"To properly plan for violence, you must first admit
and accept that the world is not as it ought to be."
Criminal violence does exist, and we may encounter it.
There are no time-outs.
Life is a "come as you are" event.
-- Dr. William Townley Aprill (14 October 1966 - 6 August 2020)
Our Drill Instructors taught us that we do not solve our problems
by killing ourselves. We solve our problems by killing our enemies.
No matter how bad things get, suicide is not the answer.
The Enemy expends huge resources, time, and effort to kill you.
If you kill you, you are doing the Enemy's work.
"But, you don't understand."
No, you don't understand, that's why you're contemplating suicide.
If you understood, suicide would never occur to you. Because there
are a myriad of ways to solve your problems. You're just too lazy to
think of a way.
"Thinking is the hardest thing a person can do. That's why so
few people do it." -- Henry Ford
If you can't think of a way, pray to God for assistance, ask for
help (from your pastor, from your friend, from your spouse, etc.);
suicide is never the answer.
***** ***** ***** Software ***** ***** *****
“You are no more armed because you are wearing a pistol
than you are a musician because you own a guitar.”
from Principles of Personal Defense by
Col. Jeff Cooper, USMC, (1920 – 2006 A.D.)
----- Basics -----
"Train, Practice, Compete
are the key elements in the development of humans."
-- John M. Buol, Jr.
Invest in yourself. Invest in training. Invest in practice. Invest in training your
loved ones and your subordinates. With proper training, they will select appropriate
equipment for themselves. With proper training they will be able to avoid the fight and
so won't need the equipment (that they might not be carrying). That's a BIG win.
If you've taken the Tennessee Handgun Permit class and you think you're good to go,
you are in a state of self deception. Tennessee now has permitless carry, so if you
are eligible to acquire a permit to carry, you may carry without a permit. This does
not dispense with the training requirement. There was never any real training requirement.
The training requirement was pro forma at best.
Take at least one training class a year. Tac Con is by far the best training
for the money.
If you've never had any real training before, you need to take a 4 or 5 day pistol
course from one of the legit schools. It's going to cost you about $2000 for tuition,
plus hotel, rental car, air fare, etc. If you check their web sites, you might find
that they give their course in a city near you. For instance, Gunsite Academy sends a
team to Nashville, TN every year to give their 5 day pistol course at Royal Range.
Front Sight Firearms Training Institute
There are many others. They expect you to be ignorant and eager to learn.
If you've had some training and you are serious, you would benefit from classes
Defense Training International
Massad Ayoob Group
and others. But, these expect you to be serious and ready for serious training.
". . . the one who is TRULY ready, . . . is the one who has stocked up on KNOWLEDGE.
Skill. Ability. Battle Wisdom.
This is the one who is to be feared. And this is the one who has nothing to fear."
-- Patrick Kilchermann
"PERSPECTIVE . . . " by Massad Ayoob
“No possible rapidity of fire can atone for habitual
carelessness of aim with the first shot.” -- Theodore Roosevelt,
(26th President of the United States) The Wilderness Hunter, 1893
----- Aftermath -----
"ANATOMY OF A CRITICAL INCIDENT RESPONSE" by Kyle Sweet and Gary Eastridge
"Do not make a statement or let anyone question you until after two
complete sleep cycles."
[If this is the protocol for police officers after a shooting, why in
the world would you do anything less. Don't be stupid. Ask for your
attorney and then shut your mouth. -- Jon Low]
----- Mindset -----
"Panic is simply the lack of preprogrammed responses."
-- Tom Givens
“Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact.
Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth.”
-- Marcus Aurelius
"The Set" by Brian Enos
"Fear is an instinct. Courage is a choice."
-- Rear Admiral Joseph Kernan, USN
"MAKE IT PERSONAL:
TATIANA WHITLOCK ON MINDSET AND THE FEMALE CONCEALED CARRIER PT. 1"
by Steve Moses
[I met Tatiana a few years ago at Tac Con and have taken classes from her.
I met Steve at this past Tac Con and took a class from him. So, I feel confident
posting links to their material, as I know that they know what they are talking
about. -- Jon Low]
Front Sight Reality Check #77
Important stuff starts at 1:10 and ends at 4:18.
Good guys win with zero shots fired, just smart maneuver.
All good guys are female. Bad guy is male repeat offender.
"Why Can’t I Achieve My Goals?
An Idea Isn’t a Plan. A Wish Isn’t a Goal."
by Chris Cypert
"My failure was that I didn’t set a Top 16 finish as a true goal,
then develop and enact a plan made up of intermediate goals to actually make it happen. "
[As we teach the junior rifle shooters on our team, the difference between
a goal and a dream, is that a goal has a plan for achieving it.
A coach's job is helping the shooter make and execute the plan. -- Jon Low]
"Dan Gable, Street Fights, and Mental Toughness" by Marcus Wynne
* Mental toughness starts at home.
* It’s recognizable in childhood.
* Skill at violence correlates to previous exposure to violence.
One doesn’t have to grow up in a violent environment to be good at
violence — but it helps. It fosters a familiarity with violence
discoverable in selection, assessment and training if not already
discovered (and perhaps hidden) by the student. It needn’t be
street fights — combat sports and contact sports can provide a context.
* Comfort in the unrestricted primal violence of previous real
street fights is a big indicator of success with professional violence.
* One of the best indicators/predictors of successful professional
violence is the satisfaction, enjoyment, even glee, one takes in
righteous violence executed in an appropriate context."
It’s about prevention, not response.
-- Michael Mann
----- Safety -----
Jeff Cooper's Rules of Gun Safety
RULE I: ALL GUNS ARE ALWAYS LOADED.
RULE II: NEVER LET THE MUZZLE COVER ANYTHING YOU ARE NOT WILLING TO DESTROY.
RULE III: KEEP YOUR FINGER OFF THE TRIGGER UNTIL YOUR SIGHTS ARE ON THE TARGET.
RULE IV: BE SURE OF YOUR TARGET.
May I recommend,
"Choose Adventure: Safe Travel in Dangerous Places" by Greg Ellifritz
Autographed soft cover for $18.50, can't go wrong.
A very enlightening book for the individual or small group civilian traveler.
Greg gave a lecture on foreign travel as a civilian to many places in the
world at Tac Con 2021. I found it eye opening, as I have rarely traveled
as a civilian. When I accompanied by daughter's high school class to
France and Spain, we were in a group and everything was taken care of for
us. But, traveling by yourself, there are many details that you have to
take care of.
I have usually flown in and out of military bases, where we carried
guns and never went through customs, showed passports, or things like that.
So, I was ignorant of how things are in the real world.
Greg's information will keep you out of foreign jails. Oh ya, there
are a lot of honest mistakes that are a big deal in other countries, that
can get you arrested. For instance, there is a section on how to do bribes.
Bribes are expected and customary in some countries. Refusing to pay the
bribe or reporting the corrupt cop to higher authority isn't going to
work out the way it would in America.
The CDC recently released their death statistics for 2018 and there is
something very, VERY interesting buried in the statistics.
Total homicides of all causes -- including firearms, knives, assaults,
& poison -- were 18,830. And that includes cases of self-defense where
the good guy lived and the attacker died.
But . . .
Total unintentional deaths from FALLS were 37,455!
Meaning your chances of dying from a fall is 2 TIMES greater
than from a violent attack of any kind.
-- Mike Ox
"Adversarial Attraction: the Predator’s Optic" by Steve Tarani (Hat tip to Greg Ellifritz)
". . . Soft Target Indicators that command a predator’s attention
at first glance. . . . if you appear to be:
Weak – physically, mentally or otherwise
Unaware – distracted (lack of situational awareness) clearly not paying
attention to your immediate surroundings – including them watching you
Alone – easily accessible, vulnerable, exposed, or some combination thereof"
Don't go to stupid places.
Don't do stupid things.
Don't hang out with stupid people.
Be in bed by 10 PM. Your own bed.
Don't look like a freak.
Don't fail the attitude test.
-- John Farnam
----- Training -----
You need training because:
You don't know what you don't know.
Much of what you know is false.
It's good to the have the answers before the criminal tests you.
-- Claude Werner (paraphrased)
Wow! Free Basic AR-15 class from Paladin Training.
Pass the word to your newbie friends.
Includes ammo (and rifle if you don't have one, loaners available).
Paladin Training got a grant from James O. and Harriet P. Rigney Endowment
administered by the Coastal Community Foundation of South Carolina.
Date: Saturday, 24 APR 2021
Location: Marion, SC (further TBD)
Prerequisite training: None
Physical requirements: Light
Start / Stop Times: 830 am – Dusk (Registration begins 8 am)
Contact: Steve Cooper, 843-618-1381, firstname.lastname@example.org
Mike Ox writes --
In Retired Delta Force Sergeant Major, Kyle Lamb’s great book,
“Green Eyes & Black Rifles: Warrior’s Guide To Combat Carbine” Lamb talks about training
with a 9-hole barricade to get comfortable and proficient at awkward, unstable shooting
positions that he experienced in combat in Mogadishu, Somalia, Iraq, and elsewhere.
Why? Because this is the kind of stuff that you want to figure out before your life
depends on getting it right . . . especially if your body has some hard miles on it.
Real life isn't static. And real fights don't look like the "average engagements"
we read about and practice for. They don't look like standards, qualifications, or
drills. They're chaotic, unstable, and unpredictable. Which is why it's so critical
that you figure out things like:
> How far can you lean around cover before you lose your balance?
> How long does it take you to pop out over, around, or under cover,
fire an aimed shot, and pop back?
> How do you engage targets in a 360 degree environment more effectively
(something you can't safely learn or practice at your local range).
> How fast/accurate can you shoot on the move and how do you get better?
> How do you shoot better after being knocked to the ground? Or after
just making the move from standing to sitting on the ground?
Most people don't find out that they've got a problem in one of these areas until
they're in a fight for their life, behind the curve, and realize that their current
situation is NOTHING like what they trained for.
But when you take solid fundamentals and then start pushing your limits . . . with
speed, balance, position, distance, precision, orientation, movement, light, stress,
etc. you do 3 really important things:
>1. You learn and internalize what your limits are and become
familiar with the feeling of shooting from awkward positions/situations.
>2. As you find your limits, you'll expand your limits. You'll be able
to make accurate shots from positions/situations that used to challenge
you. (This is especially important for people who have nagging injuries
preventing them from being as fast & mobile as they used to be.)
>3. When you find yourself in a high-speed shooting situation . . . whether
it's competition, force-on-force, or a life and death situation, you'll be
more comfortable, have less hesitation, and perform better.
-- Mike Ox
"The real value of training and practice isn't gaining technical competence,
it's achieving confidence in your abilities."
-- Claude Werner
I just returned from Michael Mann's class on "Protecting Soft Targets".
(8 hours of continuing education credit, ASIS certified, American Society for
Tom Givens often says, the bad guys do not beam down from outer space.
They do not appear out of nowhere. The victims who think or say such things
were in condition white and so were chosen by the predator for victimization.
Similarly, Michael Mann says there is no such thing as [an unplanned] attack on
your church or facility. Such attacks can be detected if your security team
is observant. The bad guy does in person surveillance and rehearsal.
If your security team pays attention, they will see this.
In the last 20 years, there were 35 incidents of mass murder in schools.
All of the schools were public schools. (Private schools have armed faculty
and staff, whether they admit it or not. So, someone stops the attack before
the body count gets high enough to be considered a mass murder incident.)
The attackers may be crazy (many were mentally disturbed), but they are not
stupid. 85% of the attackers were insiders (knew the security of the school).
79% of the attackers were students or former students.
In the New Life Church attack, the good gal shot the bad guy 10 times
(10 center of mass hits). The bad guy did not die. He was not incapacitated.
She did stop his forward progress into the church building. At which time
he committed suicide by shooting himself. She suffered no injury in the
gunfight. Lesson learned: keep shooting until the bad guy stops.
[This ain't a Hollywood movie. One shot ain't going to stop the attack.
Pistol ammunition is ballistically deficient. So, you better be able to
deliver 10 rounds on target in rapid succession. If you are unable to do
that because of your lack of training or lack of practice or bad equipment
choices, WAKE UP! Fix yourself. -- Jon Low]
"Training is NOT an event, but a process.
Training is the preparation FOR practice".
-- Claude Werner
----- Practice -----
Practice is the small deposits you make over time,
so that in an emergency, you can make that big withdrawal.
-- Chesley Burnett Sullenberger, III
"Top 10 Reasons Dry Fire Beats Live Fire Practice" by Mike Ox
"One of the biggest problems I see with shooters doing live fire
is that they either dip their wrist or dip their entire arm after each
shot to see where the previous shot went. It’s incredibly tempting to
check to see where your shot went, but what ends up happening is that
your body will actually move the gun out of the way before the bullet
leaves the muzzle and you’ll end up with groups that string up-and-down."
"Linear range training scars hurt."
"One of the things that they learned is that the ideal training
ratio for high stress combat performance is 80% dry fire, 10% live fire,
and 10% force on force."
"To each there comes in their lifetime a special moment
when they are figuratively tapped on the shoulder and
offered the chance to do a very special thing, unique
to them and fitted to their talents. What a tragedy if
that moment finds them unprepared or unqualified for that
which could have been their finest hour."
-- Winston Churchill
One of the big problems with firearms training in general
is that most training doesn't combine visual decision making
with shooting fundamentals the way real world shooting
Contrary to what some spoof videos show, bad guys don't
hit the button on your shot timer when it's time to "go."
Now, one solution for this that I love are video based gun
training scenarios . . . but besides being expensive, they tend
to be involved to set up.
Here's a cool tip...
One thing that you can do to add randomness and visual
decision making to your practice is to use a random color
app on your phone.
I like SwitchedOn, Twister Game Spinner, and Column B.
There are several ways to use them. Here are 2 to get you
started. For both of these, you want your phone or tablet set
up so you can see both it and your target.
1. Pick a "shoot" color and make the rest "no-shoot." If a
shoot color appears, engage your target with one dry fire or
live fire rep, depending on what kind of training you're doing.
It's just as important that you don't over-react to the
no-shoots as it is that you react correctly and quickly to the
shoot targets. You may want to have one color as a "shoot"
color and another color as a "draw and cover" color.
2. Use a target with 3-4 different colored targets on it.
As colors appear on the app, engage those colors. I'll usually
shoot every 3rd or 4th color so that I have time to come back
to a ready position or reholster.
-- Mike Ox
Come back to it. Look over the technique you want to master,
think about it a bit, leave it, and then return a few minutes or
hours later. Let the unconscious, intuitive part of your mind have
a chance to work.
-- Michael Sipser, Donner Professor of Mathematics, MIT
(from a Theory of Computation class)
"Be careful what you practice.
Because you will do in combat whatever you
have practiced, no matter how ridiculous."
-- "Shooting in Self-Defense" by Sara Ahrens
----- Techniques -----
"Use only that which works,
and take it from any place you can find it."
-- Bruce Lee
The following low light stuff is not just for cops. It pertains to you.
"Low-light SWAT operations training: 5 tips for flashlight use" by Dan Danaher
"In just a few short days, I had dismissed what I had been trained to do as a
standard operating procedure and adopted the new principles of low-light engagements."
". . . you should be able to maintain your light in your hand while clearing
any type of stoppage with your weapon. Placing the light on the ground, tucking it
under your arm or between your legs just wastes valuable time in a critical moment."
"There is not a single tool or tactic that works for every situation and in
every environment. Officers must learn a variety of applications in a variety of
settings in order to be able to employ the proper selection of tools and tactics
for a given situation and then be able to adapt and modify them fluidly in order
to succeed. Whether to use light, or to operate under the cloak of darkness takes
practice, discipline and understanding. To see without being seen is the greatest
advantage in any tactical environment."
You cannot afford a mistake-of-fact shooting. You don't have limited immunity.
You don't have a union attorney. So, you better have a pre-paid legal policy.
Your flashlight must be bright enough to blind the enemy. If you can blind him,
you might not have to shoot him. That's a big win for you. -- Jon Low
"When it goes down in the dark, are you ready?" by Calibre Press, Inc.
[Don't smoke. Smoking is an act of criminal stupidity. -- Jon Low]
"The What & the Why: Flashlights & Handguns" by Doug Larson
There was a lot of talk at Tac Con 2021 about how to avoid getting shot
by police, the responding officers. One lecturer (I can't remember which one
it was.) told us that about one officer gets shot per year by other responding
officers (blue on blue shooting).
The general consensus was, "Don't have a gun in your hand when the cops show up."
Put it back in your holster and conceal. Don't drop your gun on the ground,
unless ordered to do so by police, because some bad guy will grab it.
Arms straight up, fingers spread to show that you have nothing in your hands.
But, what if the situation dictates that you must have a gun in your hand to
hold the bad guy at gun point or because there is still a real ongoing threat?
We were taught to wear our badge on a necklace and to throw it over our shoulder
so that it displayed on our back. It's the good guys in back of you that you
don't want to shoot you. The bad guys are going to shoot you whether or not
you are wearing a badge (because you've got a gun in your hands and you're
shooting at their buddies).
"I will be charged with impersonating a police officer."
Well, I don't know what the laws are in your state, but in Tennessee you
have to be attempting to get some sort of remuneration or committing a crime
by the deception. Otherwise, it's just a Halloween costume. So, I don't see
how you can be convicted in Tennessee. Besides, what does that matter?
The important thing is DON'T GET SHOT.
"Everyone will see that my badge is fake."
Not likely. In any given jurisdiction there are literally hundreds of
different law enforcement agencies operating. The IRS has agents that carry
badges and pistols (I met one in Hawaii. She was married to a guy I knew.).
The U.S. Postal Service has Inspectors that carry badges and pistols. (My
first ex-wife was one. Wow, I never imagined I'd be able to make a statement
like that. Not setting a very good example for my kids.) If you get a quality
black leather holder for your badge on a quality chain (available at whatever
store the cops buy their gear from, or online) no one will notice you got the
badge out of your box of Cracker Jacks.
"What about those Miss America sashes?"
Ya, that's great. I know a lot of church security teams that use them.
The problem is, how many law enforcement officers are going to recognize them?
Remember when the shit hits the fan, local municipal police (maybe from several
different municipalities), county sheriff deputies, state troopers, and who
knows who else is going to respond. They all don't know about your sashes.
"I don't look like a law enforcement officer. Nobody is going to believe
that I am a LEO."
Don't kid yourself. Many LEOs are fat slobs, effete desk jockeys, or worse.
Did you notice the U.S. Marshals that the presidents appoint? Not the Deputy
Marshals, the Marshals. They are political appointments for reasons other than
fitness. County Sheriffs are elected and don't have to pass any sort of fitness
or age requirement. Besides, it just for the short period that you are in
danger of getting shot.
"Leads on Moving Targets With Pistols" by Mike Ox (with religious commentary)
"Trigger “Prepping” " by John Farnam
"Accordingly, being able to draw and not fire is just as important
as being able to draw and fire immediately!"
". . . the trigger-finger needs to remain in the register position
until/unless sights are visually on-target, and the Operator has consciously,
simultaneously made the decision to shoot immediately."
[John points out that this competition technique, prepping the trigger,
is wrong in combat. You have to understand why. So, you can explain the
reasoning to others. The reasoning will cause a change in behavior. Just
telling the student to do something (or not do something that they have
practiced for years) is insufficient. -- Jon Low]
‘BANK’ DRY-FIRE PRACTICE MEMORY"
by Tiger McKee
"To clear malfunctions I teach a “non-diagnostic binary technique.”
You press the trigger and it doesn’t fire.
Step 1: Load. You attempt to load, but the way the slide feels when you
rack it says, “That didn’t work.”
Step 2: Unload then Load again.
This two-step approach — Load/Unload & Load — is efficient, easy to learn
and to apply. You don’t need to identify what type of malfunction you have,
or decide how to fix it."
[I'm going to have to think about this. If by "load", he means apply
immediate action (tap, rack, point in), then it's what I've been teaching.
Attempting to load when there is a magazine in the magazine well would
require an unload first. Maybe I don't understand what he's saying.
Going to have to think about this. -- Jon Low]
"A Crash Course in Real World Self-Defense" by Eric Flynn
"It's not daily increase but daily decrease - hack away at the inessentials!"
-- Bruce Lee
----- Tactics -----
How do you win a gunfight?
Don't be there.
-- John Farnam
"Your Tactical Training Scenario- Road Rage" by Greg Ellifritz
"Don’t engage. . . . Driving away is the easiest option."
"Top 3 “Getting Off The ‘X’” Myths about Shooting On The Move" by Mike Ox
Neat video comparison of tactics.
"Tactical Moment" by John Holschen
John tells me he hopes to make more of these videos in the future.
"Why You Should Have a Partner for Firearms Training" by Jay Grazio
[Working as a team requires dedicated training and lots of practice.
It complicates the scenario by an order of magnitude. So, if you're not
living with your partner, or working full time with your partner, I don't
see this working very well. -- Jon Low]
Do not approach the bad guy. Do not render first aid to the bad guy.
The bad guy just tried to kill you. If you get close to him, he will kill
you. Do not attempt to restrain the bad guy. Handcuffing is an extremely
dangerous task. For trained military policemen, the experienced criminal
can roll out and kill the MP about 50% of the time (at least that's the
training statistics from when I was an MP).
"Chauvin Trial Day 8 Wrap-Up: Defense Pummels Prosecution with Their Own Expert Witness"
by Attorney Andrew Branca / April 7, 2021
"To counter the prosecution’s suggestions to the jury that Chauvin’s
use-of-force could no longer be justified once Floyd was handcuffed and
prone, Nelson asked Stiger if a suspect in handcuffs can still be a threat?
Yes, answered Stiger. They can bite, kick, run. Yes.
They can get the officer’s weapon?
Even if handcuffed.
The notion that a handcuffed suspect is no longer a threat is not
correct, a handcuffed suspect can continue to present a risk?
Yes, answered Stiger."
[Stiger is an expert witness. The court has determined that Stiger knows
what he's talking about and so can render an expert opinion. So, even if you
are able to handcuff the bad guy, he's still a threat. So, just stay away
from him. -- Jon Low]
"Self Defense with a Firearm Inside Your Car
Your holster may offer excellent accessibility when you’re standing,
but will you be able to draw your gun when belted in and sitting behind the steering wheel?
by Sara Ahrens
"In the unlikely event that you’ll use your vehicle for cover or as a
shooting position, be aware that taking up a shooting position behind the
engine block requires that the muzzle clear the car hood. Otherwise, you’ll
probably shoot your car. This may seem obvious, until you try it. This is a
factor because the hood may not be visible in your sight picture because of
your proximity to it."
[I love Miss Sara's writing and use her material in my classes.
-- Jon Low]
"Breaking Contact (Part I)" by Claude Werner
" For some folks, escaping is a natural response
but for others it is counter-intuitive and needs to be practiced."
You win gunfights by not getting shot.
-- John Holschen
----- Education -----
"You will never get smarter or broaden your horizons
if you're unwilling to learn from others and read."
-- Becca Martin
For those who like to read,
"Recommended Reading" by Greg Ellifritz
QUIPS ARCHIVE by John Farnam
"Concealed Carry: Issues and Perspectives" by John Murphy
A series of webinars on church security and related topics by Michael Mann
"Men Vs Women’s Self Defense" by Nick Hughes
[I think eye gouging is an excellent technique. I teach it. -- Jon Low]
"Cogito, ergo armatum sum." (I think, therefore armed am I.)
-- John Farnam
***** ***** ***** Hardware (which includes you) ***** ***** *****
"I would like to see every
woman know how to handle
guns as naturally as they
know how to handle babies."
-- Annie Oakley
----- Gear -----
“Mission drives the gear train.”
-- Pat Rogers
"Gear check!" by Kathy Jackson
"Here’s a little secret that’s a surprise to a lot of people: carry gear wears out."
"Testing 9mm Home Defense Ammo" by Kevin Creighton
Look at the gelatin blocks and notice how many bullets failed to expand at all.
"Skill Set: Mag Capacity" by Tiger McKee
". . . while mag capacity is a consideration, it shouldn’t be the
deciding factor in what pistol you choose for defensive use."
"Remember, just because your weapon works flawlessly you still need to
practice clearing a stoppage. Most malfunctions are caused by the operator."
"Is the pistol sized to where you can actually carry it, concealed and
"Can you acquire a proper grip, and still get your finger properly
positioned on the trigger? When the pad of the finger is centered on the
face of the trigger it should be at almost a ninety-degree angle to the hand;
this ensures you press the trigger straight to the rear as opposed to pulling
or pushing to one side or the other. Finally, make sure you can manipulate
the weapon – mag release, cycling the slide or any external safety devices."
"There are many factors when selecting a firearm. Reliability, size,
caliber and somewhere down the line – magazine capacity."
"Ultrasonic Gun Cleaners: Are They Worth The Money?" by Patrick Sweeney
". . . any paint, markings, labels or graphics you’ve applied to your
firearm might not survive the experience of being ultrasonically cleaned."
Hey, $600 ain't that much. It's the price of a pistol (the kind I buy
at the pawn shop). [When I got married the second time, the wife would
give me $500 and tell me to go buy a pistol (just about every month).
It wasn't until years later that I realized that she was saying,
"Go play Jonny, the adults are talking."]
Oh, looky looky, Palmeto State Armory has .223 for sale.
Steel cased Tul ammo made in Russia. It's always gone bang in my guns.
"8 Ways to Keep Your Guns From Getting Rusty" by Joseph Albanese
Looky looky, Ammunition Depot has bulk ammunition in stock.
Ya, it's steel case Wolf made in Russia, but it's (relatively) cheap and goes bang.
9mm – 115 Grain – JHP 50 Round Box $44.50
If the modern 9mm pistols and ammo are so good (and they are), why would
anyone still be using a 45 Auto (with its much lower magazine capacity)?
Because those who are observant and objective notice the effectiveness
of the 45 Auto against steel plates (pepper poppers), bowling pins, and body armor
(from news accounts such as the Garland, TX policeman shooting the Jihadists).
Or, perhaps it's from witnessing ballistic gelatin tests in person, which is
quite different from magazine articles about such tests or YouTube.com videos
showing such tests. No, really, I watched Chuck Haggard shoot a lot of different
bullets into ballistic gelatin, it's nothing like the videos or magazine articles.
The authors and videographers have an agenda (to sell product?). (Why do you
think companies send them all kinds of free stuff? Do you think they would like
to continue receiving that free stuff?) When you see it in person, it's different.
For instance, (all other things being equal, which I know is impossible) assuming
the bullets expand as advertised, the 45 Auto cavity is huge compared to the 9mm.
If the bullets don't expand, the penetration of the 45 Auto is much deeper than
the 9mm. You might have to penetrate a car door or car window or heavy clothing
or body parts or . . . to get to a vital organ that will stop the attack.
The predators that you are likely to be shooting are born with excellent armor:
a rib cage and a skull.
"The Buick O’ Truth #1 – Windshields Inside/Out" by Old_Painless
"The heavier the bullet, the less deflection you see." [Deflected up.]
"Lessons learned: Shooting through the windshield of a vehicle is not the ideal
way to engage a threat while you are in a vehicle. The only time one would employ
this tactic is if faced with a threat you cannot move away from. A car is a much
better weapon than a handgun and should be used if at all possible to evade the
threat, or to just flat run the threat over. But if your vehicle is immobilized or
blocked in, shooting through the windshield might be the only means of defense that
you have. It should be noted that armored vehicle glass works 2 ways, so do not try
to shoot through armored vehicle glass."
At the end of the article are related articles that you might want to look at.
Hat tip to Patrick Kilchermann.
"The Buick O’ Truth #2 – Windshields Outside/In" by Old_Painless
"Again, the bigger the bullet, the less deflection you are likely to see."
"Lessons learned: When shooting through the windshield into the passenger
compartment of a vehicle, you need to keep three things in mind:
1. Laminated glass and the angle of the windshield may cause your round to
deflect lower than your point of aim. How much depends on the angle of the
windshield and the weight of the bullet you are using.
2. When fired through laminated glass, bullets tend to partially fragment,
reducing the effectiveness of the bullet and causing there to be secondary
projectiles (bullet jackets, glass, etc.) that can impact the target OR other
people in the vehicle.
3. When firing a bullet into a passenger compartment, there is no guarantee
that it will hit ONLY the target you intend to hit."
At the end of the article are related articles that you might want to look at.
Hat tip to Patrick Kilchermann.
So, heavier bullets deflect less and bullets that fragment are less effective.
An argument for 230 grain ball, copper jacketed round nose, full metal jacket.
Maybe that's why some people use them.
“Your car is not a holster.”
– Pat Rogers
----- Technical -----
"Real fights are short."
-- Bruce Lee
"Need To Know: Calculating Barrel Twist Rate" by Patrick Sweeney
One of the comments after the article says,
"In other words, C is not a constant, but instead a correction
for a flawed empirical formula."
Well, that's not necessarily true. A simplification of a more correct
formula is not a flawed formula. The closer you want to get to "reality",
the more complicated the math gets. Sir Alfred George Greenhill's formula
is for a specific audience, and so the level of math is appropriate for
that audience. You'll find fudge factors in all equations in physics.
And these universal constants change with time. Check CRC Handbook of
Physical Constants and you'll see them change over the years.
In a previous posting, I mentioned that the air resistance to our bullet's
trajectory was proportional to the cube of the speed (Speed, not velocity.
Speed is a scalar, it only has a magnitude. Velocity is a vector, it has
a direction and a magnitude.). Which is true for reasonable pistol bullets
traveling at reasonable pistol bullet speeds in our atmosphere near sea level,
based on data from experiments.
Some nerd who reads this blog called me on my statement and asked for the
mathematical model. I had to look it up in "Differential Equations", 2nd Edition,
by Abraham Cohen, John Hopkins University, 1933. Very old book, out of print,
but in my personal library.
So, we are assuming the cube relationship and solving the differential equation
to get the displacement of the bullet as a function of the time of travel.
I can't use LaTex or Tex, because this blog won't render that code.
So, here goes -- (We are ignoring gravity. Which is reasonable because we
are generally shooting perpendicular to the gravitational field and our travel
times are short.)
--- Excerpt from the book ---
The acceleration of a particle moving in a straight line is proportional
to the cube of the velocity in the opposite direction from the latter. Find
the distance passed over in the time t, the initial velocity being v0, and
the distance being measured from the initial position of the particle, i.e.,
x0 = 0 (the muzzle of your pistol).
The differential equation of motion is
dv/dt = -(k^2)(v^3)
dv / -(v^3) = (k^2) dt
[1 / (v^2)] - [1 / (v0^2)] = 2 (k^2) t
v = v0 / sqrt[ (2 k^2 v0^2 t) + 1 ] = dx/dt ;
x = (sqrt[ (2 k^2 v0^2 t) + 1] - 1) / (k^2 v0)
--- end excerpt from the book ---
dv/dt means the derivative of velocity with respect to time.
k is a constant that depends on bullet density, bullet shape, humidity, air
pressure, air temperature, and so must be determined by experimentation.
k^2 means k, a constant, raised to the second power.
Juxtaposition means multiply.
v^3 means velocity raised to the third power.
dv means the differential of velocity.
dt means the differential of time.
sqrt means the square root of the stuff in the square brackets.
dx/dt means the derivative of displacement with respect to time.
x is the displacement of the bullet.
So, if you plug in the initial speed of your bullet ("muzzle velocity" in
the vernacular) for v0, the time of travel for t, an appropriate k which
can be found in various ballistics books, and calculate for x;
x will be the distanced traveled from your muzzle at time t.
"The shorter the fight, the less hurt you get."
-- John Holschen
***** ***** ***** Instruction ***** ***** *****
Colonel Robert Lindsey to his fellow trainers:
"We are not God's gift to our students.
Our students are God's gift to us."
----- Instructors -----
Remember, the students who require the extra effort are the ones who need us the most!
-- John Farnam
Instructors, you must do an equipment inspection before allowing your students
to use any equipment. (Even their own. Just because they own the equipment does not
mean the equipment works.) You must teach your students how to do an equipment
inspection so that they can inspect their equipment and the equipment of the friends
and relatives that they take shooting.
***** Start of Equipment Inspection *****
Remove all live ammo from the room.
Remove the magazine from the pistol.
Chamber check to make sure the pistol is unloaded.
If the pistol has a magazine safety and will only fire with a magazine inserted in
the magazine well, insert an empty magazine and make sure it is locked in place.
(A magazine safety is a design flaw. You must be able to shoot the round in the
chamber if attacked while reloading.)
Keep the pistol pointed in a safe direction.
Rack the slide.
Press the trigger. You should feel slack (no sear movement) and then a hard stop
(sear engagement). Press through the hard stop to release the firing pin (sear movement).
(If the sear is machined correctly, the trigger release will be smooth and crisp, no
catching, no gritty feel, no friction.) You should hear the click of the firing pin
being driven forward.
Put a pencil in the barrel with the rubber eraser end toward the firing pin and
point the pistol up. The firing mechanism should have enough force to pop the pencil
out of the barrel. (Otherwise, the student is going to get a lot of misfires due to
light firing pin strikes.)
Press the trigger and hold it to the rear. Rack the slide. Release the trigger
to reset the action. There should be a distinct click on reset. (The lack of a
distinct click on reset is a design flaw. Multiple clicks, making it impossible to
determine which click is the reset, is a design flaw.) Take the slack out of the
trigger. (Yes, there will be slack after the reset.) There should be a hard stop.
Press through the hard stop. There should be a distinct click as the firing pin is
Make sure the pistol does not fire when any one of the safeties is on.
Make sure the pistol does not fire when holstering with the safeties off.
(Yes, some ill-fitting holsters will press the trigger when holstering.)
Make sure the pistol does not fire when the slide is out of battery.
Make sure the pistol does not fall out of the holster when you turn it upside
down and shake it. (Yes, even for inside the waistband holsters that use the pressure
of the belt to squeeze the holster against the body.)
Make sure the mouth of the holster stays open, so the student can holster with
one hand. (Two handed holstering causes the student to muzzle his support side hand.)
***** End of equipment inspection. *****
Be careful what you teach.
Because your students will do in combat
whatever you have trained them to do,
no matter how ridiculous.
-- "Shooting in Self-Defense" by Sara Ahrens
----- Pedagogy -----
"The most valuable resource that all teachers have is each other.
Without collaboration, our growth is limited to our own perspectives."
-- Robert John Meehan
"Teaching Tips- Process Before Product" by Greg Ellifritz
Teach positive. Teach what to do. Don't talk about what not to do.
-- John Farnam
In mathematics we often abuse terminology, for instance saying,
"slope of the curve", when of course a curve does not have a slope.
We mean, "slope of the tangent to the curve at the point (x,y)".
In similar fashion, if you give the command, "Load your magazine."
Will the student load his pistol by inserting his magazine and racking
the pistol's slide, or will he insert cartridges into his magazine?
Overloading words, such as "load", to mean two different things in
different contexts, is wrong and dangerous. That is why John Farnam
We load and unload our pistols.
We charge and void our magazines.
Learn unambiguous terminology. Use unambiguous terminology.
Avoid confusing your students.
“The one important thing I have learned over the years
is the difference between taking one’s work seriously and
taking one’s self seriously.
The first is imperative and the second is disastrous.”
-- Prima Ballerina Dame Margot Fonteyn
An instructor should not expect any learning to take
place the first time new information is presented.
-- "Building Shooters" by Dustin Solomon
***** ***** ***** Legal, Political, and Philosophical ***** ***** *****
"Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people.
It is wholly inadequate for the governance of any other.
-- John Adams, October 11, 1798
I just returned from Michael Mann's class on "Protecting Soft Targets".
(8 hours of continuing education credit, ASIS certified,
American Society for Industrial Security)
One of the things that he emphasized was that the individual must have
pre-paid legal (self defense insurance). Because even in a completely
justified use of force, you may be criminally prosecuted for political
reasons having nothing to do with the facts of the incident. And you will
definitely be civilly sued (100% guarantee), even if no criminally charges
are filed against you.
Officer Andrew Delke (Nashville Police) hasn't gone to trial yet and
he's already spent over $3,000,000.
George Zimmerman's defense cost him $8,000,000.
If you're on your church security team, don't put this burden on
your church. Carry your own insurance.
"A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State,
the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."
-- Second Amendment, U.S. Constitution
"Arizona Governor Signs Bill to Preempt Federal Gun Laws"
Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey has signed legislation that aims
to prohibit police and sheriffs from enforcing federal
gun laws that violate the 2nd Amendment.
by Associated Press
"Biden-Harris Administration Announces Initial Actions
to Address the Gun Violence Public Health Epidemic"
The Justice Department, within 30 days, will issue a proposed rule
to help stop the proliferation of “ghost guns.”
The Justice Department, within 60 days, will issue a proposed rule
to make clear when a device marketed as a stabilizing brace effectively
turns a pistol into a short-barreled rifle subject to the requirements
of the National Firearms Act.
The Justice Department, within 60 days, will publish model “red flag”
legislation for states.
The Administration is investing in evidence-based community
The Justice Department will issue an annual report on firearms
The President will nominate David Chipman to serve as
Director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms.
[Be scared. Be very scared. The Democrats are coming for our guns
and they are using the full force of the federal government to do it.
-- Jon Low]
"Battle of Palma" BY JOHN FARNAM
"Governments are instituted among men,
deriving their just power from the consent of the governed."
-- Thomas Jefferson
"Protection?" by John Farnam
"Here's the truth: Biden is lying about AR-15s" by Liz Wheeler
"There Are 20 Constitutional Carry States" By Johnrlott (Dr. John Lott)
The green states don't require a permit to carry. The blue states
shall issue you a permit to carry upon application. Is it even possible
to earn enough money in any of the grey colored states to justify living
there? Notice that those grey colored states have a very high cost of
living compared to the other states.
“Is there no virtue among us?
If there is not, we are without hope!
No form of government, existing nor theoretical, will keep us from harm.
To think that any government, in any form,
will insure liberty and happiness for an dishonorable population
represents the height of self-deception.”
-- James Madison, 1788
***** ***** ***** Survival, Medical, Security, and such ***** ***** *****
"If you prepare for the emergency,
the emergency ceases to exist!"
-- Dr. Sherman House
When it comes to survival, “just barely” beats the heck outta “not quite good enough.”
-- John Connor
***** ***** ***** Miscellany / History / War Stories ***** ***** *****
"Good habits and skill beat luck every time."
-- Sheriff Jim Wilson
"Mirror Neurons, Facial Recognition, and Training Man-Hunters" by Marcus Wynne
A BORDER TALE
SOMETIMES ONE GOOD MAN IS ALL IT TAKES . . .
by John Connor
"2021 Rangemaster Round Up" by Greg Ellifritz
Lawyers, Guns & Freedom: Episode 3, April 1, 2021
Things covered in the video:
Lyft fires female driver who used a pistol to defend herself
from customers attempting to carjack her, even though police declined
to charge her with anything. These woke companies are disgusting.
Talk to your attorney first. A search of your home may be the
smart thing to do to prevent charges against you. It all depends.
Speedy trial (a Constitutional right), in Colorado is 6 months.
The time after which you may move to have all charges dismissed.
Explanation of Miranda Warning. The police can arrest you
without reading you your rights. The Miranda warning does not have
to be read to you verbatim. The police can use any kind of screwed
up wording they want to.
"Do you understand your rights?"
"What don't you understand?"
I don't understand anything.
I assert my right to remain silent. I assert my right to counsel.
If you don't say this, the police can continue to question you forever.
If you invoke your right and start talking, you have waived your rights.
The law is complex. It's not like what you see on TV or the movies.
Or, what your attorney friend (not an expert in self defense law) told you.
Speak with your self defense expert attorney immediately. Your pre-paid
legal policy will have a list of them on retainer that you can call 24/7
(if you have a legit policy).
No, you are not smarter than the police. No, you are not smarter than
the prosecutors. Remember Michael Drejka. After the police declined
to arrest him, because it was self defense; and after the Sheriff
declined to charge him because it was self defense; he gave the police
a 2 hour video recorded interview without his attorney present and
effectively talked himself into a manslaughter conviction.
The penalty for stupidity is spending the rest of your life in prison.
Bump stocks. You can get the same effect with a rubber band or a
belt loop. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals slapped down the BATFE.
Wyoming is a gun sanctuary state.
Many sheriffs are refusing to enforce state gun control laws.
All kinds of neat stuff at:
Practical Eschatology by Docent
The Tactical Professor by Claude Werner
Active Response Training by Gregg Ellifritz
Quips by John Farnam
Rangemaster newsletter by Tom Givens
CIVILIAN DEFENDER by Sherman House
Handgun Combatives by Dave Spaulding
"Women and Guns 2020 Data: The Woman Gun Owner" by Carrie Lightfoot
I always carry business cards with me, just as I always carry a black ink
pen, a cell phone, and a pistol. But, I rarely have occasion to give anyone
my card. I usually fold them up and use them to stabilize a wobbly table.
The other day I got a call from a lady who asked me to sell her a pistol and
teach her how to use it. I asked her who referred her to me. She said she
found my business card under the foot of a table in a restaurant (that I had
forgotten that I had ever gone to). She said that she was praying for guidance
in this matter when see saw my card folded up on the floor under the foot of
the table and decided that God was answering her prayer.
God works in mysterious ways.
I published the course notes for my NRA Defensive Pistol course as a
book on Smashwords.com at
Unfortunately, people in other countries have downloaded the book, which is
free of charge, and are using it for primary training, because they lack
access to any formal training. I have urged them to get in person training
from experts. But, training is not available everywhere. In some countries
after jumping through all the hoops to get a pistol, you can't find anyone
to teach you how to use it correctly. I wonder if I can find a pro-gun
church to send missionaries to do this work?
I took a computer graphics course at the College of Charleston when
I was attending the Citadel and the College of Charleston in a joint program.
(You may remember the criminal that murdered the 9 persons at the AME Church
in Charleston, SC. Before he went to that church, he went to the College of
Charleston, but he saw the armed guards and moved on. As Michael Mann says,
"It’s about prevention, not response.") I remember a problem we had, figuring
out if two objects in 3 dimensions intersect (actually occupied the same space),
touched (were tangent at some point or curve), or did not intersect.
It was quite a bit of work to figure out the algorithm and then to write the
computer program to get the job done correctly including all exceptional and
degenerate cases (especially for concave objects, think two doughnuts, tori,
threaded through each other but not touching each other). I wish we had such
YouTube.com videos back then.
"A Strange But Elegant Approach to a Surprisingly Hard Problem (GJK Algorithm)"
This sort of thing is necessary for Artificial Intelligence to determine
what is or is not the target, if there is anything between the gun and the
target, if there is anything beyond the target in the trajectory, etc.
Remember our RULE IV: BE SURE OF YOUR TARGET. And what's beyond your target
in case you miss or pass through, and what may move between you and your target,
because untrained people will run into your line of fire when they panic in high
stress situations. So, as the trained person, it is your responsibility to not
shoot the friendlies or the innocent bystanders.
All of the automatic gun systems that I know of, such as The Phalanx® weapon
do not follow RULE IV. Neither do the bad guys. So, as the good guy, your
problem is an order of magnitude more difficult than the bad guy's problem.
Are you willing to take on that challenge? God gave you the resources to
execute the mission (you have binocular vision and spatial perception),
but have you trained and practiced enough to execute the mission successfully?
If so, to what probability? Are you willing to accept that confidence level?
If you don't know what level you're at, you can't answer the question. If you
can't answer the question, you are not good to go.
My marksmanship is not too good. I don't have the confidence to take
the 25 yard shot. So, my protocol, that I train to, is to charge in to get
close enough to take the shot. That's what the Marine Corps taught me to do.
So, it's not a big change for me. What is your protocol? That depends on
your marksmanship. What is the probability of your hitting your target at
25 yards? If you can't answer the question, how can you develop a protocol?
"It’s Who You Are On the Outside That Matters" by Chris Cypert
“In the long-run, there is no such thing as ‘luck’.
However, the short-run is longer than many individual lifetimes!”
“Where you come from is gone,
where you thought you were going to never was there, and
where you are is no good unless you can get away from it.”
– Mary Flannery O’Connor
Jonathan D. Low