When Black Friday Comes

When black Friday comes, I’m gonna dig myself a hole
Gonna lay down in it ’til I satisfy my soul
Gonna let the world pass by me, the Archbishop’s gonna sanctify me
And if he don’t come across I’m gonna let it roll

I’ve got some thoughts on some Christmas presents for the gun nut in your life that don’t require to you to list out your loved one’s favorite calibers and ammo loads over at Ricochet.com.



Smarty Pants

I am not morally opposed to so-called “smart guns”: Technology marches on, and let’s face it, electronics WILL become a part of a gun some time in the future, more so than the red dot sights we have today. We have anti-lock brakes and traction control and active shifters in our cars and our cars are faster and safer than ever before, so it makes sense that integrating electronics into our guns will help keep us safer as well.

But that day is not today, nor tomorrow. Not when the best smart gun out there is a jam-o-matic. Let the military and the police test “smart guns” for thirty years, then (and only then) pass it on down, unaltered, (that means NO “kill switches”) to civilians. Please don’t ask me to take chances with the lives of my loved ones if other first responders won’t take that same chance on an unproven technology. It took thirty years for AR-15’s to go from military issue to America’s #1 rifle, so let’s allow the military to work out the bugs in smart guns and then we’ll see if they work for civilians as well.

Time Is Life.

It occurs to me that what we are fighting for in a mass casualty situation is time. Time is distance, and time also allows you the ability to move to cover and being behind cover gives your more time to choose the best option for the situation. Not having any time to make any decisions means you’ll probably fall prey to panic, and that is not a good thing when your life is on the line.

Hunting is May Issue. Practical Shooting is Shall Issue.

Thinking more about last week’s article for Bearing Arms, everything about hunting is about getting past the gatekeepers. You need your safety class, then your tags, then you need to find someplace to hunt or someone to show you where to hunt. There are checkpoints along the way to make sure you’re the “right type of person” to hunt, and even then, you may not get a chance to hunt if you don’t have the right connections.

In other words, “May Issue” concealed carry.

Practical shooting, though, is different. If you have something even close to the right gear for the match and have a basic understanding of gun safety, you shoot. You may have to go through a safety briefing and have a more experienced shooter guide you through the match, but if you show up, you shoot.

“Shall Issue”.

Which path leads to growth? Well, that one’s not hard to figure out.

The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Match Etiquette

A great run-down on how not to be a jerk at a practical shooting match.

“The core thing to remember is that most matches only happen thanks to the generosity of time from the volunteer staff. They’re there because they love the sport and want to help others. As long as you respect that, help out, and don’t be a jerk, you’ll be more than halfway to being a good competitor.”

Also, as volunteers, the people at a match love to have new people show up, because the more people shoot, the easier the jobs get for everyone.

Rational Fear, Irrational Conclusions

The National Journal has an interesting, if flawed, look at American’s growing mistrust of government and how that is driving firearms ownership.

“Fear of the gov­ern­ment had the strongest re­la­tion­ship with buy­ing a gun be­cause of fear,” said Chap­man sur­vey re­search­er L. Ed­ward Day.

“People who have pur­chased a gun be­cause of fear also have high levels of fear of tech­no­logy and crime.”

Well duh. Unfortunately, right after that, they quote the Violence Policy Center as to how effective guns are in self-defense. This is roughly equivalent to quoting the Moral Majority about gay marriage, but the narrative must come first, the facts must come second.

Despite that tragic flaw, there’s a lot to be learned in this article about the desire to stay safe versus taking the steps needed to stay safe.

If Amer­ic­ans are too quick to act in this in­stance of fear-driv­en be­ha­vi­or, they un­der-pre­pare in re­sponse to oth­er dangers. More than half the re­spond­ents in the sur­vey say they fear a nat­ur­al or man-made dis­aster, and 86 per­cent be­lieve an emer­gency kit would im­prove their chances of sur­viv­al. But the vast ma­jor­ity—72 per­cent—have made no ef­fort to put to­geth­er such a kit.

Look, when even the .gov is telling you to build yourself a 72 hour kit, there is no real reason not to have the items you need to stay safe for three days (or longer) near you at all times.