Monday, June 18, 2012

How could this happen in Chicago?

In theory, this couldn't have ever happened - Chicago (along with the entire state of Illinois) has no provision for concealed carry and effectively bans gun ownership in the city.

And all of this happened with POTUS enjoying a little vacation in Sweet Home Chicago with his family. I'd be willing to bet this didn't happen in HIS neighborhood.

It's ridiculous to think these folks still believe disarming law-abiding citizens is the answer! 7 dead over a weekend and the Rahm-bama crowd wants to blame US for this county's ills... shameful.

At least seven people were killed and 35 were injured since Friday night. The youngest victim was a 16-year-old girl who died after she was shot three times in the chest Saturday evening in the Englewood neighborhood.

Ten people were shot overnight Friday, and in one hour Sunday morning, three people were killed. The latest shooting happened just after midnight Monday when a 19-year-old was shot to death on the city's North Side.

The shootings mark the third weekend in a row with gunfire injuries totaling well into the double digits. Last weekend, 46 people were hurt and eight killed across Chicago. The previous weekend, 29 were injured and three were killed in shootings.

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Friday, June 8, 2012

The "Unarmed" Attacker

Thankfully, the media hullabaloo surrounding the Trayvon Martin shooting has died down somewhat, but there's one consistent element to the coverage which has been bothering me.

It requires a couple of assumptions, the key being that George Zimmerman is telling the truth about Martin going on the attack and the second being the attack itself went down as described.

Here's my issue... every news report I read or hear keeps circling back to Trayvon Martin being "unarmed." The intent here is clearly to illustrate that a guy with a gun shot a kid with no weapons on his person at the time.

However, here's where I think that logic misleads and misinforms the general public - being "armed" is as much about mindset and will as it is focused on the weapon itself. Following that logic, I feel it's irresponsible and inaccurate to characterize Martin as this innocent, unarmed cherub.

The evidence may soon demonstrate his hands and body were very effective weapons and his size, conditioning, and training in a sport which rewards physical brutality provided the ability and willingness to use them to inflict what we call in Colorado "great bodily injury or death."

The tools and the will went sideways, however, when Martin found himself on the losing end of fists-vs-gun.

One could make the argument that Martin didn't know Zimmerman was, himself, armed with a handgun and that his intent was to visit violence upon someone HE thought to be unarmed. This is a far cry from the scared little boy we're being led to believe Zimmerman shot in cold, racist blood.

And, for those who believe hands, feet, elbows, knees, and the head aren't "weapons" capable of inflicting great bodily harm or even death, watch an MMA match or search the Internet for injuries sustained by muggings or street fights.

A person need not equip himself with a gun, knife, club or brick to be considered "armed." To assume that an "unarmed" person can't visit grave, mortal damage to another human being could be the last bad decision someone makes.

Shame on the media (Fox included) for insinuating innocence or, at least, no intent to visit harm because a person wasn't carrying a weapon.

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Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Shooting Old Yugoslavian Iron

After testing three different batches of ammo tonight, I had the unexpected pleasure of having another shooter ask me if I want to give his old Yugoslavian M56 a spin. Never one to turn down a chance to shoot old eastern-European pistols, I graciously took him up on the offer!

This particular model was manufactured in 1953 and was in next-to-new condition. Loosely-based on the 1911, they're wickedly accurate for old post-war surplus guns and shoot a bizarre, fun cartridge - the 7.62x25 Tokarev.

As one might expect from that part of the world, it's a heavy, purposeful, and somewhat foreign-feeling pistol. The grip angle is weird, the sights are tiny, and the trigger appears to have been designed by the same guy who drew up the plans for a tractor transmission. Run a few rounds and it comes together pretty quick, as did the tightly-packed (about 1.5" at 15") cluster of 7.62mm holes would attest.

The cartridge is what one might describe as "sporty" if you lived next door to the 1980 Russian Olympic Hockey Team - incredibly well-managed yet deadly serious. 85 grain bullets don't make it to 1,500 fps without a hell of a push.

The weight of the Yugoslav Tokarev copy soaks it up, but the recoil is substantial and the lack of a "beavertail" at the back of the grip offers little reminder that there is nothing separating a high hold from the hammer. Having been bit by another Tokarev in the past, it's a lesson you usually learn on the first day of class.

Not a bad way to end a Wednesday...

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Monday, June 4, 2012

The Range A-Hole

If you shoot regularly at a real range (not just some open land in the hills), you're bound to run into him...

You know, that guy who knows all, is an expert at everything, and seems to lack that internal filter which keeps most of us from acting like a compete jackass.

Sadly, my shooting schedule often puts me at the range at the same time as our (not so) beloved Range A-hole.

You couldn't cast this guy any better...
Stereotypical "Glocks-rule, everything-else-drool" guy, IDPA shooter (because USPSA is just spray-and-pray dancing with no real-world use), expert on all things "defensive" and gun world name-dropper extraordinaire. If he shows up and the range is full, he gripes until a lane comes open. If you're finishing your session and letting your gear cool off, he'll make fun of you for not putting a red-hot firearm back in your range bag.

If you actually work in "the biz" (and I do!), he will demand to know why you get to go to SHOT. If you've met the best shooters in the world, he plays it off like he's already been there.

Worse yet... he'll start crap-talking your chosen shooting avocation to your wife without knowing who he's talking to.

In short, he's the range asshole and, sadly, he revels in it.

Every range has one. Don't be that one.

Roll Your Own...

A week ago I joined yet another club in the "gunnie" universe - I'm now officially a Reloader!

Through a fun twist of the powder-charged Fates, I had a pair of boxes show up from the fine folks at Dillon in Arizona with the Memorial Day weekend coming up.

After a couple days of rearranging the garage and building a new workbench, I finally got the new 550 installed and running.

After a day of tinkering with dies, dialing in the settings, poring over books, and sloooowly adjusting the powder throw, I finally loaded the primer magazine and seated the first case.

Four pulls of the handle later, that satisfying "thunk" of a loaded cartridge signified the first of what will one day be thousands of properly-loaded cartridges taken to the range for training and eventually competition.

Tonight, I ran my fourth batch of ammo - dialing the powder charge back to come up with a smooth-shooting load that's a little softer than factory ammo but strong enough to run our M&Ps.

More to follow... I'm just getting started.

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Sunday, June 3, 2012

Open Carry Weekend... Huh.

According to teh Intarwebs, today is the last day of Open Carry Weekend. Well, I have yet to see a single soul I've encountered between Denver and Loveland this weekend carrying openly.

I do occasionally see the telltale "hip bump" of someone going concealed, but I have yet to actually see someone who doesn't work in a gun store rocking it OC style.

Personally, I keep mine out of sight. ANY truly defensive scenario requiring force is one in which I will be behind the curve, even if just by a little.

I am not "anti-open-carry" but I believe it has its place and is the lesser of two goods in the real world with the potential to create more headache than good.

I appreciate the effort to make guns more mainstream, but the place to push political activism is our seat of government, not the city street.

Proselytizing with a pistol IS an inflammatory act, as is protesting the 1% on Sixth and Main, gluing photos of aborted fetuses to a car and parking in front of a clinic, or hassling shoppers in front of Safeway. Inflammatory acts rarely lead to civil discourse and largely serve to sooth the ego of the person out marching for their cause.

For me, EVERY day is a "carry" day - I just don't advertise.

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