CWP, 9 April 2014 A.D.
Greetings Concealed Weapons Permittees,
***** Mindset *****
Jeff Cooper's Commentaries
Vol. 1, No. 6, 2 September 1993
I have often preached that the proper antidote
to fear is anger, and I see no reason to change
my opinion on this. However, there is another
mental condition that serves as well or
possibly better, and that is concentration.
I have discussed this matter at great length
with people who are in a position to know,
and I am not without experience of my own,
and I can state positively that when you find
yourself facing deadly danger, your ability to
concentrate every mental faculty upon doing
what needs to be done to save yourself leaves
no room for fear. If it happens that return
fire is the best solution to your danger,
you are fortunate, because if you have
organized yourself properly your total
preoccupation with your front sight and
trigger control will have become automatic;
and therefore you cannot fear your enemy's
bullet since you are simply too busy
concentrating on hitting him. I think this
truth is incontrovertible, but we certainly
see that large numbers of people who get
involved in street fights, on either side of
the law, have never heard of it.
Over here, over there, everywhere,
today, tomorrow, always:
Bad men there are.
Hate you they do.
Kill you they will.
Watch out you better!
***** Training *****
James Yeager of Tactical Response
(a series of videos)
Excerpts: (I paraphrase and any errors are mine. -- Jonathan Low)
In order of importance:
Spend your time, money, and effort on the
most important things first.
Don't install an extended magazine release.
I hear people saying, I need an extended mag release
because I can't reach the mag release without moving
my hand around the pistol. Well, if you could reach
the mag release while shooting the pistol, you'd be
ejecting the magazine during firing. The pistol is
designed correctly to prevent you from doing that.
Keep your magazines loaded. (They are useless
when unloaded.) If you know anything about modern
metallurgy, you know that you won't hurt the springs
by keeping your magazines loaded.
Compression and stretching of the spring within
its elastic limits weakens the spring through the
action of work hardening. But, compressing the
springs without movement, as in the case of a loaded
magazine in storage, causes no work hardening.
Loading your magazines to capacity is well
within the elastic limits of the springs. So, the
springs will not deform.
[Yeager's explanation was a bit simpler,
but I am sure this is what he meant.]
Practice saying "STOP!" as part of your presentation.
Because, you will do in combat what you have practiced.
If you don't practice saying "STOP!", you may say
something stupid, like "Die motherfucker!", which
won't play well with any jury.
[end of excerpts]
Racking your pistol by Tom McHale.
To share with your friends who may be having
difficulty racking their slides. One must be
tactful. At a Bible study, I showed a lady how to
rack her slide. She had had difficulty for years.
Now that she could do it by herself she was a little
irritated with her husband for never teaching her
the correct technique. Of course, it wasn't his
fault, for he had never learned how to rack a slide
Go out and teach, for ignorance runs rampant.
***** Pedagogy *****
To be a better instructor/coach, I took a
First Aid class. One of the things we learned was
how to use an Automated External Defibrillator (AED).
I learned that what you see in the movies and TV is false.
Defibrillators will not start a stopped heart (asystole).
Normal Sinus Rhythm (NSR), the heart is working normally.
Ventricular Tachycardia (VT), a very fast heart beat,
use the defibrillator, it might restore NSR.
Ventricular Fibrillation (VF), a chaotic heart beat,
use the defibrillator, it might restore NSR.
What's the point, Staff?
The point is that what I knew was false. I had a
superstition. Over the years there were many doctors
in my classes who knew the truth, but never told me.
The topic never came up in conversation.
About half of the NRA Defensive Pistol class that
we teach is lecture/discussion/questions. It has to be,
because ignorance runs rampant in our society. You
can't dispel superstitions until you find them. You
won't find the superstitions unless you ask questions
and cause your students to make statements and ask
If you aren't surprised several times during the
class by what a student believes, you aren't eliciting.
"It's better to be wrong than to be vague."
-- Freeman Dyson
Because, if the student is wrong, we can
correct him. But, if the student is vague,
no one can help him.
Another thing we learned at the First Aid class
was that in an incident (person collapses,
car crash, explosion, what have you) 80% of the
trained first responders will freeze. Some one in
the other 20% has to give them orders, tell them
what to do, get them moving. Clearly that 20% would
include the experience personnel who have done this
before and are inoculated to the trauma and stress.
But, most of moving yourself from the 80% to the 20%
is mindset and training. You have to know what to
do, otherwise there is no motivation to do anything.
You have to be willing to put yourself at risk.
It's easier and more comfortable to stand back and
hide in the crowd. We were taught that the first
thing you do is to use all your senses to determine
if the situation is safe to render aid. It doesn't
help anyone if you get yourself injured or killed
in the rescue attempt.
Of course, a lot of the 80% will be children
who have just finished a First Aid/Life Saving/
Water Safety class (when you're as old as me, all
these young adults look like children) and are
experiencing a disaster for the first time. But,
having witnessed such children in Marine Corps
Recruit Training, I would bet that mindset and
training overcomes youth and inexperience every time.