Category Archives: Self-Defense

Could this case mean nationwide CCW reciprocity?

Culp et al v. Madigan et al

Basically non-residents with CCW permits from their home states who have to be in Illinois for business reasons are disarmed by Illinois law. Since they have little chance of the legislature providing relief they have turned to the courts. Depending on how far this case goes I think there is a chance that a decision could be handed down that would bring full 14th Amendment protections to CCW permit holders.

Why we train

My opinion is things like this are the reason the founders of our nation wanted everyone to be armed and skilled at using those arms. We must all strive to ensure that if such evil ever appears in our nation the notion of “a rifle behind every blade of grass” is reality.

But that’s just my humble opinion.


There are always people who are convinced there is a rational, polite, gentle and civilized way to stop a violent sociopath from raping their eye sockets.

We call these sensitive souls “Morons.”

Michael Z. Williamson

Why our freedoms matter

Shortly after the 9-11 attacks I commented that the best way to beat our enemy was to guard and increase our liberties not restrict them further. Recall that at this time guns were banned based on cosmetic features magazine capacity was (nationally) subject to an arbitrary limit and concealed carry laws had not spread to every state. In light of recent events I am more convinced than ever that we need to not only restore our rights we need to exercise them as well.

This article (subscription required) details possible methods and outcomes of a terrorist attack(s) on the United States. The Washington Times opines that having and exercising our right to bear arms is one way to ensure our safety. Monderno reports on a potential threat to soldiers and their families in their homes. Australia recently stopped an ISIS plot to abduct and behead Australian citizens.

This is not comforting news and barely scratches the surface of what terrorist groups are capable of. Granted not all threats can be stopped by armed citizens, but having a well armed citizenry makes it much more difficult to conduct hostile actions on American Soil. So if you don’t have your permit (and need one to carry), get one. If you do have one or don’t exercise your rights, start. Finally keep an eye on your elections Local, State and Federal. If a candidate does not support your right to keep and bear arms its a sure thing they think little of the rest of your liberties too.

If You Live in St. Louis Now is NOT the Time to Buy Your First Gun

This title is not likely to make a few of my pro-gun acquaintances upset, but I believe it to be sound advice in spite of the current civil unrest. Allow me to explain before you march with your pitchforks and torches.

Deciding to prepare to defend yourself with lethal force is a heavy decision. It is also one that requires some preparation you can’t just go buy a gun, a box of ammunition, maybe fire a few rounds at a range stick it in the closet and assume you are protected. A firearm is much like a musical instrument, you need training and practice so that when it comes time (and hopefully it never does) you can use it proficiently.

So what should a defenseless St. Louisan do? In my opinion they should do the same thing as an armed St. Louisan. Pay attention to the news reports so you know where the trouble spots are, keep an eye out for potential trouble and avoid both if you can.

Once things settle down if you still think you want to add a firearm to your security plan I heartily encourage it. I think you should start by doing some research before heading down to the gun store though. I recommend you start with Massad Ayoob’s “In the Gravest Extreme” due for an update very soon. Other books I recommend include “Counter Ambush” and “Defend Yourself” by Personal Defense Network’s Rob Pincus.

Once you buy your gun, it’s time to get training. The NRA has thousands of certified instructors where you can go to learn the basics. I also recommend getting a CCW permit if you selected a handgun as your defensive firearm. Then you should look into advanced training. If you’re in the St. Louis area I have heard good things about Asymmetric Solutions, you can also look at courses from Combat Focus Shooting (headed up by the previously mentioned Rob Pincus). Additionally you could attend courses at Gunsite, Thunder Ranch and the Ayoob Group. To keep your skills sharp I recommend participating in matches like those put on by the International Defensive Pistol Association (IDPA).

Purchasing a firearm for self-protection is not a decision to be taken lightly. It is one that will require careful forethought and a commitment to learning and practicing a lifesaving skill. It is not something one should do in a rush, but rather done in a careful methodical manner where you examine all of your options and make the choices that best suit you.

Someone fixed the commercial. Gunsense saves lives

Update: Apparently MDA doesn’t like inconvenient truths so the abused DMCA to yank the video. Here’s another link.

Update #2 in case the second link gets taken down this video should survive.

On Being Consistent

No knows for certain who first coined the phrase “Beware the man who only has one gun. He probably knows how to use it!” However there a lot of wisdom in those two sentences that the average individual would do well to learn. As rob Pincus explains in this video, When choosing firearms to protect you and your loved ones having them all work in the same way makes it easier for everyone to operate them under stress. An example of this would be a husband and wife who both carry and shoot Glock 19s, have his and hers Remington 870s and his and hers AR-15s for protection. If the absolute worst happened and one were incapacitated and the other needed a working firearm they could grab their spouse’s and be able to use it as if it were theirs.

My own efforts in this regard have not been entirely successful, but I think I’m pretty close. When I was younger and owned fewer firearms this was easy to do. I either had a 1911 pistol or a S&W revolver for a sidearm, my shotgun was a simple Winchester pump action and my rifle a surplus SAFN chambered in a round well suited to the desert terrain I lived in. Today things are more complicated because as a firearms enthusiast I have a variety of firearms that all work differently. Thankfully, I don’t HAVE to employ them all in a defensive role. Instead I employ a Glock and/or Kahr pistol and an AR-15. Even this combination has an issue though as the preferred method for chambering a round in a Glock is to slingshot the slide, while Kahr recommends using the slide lock to release the slide to chamber a round.

Many instructors, notably Rob Pincus and Clint Smith advocate the slingshot method for loading a firearm. This approach makes sense as it is a gross motor skill that utilizes stronger muscled in the upper body making it desirable for those without much upper body strength. It also creates a consistency as not every gun has the slide stop (if it has one) in the same place but all will release the slide if there is no empty magazine to push the slide stop into position. If you have a gun that doesn’t lock back the slingshot method will still charge the gun. Kahr’s recommendations meant I would either have to get used to using two different methods to reload my pistols or I could do something to ensure consistency. I’ll tell you what I did next time.