Meet’s newest contributor.

Me, and my first article for the site is about choosing a holster for concealed carry and the benefits of an inside the waistband holster versus outside the waistband holster.

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I’ve been a big fan of and their unique “pay to comment” business model for a long time, even before my good friend and former co-blogger joined their ranks, and now I’ll be writing for them on the new realities of gun ownership and how it affects the politics of the U.S. I’ve been after them for years to add more Second Amendment content like their competitors at The Daily Caller and, and now they’ve got one.

I just wished they’d pay more…

If you’re reading this and are not a member, please consider joining the site. The people there are smart, the conversations are guaranteed to be troll-free, and it costs about as much each month as a squash pumpkin-spice latté, but without the cloying aftertaste.

Ruger Ammunition?

Ok, this gets interesting

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According to, the ammunition is made for Ruger by Polycase Ammunition, and if so, I’m very intrigued. I shot their ammunition at SHOT and was very impressed. It was easy to shoot, accurate, and had a bullet design that looks to re-invent what defensive ammunition looks and acts like.

And the price looks right, too. Ruger upset the apple cart 8 years ago with the LCP, did it again this year with the Precision Rifle, and now they’re looking to follow Sig Sauer into the ammo market as well.

Stay tuned.

Something to add to your reading list

I’ll admit, my initial reaction to sociologist Jennifer Carlson’s book on concealed carry was a bit… wary. No one likes to be poked and prodded as a test subject, and I thought her take on why concealed carry was gaining popularity to be a bit simplistic.


In the course of her research, she got her Michigan CCW. She became an NRA Basic Pistol and PPiH instructor. She carried on a regular basis. She attended an open-carry rally, and openly carried while doing so.

I probably won’t agree with everything she says in her book, but the amount of effort she put into it deserves more research and my respect. Rather than show up at an NRA convention and mock the old fat white guys in camo overalls, it sounds like there’s a sincere effort to start with a “beginner’s mind” and truly learn the ins and outs of new gun culture.

So I’ll let you know what I think of her book, “Citizen-Protectors: The Everyday Politics of Guns in an Age of Decline” after I’m finished reading it.

Product Review: ThruNite TI4 Flashlight

Advantages: Small size, powerful output, common battery type
Disadvantages: Confusing controls
Rating: Four out of five stars.

I’ve been carrying a SigTac flashlight for a year now, and I like it because it’s bright (enough), small and it takes one AA battery. Yes, this means it isn’t as bright as an equivalent flashlight that uses CR123 batteries, but it also means I can find batteries on the Moon if need be.

However, it’s a thick flashlight, and that thickness is something that I need to deal with when I take other things out of my pockets. Sometimes, it’s not about the gadget itself, but how that gadget plays well with others. Also, I wasn’t really satisfied with the output of the SigTac light, so I started to look around for a slimmer light with a bit more candlepower.

I settled on a Thrunight Ti4 LED light. It’s powerful, easily surpassing the output of the SigTac. It’s also light, slim and becuase it looks like a pen, it doesn’t scream “I have a tactical flashlight on me!” when it’s clipped in my front pants pocket.

2xAAA LED flashlight

If I have one complaint, it’s the controls. The light has four modes: Firefly (very weak), Low (good for navigation), High (good for dazzling someone) and Strobe (good for triggering epiletic seizures). The light starts out in the dimest mode available when turned on and then the other modes are accessed by double-clicking the end cap, twisting the lens barrel or pressing and holding the end cap. It works, but it’s a bit kludgy. I’d much prefer some way to set up the light so that it starts up in my preferred mode every time I turn it on, rather than having to cycle through all the modes to get to the one I want. Also, an “emergency switch” of some sort would be nice to quickly turn on the strobe function when I need to use it stop a potential bad guy from doing me further harm.

Overall, though, for the price, it’s a great light, and definitely an upgrade from the SigTac light I had been carrying or the Streamlight MicroStream I carried before that.

Production note: As an experiment, this post was created entirely on my iPhone 6+ using an iWerks Bluetooth keyboard and the Camera+, Tilt/Shift Generator and Resize Image apps. It took me about twice as long to write than if I’d used a full-size computer, mainly because the layout of the keyboard is slightly different and toggling between browser windows is tougher on a smartphone than it is on a desktop, but I found out I can write a blog post on gear I can fit into my pockets. Cool.

So just what is a “training scar”?

Judging by this conversation, a training scar is best defined as “a process or style that a student has which a firearms teacher cannot integrate into his teaching”.

Look, I know I have a tendency not to look around after a course of fire is over. Despite that, every time I’ve ran through a “blind” shoot house, where I didn’t know where the targets were or how many targets there were, I stopped only when the instructor told me the exercise was over.

Yep, despite not doing a “scan and assess” after shooting a stage, when it came time to replicate things in as real of environment as possible, I kept my guard up and kept treating it as “real”, even though it wasn’t.

It’s almost as if my mind and body know when I’m gaming, and when I’m not.

For me, the benefits of regular competition, namely, being able to deliver the shot quickly and accurately under stressful conditions, outweigh having to deal with integrating that into a “tactical” environment like a training class. Let’s stop worrying about “training scars” and start worrying about making the shot, no matter what happens before during or after the trigger press.

Optimism means evangelism

I wrote a piece on gun ownership targeted for the non-gun-owning crowd of, and it generated a lot of good comments and a lot of… not-so-good comments. I was expecting a lot of stupid questions, and that’s ok because stupid questions help avoid stupid mistakes.

Another example.

A few months back, there was an excellent two-hour talk on Florida self-defense law here in Naples. The attorney who gave it was affiliated with the Armed Citizen’s Legal Defense Network and knew his stuff. The people in the audience DIDN’T know their stuff, and their questions revealed that fact to everyone present.

That’s ok, because if they knew everything, they’d be teaching the class, not giving it. The problem is, of course, when those who DON’T know everything think they can teach the class, and that’s when the fun begins.

If we want the pool of gun owners to expand, we need to put up with such stupidity and guide the people towards a safer, more educated lifestyle. It’s not fun, and it means putting up with some really bad ideas and even worse choices, but that’s what happens when you win: People want to be on your side.

Let’s make them at home, not uneasy.

Sun’s out, Glocks out.

2231111Should be fun.

Louland Gun Range, Southwest Florida’s favorite outdoor shooting range, and Step By Step Gun Training are teaming up for a unique shooting sports event featuring GLOCK USA firearms. The Everglades GLOCK Range Day starts at 9am on Oct. 24, 2015 at Louland Gun Range, 12425 Union Road, Naples, FL and runs until 4pm that day. The event will feature three stages based on GLOCK Shooting Sports Foundation stages and much more. Admission is $5 per person, and the entry fee for each stage is $5.

So to the reader(s) in the 239, come on by, and to those elsewhere in South Florida, come on by as well. Hey, it’s a day on the range for five bucks, what more can you ask for?

FTC Disclaimer: I’m involved in helping set this up, and know everyone involved.

The Purpose-Driven AR

For the last 20 years, buying an AR was the goal of buying an AR: Either they were banned, or they were about to be banned. Back then, you didn’t need a reason to buy an AR other than “It’s an AR, it’s in-sotck, and I want it.”

That is no longer the case, and the downturn in AR sales reflect that fact. Yes, there are people who buy guns for gun’s sake, but I’m not one of them, and I’m not certain that attitude reflects the majority of today’s gun owners, who buy guns for a reason, not because they’re “into guns”.

From my (brief) experience slinging steel over the counter, the big things driving AR’s these days are a) uniqueness or b) price. Either people are willing to pay more for an AR that does more than the average rifle, like, say, an LWRC or a Noveske, or else they want to buy the cheapest (not: I did not say “least expensive”) gun out there.

AR’s needed no other reason to exist beyond “we can buy one”, but that’s no longer the case now. It’s going to be interesting to see what they become over the next few years, as we move into a post-pessimist world of gun ownership. The reason for getting a defensive pistol are self-evident, and even shotguns have an aura of “I’m just protecting what’s mine” about them.

A rifle, though, is different, because a rifle allows for engagements at distances far beyond what non-gun people consider to be an “immediate threat”. Yes, the power of a rifle trumps the power of a pistol, but a shotgun does that as well, without the baggage of being something regularly seen in the hands of the military, not civilians.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not banging on the capabilities of a rifle as a self-defense weapon. I have one dedicated to just such a thing myself, and I also think that an AR-15 is an essential part of anyone’s arsenal, but acknowledging the realities means being able to overcome the problems, and getting the AR off the range and into the home is the logical next step for rifle manufacturers.

The Post-Pessimist Era of Gun Rights Starts Now

The template for the gun rights battles of today was created in a hot, cramped conference room in Cincinnati in 1977, and it’s been wildly successful for almost 50 years. The seemingly inexorable slide towards tighter and tighter gun regulation has, for the most part, been halted nationwide, and we have more freedom than we thought was possible back in 1995. Although pockets of gun-rights resistance remain, the fact of the matter is, the people of America feel safer when their neighbors have guns. The anti-gunners may chirp and complain and throw temper tantrums, but even Obama’s Department of Justice realizes that gun safety means keeping guns safe, not trying to ban them altogether.

Yes, there will always be elements within and without the halls of power who want to ban guns and take them away from the people least likely to use them in a crime, but those people are on the run. Our side is winning. Maybe not all the time, maybe not all the battles, but the tide has turned. We’re in a post-pessimest world of gun rights. Gun owners weathered the storm of outrage over Sandy Hook and came back even stronger. We won Kasserine Pass and Guadacanal, now it’s time to dream big and plan for Sicily, the Marianas and beyond.

How we’ll do that, I don’t rightly know. We’re good at playing defense, but it’s a long, long time since we’ve been on offense on this sort of scale.

But it will be cool.