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Ok so this is going to be a little bit of a rant.

But it needs to be said because in this day and age — with the internet making practically all the information of the world available at your fingertips — we’re not suffering from a lack of knowledge sources or information to potentially learn from.

No. In modern life, you need to carefully sift through an incredible amount of information and pick out what’s good and bad.

So here’s your warning/rant for today.

Don’t Do Stupid Sh*t Just Because “Special Forces XYZ Does It That Way!

I don’t mean to pick on the Krav Maga experts and their followers, but it seems like it’s always something with these guys.

I wrote an article where I explained how “Israeli Carry” (Condition 3, no round in the chamber) got started. And why it’s obsolete now. (As a followup, you can Watch as Israeli carry nearly gets an Israeli Police Officer stabbed to death when you click here if you insist on carrying that way.)

But this isn’t about Israeli carry …

This IS about not doing stupid sh*t just because “Special Forces XYZ does it!

Here’s a new one to me …

Israeli Krav Maga “Tactical Movement” Shooting Position. Just Don’t.

There’s a Facebook vid that’s making the rounds …

In it, the instructor demonstrates a modified retention/CQB shooting position that goes like this.

Draw

Blade the body …

Shield yourself with an elbow out …

And put the pistol on the crook of your elbow there.

Looks like a perfect little place to stick the gun huh? Nice little spot, like it was made to cradle your pistol barrel …

The guy shoots a target and doesn’t shoot himself. It works out for him.

But do me a favor?

Just Don’t.

Just because you see this guy who was in a cool military service (Israeli something or other …) doesn’t mean you should mimic what he’s doing.

There’s a ton of problems with mimicking this …

Probably, what should be most obvious, is that you will eventually shoot a round through your elbow. If you’re really using this in a situation where people are making contact with you — bumping you around, grabbing for your gun, fighting you, etc (as is the justification in the video) — then your shielding arm IS going to get pulled away from you just enough to let the gun muzzle slip down to where it’s pointing into your elbow and you’re going to need a new elbow after you smoke a round through the one you were born with.

Just saying.

If you don’t believe me, clear a pistol for dry-fire or grab an airsoft gun and “war game” this one with a buddy. Basically get in a fight with him trying to grapple with you while you try this.

I’m sure there’s other reasons to not do this, but I just don’t have the energy right now …

If you’re going to shoot from retention, then check out my post where an Ex-Navy SEAL Shows You The Basics of Close Quarters Shooting.

There’s a much better position for compressed shooting. It usually looks something like this:

Former Navy SEAL and professional Firearms trainer Kyle Defoor demonstrating shooting from retention.

Retention shooting/shooting in close quarters usually looks something like this depending on the application. The gun is in a compressed position, so it still can’t be grabbed (easily). The other hand/arm is WAY out of the way because shooting yourself with the gun in retention is a very, VERY possible scenario.  This is pretty basic/proven stuff and it should stay that way.

Just because something is “cool” looking or “new” or taught by “Special Forces” or they (supposedly) do it that way — doesn’t mean you should too.

Oh by the way:

Mini Rant: Stop Saying “Special Forces” Unless You Mean “Special Forces”!

First, don’t do the dumb stuff.

Second, don’t do it and then justify it by saying “Special Forces” does it if you don’t really mean “Special Forces”!

As explained here, “Special Forces” is a specific term for a particular group of soldiers in the US Army (also commonly called the “Green Berets”.)

Because not only do you look dumb for justifying your dumb/not well thought out techniques by saying you’re copying “Special Forces XYZ“, but you look double dumb for mis-using “Special Forces”.

Anyways, Enough Negativity. Don’t Try This One At Home Folks!

I really mean no disrespect to the instructor in the video.

I don’t know who he is, his background, or whether he could kill me in a 1-on-1 fight to the death.

And I’m not linking to his page.

I’m not starting a fight.

I don’t care.

He may be a great guy, and everything else he teaches is solid.

I’m just showing the technique that was demo’d in the video and telling you not to do it.

But the BIGGER lesson here has nothing to do with this particular technique and definitely nothing to do with this particular instructor …

MY KEY POINT: Just because you saw some “Super JSOC Jedi Special Operator Ninja” show a technique on the internet, you shouldn’t try copying it because they do it. Apply critical thinking first.

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6 462

There are still millions of people in America that think simply banning guns will make it so that criminals and terrorists can’t access them.

That, my friends, is just dumb.

One of the easiest ways to prove or disprove this assertion is to simply look at other countries in the world that — unlike the USA — have practically banned guns and where there is no “gun culture” of normal citizens/civilians buying, using, carrying guns.

Does it work?

In a word? NO.

Gun Control Is 100% Useless In Stopping Terrorists & Criminals

As I pointed out in my article titled Why More Gun Control Will Not Stop Terrorist Attacks Like The Orlando Night Club Shooting, the killer in Orlando passed multiple background checks AND personal investigation by the FBI to go on to commit a mass murder in a “gun free” zone.

In my other article Why It’s IMPOSSIBLE To Actually Ban Guns, I pointed out that guns are actually really easy to simply make at home.

Even in some alternate universe — where the earth suddenly had ZERO guns — terrorists would just make them at home.

In another article called Terrorists ALWAYS get around useless “gun control” laws we talked about how Tel Aviv Terrorists Used Homemade Submachine Guns to attack Israelis …

In short, there is plenty of evidence to show that when guns are banned — terrorists and other criminal scum will still acquire them — and the only people that follow the gun control laws are the law abiding citizens that are then turned into sitting ducks.

Here’s something interesting I just found …

10,000+ “Illegal” Guns — Including Anti-Aircraft & Machine Guns — Seized In Spain

A story on the DailyMail reported that 10,000+ “deactivated” guns had been bought by a “gang” in Spain from online, then repaired and were being sold illegally throughout Europe.

They report an estimated black market value of around €10 million (£8.75 million) for the seized guns.

The collection is said to include more than 10,000 “assault rifles”, machine guns, revolvers, pistols and 400 grenades and shells

The DailyMail writes:

“Europol, which supported the operation, revealed the firearms were sold in Spain, France and Belgium.

It was previously reported that terrorists are finding it easier than ever to get guns because of the flow of illegal weapons flowing from the Balkans into the heart of western Europe.”

Meanwhile, All The Law Abiding Spanish People Sit On Their Hands With No Guns To Protect Themselves …

It’s enough to make you sick, but once again it’s proof that Gun Control only works to keep guns out of the hands of the people who need them.

What do you think?

Are you surprised that criminals are getting “Deactivated” guns and restoring them to use in crimes?

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17 566

Do you have a gun for home defense?

I see you nodding your head “yes”

(actually, I can’t see you as you read this on the internet I’m not the NSA/CIA …)

But maybe you like guns and shooting them …

What’s the BEST home defense gun for a beginner though? That’s what we’ll tackle today. Check it out:

What Do YOU Think Is The BEST Home Defense Gun? Pistol, AR-15, or Shotgun?

I like this video from John Lovell, where he goes through and “rates” each type of gun in multiple categories, then weighs them out.

Check it out and see if you agree with his conclusion for the BEST home defense gun for beginners:

What Do You Think?

As I’ve written before, I agree with John’s choice of the AR-15 for beginners as I’ve covered extensively in my article “Why I Plan To Switch From A Shotgun To AR-15 For Home Defense

But what about you?

Do you agree or disagree?

(Forgive me for being sexist and assuming here) If you were not home and your wife was all alone and had to grab a pistol, shotgun or AR-15, which one do you want her to grab?

Leave your answer in the comments!

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24 831

Question: Where do you shoot a bad guy that’s doing bad stuff if you want him to STOP doing bad stuff to you?

Answer: Most people would say “Center mass” right? Aim for the chest?

(Or “upper thoracic cavity” if they want to sound smart)

After all, that’s the (arguably) easiest place to shoot and hit because it’s the biggest — it also contains some of the most important human “machinery” — the heart, aorta, lungs, etc

Second to this, most gun guys will say the head.

All great answers, but is there any even better target to aim for? Maybe.

Should You Shoot Him In The D*ck?

I recently ran into this great little video of Clint Smith from Thunder Ranch, titled, “SHOOT THEM IN THE CROTCH”:

While the concept is definitely not new to me, I picked this particular video for discussion because, for one, it’s super entertaining, and two, I believe Clint brings up some great points:

1.) SPEED TO FIRST SHOT: If you’re in an entangled gun fight at close range — where the bad guy is putting his hands on you or could possible do that — then when you draw your gun, the first thing your muzzle will cross on his/her body is the groin. So why not shoot them there first?

2.) BYPASSES BODY ARMOR: If the bad guy is wearing body armor (most bad guys these days, something you should count on) then this is an excellent way around it. Even with a pistol, because there’s no body armor there, you can shoot them in the groin/crotch and it works.

3.) A “GOOD INTRODUCTION”: Keep in mind, Clint says “it’s not a fight winning hit, but it’s a good introduction”. If the first shot is to the groin, then that’s not a bad way to start — as with most fights the guy that gets the first hit/injury typically wins.

The Origins Of The Pelvic Shot …

The first time I heard of the groin/pelvic shot was from John Mosby. He writes (emphasis his):

“The point-of-aim on a particular target will be dependent on mission, range, and situation. I’m fond of citing the platitude, “Hips and heads kids, hips and heads. All the bad guys are wearing body armor these days!” (In fact, I’m pretty sure I made that up two years ago. If anyone heard it previous to 2011, let me know where, and from whom, and I’ll gladly cite them as the source, if the speaker can verify it as original to them…). The truth is, in a world of relatively inexpensive, rifle-level ballistic plate armor, it’s not a bad ideal to shoot for (no pun intended, seriously). The pelvic girdle is rich in major blood vessels and nerve centers, and of course, the pelvis itself, is a major structural element of the skeletal system. Having it shattered by a high-velocity rifle round (even a poodle-shooting varmint round), makes walking a little uncomfortable. Unfortunately, while this MAY result in a non-ambulatory combatant (I once walked 150M with a broken hip, carrying somewhere around 100 pounds of kit, albeit not very fast…), it may not reliably take him completely out of the fight. After all, he can still hold and shoot a weapon, if somewhat distractedly. Of course, putting two or three or ten rounds into a dude’s hips (or just one if you’re a real man and shoot the magical rhino stopping .308…) makes that rapidly moving head move a lot less rapidly, subsequently making it easier to shoot…..and solid head shots generally do take a dude categorically out of the fight.”

John told me personally when I asked him about  it, by the time he deployed to Afghanistan, that it was pretty much their standard SOP to shoot the hips first then follow up from there where the next shot would get the best effect as needed.

Now, this makes perfect sense with rifles because getting shot by practically any rifle round in the groin — 5.56 or 7.62×39 especially — is really going to mess someone’s day up …

But does it transfer over to the civilian paradigm where you’re conceal carrying a relatively impotent handgun caliber such as 9mm, .40 or .45 ACP?

Dave Spaulding Weighs In On The Pelvic Shot …

Dave Spaulding is someone I’ve yet to take a class from, but he’s on the short list. He weighs in (emphasis mine):

“I have been looking at the issue of handgun “stopping power” for decades now and have come to the conclusion that handguns are not impressive man stoppers regardless of caliber or bullet design. While we currently have THE BEST combative handgun ammo ever designed, all the logical person must do is hold a cartridge in their hand, consider its weight and size and compare it to the mass that is the human body and it is not hard to see why such a small, light projectile will likely have limited impact on the human organism quickly. Just hold a .45 caliber projectile in front of the human chest cavity and you will see it is pretty small. In order to get any type of rapid result, it will have to hit a pretty important part of the body. The question is, is the pelvis “important”? Should it be a primary target?

In my classes, I use a simple target that highlights the upper chest cavity and head, a 6 x 14 inch rectangle that includes the center of the skull and the vital organs of the heart, aorta, major vessels and spinal column. Few dispute this area as “vital”. The head can be considered controversial since handgun rounds have been known to not penetrate the skull but I, personally, discount this. I have been on the scene twice when humans have been hit in the skull by a handgun round that did not penetrate and on both occasions, the person was knocked off their feet much like a batter that is hit in the head with a baseball. I have received this same feedback from others. My concern with head shots is the lack of “back stop” to catch a round that is not well placed. The center chest has the remainder of the torso to help slow/catch a round that does not hit the center chest while a round that misses the head goes over the shoulder. I counsel my students to use the head shot for close distances where they know they can hit or for times they can take a low posture and shoot upwards. 25 to 50 yard head shots? Up to you, I guess. You might be able to do it on the square range, but the pandemonium of a real gunfight, where non-hostiles might be in your battle space, is an entirely different thing. Consider carefully…

I believe the high chest and head is a much better “strike zone” for combative pistolcraft than I do the pelvic girdle. I do not emphasize it in my classes, but I also do not take to task those instructors that do. In the end, the region of the body you will shoot for is that which is available to you when you fire your shots! We will all take what is offered to us, but if there is a hierarchy of shot placement, the pelvic girdle would be ranked below the chest and head…and least in my mind.”

So Dave points out that pistol terminal ballistics being what they are, the pelvic shot is not a “fight stopper”.

But, he doesn’t vehemently disagree with the notion.

And most importantly, he points out that the region of body you will shoot for is “that which is available when you fire your first shots!

Suarez Says To Forget The Pelvic Shot …

Gabe Suarez is rarely wishy-washy in his opinions. His thoughts on the Pelvic shot are no different (emphasis mine):

“Insofar as the Pelvic Girdle Shots go, it does not take a degree in medicine to realize that the pelvic bone is not connected to the hands, nor the brain, and that a pelvic shot – even if successful – will not stop a terrorist from continuing to fire, or setting off an explosive.

In order to break and destabilize the pelvis, it must be broken in two places. Those places are near where the two pockets would be in a man wearing Levis.

They are far smaller than the area suggested for a brain shot. So a proponent of the pelvic shot wants you to hit not one, but two targets that are smaller and harder to hit than the head shot’s highest value area…and two targets that will prevent neither return gunfire nor explosives detonation.

Stupid idea, do not take such advice.”

Gabe Suarez points out — again talking pistol ballistics here — that you have to hit the pocket areas to destabilize the pelvic girdle with a handgun and it might be harder to hit than the head/face/neck that Gabe tends to recommend.

That’s true.

And it’s worth noting that Dave Spaulding typically teaches his classes using his own target designs and, as you can see in the picture below, they have two black target zones in the “jean pocket” area of the body — that are used to run drills — but also represent these pelvic/ball socket shots (you can see Dave’s targets behind him where they’re taped to the target — with the paper with two little rectangles on the hip area):

And he also used to have custom targets available from LE Targets called the HCT-01 but I can’t find a direct link right now and they look(ed) like this:

Besides being able to run drills from HandgunCombatives — the black squares made good hip/pelvic targets.

So Should You Shoot Him In The D*ck Or What?

To clarify, let’s talk about why shooting bad guys in the groin/pelvic/hips/d*ck is a viable option …

1.) First you have to understand, from a civilian perspective, a pistol shot to the groin/pelvic area is NOT going to be a fight stopper.

Then again, with handgun rounds, even a shot to the face/head is NOT guaranteed to be a fight stopper.

See the story on this page where a police officer shot a man 14 times with .45-cal. ammunition – six of those hits in supposedly fatal locations.

The final three shots that the police officer fired were into the suspects head — one through each side of his mouth and one through the top of his skull into his brain.

In case you missed that, the officer shot the man 11 times with .45 and then 3 more times in the HEAD before the guy finally stopped fighting.

Autopsy later showed the guy was not on drugs, they reported “Sheer determination, it seemed, kept him going, for no evidence of drugs or alcohol was found in his system.”

Some people are just hard to kill. Period.

2.) Second, if you agree with that premise, then going back to the original video and quote from Clint Smith, “It’s a good introduction”. In other words, if the opportunity presents itself, it’s a great spot to shoot someone.

3.) Third, it is definitely an area that is NOT covered by most body armor. Which means it’s a viable option to keep in mind — along with head shots — for terrorists/active shooters/anyone that you think might be wearing body armor.

4.) Finally, in real combat, ideal target zones are typically “whatever presents itself”

Which is what you’ve heard me say, John Mosby say, Dave Spaulding say, and I’d venture I could find a quote where Gabe Suarez said it at one point too. Most all shooting instructors I’ve trained with point out that aiming and shooting for “center of mass” means that you aim and shoot for the “center of mass” of whatever target is available to you at that time.

The Bottom Line Is This …

The pelvic shot is a viable target area, but it’s controversial — probably moreso than head/face shots — because of how some people love it and some don’t.

Probably, in reality like most things in the combative world, it’s misunderstood.

In a real fight, whether with guns or bare hands, you should probably hit whatever targets on the human body you can hit, then keep hitting them — until the bad guy stops doing the bad stuff to you that caused you to need to shoot him in the first place.

In other words, yes a shot to the pelvic girdle/groin — with a handgun — may not be the most “ideal” shot, but it may or may not give you time to followup with a fight ending shot to the brain, heart, etc

And in a fight, the guy that gets the first hit/injury usually wins (again, gun fight or hand to hand combat, it makes no difference).

My verdict? If a bad guy is doing bad stuff to you and you need to shoot him, and the groin shot presents itself?

Why NOT shoot him in the d*ck?

You can always shoot him again–bullets are cheap and that’s why they invented double-stack magazines 🙂

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11 1575

If you’ve ever tried to shoot accurately …

Or you’ve been missing a target and you can’t figure out what in the HECK you’re doing wrong …

Then you’ve probably discovered the horrible concept of “flinching” when shooting and how it can totally mess up your shot!

Today, I’m going to introduce to you an idea that can almost completely eliminate flinching when shooting and do it practically overnight. Sound like a HUGE promise? Check it out:

What Is Flinching And Why Is It Such a Big, Bad Deal?

The fact is, that different trainers use different terms, so for this article I’m simply talking about any UN-intended human reactions or movement of your arms, hands, fingers, etc when you break a shot that causes the bullet to not go where your sights were aimed.

I recently read this article by Julie Golob and she says:

“Hello, my name is Julie Golob, and I flinch.

That’s right…I’m a professional competition shooter, a seven-division practical shooting ladies champion with over 50 world and national titles. How could I possibly flinch when I shoot?

Every now and again, though, you’ll see me flinch. It can happen when I am shooting cold, with no practice. It can happen when I know I will experience significant recoil. It can happen when I feel pressure to perform. My eyes may close just as I break the shot, but training, discipline, knowledge of my firearm and recoil control techniques result in a minor discrepancy of hits on the target… or a quick follow-up shot.

Flinching is a natural defense mechanism that plagues many shooters, and yes, even seasoned ones. A flinch is a natural human reaction, defined as a quick, nervous movement of the face or body as an instinctive reaction to surprise, fear, or pain.

When you shoot a firearm, there is literally an explosion happening inches in front of your face. It’s completely natural to slam your eyelids shut, tense up, and…flinch.”

To review …

Shooting accurately is simple.

Simple, but not necessarily easy 🙂

Like “The Great One”, Rob Leatham, says, these are the three secrets to shooting better:

1. Hold The Gun REALLY tight! We don’t have all day to line up our sights and take our time and because we may need to shoot multiple, fast, accurate follow-up shots — we need to hold the gun really tight.

2. Point the gun at the target where you wanna hit it (That means get the proper sight alignment and sight picture).

3. Pull the trigger without moving the gun and/or sights. And according to “The Great One” THIS is the most important part of the process and it has more to do with #1 (Gripping/Holding the gun) than it does #2 (aiming).

It’s number 3 that’s the problem for most all of us.

Breaking The Shot By Engaging The Trigger Without Disturbing The Sights Is The Most Important Part of Shooting!

Reading what Julie wrote, and thinking on the Great One’s thoughts, and then I recently was training with the “Mountain Guerrilla” John Mosby when we were talking about the unique way he runs drills at the range.

(This is the secret.)

You don’t flinch — or you will notice if you’re flinching — when you dry fire.

(Dry fire is of course shooting with NO bullets, just practicing the three steps of holding the gun, aiming the gun, and breaking the trigger with no shots fired.)

Yet, if you ONLY dry fire you never get used to real shooting …

And if you ONLY shoot live fire, you quickly develop a flinch without noticing it …

Which leads us to …

#1 Way To (Almost) Completely Eliminate Flinching When Shooting!

Combine dry fire and live fire in the same session.

I learned this simple — but brilliant — concept from John Mosby and it’s called the “5+1 Drill”:

The 5+1 Drill

It requires the shooter to perform five dry-fire iterations of an exercise for every single live-fire iteration.

This is useful beacuse it ensures you are practicing the exercise correctly, without performance inhibitions due to the flinch mechanism as a result of recoil aversion. It also allows you to ensure that you are not “jerking” the trigger, or otherwise interfering with your sight-picture as you break your shots.

In today’s reality of limited, extremely expensive ammunition sources, this is particularly beneficial, because for every single round you actually fire in training, you’ve performed a minimum of six practice repetitions of that shot. As the old saying goes, “The more you sweat in training, the less you’ll bleed in combat.”

This is a simple, but VERY effective way to train.

It will keep you from hammering away in live fire and training yourself to flinch, because you are practicing piss poor repetitions.

But it will also keep you from fooling yourself with a bunch of dry fire reps that feel and look “fast and accurate”, but really when you load up your gun and actually shoot at the same target, you are not hitting it!

The more and more I think about it, it’s the absolute BEST way to train any drill or shooting technique.

Give This a Try!

If you find yourself flinching at the range, or you simply can’t make progress on a certain aspect of your shooting … then give this simple concept a try.

I think you’ll find it helps! If you already do this or something like it then please leave a comment below.

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10 866

This is a review of sights that I have not yet purchased.

Actually, that’s not true. I’ve bought them, but I couldn’t wait for them to get here before I tell you about them!

That’s how great I KNOW they will be.

Have I gone crazy?

Not at all. Let me ‘splain what I’m talkin’ bout:

Why Trijicon HD’s Are The Best Handgun Sights

Let’s face it: stock Glock sights suck.

In fact, most handgun sights from the factory suck.

That’s why most people go looking for aftermarket sights.

Luckily, one of the very first aftermarket handgun sights that I tried was the Trijicon HD sights. I loved them!

I use the orange and it’s so fast and so bright and easy to see it’s not even funny.

I’ve raved about them before, and I even listed them under 3 Of The Best Handgun Sight Options For Older People Who Have Trouble Seeing Their Sights because I believe in them so much.

The One BIG Problem With Trijicon HD Night Sights

The ONLY problem I have ever had with the Triji HD’s is that the front sight is wide.

Like, really wide.

Which, on the one hand is a good thing at close distances because it makes it very easy to see. That means you shoot really fast and accurate enough at 15yds and in.

Good stuff.

But whenever I would shoot out at 25yds or further — the front sight width was so wide that — for me and my limited skills — it was hard to be precise.

I guess I’m not the only one to complain about this because recently Trijicon released their all new Trijicon HD XR™ Night Sight Set.

Introducing The Trijicon HD XR™ Night Sight Set

According to Trijicon:

“The Trijicon HD XR™ Night Sights were specifically designed with the ever evolving challenges of law enforcement agencies in mind.

Building on the features of the current HD™ Night Sights, the Trijicon HD XR™ night sights are for the next level of advanced target identification and engagement at increased distances. A thinner front sight post allows shooters to have a larger field of view which further enhances the ability to identify targets, expedite engagements and see location of hits on target at longer distances.

Pistol shooters that need the advantage of a more precise engagement in any light can count on the Trijicon HD XR™ Night Sights. “

So the only change?

The front sight is a wee bit thinner and taller!

What’s the difference?

The regular Trijicon HD’s are 0.144 in wide … and 0.268 in tall:

The Trijicon HD XR sights are 0.122 in wide and 0.283 in tall:

 

That Big of a Difference?

Everyone seems to think so …

The TruthAboutGuns has a review with this comparison pic:

 

And this awesome pic as well showing all that equal height and light on the sides of this front sight:

 

 

And this video by some sponsored Trijicon shooters show you all the details of both the HD’s and the new HD XR thinner sights:

 

Anyways, I’m really excited about these bad boys.

I’m such a big fan of the original Trijicon HD sights that I can’t see how this one change — the one change I wanted! — could go wrong.

I ordered some up from here on amazon and can’t wait to get them on my pistol and test at the range ASAP!

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5 1670

The “tactical shooting” training industry has grown exponentially over the last decade plus …

From a few schools, generally run by competitive IPSC/IDPA or Three-Gun shooters or by former LEO with some military background in there years before, we’ve seen an industry grow, with thousands of schools, ranging from mom-and-pop operations run by some local fellow, to a major growth in schools run by military SOF veterans with known, bona fide mankilling credentials. While the merits of one versus the other are certainly open to debate, one thing has really leapt out at me, as I watched this growth occur.

We spend a lot of time, as teachers—if we’re any good at it, at least—telling people to “focus on the fundamentals,” and “there are no advanced gunfights.” Despite that, there seems to have been an interesting trend to move away from the basic, fundamental drills that most of us practiced as we were learning the skills, to more “advanced,” “dynamic” drills. The most obvious of these is the trend to get away from simple “snap drills,” often derided as “UP! Drills,” after the shooter command of, “Shooter, ready?…and…up!” I’ve watched as guys coming out of a variety of units, with legit backgrounds as shooters, both SOF and Big Green, do anything they can to move away from this very basic, almost mind-numbingly monotonous drill. I understand that the basic snap drill can be overused, but almost too often, it has become underutilized, leaving many of its greatest benefits laying in the dust with the bathwater.

How is that possible? Trainers had a tendency to rely on the drill—especially in the military, but no less in the civilian training industry—because it’s simple, easy to run on a square range with a large number of moderately—or even barely—trained shooters. That’s good, because it’s actually a very useful drill. In many ways, in fact, it is the single most useful drill we have for teaching effective combat shooting, whether with carbine or pistol.

The problem arises due to a lack of understanding of how to leverage the maximum amount of benefit out of that drill. When it simply becomes a rote thing, with no metric for performance and improvement, then it loses the vast majority of its potential for benefit.

The Benefits

So, how can the most basic, beginner level close-quarters marksmanship drill actually be the most important drill available? Well, as any good shooter—and all the great shooters—will tell you, advanced shooting skill is simply a mastery of the fundamentals. That’s obvious though, right?

The fact is, the single most important shot you will take in a fight, regardless of all other contextual considerations, is the first shot you fire. It doesn’t matter what gun you’re running. That shot needs to be accurate enough, and arrive soon enough, to rob the opposition of the initiative. So, developing speed and accuracy for that first shot is critical. The best way to do that? Master the snap drill, and make it a religious part of your practice regimen.

What about all the cool-guy, go-fast drills that have you performing mag-dump after mag-dump on the range, focused on split-times, transitions between targets, and all the other “chicks-dig-it,” Jedi gunfighter tricks? I’m not saying those are unimportant. What I am saying is this;

1.) If you smoke your first round into the dude’s grape…or, well, pretty much anywhere on his body, there is a significant chance that it is going to interfere with his actions long enough to buy you a margin of time. If your split-times between follow-up shots are slow, but you’ve “interrupted his OODA loop” (I’ve really grown to hate that term!!!) by putting a hole in him, guess what? You’re probably going to get a chance to shoot him again, even with a slow split-time.

Yes, you should be able to engage with multiple, aimed rounds, at a high rate of fire, in order to “shoot him to the ground.” Nevertheless, getting that first hit on meat will go a long way towards allowing you to get the others, even if you’re not a Master or Grandmaster competitive shooter.

2.) One of the most important things we learn when we do the snap drill correctly, is exactly how much precision we need, in order to get as fast as we can get, at different ranges. I need a lot less precision with my carbine, to get a head shot, in less than one second, at 10 meters, than I do to get a torso shot in less than one second, at 100 meters. This carries over to target-to-target transitions, because our neural pathways, between eyes, brain, and trigger finger, are being exercised and trained to recognize how much is “enough.” Accuracy and precision are critical, but there is a lot of truth to the old adage that, “perfect is the enemy of good enough.”

3.) Building the neural pathways to build a solid, stable, durable, firing position that allows you to get a fast, first-round hit at various ranges, will facilitate all the other shooting skills you need with that particular weapon.

How Do I Do It Right?

The first step in utilizing snap drills to their full benefit is establishing metrics. How are you going to define success. Just by hitting a silhouette? That’s a standard that caused a whole load of heartache within most of the military, when after-action reviews started coming back, that recognized the importance of precision in close-quarters marksmanship in places crowded with no-shoots, like a house in downtown Baghdad, full of women and children.

Seriously, being able to hit a silhouette at 10-25 M is a really, really bad joke. It’s so far beyond simple that it’s below inadequate, if you consider yourself a trained shooter. Step one then, should be defining a more stringent metric for accuracy. I firmly believe, if you’re aspiring to “trained shooter” status, at distances out to 10-25M, or closer, a target the size of an index card should be the metric. For casual shooters, or the average student, “simply” concerned about home defense, I MIGHT be willing to concede that A-Zone hits on an IPSC silhouette are adequate. I tend to be lazy, and don’t like to walk downrange after every shot to record, so I tend to resort to using a 6” steel plate at anything over 10 meters, which is still roughly half of an A-Zone.

At 50-100 meters, I believe that a C-Zone silhouette is adequate for most purposes and most people. If you look at the size of it, it is roughly the same size as the center portion of the upper thoracic cavity of an adult male. That’s “enough” precision, even at 200 meters. If you end up being a little outside in the real world? A rifle round will still ruin his week, and still slow him down enough to allow you a follow-up shot. Further, there’s nothing stopping you from using a smaller target, once you’ve gotten consistent on the C-Zone. When I got to the point that I could hit the C-Zone in less than 1.00 seconds, 99% of the time, I graduated to shooting an 8” plate.

One issue that I’ve seen a lot in training classes that I’ve taught, is that we tend to have a traditional, American view of marksmanship as being, “I kin shoot a gnat off a fly’s butt at 300 yards, by Gawd!” People are looking for far more precision than is necessary. Don’t get me wrong, I love shooting for precision. I start and finish every range session running dot drills to master marksmanship precision. Unfortunately, that level of precision needed to punch a one-hole group with ten rounds may take more time than we’re going to have available in a fight, when the other dude is trying to interject his opinions into the conversation. He isn’t likely to be nearly as concerned about precision, or bystanders, and even if he “just” shoots you in the leg or arm, it is likely to have a seriously detrimental effect on your precision anyway, so you have to learn to recognize what is “good enough,” and how to accept that.

Unremarkably, this issue most commonly arises, in my experience, when a fellow is running a magnified optic on a carbine. I love optics. I will never willingly move to the sound of the guns with a rifle that is not equipped with a decent, low-powered, variable optic. Unfortunately though, too often people don’t understand that just because you can be more precise with an optic doesn’t mean that doing so is always the right choice. This isn’t an attack on precision. As I noted above, once we’ve balanced “precise enough,” with “fast enough,” we can—and should—begin looking at tightening up how we define “precise enough.”

So, step one in correctly utilizing the snap drill is establishing an effective level of “precise enough.”

Once you have established your precision metric, stick to it, but start focusing on achieving it faster. How fast is “fast enough?” I can’t tell you. If you’re stuck fighting a guy who is not really committed, and is a lousy shot, five or six seconds might be “fast enough.” On the other hand, if you’ve got a trained, aggressive shooter, with a lot of gunfights under his belt, sub-1:00 might barely be fast enough…or it might not be fast enough at all.

For the carbine, generally speaking, I tell people that, realistically, from the standing, low ready, they need to be able to move into any given firing position, and engage a target of the above dimensions, with at least one aimed shot, in less than three seconds. Why?

Because, doctrinally, we teach the use of a 3-5 second rush, and under fire, that really does tend to shorten towards the three second end of the spectrum, for obvious reasons. If I can get a hit in less than three seconds, on a reduced-size target, when responding to an external cue (such as the start signal of the shot timer), and the dude takes three seconds to get to a position of cover, then I’ve got a pretty solid chance of getting at least one round into him. Whether that one round drops him where he is, or he gets to cover and then tries to move again, it’s still probably, generally, going to slow his roll a little bit, increasing the odds that I’m going to get to him again.

Anyone of reasonable health and fitness can achieve a sub-3:00 second first round hit snap drill, even if they’re dropping into the prone. Seriously, I’ve seen 60 year old, overweight grandmas, with heart conditions achieve it, in less than an hour of training. If you can’t? Take up cooking. You’ll be more useful to society, and you’ll live longer.

With a sidearm, especially your concealed carry piece—which, let’s be honest, we are far, far more likely to need to use, if we look at historical statistical precedence—there’s no reason that someone with a modicum of training and practice can’t hit a sub-1:50 draw to first shot—to an index card—at 10 yards/30 feet. Again, I’ve watched more than one grandmother do it, with very little training and practice.

Ultimately, you should be pushing those speed barriers, and exceeding them, as long as you’re still shooting “precise enough.” When you find a barrier that you can’t cross, without missing, it’s time to focus on solidifying your skill at that speed. Focus on performing the skill properly, at speed, and pretty soon, you’ll be able to break your new barrier. This is not about “how fast can I shoot?” It’s about “how fast can I shoot properly and effectively?”  As the adage goes, “you can’t miss fast enough to win.”

The problem with the time metrics on the snap drill that has often arisen in the military, is the lack of emphasis on that metric. For entirely too long, the mantra has always been, “slow is smooth, and smooth is fast.” While appealing, it’s only partially true. Yes, in order to go fast, you’re going to have to have smooth, well-developed biomechanics. Unless you’re willing to push your speed until your biomechanics start becoming “not smooth,” though, and then focus on making them smooth again, at the faster speed, you’re just engaged in martial masturbation. It’s like doing strip mall dojo karate, with a gun.

The potential drawback to the time metric though, is when it becomes The Goal. That’s not the way it is supposed to work. It’s just a metric. It’s a way to measure performance. That’s the problem with standards. If you establish them low enough for people to achieve easily, they achieve that, and say, “Meh, I’m good enough. I met the standards.” If you set them high enough that they might actually be, “good enough,” then people get discouraged and give up. So, your “standard” should be “precise enough,” as fast as you can, and then, a little faster.

Of Carbines and Pistols

Most people are at least passingly familiar with the basic snap drill, in the variation of the “UP! Drill,” fired at close-quarters distances, with the carbine. Limiting ourselves to this however, does a great disservice to what is an excellent all-around shooting drill. While the basic standing snap drill should play an important role in your practice, there are other variations that are just as important. Some variations I like to incorporate include firing from different positions at different ranges.

For example, instead of limiting myself to 100 meters, from the standing, I might decide today, we’re going to start in the standing ready position, but we’re going to drop into the prone or squatting position, and shoot at 200 meters. Again, with even just a little bit of practice, I’ve seen people hit this in 2:00-2:50 seconds, consistently.

Another variation is with the concealed carry pistol. This is a regular portion of every single range session I do with my CCW pistol. At 30 feet, I’m trying to hit an index card, with one shot, as fast as I can, from the holster. I can consistently hit this in the 0.9-1.25 second range. I’ve seen other people hit 1:25-1:50 seconds, in a half-hour of trying, after insisting that it was impossible to draw from concealment in less than 2:00 seconds.

The point is not “look how cool I am.” The point is, these are metrics that are achievable, by real people, in real life, with varying levels of training and experience. Utilizing the basic snap drill, in different variations, allowed them to achieve a skill level—assuming they continue to practice it—that they previously though they were incapable of. It’s that important a drill.

It’s Not About Shooting Faster!

The purpose of the snap drill is not about shooting faster though. In the real world, shooting faster tends to have deleterious effects, like shooting the wrong person, because you shot before your brain could catch up and tell you that it is a twelve year Catholic school girl, not an MS13 gangster.

Our goal should be to shoot “sooner.” What’s the difference?

Shooting sooner is about working the problem correctly, and only making legitimate shots, as soon as possible. That requires more than a fast target acquisition and a quick trigger finger though. It involves knowing and understanding what the parameters are that allow for a legitimate shot, in your circumstances, and only then, breaking a fast, accurate shot. Being able to recognize what is “precise enough,” and then being able to deliver it “fast enough,” will allow you to shoot sooner, after the decision-making process has allowed you positively identify your target as a legitimate target. The time metric simply forces you to accept “precise enough,” instead of pushing for “absolute precision.”

Snap drills will help develop your ability to make the decision that “this is accurate enough,” at the speed you’re capable of making the hit. Whether it’s the first shot of the fight, or it’s the first shot on the last bad guy standing; even if it’s the second or third shot in a string of shots, to put some dude on the pavement, that recognition of “this is accurate enough,: is invaluably developed with snap drills, conducted to a time standard.

Conclusion

I am not suggesting that you shouldn’t perform other drills. The basic snap drill though, should be a bread-and-butter staple of your practice diet. It will increase your ability to deliver a solid, first shot hit that may allow you more of a window to get follow-on hits. It will increase your ability to recognize “this is accurate enough,” when “perfect is the enemy of good enough.”

I’ve repeatedly explained to students—and I believe it to the depths of my shooting soul—that, other than a firearm (and a holster, if we’re talking about handgun work), the single most important training tool you have available to you is a shot timer. While ammunition is obviously necessary for live-fire training, I’d take a guy who has a pile of good dry-fire training, on a shot timer, over the dude who has plinked at targets with live-fire, but has no metric of performance, any day of the week, and twice on Sundays.

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In the video below, you’re going to see surveillance footage from the 2014 Seattle Pacific University Shooting that could have been a tragedy.

That’s if student Jon Meis hadn’t taken fast action!

But he did take fast action! Now, watch as he takes down the active killer who shot and killed one student and injured others (and also keep reading to see some key points you should think about if you’re ever in a similar situation):

What Are Your Takeaways? Here Are Mine …

* Bad Guy appears to be using a break action shotgun

* At 0:50 the poor girl coming down the stairs doesn’t even NOTICE the bad guy holding a shotgun until he shoots her. Then she seems very confused by the fact she got shot and stumbles off. (Keep your eyes open and head on a swivel people!) – Also notice — this is not Hollywood, even though she got shot with a shotgun, she didn’t fly through the air!

* I don’t know if the hero student planned it, but it was perfect time when he came out of the door behind the killer with pepper spray, which he immediately shot into the face of the bad guy

* The GOOD guy did the right thing after spraying the face of the bad guy. He did not wait to see if it took effect – he immediately tackled the bad guy. The bad guy is using a long gun, good guy closing the distance takes away much of utility of such a weapon.

* Good guy tackles bad guy. Starts to choke him and then takes the long gun from him when the bad guy lets it go. Importance of h2h combatives/martial arts here! Learn and get comfortable with wrestling/taking people down and choking them.

* It looks like good guy took the long gun back to another room and came back to find a knife in the bad guys hand, disarms that too and chokes him some more until more help arrives.

We salute you Jon Meis!

Could You Save MORE Lives In This Scenario?

Also from a news report on the incident (emphasis mine):

“Jon Meis, a student working as a building monitor, pepper-sprayed the shooter as he stopped to reload, then put him in a chokehold and took him to the ground, according to police and a friend who spoke with Meis after the shooting. Then other students and faculty members rushed to hold the shooter down until police arrived.

But until it was clear that only one shooter was responsible, students barricaded themselves, pulled blinds and waited for word that they were safe. Medics were forced to wait outside until police were sure there was no more danger.

Smart work on the students holding up to see if there was more danger … but look at what happened?

I don’t know if this is standard procedure, but the Medics were “forced to wait outside until police was sure there was no more danger”.

Say you’re the hero here …. BUT … 20 seconds before the bad guy shot your friend, or your wife, your daughter, etc …

Are you going to watch your loved one bleed out while you wait for medics to arrive …. or are you going to get some Tactical Medicine training and CARRY that medical gear with you so you can continue being a hero and save the day?

Learn how to save lives too!

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One of the long-running themes of my blog, Mountain Guerrilla, is the importance of focusing on underlying concepts and philosophies, rather than technical dogma. That applies to shooting as much as it does to preparedness generalities. I am a geek, down to my soul, and I wholeheartedly believe in the importance of the “philosophy of ideas.”

My overriding goal, from the beginning of the blog—and really, the reason the blog was started in the first place—was to act as an objective, outside voice, to help readers begin to recognize, and hopefully overcome, some of the cognitive biases and group-think errors so prevalent within the culture of preparedness. That emphasis on metacognitive considerations has not changed, even as the focus of the blog has moved away from sheer technical datum to a greater emphasis on my philosophy of emigrating outside of the failing imperial civilization.

I have always, and probably always will, write training- and gear-specific articles, but the blog was never about “training” or gear, specifically. As I pointed out from the very beginning of my efforts, any infantryman with even one enlistment under his belt, could teach basic tactics and riflecraft. Any graduate of any of the myriad combative pistol courses could—theoretically—come up with a syllabus and begin teaching basic combative pistol skills. Anyone who has lived in a few sketchy neighborhoods, and survived to adulthood, could—again, theoretically—sit down, write up a course on urban survival, and begin teaching it. All it would take is the ability to look at their experiences objectively, and determine causation versus correlation in what they determined were the key skills, and then focus on solutions for the causal factors that concerned them.

My goal has been to move readers past the elementary grammar phase (to borrow a concept from the classical education Trivium) on to some of the processes necessary to not just learn and teach those methods around you, but to discover the underlying principles behind those skills, allowing the individual to modify them to fit their specific need, in a way that is “relevant to reality,” rather than fitting the hyperbolic fantasies of dystopian fiction and political pandering.

The Socratic Method

One of the key elements in achieving this, in my experience, has been the development of a method for forcing myself, students, and colleagues, to think “outside of the box, in order to provide answers to questions that we maybe should have been asking, had we even known the questions existed. One of the most useful is The Socratic Method.

The Socratic Method, or “Socratic Debate,” is a method of inquiry and discussion that serves as a method of hypothesis elimination, through the deliberate asking and answering of questions. It is a tool utilized to stimulate critical thinking, in order to provide clearer illumination, in our effort to reach “better,” if not “best” hypotheses, in the search for solutions to problems. This is achieved, within The Socratic Method, by identifying and eliminating competing hypotheses, among those available, that lead to contradictions.

In its simplest form, The Socratic Method is just a series of questions, with the simplest but most useful, often simply being, “why?” in order to formulate tests of logic and fact. It can help us determine where the line of division exists between the actual facts about a subject, versus what are simply our beliefs—our preconceived biases—about that subject.

A History Lesson

In the 5th Century BCE, there was a class of professional teachers in Athens called “Sophists.” These teachers specialized in using the tools of philosophy and rhetoric to entertain, impress, and hopefully persuade those sons of gentility that could afford their lessons, to accept their arguments. In counter to the Sophists, Aristotle credited Socrates with developing an alternative method of using definition, induction, and deduction, to learn and teach. Plato famously formalized The Socratic Method in his earlier Dialogues (for a more in-depth discussion of induction vs. deduction in logical thought, within the context of intelligence analysis for preparedness, see my book, The Reluctant Partisan, Vol 2: The Underground), by portraying Socrates engaging in this method to interrogate his fellow citizens about moral and epistemological issues before becoming more Dialectic in his methods, while Diogenes Laertus credited Protagorus with the development of the method.

The Method In Action

Regardless of the actual development of the method, the central technique of Socratic Debate is called “Elenchus,: and simply refers to cross-examination for the purpose of refutation. In Plato’s early Dialogues, this cross-examination is the method Socrates used—as one example—to determine the definition of justice. It was comprised of four steps:

  1. The interlocutor asserts a hypothesis: “We need to have a minimum of one year of food storage,” which Socrates considers false, or incorrect—the two are NOT synonymous, from a philosophical perspective—and so, he decides to refute the assertion.
  2. Socrates secures the interlocutor’s agreement to further premises that are based on the original thesis, such as, “We need food, or we’ll starve, correct?” and “We can’t hunt for our food, because all the hillbillies will be out there hunting the same deer, right?” and “The deer will be extinct in a month or two, right?” as well as the ever popular, “90% of the US population will die in the first 30 days of a grid-down event, correct?
  3. Socrates then argues, and the interlocutor is forced, logically, to agree, that these further premises—to which he has agreed—actually imply that the contrary of the original thesis is more accurate: “We do NOT need food storage for one year, because most people will be dead before all the food is gone, and then we’ll be able to gather what we need, for free.
  4. Socrates then claims that he has shown his interlocutor’s thesis to be false or incorrect, and that its negation is true.

Shortcomings

The problem that has been brought to light, of course, is that Step Four above, is nonsense. Having demonstrated that a given thesis is flawed on some grounds, is not sufficient to a) prove that the basic thesis (“We should have a year’s supply of food stored!”) is false, or b) that the alternative theory MUST be true. Rather, the discussion has reached a state of aporia; an improved state of still not knowing the “best,” but having a better understanding of what is “not best.”

Ultimately, the exact nature of this cross-examination—elenchus—is open to discussion and debate, itself. Is it a positive method, leading to knowledge, or is it a negative method, useful solely for the purpose of refuting false claims to knowledge.

Unlike his opposition among the Sophists, Socrates did believe that knowledge was possible, as long as one was able to take the first step of recognizing their own ignorance. The Dunning-Kruger Effect being what it is, this is a concept that the vast, vast majority of modern Americans, including within the preparedness culture, could profit from spending some introspective navel-gazing time considering.

Socrates himself claimed that he didn’t know anything. By this, of course, he was emphasizing that he didn’t know anything. The only way he was wiser than those around him, he claimed, was that he was conscious of his own ignorance, while they were not. The essence of the Socratic Method then, is to convince the interlocutor that, whereas he thought he knew something, in point of fact, he did not, because he could not.

This is the value that the Socratic Method offers those who would be prepared. It gives us the opportunity to determine what we know, versus what we believe.

Modern Applications

Socrates generally applied his techniques to those concepts that lacked concrete definitions. These included things like moral concepts, such as courage, justice, etc. This challenged the cherished moral beliefs of the interlocutor, pointing out inadequacies and inconsistencies in their beliefs, ultimately resulting in aporia.

The contemporary use of The Socratic Method, compared to Socrates’ use of this method, are not equivalent. Socrates did not—or at least, rarely—use the method to develop consistent theories. Instead of arriving at answers, he used the method to break down theories that were held, to go beyond the platitudes that we take as “truths.”

Examples of this can be seen in almost every single “truth” we take for granted in modern shooting, preparedness, and political culture.

Jim: Smart preppers will move to small, rural communities, because they are safer retreat locations than large cities, because large cities are festering with crime and poverty!

Socrates: Fair enough. Small towns have crime and poverty as well though, right?

Jim: Well, yes. Of course.

Socrates: Small town people tend to be closer knit, with shared values, and people know each other’s business, as well, right? Keeps them safe, when there are no secrets, correct?

Jim: Often enough, yeah.

Socrates: Large cities often have safe neighborhoods of shared cultural values, within their boundaries, correct? Say, a Little Mexico, or a Little Dublin?

Jim: I suppose so, sure…

Socrates: A densely packed, urban neighborhood, assuming it is one of the safe neighborhoods, has more people available to mount an adequate defense against aggressors, right?

Jim: Well, yeah, I guess that might be true.

Socrates: And, in a world of modern, industrialized, monoculture agriculture, there’s probably a better chance of finding a warehouse full of a variety of good, and more manufacturing capabilities to rebuild necessary technology, in a large urban area than in a small community, correct?

Jim: Probably? I suppose, yeah.

Socrates: So, perhaps, small, rural towns are neither safer, nor more dangerous, than a well-selected neighborhood in a large urban area…

Jim: Well….but….uhm…..

Of course, that’s neither going to end the argument, nor change Jim’s mind about the benefits of living in the sticks. That’s okay. What Socrates actually wants for Jim, is for Jim to develop a framework to question his assumptions and conclusions, and perhaps discover that his preparations are not perfect, or even “better,” and thus have the capacity to overcome his cognitive biases, in order to improve.

In another example, common to the preparedness cycle, we have a discussion about caliber selection:

Mel: I need a .308 Main Battle Rifle, because “it turns cover into concealment!” It’s more accurate at long range too! You can keep your silly mousegun!

Socrates: The .308 has better penetration than the 5.56? This makes it a better caliber?

Mel: Yes! Of course!

Socrates: Just to make sure we agree….308 is better than 5.56 because it penetrates better, right?

Mel: Yeah, like I said!

Socrates: You’ve seen the body armor testing I sent you, that clearly shows 5.56 M855 and M193 both, punching through body armor that stopped all the varieties of .308 and 7.62x51NATO that they tested. Right?

Mel: Uhm, yeah…but…well…in general, I mean, .308 will punch through stuff that 5.56 won’t!

Socrates: Do you accept that the difference between cover and concealment is that cover stops incoming projectiles, while concealment simply hides you from observation?

Mel: Of course! I’ve read the field manuals!

Socrates: And, as a “long-range shooter,” I’m sure you are well-versed in the fact that 5.56 has been the consistent winner in long-range National Match at Wimbledon for some time now, right? It is demonstrably true that .308 is NOT more accurate at long-range than 5.56 is, right?

Mel: Well, yeah, but that is just punching paper. It’s not real.

Socrates: If “cover” stops incoming projectiles, but .308 will penetrate it, then your “cover” was always merely “concealment,” and since 5.56 will penetrate body armor that stops your .308, and since National Match high-power is regularly won with 5.56, then your conclusion is flawed.

Mel: Well…..crap!

As in the previous example, this is not going to change the interlocutor’s mind. It has two purposes. First, to provide the interlocutor with a more robust means of questioning his own hypotheses, and second, to illustrate the fallacies of the interlocutor’s arguments to witnesses, and perhaps keep them from being led down the same silly trails.

Conclusions

Stop. Seriously, just stop. Stop assuming that, because you read a couple of books by “survivalism experts,” that you know everything you need to know about preparedness. Question every conclusion that you’ve drawn from your reading and study. Question the credentials of the experts.

It was pointed out to me once, that “experts” have a lot of knowledge. Inarguable, right? Otherwise, they wouldn’t be experts. The important question however, is two-fold:

  1. Is it knowledge, or is it supposition and belief? Is it predicated on factual, provable history, or is it theory, developed through uneducated imagination?
  2. If it is, in fact, knowledge, is it relevant to your reality?

There has been a tidal wave of change in the preparedness culture in recent years. The teachers available, in all areas of preparedness, have grown exponentially. We’ve gone from reading books written by people who had read some books, and maybe taken a couple weeks of training here and there, to combat veterans who have not only trained at those schools, but then actually put their training to the crucible of actual combat testing, day-in and day-out, for multiple tours in actual combat, for a decade and a half.

Instead of being limited to reading the pet theories of people who lived on small homestead-type hobby farms, who extrapolated from there, what would be needed for survival in Dystopia, we have the lessons being taught by people who survived collapsed societies firsthand, as well as the teachings and observations of people who are serious enough about living outside of the system that they’ve “collapsed now, to avoid the rush,” living completely off-grid, within the minimum legal requirements of paying property taxes.

There is no reason to maintain the status quo in the preparedness culture, and manifold benefits to upsetting that apple cart, and questioning the basic assumptions the subculture has cherished for decades. The only “authority” we should owe allegiance to, when it comes to being prepared to protect and provide for our families and communities, is the closest approximation to Truth that experience, logic, and reasoning can provide. Any other “authority” should be—must be—questioned, objectively, but incessantly, until we determine that their premises are flawed, and where those flaws are, in order to determine “better,” or “best” alternatives, or until we determine that the premises are—regardless of origin—the “better” or “best” alternatives available.

The Socratic Method offers one means of fulfilling that crucial task by playing “Devil’s Advocate.”

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File this one under “uh duh”!

As you probably know the “Hearing Protection Act” was reintroduced to congress to remove silencers from the National Firearms Act (NFA).

Obama Admin’s Center for Disease Control (CDC) also found out there are not one but TWO things silencers can be beneficial for. You may guess the one, but maybe not the other? Check it out:

First, Silencers Best Option For Reducing Gun Range Noise

In the first “duh” entry — after noting that the noise on outdoor test ranges in California was particularly high — CDC found this:

The only potentially effective noise control method to reduce students’ or instructors’ noise exposure from gunfire is through the use of noise suppressors that can be attached to the end of the gun barrel. However, some states do not permit civilians to use suppressors on firearms.

Well, yeah.

Now let’s not go full retard and think we need handguns with silencers hanging off them as a requirement (I feel like that would be the next Government step because “logic”), but yes, encouraging silencer use by making them 100% legal like any other non-registered gun part would be perfect. I would GLADLY shoot silenced rifles if given the choice.

Also …

Second, CDC Finds Quarter of Americans Have Hearing Loss Because of Noise (Solution? Silencers)

Along with that, as Americas1stFreedom notes:

A CDC study recently found that a staggering 40 million American adults—including one-fourth of people 20-69—have lost some hearing because of noise. Even more noteworthy, 53 percent of those with hearing loss claimed to have no occupational exposure to excessive noise—a number which likely includes many shooters and hunters.

These numbers not only uncover a national epidemic—they also indicate that the deregulation of suppressors, as outlined in the Hearing Protection Act, should be regarded less as a matter of politics and more as an urgent matter of public health.

Given that noises of over 140 decibels can cause permanent hearing loss with hearing protection—and that an unsuppressed .223 rifle produces about 165 decibels—the use of suppressors (which reduce gunshot noise by 20-35 decibels) could, when combined with regular hearing protection, significantly reduce the longstanding prevalence of hearing loss in the shooting community.

I mean, none of this should be news guys.

This is common sense.

Conclusion? Support The Hearing Protection Act In Congress Again

This isn’t the first time that a pro-silencer bill has been in congress. They normally don’t pass. This one has a lot of support and with a new Trump presidency a lot of people are hoping it will.

As I’ve said before, even anti-gun places like Europe are KILLING America when it comes to silencer use. Trump’s son knows it, let’s see if he can convince dad too.

After talking to some people who work in the silencer industry, as the video points out below, it might be a WHILE before this bill gets passed (if at all) … and more importantly because people don’t realize how complicated our Government is … that just because we have a republican majority, it’s not a guarantee (at all) it will ever even make it to the President’s desk. Good little fact filled vid:

When it comes down to it, support the bill and lets dismantle the NFA entirely before Trump’s first term is over (a gal can dream can’t she?)