety

Law of Self Defense Podcast 8-14-17
     Road rage -- Don't stop.  Drive away.
     Once you present your pistol, you have a non-zero
probability of dying, you have a non-zero probability of
going to jail.  There is no way to reduce the probabilities
to zero.
     [Once your case goes to trial, you have a 10% to 20%
chance of being convicted (assuming you are morally
innocent), because the jury is made up of people who were
not smart enough to get off jury duty.  And the prosecutor
would never prosecute an innocent person.  But, that's okay. 
It's better to be alive in prison than dead.  Why aren't you
dead?  Because God still has work for you to do.  In prison,
you might be able to bring a lost soul to Christ. 
     If you stop thinking about yourself and concentrate
on helping others, YOU WIN! -- Jon Low]

***** Legal and Political stuff *****

"Scientific Theory v. Legal Theory"

"States ask Supreme Court to halt unjustified searches of lawful gun owners"
     Amicus brief in opposition to
en banc (16 judge panel) 4th Circuit Court of Appeals ruling,
     Original 4th Circuit Court of Appeals ruling (3 judge panel),
     Conflicting ruling from the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals, article about original appellate ruling,
     Blue Sheepdog article with background on ruling
"Concealed Carry: A New Legal Consideration!"

"Concealed Carry and Police Encounters"

4 Self-Defense Insurance Options To Protect Your Six

Two Cities!
     "There is a feeling of personal dignity and independence
in grasping, literally, the power to back, with lethal force,
your refusal to be a target of violent crime.
     This is not a 'sense of power.'  It is the experience of
escaping from a sense of powerlessness." 
-- John Longenecker

Dr. John Lott (
On Armed American Radio
"To discuss how law-abiding permit holders are."
     Democrats are trying to keep poor people
from being able to defend themselves by imposing
taxes on the acquiring of carry permits.
     Democrat Chief Law Enforcement Officers
are preventing racial minorities from being able
to defend themselves by refusing to issue carry
permits to them.

***** Survival Tips *****

***** For Beginners *****

***** Miscellany *****

The Responsible Patriot at
has a link to
And refers to it as ". . . one awesome blog."

"Skill Set: Flying with Firearms"

     If you would like the lesson plans for my
NRA Defensive Pistol course, send me an email,
and I'll send you the latest version.


Jonathan Low