Do You See The Light?

Published August 11, 2021 by
Filed under CCW, Self Defense, Tactical

best tactical flashlight

I put a lot of effort into this post about what makes the best tactical flashlight over at my day job. To the best of my knowledge, there really wasn’t any independent, third-party test of what a common tactical flashlight actually can or can’t do until I published this piece last month. I tested things like stated lumen output, runtime, water resistance along with stuff that doesn’t usually get compared, such as candela and running temperature.

Plus I tested just how “blinding” the “blinding” output of a tactical flashlight really is, and I gotta be honest, the result surprised me a bit.

Look, a concealed carry gun solves one problem: It projects lethal force at a distance. That’s it. It’s true that even the threat of such a thing can solve other self-defense problems, but those other problems must also involve lethal force, or else you’ve put yourself behind one heck of a legal eight ball*.

Carrying a gun is great, but have other options as well, such as pepper spray and a bright flashlight. We face a variety of problems out there in the cold, harsh world, so it stands to reason we should have a variety of solutions to that variety of problems.

* You know the drill. Not a lawyer, not legal advice, yada yada yada.

Welcome, NRA, To The TeamGunBlogger Lifestyle

Published May 12, 2014 by
Filed under CCW, Mindset, NRA, Self Defense, Training, Women

We started TeamGunBlogger because we weren’t seeing the gun industry talk to today’s gun owners. There are thousands (if not millions) of gun owners who didn’t buy a gun to go hunting, they bought a gun for personal protection and/or competition.

While not in the gun-manufacturing business themselves, the NRA is finally catching on to this fact, and has rolled out NRA Freestyle TV.

While they’ve got their own page and video player, but to me, it’s their YouTube channel that matters to me, because that’s where people from outside the gun culture will find their videos and have the opportunity to what gun ownership is really like.

Like this one.

The message (aside from the fact that Jack Reacher’s fight coordinators screwed up) is that no, you can’t use the movies or the media as your guide to what owning and safely using a gun is all about. It’s subtle, but it allows people like you and me to counter the narrative that guns kill people.

Funny, I own a bunch of them, and all I’ve killed with my guns is some tasty quail and a few coyotes. It’s almost as if my guns respond to my will, and not the other way around or something.

We already know that’s true. It’s time for the rest of America to know it too.

The Top Ten Clues You Picked The Wrong CCW Instructor.

Published March 4, 2014 by
Filed under Carry, CCW, Training

From the home office in Paulden, Arizona…

The Top Ten Signs You Picked The Wrong CCW Instructor

  1. He starts off his safety speech with “Accidentally discharging a firearm is something you need to get used to.”
  2. He has a Mayors Against Illegal Guns challenge coin.
  3. He spends more time complimenting your choice of camo gear than he does correcting your shooting stance.
  4. He says “Ok, here’s something I learned from Call of Duty.”
  5. His handouts  on aiming refer to “site picture”.
  6. He’s wearing a drop leg holster. On his arm.
  7. He’s proud of the fact he’s teaching the same stuff they taught in the 50’s. The 1850’s.
  8. His talk on the legalities of carrying a firearm is just “Shoot first, ask questions later.”
  9. He says he can’t pick up yours or anyone else’s guns because his felony conviction is still on appeal.
  10. He starts off the range session with “Here, hold my beer while I try this.”

Always be nice. Until it’s time to not be nice.

Published February 25, 2014 by
Filed under Carry, CCW, Mindset

“An armed society is a polite society. Manners are good when one may have to back up his acts with his life.” 
– Robert A. Heinlein

“Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell.”
James 3:5-6, NIV

In general, I’m not a fan of “Monday-Morning-Quarterbacking” defensive gun uses, because each one is unique and may or may not apply to our daily lives. However, this happened less than a mile from my old house, and because I lived in that neighborhood and know that store, it’s more applicable to my life, and maybe I can help others as well. 

A man who shot and killed another man inside a suburban Phoenix Walmart opened fire in self-defense, Chandler police said Monday. 
According to Chandler police, Cyle Wayne Quadlin, 25, shot Kriston Charles Belinte Chee, 36, following a fight at a service counter Sunday afternoon.
Detectives reviewing surveillance video report the two men fought in the store before the shooting Sunday afternoon.
Quadlin told police he pulled his gun in self-defense.
“Mr. Quadlin was losing the fight and indicated he ‘was in fear for his life,’ so he pulled his gun and shot Mr. Belinte Chee,” police said in a statement.
Belinte Chee was taken to a hospital where he was pronounced dead, police said. Investigators said the pair did not know each other before the shooting.
Authorities said Quadlin remained at the store for a little while following the shooting and then fled. Police found him after a family member called authorities to report his whereabouts.

This fight started with a heated argument and escalated into deadly force. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: When you carry a gun, you gain the ability to defend yourself against violent lethal force, but you give up the “right” to get angry at another person’s wordsI cannot emphasis that enough: If you’re the hot-temepered type, get your anger under control before you carry a gun, or don’t carry one at all. A man died in this incident and another’s life is forever changed because tempers flared and things got out of control. Learn to walk away from fight before it happens, because the easiest way to win a fist is never starting it. 

This is why I’ve never recommended off-body carry

Published February 13, 2014 by
Filed under Carry, CCW, Clothing, Equipment, Self Defense

I was a professional advertising photographer for ten years, and to getting the shot meant I carried  a gadget bag full of expensive cameras on my shoulder in some pretty shady areas full of pretty shady people. That gadget bag drew attention to me and said to the criminal element “Look, here’s a bunch of expensive stuff you can fence quickly: STEAL IT!” 

And I never once considered carrying a self-defense weapon in my gadget bag: It’s what the crooks want, why would I just add to the stuff they get to steal by putting a weapon in there with my lights and lenses? 

Same with a purse: It’s what the crooks want and one of the things you want to defend, so keeping the means to defend yourself inside the thing you’re to defend. 

It’s like freezing your diet plan inside a tub of vanilla ice cream: You’re going to get into more trouble getting to it than you are using it. 

Video courtesy of Kathy Jackson, who recommends on-body carry, and so do I. 

Carry often, carry consistently.

Published January 9, 2014 by
Filed under Carry, CCW, Clothing, Equipment, Self Defense, Training

Stop for a moment: Do you know where your house keys are? Where your cell phone is or your wallet? Are they in the same place they normally are? Probably.

We carry our daily “must have” items in the same place all the time because we don’t want to spend a lot of time looking for them if we need them. 

The same thing is true for your defensive firearm. If (God forbid) you’ll need it, you’ll need it rightthisverysecond and not want to pause for a moment to reflect where it might be. This is why once you’ve decided on where to carry your pistol, you’ll want to carry in that position as often as possible and not move it to another location or yourself or somewhere else. 

For example, through trial and (some) error, I’ve found that I prefer to carry my CCW gun in an Inside The Waistband (IWB) holster, specifically in a hybrid Kydex/leather holster of some kind, positioned at about 3:30 on the same side as my strong hand. I usually carry either a Smith and Wesson Shield or a CZ P07 in that position, but if I can’t carry on my waist because of what I’m wearing or where I’m going, I carry a pocket .380, a Kel-Tec P3AT in a pocket holster in my pants on my strong hand side. My extra magazine (and you DO carry spare ammo, don’t you?) is either in a mag pouch on my waist or in a nifty little pocket pouch that keeps my ammo separate from the flotsam and jetsam in my pockets.  

Take a moment to think about where your carry gun is right now. If you’re not sure, or if it’s not close by, it’s not going to be much help when you’ll need it most. 

Accepting the responsibility of owning a gun.

Published December 17, 2013 by
Filed under Carry, CCW, Mindset, Practice, Self Defense, Training

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Owning a firearm for personal defense is the most grown-up decision you’ll make in your life because you realize that an armed representative of the state (a cop) will not be there when you need one and you are, and always will be, your own first responder. 

I agree with Rob Pincus: The government shouldn’t mandate training as a pre-requisite to gun ownership, anymore than they should mandate J-School classes before owning a typewriter. It’s the duty of responsible people to set up and advocate responsible actions for anyone wanting to own a gun, and training is definitely a part of that equation. 

BTW, for more info on Combat Focus Shooting in Arizona, check out Phoenix Firearms Training

Thanks for your feedback.

Published December 12, 2013 by
Filed under Carry, CCW, Clothing, Equipment, Women

I want to thank everyone who answered last week’s poll because it really helped me (and a bunch of other people) become more informed about where to start when recommending on-body carry for women. 

Yes, no two women are exactly alike (no two men, either…), so there will always be a need for women (and men) who own guns to try things out for themselves and see what works for them. The difference is now I and a bunch of other people have a place to begin from when it comes to recommending on-body carry for women. 

Thanks again,

K

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