Wednesday, September 4, 2013

21 Days a Father, Not a Single Shot Fired

...and that's not a good thing :-)

I've got a half-tuned race gun just waiting to be taken to a match, a new CCW holster I want to run some live fire drills with, and a generally itchy trigger finger.

My new baby son turns 3 weeks old today and, as they are wont to do, he has been consuming most of our waking minutes (and plenty of our sleepy ones) with snuggles, fussing, diapers, bottles, ad car rides.

Needless to say it hasn't left much time for the range, and since that's become one of my only "escapes" from the real world I'm definitely feeling like I don't just need a few minutes at the club -- I really feel like I should bail for a 2-day class somewhere and just get lost in Gun-Fu for 48 hours.

Wishful thinking, I know...

- Posted from somewhere on this big blue marble.

Friday, August 9, 2013

Why I Use Tactical Gear in a Civilian World

When I took my first CCW class I was introduced to serious "professional gun men" who wore serious looking boots, cargo pants, and these weird nylon belts I'd never seen before. They wore plastic holsters and clothes by a company I recognized from my college days as a rock climber. In that first minute, I knew what I wanted to look like and dress like from there on out.

I didn't realize I was falling into that classic new-CCW'er trap - instructor idol-worship through buying every piece of clothing in the 5.11 catalog. Yup, I "been there, dun that," BIGTIME.

One thing I came to realize after diving into the looking-glass world of "tactical" clothing, equipment, and accessories, is that there's a LOT to love about it but there's a fine line - a balance between "real-world" practical vs the fashion of looking "tacti-cool."

I found most of the outdoors companies I relied on in my 20s as a climbing bum and mountain guy make a line of products for cops, soldiers, and hunters which are overbuilt for hard use, and usually in the US, Canada, or first-world nations where most off-the-rack gear at REI is mass-produced mediocrity from Vietnam and Taiwan. Score!

I was a teenager when parachute pants gave way to pegged cuffs and neon EVERYTHING. I'm amazed this fashion trend came back, and I absolutely refuse to participate - this is the next awesome thing about tactical gear in moderation... I don't have to look like a neon peacock to enjoy quality boots, jackets, and backpacks. I have been praying I won't have to go for a hike dressed like a futuristic Sun Chips bag in Oakleys, and the natural, normal look of tans, greens, and grays doesn't look out of place in the woods.

Finally, while there's a TON of "fashion" tacticool crap on the market, if you shop wisely you'll find packs and jackets that will last a lifetime, boots that won't break down after a year, and daily-use equipment that looks at home in the brewery as it does on the battlefield.

Just don't overdo it and walk around like a model from the 5.11 catalog. Cops smell cop-clothes a mile away, wearing 8" combat boots with shorts is just silly, and the point of "concealed carry" is just that.

However, since I became a "professional gun guy" you can bet your butt I dress the part when I'm teaching or competing :-)

Cheers, and keep it pointed downrange!

- Posted from somewhere on this big blue marble.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Politics and Media Stuff...

I touch on a few of the bigger political issues surrounding guns from time to time, but our universe has come under such bizarre attack of late that I wanted to look at a few of the high points:

Colorado passes a bevy of highly-restrictive and socially dangerous anti-gun laws penned and pushed on us by the NYC/DC crowd, now our government has to figure them out (AFTER enactment, of course).

George Zimmerman is rightfully acquitted of murder and manslaughter charges in the self-defense shooting of teenager Trayvon Martin but our country riots and screams for "justice."

Cook County (IL) police are raiding the homes of people whose Firearm Owner ID cards have expired, attempting ro confiscate otherwise legally-owned firearms.

A columnist for recently penned an article excoriating the "gun culture" as being exclusively "white" - the only basis for this assertion being the number of pictures of white folk in a few gun mags.
Guess the writer was too busy to watch a movie, listen to a rap song, check the crime stats coming out of Chicago or (on the positive tip) watch one of Colion Noir's NRA vids or check the most recent USPSA results.

Illinois is about to become the last state to permit citizens to carry firearms outside their homes for personal protection. Their Governor is trying to gum up the process while innocent kids and adults are killed on the streets of Chicago every day, unable to provide for their own defense.

A self-aggrandizing Liberal super-mom type of woman gets a Glock and obtains a CCW license with the bare minimum of training, mindset, or skills to prove how dangerous we are. She carries it for 30 days then gets rid of it because she found herself to be paranoid, scared, and ill-equipped to bear the actual weight of personal protection. She exposes her own phobias, irresponsibility, and has been publicly excoriated by gun bloggers and gun rights advocates as a charlatan and a fraud.

Our Vice President tells America the most popular sporting rifle chambered for a varmint cartridge is too big and complicated for a woman to use and instead advocates emptying a 12-gauge shotgun into the air if accosted by a violent intruder. Americans have been arrested in the following months for doing exactly as he advised.

- Posted from somewhere on this big blue marble.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Little Wheel or Little Auto?

I've been thinking a lot about my range session yesterday. It's got me jonesing again for a slim semiautomatic pistol for CCW.

I've had an M&P 9 Shield on allocation for quite some time now but now I'm really wishing it would come in. It is primarily to be for Mrs. Normal but now Mr. Normal is missing the old days of carrying a single-stack semi-auto.

I'll probably have my LCR forever. Heck, it's great fun and super easy to carry while providing full-power protection. I really should seek out a local trainer who could give me some revolver-specific instruction (again, I'm far from sucking with it, but could definitely improve).

Buuuuuuut... I sure would like to get my mitts on that Shield. A well-tuned Kahr P9 wouldn't get kicked out of my holster for eating crackers, either.

- Posted from somewhere on this big blue marble.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

It's A Perishable Skill, Kids

With the Mini Normal on the way range time has dropped almost to zero, with most of it going toward taking friends shooting or blazing away at matches.

After running a couple errands today and dropping a part off for a friend at the gun club I decided I needed a little revo work, since I've been carrying my LCR a lot lately (it's been my "summer" gun for a couple seasons now).

Let's just say that I managed what (for my skills and abilities) would pass for "proficient."

I didn't suck it up, but I didn't leave the usual mess of tape inside the "got 'em" box on my preferred human silhouette target, either. Also managed to throw a "mike" - something I rarely do even under stress during rapid fire.

Now, I do have to work harder to rock my little revolver and it's the only gun I use a "unique" sighting system on (XS Express front post) but I definitely lived out the axiom about shooting - ESPECIALLY defensive shooting - being a very perishable skill.

That damn miss always gets me... I think about what that means in the real world and it sobers me up. The other 49 rounds would have stopped a threat, even those taken at 50 and 75 feet. But I know I can shoot that little gun a bit better than I did today.

If you're carrying it, practice with it. We don't bury hollow point bullets into dirt berms on the 360 degree range.

- Posted from somewhere on this big blue marble.

Sunday, July 21, 2013


My competitive shooting calendar and my training availability have been balanced against the quickly-approaching birthday of our son. And, as many folks have been sure to let us know, life as we know it is changing.

Now, while we certainly don't need to be told that (in other news, water and sun still make the grass grow) Mrs. Normal and I have spoken often about what changes and what we want to bring our kid into.

Thankfully, our avocations lend well to a guy about to have a kid - cooking, movies/stories, photography, competition shooting, motorcycles, and self-defense. I'd like to think our life isn't "changing" as much as it's growing.

I know I'm not going to shoot as many matches, take as many photo walks, or spend as much time afield for the next couple years, but I don't have to give up any of these things to enjoy life with Mrs. Normal and Baby Normal.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Sunday, July 14, 2013

A Few Thoughts on The Zimmerman Verdict, and That's It

First, I am a self-defense instructor with a focus on handguns as well as an active competitor. I've spent two years and change teaching CCW courses with the basic focus on situational awareness and conflict avoidance.

Second, I am weeks away from being a father.

I followed the Zimmerman case from local event to national media circus.

The instructor in me immediately asked the most important question (in my mind); what broke down to create a deadly-force encounter?

Did Zimmerman start a fight he couldn't finish? Did Martin attack a man he didn't think would defend himself?

My fellow instructors dug for the facts while the national news media and armchair activists screamed "murder!" We figured there was something more to the case, and we were right.

As the details of the case were made public, one thing became clear. Regardless of the outcome of any trial, two peoples' lives were destroyed.

The facts of the case were far from clear. All we had from the start was that one young man was dead and another man was literally running for his life to escape a modern day lynch mob.

As the details of the event began to coalesce into a case, the media narrative fell apart. The little innocent angelic child lost his wings. The wannabe cop who started a fight he wasn't man enough to finish began to look more like a person who was assaulted while doing nothing illegal. In a word as obscene as the mess we watched unfold, this became a massive clusterfuck.

Fast-forward to July 13th, 2013. Zimmerman is found not guilty, much to the unjustified horror of millions, leaving a few sobering truths in his wake.

1. The only true way to win a violent encounter is to avoid it in the first place. Any other resolution will change your life, or end it.

2. Regardless of how right you may be in pulling the trigger, be prepared for the reality that your private world has come to an end, even for a short while, and that your goal was simply to prevail... with living to see the sunrise as your primary goal.

3. When I raise my son, I will do everything in my power to teach him to be a responsible man who strives for peace and offers respect.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Monday, July 1, 2013

Happy First Day of Occupation - Part One

And so it begins... July 1, 2013

It's been a while, friends. Since we last got together, a lot's been going on. Sadly, today is the day Colorado falls prostrate to the gods of gun control, Reasonable Restriction and For The Children - false idols both.

Today, Colorado House Bill 1224 goes into effect, severely limiting a law-abiding citizen's ability to legally own standard-capacity magazines. This means most common full-size self-defense handguns in 9mm must be shipped with "compliant" magazines and the most popular sporting rifle in the nation has just had its balls clipped.

Furthermore, there is an uncertain effect on nearly all new modern sporting shotguns as an arbitrary limit has been placed on the number of "inches" of shells a shotgun mag can hold. As most shotguns may be easily adapted to hold a larger number of shells than they do in factory configuration, it's difficult to see how this may be enforced and is certainly NOT going to prevent violent crime. It does, however, create the opportunity for any hunting shotguns bought today or later or which are brought into the state by a hunter or sportsman to be targeted for "determination."

Our occupiers claim this new law, which key members of our state congress don't even understand, will prevent atrocities such as those which took place in Aurora and Newtown last year. However they cannot produce a single piece of factual evidence which shows this will have ANY effect in reducing violent crime or mass shooting deaths.

They claim the rights of gun owners aren't affected - with a smirk. Sure, I can buy the GUN. I can own the GUN. I can shoot the GUN. However, I can no longer purchase the STANDARD capacity ammunition feeding devices for which my defensive, utility, and sporting/competition firearms are designed.

This IS a strict form of control and tacit attempt at re-engineering our sense of security to align with patently false and demonstrably dangerous idealism. Congresscritter Diana DeGette wrongly assumed magazines are single-use only items and we'd rid ourselves of them as soon as we shot them dry. Seriously. That's exactly how she THOUGHT it would work...

If this new law will have no impact on citizens rights to protect themselves, why then are our police exempt from trading, transferring, our acquiring "high capacity" magazines for both duty weapons and OFF-DUTY or personal use?

While I have the utmost respect for honorable law enforcement officers, I don't value an officer's life any more than my own or that of my wife an soon-to-arrive baby boy.

The Colorado legislature, however, must see that a disparity of force exists to allow its police to retain standard capacity magazines, telling me they don't actually view my personal safety and security in the same way.

That is unconscionable, immoral, and demonstrates the contempt these people truly hold in their hearts for folks who simply want to life free while taking charge of their own personal safety needs.

Thankfully, a brave group of law enforcement officers are standing up to these idiotic laws and challenging them in court. We have already seen voter-approved recall efforts to remove legislators who blindly drank the Jonestown grape drink shipped by the tanker-truck to Colorado by special interests in NYC and Washington DC.

And most importantly, the people reject these measures because we know they were a knee-jerk political move to reshape the "color" of a key swing state in the Presidential elections and don't actually do anything to prevent crime, prevent murder, or stop violent criminals.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

The Lesser of Two Awesomes

As just about everyone in the gun world knows right now, ammunition and even reloading components have been harder to come by than a good Lindsey Lohan movie.

To those of you who stocked up way ahead of time and are sitting on 20-30,000 bullets and 50# of powder... yes, I hate you :-)

For the rest of us, we're loading up everything we've got, running our stores of powder, bullets, and primers down to the bare shelf, and it's hurting a lot of folks' abilities to compete as much as we want, get in some quality live-fire range time, or attend training courses.

I've been able to scrounge bullets and powder here and there... but it ain't much and, worse yet, not in the caliber I really NEED to be loading for.

This year marks my first full season shooting in the USPSA Limited division, and the year is off to a GREAT start. I should be 2-3 more good classifiers away from making "B" and the new STI has been running better and better with each match. The only wrinkle??? I can't find .40 bullets to save my life! I'm down to just enough for this weekend's "Super-Classifier" match and then I'll be done shooting Limited until I can find and press together more ammunition.

What I HAVE been able to find has all been of the 9mm variety... and I've grabbed everything I could find. Plated, lead, JHP, 115gr, 124gr, 125gr, you name it. My ammo locker is starting to look like leftover casserole, and it means I bet I'll be doing a LOT of Production shooting in the bear future unless I can come up with a source for 1,000-2,000 more .40 caliber bullets.

...and a LOT of people I know are stuck in the same boat with me. Argh.

Oh, and to those of you holding onto those inventories of 20,000 bullets, be a buddy and consider kicking one loose to a friend in need (REAL need) every once in a blue moon. Your karma will thank you :-)

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

...the Waiting Game WELL underway for two new blasters, one of which would be restricted in my home state after July 1 and another that's so popular they're usually sold before the UPS driver's tracks have cooled off.

The first is the Smith & Wesson M&P Shield (9mm). I've had this on a list with our distributor since sometime around last June. Mrs. Normal wants it, I want it, and we've both been waiting patiently for it to come in. We got close last week... but it was available for all of 30 seconds and it was gone. Having shot the new skinny Smith, I understand why literally everyone is buying one. It's FANTASTIC! It conceals like a big .380, is incredibly easy to manage in 9mm form, and just plain feels great in my hand. I WILL own one, and soon. Or... whenever it comes in. Which could e a while.

The one I'm REALLY jazzed about would be my first scattergun - the Mossberg 930 JM Pro (10-shot). Tuned for action shooting competition, it will serve the homestead equally well as a defensive shotgun, bird hunting and clays gun, and hopefully let me try my hand at 3-gun sometime down the road. Sadly, the JM Pro has been about as difficult to find as the Shield, so while we're waiting I'm keeping my eyes open for a normal 930 which could be built and tuned up or maybe a 590 or Remington 870... Just to get into the shotgun game before Colorado's stupid and dangerous magazine ban goes into effect on July 1.

Say a prayer to the gun gods for us, friends... Mama Griz wants her Shield and Papa Bear needs a shotty.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Saturday, April 6, 2013

The Barbie Doll Gun

I haven't really spent much time talking about the AR platform yet it's one I'm enamored with.

When I go to the range I see plenty of them and none of them are exactly the same. I love it!

Around 2009 Mrs. Normal gave 'corporate approval' to add one to the collection. At that time, Attorney General Holder came out and said the new President would be coming after "assault weapons" again and instantly created a run on black rifles.

A week later, we brought ours home - the last Smith & Wesson on the wall. It was a stripped down "optics ready" model and stayed very basic for quite some time. I shot the heck out of it and have loved it ever since.

Over the past few years I've made a few changes here and there. It went "brown" (Flat Dark Earth, technically) for a while. When the Angled Fore Grip hit the market, I HAD to run one on my rifle (Costa had one!)

Then, when it seemed like everyone was dressing 'em up in Magpul FDE furniture, I decided to turn it into a "not-Magpul" gun. I have nothing against Magpul anymore but wanted the challenge of setting it up with good gear everyone else wasn't running.

A call to Stark Equipment put a new grip in my hands (yep, their funky vertical pistol grip) and another to VLTOR soon sent their eMod stock. Both pieces of gear look a little weird but feel great.

With Magpul's MOE handguard up front and a garage-project chopped-down MOE foregrip, the gun looks a bit hodgepodge but fits me like a glove.

When the stock M&P safety snapped off it was time to call Battle Arms Development for their highly-regarded ambidextrous safety with user-configurable levers, which I think everyone should own :-)

Most recently, the addition of an Aimpoint Comp M4 and a reworked sling setup courtesy of Larue (two-point sling), Noveske (QD end plate), and Impact Weapons Components (2-to-1 tri-glide and low-profile QD forward mount) have rounded out what is now a VERY worthy and reliable rifle.

And I've still got plans for it...

It may never be complete but it's my "Barbie" and I've love every minute I've poured into building and shooting it.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Monday, March 18, 2013

Competition Notes - Finishing In The Middle Is OK!

I learned a very valuable lesson yesterday at what was actually a great USPSA match - set realistic expectations for yourself.

Yesterday, I simply wanted to have fun, shoot well, and put down another solid classifier. With the exception of a pretty bad bobble on the classifier and checking out early (mentally), I had what I felt was a GREAT match! No mikes, shot 97% of available points while moving efficiently through stages, and got to watch a Limited GM ply his trade.

Then... the scores email comes out and I'm finding myself more than a little confused. I didn't shoot like a man possessed but I certainly didn't feel like it was good for 11th out of 20. What the heck!?!? I only blew up on one stage!

I looked hard at the Overall results for the day in Limited and made a rather humbling realization... I'm playing with the big kids now, a small fish in a very competitive pond.

There were 3 Grand Masters shooting in Limited yesterday. You read that right... 3 Limited GMs shooting a club match. What an awesome day!! Then, we had 2 A-class shooters burning up the scoreboard, followed by a deep core of solid B shooters, one insanely quick "U" (bet he won't be there for long), a couple of inspired C performances, then me. I shot better than most of the "C" shooters, held my own near the "B" ranks, and would have been in the thick of it had I cleaned my classifier instead of borking it.

This is my second really "serious" season in USPSA shooting and I achieved most of my 2012 goals. Most of those goals were individual challenges, not largely driven by the skill level of my fellow competitors. This year, I'm looking at the company I want to keep, and the folks I want to keep up with. I'm on track, with a lot of hard work, to make "B" in both Limited and Production this year and I want to make it in both.

"B" is where it starts getting serious. C-classified shooters are good, many are lifelong competitors and are accomplished marksmen (and women). I like to think of the B as the "deep end" of the pool. It gets real, and it gets live. Serious competitors all, and every one of us itching to take the next step up.

Check out the video below - THIS match is what "middle of the road" looks like in the USPSA Limited division. I ain't no slouch behind the trigger... there truly are some gifted shooters roaming the Front Range and I'm very proud to mingle with them, even if I'm just on the fringe for now.

Click Here For The Match Video

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Colorado Inches Closer to Idiocy

Unless there's a miracle in the House and we can get 2 or 3 more Dems to flip on HB-1224 (the bill to limit magazine capacity) now that it's been amended and passed through the Senate, there is just one hope left.

Veto by the Governor.

I would love to hear the moral dilemma playing out in Governor Hickenlooper's head right now.

On one hand, MAIG is elbows-deep in Colorado politics and God only knows what kinds of promises are being made to legislators and the Governor for supporting their agenda. Appointments in DC? Political clout in the national arena? Seven Minutes in Heaven with Janet Napolitano?? Rumors are the Obama administration and Bloomberg have been constant in their contact of Colorado Democrats.

On the flip side, our Governor is rumored to be a shooter himself. An avid sportsman and outdoorsman, he knows much of the state's revenue comes from tourists, hunters, athletes, and fishermen. While their chosen avocation may not involve firearms or be impacted directly by the new laws, their views on them may (and likely will) drive them to ski in Utah, fish in Montana, and hunt in Wyoming instead of bringing their money to Colorado. Many people who are self-avowed supporters of 2nd Amendment issues have pledged to vacation elsewhere and it's reasonable to assume they're going to follow through on their promises.

If the potential loss of tourism and recreation revenue is bad, this legislation also threatens to drive out a number of nationally-prominent companies which manufacture components affected by the new laws or are moving commerce to states which do not openly attack the law-abiding gun owner in the name of "little coffins."

Four very popular shows on the Outdoor Channel are produced in Colorado and will move to other more "friendly" filming locations if/when these bills become law. This will pull income tax revenue, sales taxes, permitting and use fees from the state's coffers. Potentially worse than that, however, will be the hosts - some of which are Coloradans - coming out on the air and repeatedly hammering home the point that Colorado, once a fantastically gun-friendly state, is no longer a safe haven where the safe, same, and legal use of firearms for hunting, sports, recreation, and personal protection has long overshadowed the two major active shooter massacres we've suffered in the last 15 years.

That will certainly cause damage to our state's reputation an our ability to draw outside recreation money. It pales in comparison, however, to one of the most publicly visible unintended consequences of these bills becoming law - the loss of Magpul in Colorado. Most folks in the gun universe are aware of their plans to move in order to remain in compliance with the law and to keep from funding a government hostile to its citizens. Governor Hickenlooper is going to have to look long and hard at each one of the jobs which will be lost if and when Magpul pulls most of its production and relocates to a "friendly" state. He would do well to look those 600+ workers straight in the face and sign their jobs away.

Now, I have a good friend who feels this socio-economic game of political chicken may be enough to get our Governor to flinch at the last second and jerk the wheel toward "veto" of at least that particular bill. I'm not as optimistic, but I still hope he'll see the light.

As it stands today, Colorado's law-abiding gun owners are going to be in for a long winter...

Monday, March 11, 2013

My Perspective on Gun Rights fairly obvious.

Normally, I find myself borrowing my responses to "why do you think you need xx?" from a couple other bloggers:

Because GUN.

That's it. Simple. We have plenty of (unenforced) laws on the books making the bad things bad people do with guns, um, bad. Tons.

Why do I feel like my antiquated notion of security trumps their need to be socially comfortable?

Because GUN.

Bad guys (and gals) don't give two shits or a squirt about me, but they do care about my right to self-defense and the numbers support defensive carry as a general deterrent to crime.

"B-b-b-b-ut Mr. Normal, don't you think that if we could save one life, it's worth sacrificing a little freedom, right?"

Those willing to give up liberty for safety deserve and get neither (thanks, Ben).
Furthermore, I believe responsible for my immediate security and the police are there to follow up.

So...until the cops get teleportation and the ability to read minds...

Because, GUN.

Gun is an equalizer. Gun is a deterrent. Gun meets lethal force in kind.

Gun is a manifestation of positivity, strength, peace, and the notion that I must be reasoned with, never bullied (thanks Uncle Ted). Gun is a symbol of independent freedom that carries heavy responsibility and I argue the moment we come to comfortably shoulder that load, life actually becomes more enjoyable as we realize it's NOT too heavy and the rewards of self-determination are incredible when set against the worn beige walls of the "gimme" mindset.

Gun is not a talisman. Gun is not a miracle pill. Gun is complex and complicated enough without politics entering the scene.

When it does, however, I will always keep a few things in the back of my head:

1 - will these measures do anything we're not already supposed to be doing under current law?

2 - will I be required to give up any of my natural rights to toe the line and get on board?

3 - are we protecting liberty or merely fluffing the pillows?

...and why?
Because, yes, GUN.

Do or Die, Colorado.

Today's the day we find out whether my home State's Senate has any real gravitas, huevos, chutzpah, or balls.

Of the seven anti-gun-culture bills (make no mistake, this is a war over culture, not equipment) being debated in the Senate over the weekend, two have been killed by their sponsors while the five with actual teeth are moving to final reading and recorded vote today:

* HB-1224, a bill which would outlaw all removable magazines over 15 rounds and ban any shotgun made or modified to hold more than 28" of shells.

* SB 195 - a bill banning online CCW training certificates state-wide.

* SB 197 - a bill which would further ban domestic abusers from owning guns.

* HB-1228 - a bill which would establish a background check fee.

* HB-1229 - a bill which would mandate universal background checks for all firearm transfers at any level and redefines the nature of permitted possession as transfer.

And here's my take on why every one of them is fluff, bullshit, or will never save a single life:

With regard to the magazine ban, there is a grandfathering clause permitting those owned prior to July 1, 2013, but it requires the owner to maintain continuous possession. That means no handing a full mag of 9mm ammo for your Glock 17 to a buddy. No giving your friend a PMAG for his birthday, and no handing your "high capacity" shotgun to a trusted hunting or shooting buddy if you cross a fence. This is also the bill which will prevent manufacturers from building "high-capacity" magazines in Colorado - effectively driving off Magpul, a market leader employing (directly and indirectly) some 700-900 Coloradans and generating more than $80M in state tax revenue. And finally, the magazine capacity restrictions set forth in 1994 and remained in effect for a decade did absolutely NOTHING to prevent or deter criminal use of a firearm. It simply turned gun owners into outlaws or gray-market profiteers overnight.

Now, online CCW certification is a fairly new concept, driven by the insane demand for training and the Internet sales model promoted by "deals" websites. Well-meaning national firms have been charging to let folks take online webinar or PowerPoint training then submit their test results and obtain the required certificate of training. In Colorado, CCW licenses are issued by the county and not the state and, as long as the instructor meets statute and the county sheriff accepts it, online training is valid. Many counties have banned or prohibited applicants from using certificates of instruction from online companies. Given my personal stake in a local training company, I don't necessarily oppose the measure because I feel it to be important to have one-on-one time with students. I do oppose it as it strips the county sheriff of the right to administer his program within the terms of the Concealed Carry Act.

The proposed legislation to prevent domestic abusers from committing acts of gun violence is also fraught with pitfalls and legal peril. First, it requires a person under a protection order - NOT convicted of a crime - to relinquish property to the government or to sell or transfer it within 24 or 72 hours upon demand. The last time I checked, the Fourth Amendment protects free citizens (those NOT convicted in a court) from unreasonable search and seizure. And, given the number of domestic violence cases which may be initiated by a spiteful party who is actually committing acts of violence themselves, this is a powder keg bill just begging to blow back into the faces of its sponsors and supporters. Furthermore, I've seen nothing to suggest this will prevent further domestic abuse as a perpetrator will use whatever weapon is at hand to commit acts of violence.

Finally, the background check legislation currently being proposed is one of the sneakiest and most underhanded attempts at criminalizing free and legal behavior to-date, packaged under a tissue of "public safety" and "fiscal responsibility." It will require literally ANY transfer of a firearm between private individuals not currently at a shooting range to process (and pay for if the companion bill goes through) a Form 4473 with a federally-licensed gun dealer. To that end, the bill authorizing the state to charge for background checks is absolutely ludicrous. At the beginning of a previous legislative session, Colorado lawmakers tried to SAVE the state over $1M/yr by eliminating the CBI from the firearm background check process but that bill was killed in committee. Instead, now, a Democrat wants to increase government and charge us for something most other states rely on the ATF to provide. For free.

If these laws go through, not only can you sell your friend a gun you don't want anymore or gift a firearm to someone not your immediate family, you won't be able to do the following:
• handle a gun at a gun store before purchase unless that shop also offers gunsmithing services
• loan a gun to a friend out in the field on private property or land otherwise legal to use for sport shooting or hunting
• hand a firearm to a trusted friend or loved one (unless they live within the same household) to protect another or one's self from deadly force or great bodily injury

...there ain't a single good idea in there.

Friday, March 8, 2013

Today is The Day Liberty May Fall

Today may forever be known in Colorado as The Day Common Sense and Freedom Died and was replaced with fuzzy-logic feel-good legislation which will likely get a legal gun owner killed at some point before its repeal.

The Colorado state Senate is voting on four bills the residents of this state do not support and will never support. Their vote in favor of passage will drive away a major employer, impose idiotic restrictions on law-abiding citizens, and shackle the rights of all in Colorado who use firearms for sport, personal protection, or hunting to the misguided East Coast sensibilities of those who seek not to lead us but make us their subjects.

This naked aggression should not stand. Bring on peaceful regime change in 2014!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Colorado Has Officially Been Sold Down the River

It's official. Governor Hickenlooper's journey to the Dark Side is complete.
For a moment, it looked like a tiny kernel of common sense may have bled through the wad of cash MAIG and the Bloomberg-Biden machine forcibly inserted into our state politics.

If he signs his into law, it will ring the death knell for one of this state's most well-regarded manufacturing icons in Colorado, kill hundreds of jobs, and kiss tens of millions of state tax revenue dollars goodbye.

And for what? Laws proven to be ineffective which only guarantee a growing population of criminals a tactical advantage and the law-abiding public will no longer be able to levy Unfair Advantage (Magpul's slogan) against them.

I feel violated.

click here for the gritty details

Magpul Industries' response? It may be a parting shot, but its a hell of a classy move. You read it here.

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Location:Corey St,Longmont,United States

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

New Carry Gun? Put Some Wear On That Thing!

With CCW training classes filled to the brim with folks waking up to the outright assault on our liberties, I'm seeing more new guns than ever cross our door and meeting more brand-new shooters come in for training.

What I would love to see, more than anything, is these folks step up to our next level training course with that same gun, only now it's got a few shiny spots from a couple thousand dry-fire practice draws from a broken-in holster.

If you're among the new shooters seeking CCW training, welcome to the life brothers and sisters! At some point today, go into your training space and do a few reps from the leather or Kydex you'll soon be wearing on a daily basis.

...and find a local IDPA or USPSA club nearby, Spring is right around the corner!

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Reasoned Discourse? Nope. Logical Superiority.

I'm sure you are all as tired as I am from hearing the bleating left demand a "reasoned, rational discourse" about the best ways to chip away the moral, logical, and fundamental base of every living being's right to protect himself or herself from injury, death, and tyranny.

I recently read a post on one of my favorite Facebook pages about engaging the other side on their turf with our well-stocked powder keg of legal precedent, Constitutional protection, and common sense. They advised those of us who walk through that looking glass to be polite, and to be professional.

My research into military / combat mindset and experience volunteering with law enforcement finishes that statement like this:

"Be professional, be polite, an have a plan to kill everyone in the room/car."

When I enter into a "reasoned" conversation with an anti-gunner, I am polite. I am courteous. And I just so happen to bring enough firepower to finish the fight. You should, too... just in case it gets ugly.

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Enforce Current Laws or Enact New Ones?

I'm reading all across the Intarwebs that the Obama Administration has prosecuted far fewer Federal gun law violations than his predecessor's, who worked to repeal useless the gun laws and enforce those that remained.

And, I memory serves, GeeDub didn't release thousands of illegal aliens back into the wild because we could to afford to keep feeding and housing them...

So, tell me again, why is it we should expect a new batch of gun laws, even more useless than the first, will automagically civilize the criminals, cure the insane, and turn Omerica back into the land of safety and plenty?

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Monday, February 25, 2013

Background Checks to Registration to...


Uncle sums it up quite well, click here.

I had an empassioned discussion at SHOT with my partners about universal background checks for private citizens. Morally, if it shuts down access to those on the "gray" fringes - strangers, the mentally ill, the questionable buyer, the under-21 purchaser of a handgun - who are going to commit a crime with it, then yes. I think we all agree that it merits debate.

However, the rate of crime by those who might prefer the legal private market over an FFL pales in comparison to the sheer volume of violence committed by criminals who bypass the legal marketplace altogether. It is THOSE guns we need to find a way to bring back under legal control, and no amount of legislation is going to stymie the transfer of legal guns between criminals - the DOJ's own statistics bear this out.

So, while the emotional argument tugs the hearts and minds of well-meaning gun owners, I do believe it's the wooden pony stuffed full of legislative Trojans sent in humble concession when in fact it will be hewn from the lumber of countless failed attempts to erode the enamel of the 2nd Amendment and may yet get them in behind our wall.

Currently, the background checks performed by FFLs are there only to verify eligibility and not feed a national registry. But, some legislators are raising the need for a national registry, which dovetails nicely with "reforming" the background check process. Hell, our side snuck carry in National Parks into a credit card reform bill... how hard do you think it will be for them to ramrod this through??

As Uncle mentions and links, there is one true goal is to get our names. Then, history shows what every government with such a list can do in times of "threat to national security" within its own borders.

Ask a Brit.

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Do NOT Listen to Joe Biden on Self-Defense

I cannot stress this hard enough.
Joe Biden is offering the most horrible advice - advocating criminally reckless behavior - when he suggested firing a shotgun off into the air to ward off an intruder.

The article below makes me wonder exactly WHEN using a gun to defend yourself in Virginia Beach won't get you arrested, especially since this guy followed Joe's instructions almost to the letter.

Link to the article - click here.

Let's break this down...

According to the report, the victim's dog (who is a fluffy fun security system ONLY on the best of days) starts acting goofy. He follows the dog to the bedroom where he sees two men in black masks crawling in the window. They're armed and tell him to close the door.

Instead of complying, he recognizes a deadly force encounter and retreats to retrieve his home defense firearm, then fires it through the door.

He then opens the door and continues discharging rounds toward the assailants, who flee. No injuries are reported, no additional damage is done, yet the victim is charged with reckless handling of a firearm.

Kudos to the resident for defending himself instead of turning into a puddle of helpless victim, but I can find two big errors in judgement.

"Be sure of your target and what lies beyond." is one of the cardinal safety rules we all must adhere to - without fail. Firing through his door, one could argue he didn't have a clear understanding of the room on the other side of it. The second is the act of going immediately through the door after unloading on it and anyone on the other side, continuing to blind-fire along the way.

However (Devil's Advocate time), if I've got two armed bad guys on the other side of a closed door in my house, they OWN that room and I might assume they don't intend to leave. Tough call, to be sure. Doors are VERY soft cover (if at all) and while it would be tempting to go Call Of Duty on their butts, that closed also offers me time and space to figure out where to go next.

After deciding I want that room back - again, a very questionable call since my stuff is insured - that first round through is very likely to scare a meter of feces out of the bad guys on the other side, if not do real damage.

Even with no duty to retreat, outnumbered and presumably outgunned 2:1 may not offer my best odds for survival or prevailing the fight. But if I go for it and send a curtain of lead their way after going through the door, I'm still responsible for making sure I'm not putting any one else at risk.

Insanely tough call... and what I might assume as an armchair quarterback to be the reason for the ticket.

Fortunately, nobody else was injured and the victim escaped a whole man with his life (and I assume his pooch).

In Colorado, I have no duty to retreat. I am permitted to use any measure of force I deem appropriate - up to and including deadly force - to stop someone who's made uninvited entry into my home and who is or I think may commit another crime and is hurting or is about to harm anyone in my house. I am protected under the law from civil and criminal prosecution for the use of said force.

Even then, barring a knock-down drag-out gun battle, I'm looking for my sights and I need to be sure of what I'm unleashing hell at, even if he or she is on the other side of the wall. Keep that in mind...

In this case (literally), I hope the resident acted inside whatever Castle Doctrine Virginia offers and hope the charges against him are dropped, as long as this story doesn't take any unscrupulous twists or turns. I also hope one or both of the intruders turns up - either through investigation or at a hospital getting pellets dug out of their hide.

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Monday, February 18, 2013

Colorado's Magazine Ban is About to Pass

It's only a matter of time before the Colorado Legislature finally passes and the Governor signs the new magazine ban law into effect. What does that mean to us?

Magazines over 15 rounds in capacity will be illegal to own, possess, transfer, sell, or manufacture in Colorado once the law goes into effect.

I won't be able to feed my Limited pistol with full-capacity mags unless I had them before the ban went into effect.

I won't be able to procure STANDARD-capacity mags for my defense guns which were designed to hold more than 15 rounds.

It means my state government would rather only see criminals and cops armed with "what's in regular use" while I'm left restricted to what they feel is acceptable" for the protection of myself, my family, and my friends - and I would putting training up against any active patrol cop.

Now, as long as you own it as of the effective date of the law, you're good. And... That now means every gun owner in Colorado affected by this law is going to start stockpiling and hoarding little boxes with springs in them, adding to the demand and extending the shortage worse than before.

Expect a flood of people slamming all major retailers of magazines for "pre-Colorado-ban" - making an already out of control supply crisis even worse. I'm trying to pick up a couple more STI mags right now, very specialized items, and it's proving to be difficult, if not impossible.

It means an instant black market is going to pop up overnight for unmarked magazines which would be impossible to discern we're owned before or after implementation of the law.

Magazines wear out over long periods of time or with frequent use over a period of time. They're meant to be cared for and occasionally replaced.

Our opposition knows all this and knows that they are incrementally breaking us. Mark my words... this law is just the "lube."

"Maintain continuous possession" means you will never send a mag with a blown seam or out-of-spec feed lips for repair. It means you will never loan a mag to a friend at the range or at a match.

If you want to keep range or competition mags in spec, you're going to learn to tune then as maintain them yourself. And... When they're literally "priceless," you'd better learn quick.

All you have to do is look at the Internet Gun Universe to know that a major Colorado employer is about to pull the majority of their manufacturing business away from Colorado, potentially stripping a reported $80M from state tax revenue and axing up to 150 Colorado jobs because of this law. Why? because they make 20 and 30-round standard-capacity magazines. The Legislature forgot about Magpul. Way to go, assholes...

And, when all this is said and done, will one life be saved because the state just summarily and arbitrarily outlawed millions of legally-owned magazines? No.

Criminals don't give a single squidgy crap about whether or not the 17-round standard-capacity magazine in their Glocks are banned or not.

In fact, when lawful, legal gun owners like you and me are forced to face that criminal down, we now know we're going to be under-gunned when we do so.

And that is precisely what they want.

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After-Match Report - Limited Division Rocks

After my 4th or 5th match as a new shooter in Limited, this transition to new equipment is pretty dang cool and I'm starting to get the hang of it!

Despite it being the middle of February, the weather yesterday was just about perfect - 50-60 degrees, just enough clouds to keep the glare down, and no wind (a miracle at that range).

Likewise, the shooting went reasonably well. As an as-yet unclassified shooter in Limited (I'm close to making B in Production) I was able to eke out two 2nd place stage finishes which helped offset two bad stages and secure 4th overall out of 13 Limited shooters yesterday.

I definitely learned a few things yesterday, both about my gear and about myself as a shooter.

The equipment should be a straightforward fix - I effectively need my STI fitted a little better to my hands and I need to find the best mag release for me. It's reliable, for the most part, and extremely accurate when I do my job.

As for my mind... that's gonna take a bit more work. I can break it down into two categories - (1) learning how to quickly tea a stage and develop a plan and (2) being able to recover when I fail to execute my plan or run into an equipment issue.

I was reading recently on another gun blogger's site that there is a unique value in adding competition to training for defensive handgun shooting. I don't always agree with this writer but, in this case, he was spot-on.

The combination of safe stress (nobody's shooting back), planning, problem-solving, and the ability to improvise when things go all pear-shaped can only help, and never hurt, the avid shooter or someone who carries for personal protection.

I was trained to keep thinking, keep working, and keep fighting, even if you run into a problem. In a USPSA match, freezing when you have even a minor problem will destroy your overall score. Freezing in a gunfight, well... that could have MUCH more severe consequences.

Yesterday, I shot a stage completely off-plan starting with round 3 (out of 28), grabbed a reload when I didn't need to, and ran the gun dry by the time I recovered. While I could (and should) have taken about a second to regroup mentally, I drove on... leading to two more mistakes that would turn what should have been a 3rd-4th place run into an 11th place debacle. Positives from that run? I made sure to get my hits once I got my crap repackaged. Negative - I ran out of ammo on the last target.

BIG lesson number 2 - Don't Freak Out, There's a way through every stage!
Yup... It happened. I stepped into bay 5 yesterday and simply said "holy s#!t." I was staring down two lanes of targets a mile long on each side and immediately tried to figure out how to get through the 20 rounds I'd need to get through what looked like an attack of the walking dead!

After looking long and hard at the stage I found a way to break it up, keep pressing forward, and engage the brand-new swingers that were freaking us out. Then... the shooter order was called out and I was up first. Damn. Yep, that was my "reset button."

When the start buzzer went off I just let 'er rip and broke from what was actually a very good strategy. I just stood there, dumbfounded by the 10+ targets all staring back at me, and started shooting down one row and up the next. It forced me into a standing reload, staying right inside a "fatal funnel" and broke my concentration enough to smack a no-shoot at the end. Fortunately, driving on saved the stage for me and I'd somehow managed to salvage 7th. Apparently I wasn't the only one who blanked!

All told, yesterday's match was a success. I shot very well (for me) when it came together and I was able to drive on through a number of mental flubs and a couple mechanical hiccups - neither of which are rare in our sport. I would turn in one of my best-ever classifiers, which will be very helpful in pushing through "C" and joining a much smaller group of highly-skilled shooters.

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Monday, February 11, 2013

A Few Thoughts on "Race Gun" Equipment

One of the best things about being a competitive shooter is I get to embrace my inner 12 year-old and let him run wild...

You know the kid, were talking about the one with a Ferrari poster on the wall, a shelf full of Jane's Guides to modern fighter planes, and a head filled with the tech specs of every new gun American Rifleman had published over the past 12 months.

Only now, he's got a budget and a skill-set worth indulging with the "good stuff." Moving past modified M&Ps and squarely into Race Gun country last year, I've walked into a world where equipment matters, and the gear ain't cheap.

To most folks outside the USPSA / IDPA realm, a $2000 hand-built semi-custom pistol would be the prize of any collection and likely spend its days riding the top shelf in the safe. For us, however, that's the low end of the spectrum for a gun most would look at as a great "starting point."

Now, there are plenty of folks running modified production guns in the Limited division but I had no intention of driving Herbie to the starting line of the Daytona 500. If I'm going to play with the big kids, even if I'm not going to place anywhere near the top, I want to get beat on skill, not gear.

...and I want to let that 12 year old boy loose every once in a while.

But one thing all custom gun drivers will learn is just because you CAN change something or bolt on the latest go-fast parts, it don't mean you SHOULD.

Case in point - advice I received from an up-and-coming "A" level Limited shooter was to add an extended mag release to my new STI.

Now, I'll be the first to tell you that the grip of a standard STI prevents me from getting to the mag release in a hurry and, to remedy that, I ordered mine with a low-profile extended release that sorta works but tears up my support hand.

At SHOT this year I was given a very snazzy machined stainless extended release button that added 30% extra sexy and seemed like it would be my answer to all things mag release.

...and I'm here to report that all that glitters definitely ain't gold. As much as I wanted to LOVE that mag release, I found it to be so big that my support hand was mashing down on it under recoil, causing me to spontaneously drop my mag 3 times in a 150-round training session.

Not bueno.

The hard-learned lesson here is that, despite owning a "race gun" the best solutions may be the most subtle... I'm going to need to actually have the gun custom fit to my hand a bit better. Not only that, but the flashy go-fast bits might work for some but they ain't always the answer.

Tonight, after work, I have a feeling that part is going on a classifieds board somewhere or into my bin o' parts that live on the shelf.

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The Ammo Situation

I don't have any "industry" insight into this one, only that things are freakin rough right now and aren't likely to improve before the end of the year (yeah, I know it's February).

Clearly, I remember the great rush of 2008/2009. CCW background check turnaround went from 6 weeks to 90 days (the max allowed by law for processing in my current home state). AR-platform rifles prices skyrocketed. Ammunition for opular pistol calibers like 9mm and .45 ACP started drying up. Primers went unobtanium.

All of that seems like a picnic compared to the first couple months of 2013. Now, if you want a chance at ANYTHING, the best bet is to stand in line overnight at Sportsman's Warehouse, waiting for the doors to open at 9:00 Friday morning. Seriously. One location in Northern Colorado recently opened with close to 100 people pressed to the glass like Black Friday.

My normal sources of powder and bullets for reloading, which a USPSA shooter NEEDS for both training and matches, are barren. The Usual Suspect lineup of suppliers are tapped. Major manufacturers of primers and bullets have restored to running at or above full-capacity just to keep up with backorder fulfillment.

This is insane.

I don't want 20,000 of anything to hoard - I need a few thousand to SHOOT! I have no plans to put the 2013 season on hold, but unless I can source some lead to sling, my aspirations of a long and productive season shooting Limited are in serious jeopardy.

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Observations from SHOT 2013

The FUD created by politicians in the wake of Newtown has turned our world upside-down.

Sales of guns, accessories, and ammunition are through the roof, but you didn't see execs and reps high-fiving as they plan what to do with all the money. Instead, the mood was uncertain, at best, and fatalistic with some. Panic-buying is in full effect and it's creating far more problems than anyone seems capable of dealing with in the short term while the long-term is so up in the air that planning for anything other than trying to maintain a pre-panic status quo is a dangerous bet for many.

Companies making and selling ANYTHING major AR components are sold out indefinitely. New AR products and features don't really matter right now since most folks aren't going to be able to pick up a new AR anytime soon, anyway. All of the "sexy" guns are priced so dang high that only the "wallet-elite" ready to pounce on the Submit button are getting the goods.

Ammo isn't just scarce, it's GONE. Reloading supplies are backordered for months. Manufacturers are starting to tell us the shortages and backorder volumes are getting so bad that some simply won't tell us how far out orders are.

The biggest questions at SHOT seemed to start "how far behind..." Every distributor we met with was out of stock in just about every popular handgun in .380, .38, 9, 40, and 45. Period. Good relationships with your dealers are worth their weight in platinum.

Finally, there was next to no presence by companies focused on competition shooting products, outside of the pro spokespeople and a few gun manufacturers.

That's unfortunate, considering competition is one of the best ways of mainstreaming gun ownership, promoting skill development among new CCW'ers and letting people who DON'T want to look like a tacti-dork know there's a place for regular folks, too.

Many of the reps for high-end parts makers gave me weird looks when I mentioned the use of their products in a competitive, rather than "tactical," realm. It's like they don't know or just don't care about getting their gear into the hands of more customers.

Admittedly, many of those folks supply gear to the HSLD crowd and don't really deal with 3-gunners all that often. a case in point - when I saw the quick-flip lever on the Elcan 1-4x optic (primarily sold to military and true operator groups) I immediately saw the advantage of a weatherproof and shock-proof small-form-factor zoom optic. When I asked the rep if they have ever seen interest in these from the 3-gun world the guy looked at me like I grew up on Mars.

Despite these challenges and changes in mood, there were still 62,000 attendees and the floors were packed every day of the show with shop owners, trainers, manufacturers, media, and oh-so-many wannabe "operators" bedecked with beards, coyote nylon, MOLLE, and Velcro hats.

Uncle/Daddy/Boss/King Obama gave is "executive powers" speech, a fat slap to our collective faces as he continued his malignant campaign of ignorance, misinformation, and hate for us. His speech was on the lips of every attendee at the show and heavy on the hearts of people whose feet would inevitably wear out sometime on or before Friday.

It was a weird show.

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Tuesday, January 15, 2013


Gun nerds won't find this too exciting... Today was all about meeting with distributors, manufacturers, and getting the lay of the land.

A few sightings and a few cool booths visited, but nothing too "race" or tactical yet. I'll probably be walking those on my own or perusing those booths after the business of business has been concluded.

Gun-celebs and regular celebs sighted:
Todd Jarrett (gun GOD)
Taran Butler (3-gun GOD)
JJ Racaza (Top Shot and USPSA shooter)
Julie Golob (Team S&W captain)
Greg Littlejohn (from Top Shot)
Rich Franklin (UFC fighter)

Three Simple Reasons New York's Restriction to 7-Round Mags Won't Prevent A Single Crime

1 - any criminal with access to YouTube can teach themselves to somewhat-efficiently change mags.

2 - many common revolvers in .22 (and some larger guns) hold 8, 9, or even 10 rounds, instantly rendering them outlaw and giving criminals immediate and lethal advantage.

3 - criminals don't give a shit about magazine capacity bans.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

T-Minus 12 Hours

...or so, until I have to wake up, grab my bags, load a sleepy Mrs. Normal into the Stormtrooper and make chilly tracks to the airport.

We'll be attending SHOT Show in Las Vegas next week, hopefully reporting positive and upbeat news about products, training, and industry updates.

However, while this is the time when all the new high-speed guns, ammo, shooting gear, and training tools hit the market and those of us who hawk the latest wares start salivating, I anticipate an undercurrent of uncertainty and doubt to hang high overhead.

I'll be sure to report on any protesters that might try to get all up in my grill or any challenges we see on the streets of Las Vegas as we pile into the coolest gun show of the year.

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Saturday, January 12, 2013

Off To The Range

As it stands now, I'm going to be too busy strolling the hallowed halls of the SHOT Show to head out to a range on Monday for "Gun Appreciation Day."

Your Humble Narrator and his British Shooting Buddy are taking a couple folks who're new to the formal indoor range concept out for a morning of gunpowder and unrestrained celebration of our right to lock, load, and fire.

In related news, the STI came in sometime in the Fall and, in a word, DAMN, SHE FINE!

I wound up with a Dawson-accessorized Edge in standard blue finish and so far, so good. It definitely prefers long-loaded .40 ammunition but has been 98-99% reliable over 1,000 rounds of factory ammunition, with all minor feed issues attributable to the shorter factory stuff.

A few minor fitting issues aside, the thing's a definite shooter and I'm looking forward to running it in USPSA Limited Division in 2013.

Now, off to finish packing the bags and heading up north.


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Friday, January 11, 2013

Guns are NOT the problem!

I want to ask you all an uncomfortable question and I hope we can all look at it honestly.

How many people have been killed in spree shootings in the US in the past 15 years?
Now, how many people have been killed by gang violence, drunk and reckless driving, accidental poisoning, and drowning in that same time period?

Guns are not the problem, people.

As a gun owner and trainer, I weep for every life taken by a criminal madman and wish I could have been in a position to stop just one horrific killing.

But I also strongly contend the safety of our schools and malls and places of worship is NOT threatened by the prolific use and ownership of guns in America.

While they are imminently newsworthy, spree shootings are also so rare as to barely impact the number of criminal homicides. Furthermore, shootings make up less than 1% of the accidental deaths which occur within the home.

School shootings are NOT epidemic. They are NOT the most clear and present threat to our children, and banning America's most popular sporting rifle (used in fewer numbers than hammers and clubs per the FBI) as well as metal boxes with springs in them is just plain wrong.

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It's Been a While...

I've been told there are a couple people out there who do occasionally pop by to see I anything new has been posted...

and that is awesome!

Sorry I haven't been around here much in the past few months. Life, work, other work, shooting, reloading, and trying to rest have all conspired to keep me away.

I'll be at SHOT next week and will try to post a daily recap on what's cool, what's crap, and what's been going on.

Cheers! Check back soon!

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