Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Open carry gaining traction...

Majority of Americans Feel Comfortable Around Open Carriers - Defend and Carry

Jun 3, 2015 | 

YouGov Poll: Majority of Americans Support Open Carry of Guns

www.newsmax.com,By Jason Devaney

More than half of Americans would be OK with seeing someone openly carrying a holstered handgun in public, according to the results of a new poll.

The YouGov survey finds that a combined 52 percent of Americans would either be very comfortable or somewhat comfortable with the practice.

Further, just under half of those surveyed — 48 percent — said the average American can be trusted with a firearm. That breaks down to 69 percent of Republicans; 49 percent of independents; and 32 percent of Democrats.

More than half of Americans feel comfortable with the Second Amendment and our Constitutional right to keep and bear arms. I don’t know about you, but that’s how I read the poll’s results.

Our Founding Fathers would probably be disappointed with these numbers, but in today’s society, the results from this pole are a step in the right direction.

With all the slanted and biased media attention nowadays, it’s a relief to see that many Americans still understand the need for open carry. They realize how firearms can and should be integrated into our society. Our Second Amendment wasn’t scribbled into the Constitution just to look pretty; it was enacted to protect the people.

Although there’s an overall improved support for guns, statistics still show a major divider between the American people. This could be due to the media’s uncanny ability of reporting exclusively on the negative gun-related stories, ultimately skewing public perception on a daily basis. “If it bleeds, it leads” should be abandoned altogether; the public deserves to hear both sides of the issue.

We as open and concealed carriers are making baby steps toward educating those who know little about defensive gun use.

Too many stories about carriers preventing burglaries, robberies, and massacres fall upon deaf ears. You can bet that if the media focused more on covering both sides, the percentage of open carry supporters would be even better.


Monday, June 29, 2015

Myth of hierarchy of lethality

Myth of Hierarchy of Lethality

self defense laws

Ignorance of the Law Excuses No One

One of the most crucial components of an armed encounter is what happens after the actual event. Maintaining an awareness of self-defense laws – not just in your home state but others as well – is crucial in order to avoid possible arrest, trial, and even conviction or sentencing via the justice system. Ensure a well-rounded understanding of your right to self-defense with this four reference exclusive collection. Arm Yourself with Knowledge

Far from popular perception, a knife or baseball can be as or more deadly than a firearm.

Far from popular perception, a knife or baseball bat can be as or more deadly than a firearm.

We live in a world where the entertainment media and the news media alike have demonized the firearm as a frightening, high-efficiency killing machine. A myth has arisen that I call “hierarchy of lethality.” It is the false belief that the firearm represents the nuclear level of hand-held weaponry, and is somehow more lethal than other deadly weapons.

The general public sees the knife as something less: after all, they’ll open their mail in the morning with something very much like your opponent’s knife, and will slice the roast at dinner tonight with something virtually identical to the blade your opponent wields.

Because it’s an accoutrement of everyday life, they just don’t see the knife as a weapon, even though they know cognitively that it can be turned from culinary aid to murder weapon in a heartbeat. An impact weapon, a “club”? Well, they may see that as even less deadly.

Now, the night comes when you are attacked by a homicidal perpetrator wielding bludgeon or blade. You are forced to shoot him in self-defense. I can almost guarantee where the subsequent attack on you is going to come from:

“He only had a knife!”

“He only had a baseball bat!”

Opposing counsel may attempt to paint you as the bully and coward who used a deadlier weapon than your assailant, and will attempt to convince the jury that your shooting of a man with “a less than lethal weapon” is unfair and therefore improper.

Of course, this flies in the face of the legality of the matter, which is that within their range, the club and the knife are every bit as deadly as the gun…and, in some situations, can be deadlier.

Knife Lethality

A knife never jams. A knife never runs out of ammunition; you rarely see a gunshot murder victim who has been shot more than a few times, but any homicide investigator can tell you how common it is for the victim of a knife murder to bear twenty, thirty, or more stab and/or slash wounds. “A knife comes with a built-in silencer.” Knives are cheap, and can be bought anywhere; there used to be a cutlery store at LaGuardia Airport, not far outside the security gates. There is no prohibition at law against a knife being sold to a convicted felon. Knives can be small and flat and amazingly easy to conceal.

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Impact Weapon Lethality

Common tools turn into remarkably efficient death weapons, some more readily than others. Police batons have rounded surfaces in hopes of reducing fractures to underlying bone and minimizing lacerations, while still delivering a stunning impact to stop the recipient’s physical assault. Many common tools and other objects have rough, irregular edges which are conducive to shattering bones and splitting flesh. The common claw hammer is a particularly deadly murder weapon. In blows to the head, it often punches completely through the skull wall and into the soft, vulnerable brain tissue beneath. Hammer murderers have told in their confessions how the hammer became stuck inside the victim’s skull so deeply that they had to step or even stomp on the head to break the hammer free for the next blow. Crowbars are also associated with particularly destructive blunt force injuries. The list goes on.

The “Unarmed Motorist”

Unarmed? A full-size automobile traveling fifty miles an hour generates approximately half a million foot-pounds of energy. Far from being unarmed, the violent man who turns his automobile into a guided missile has armed himself with the most crushingly powerful of bludgeons. Deliberately driving at a person on foot is a serious crime, delineated in some jurisdictions as “assault with a deadly weapon, to wit, a motor vehicle.” That angry spouse who runs over the significant other is culpable for murder in every jurisdiction.

Less Lethal Weapons

Over the years, the terminology changed from “non-lethal” to “less-lethal” or “less than lethal.” The reason was simple: in real world application, intermediate force weapons weren’t always non-lethal. A fight is generally a rapid swirl of movement involving at least two people. Sometimes, for example, a swing of the baton intended for a suspect’s shoulder or upper arm might hit the rounded deltoid muscle and skid off into the head as the suspect simultaneously tried to duck away from the stick. The result could be a blow to the temple with enough power to fracture the skull, and/or cause permanent or even fatal brain injury.


Sunday, June 28, 2015

$135 Utah, Arizona & Florida Concealed Carry Weapon (CCW) Class

$135 Utah, Florida & Arizona Concealed Carry Weapon (CCW) License Class

Get three (3) non-resident Utah, Florida & Arizona CCW permits / licenses - together legally and safely conceal carry handgun(s) in over 34 States. 

Location: Villa Park,  Illinois 
Date: August 8th (8AM - Noon)

Cost: $135.00 includes (UT & AZ) fingerprints, passport photos, non-resident paper applications and notary of the FL application.

331-642-8110 / www.IllinoisCC.com

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Only a good guy with a gun can stop a bad guy with a gun

12 Occasions Mass Shooters Were Thwarted By Armed Citizens - Defend and Carry

Jun 25, 2015 | 

12 Times Mass Shootings Were Stopped by Good Guys With Guns

By Hunter Roosevelt, Controversial Times

1.) Pearl High School

2.) Parker Middle School

3.)Appalachian School of Law

4.) New Life Church 

5.) New York Mills AT&T Store

6.) Sullivan Central High School

7.) Freewill Baptist Church

8.) Clackamas Town Center Mall

9.) Mystic Strip Club

10.) Austin, Texas Construction Site

11.) Cache Valley Hospital

12.) Mercy Fitzgerald Hospital 

Look what we have here… Another bit of material that the liberals don’t want us to know about. This list, made up of 12 mass shootings attempts, consists of names, churches and stores that I’m sure only few people will recognize. The reason: mainstream media covers only the issues that will boost their ratings and add to their gargantuan fan base.

If it bleeds, it leads” is a phrase that may not get tossed around in the large news broadcast companies, but it is undoubtedly an underlying factor when producing the nighty news. They believe a good story requires a helpless victim, gunned down by a heartless villain. News broadcasters see a failed attempt of a mass shooter and assume the public would be disinterested without the bloodshed.


We the people deserve to hear both sides of the story-the good and the bad. It comes as an injustice when media corporations dilute the news with negativity. Is this really what sells?

My advice to the syndicates that exclusively cover biased bloodshed is this: try the truth out for size.

See how we, the people, react to a story with a hero who happens to save dozens of lives through an act of courage and valor. I bet we’d surprise you.

Pick any one of these stories within this list of 12 and you’ll get a look at the more positive, realistic side of guns and the concealed carry culture. School resource officer Carolyn Gudger saved the lives of many because of her quick actions and situational awareness. But did this make the nations front pages? Not a chance. It may have made a few, but the positive outcome of the situation just wasn’t bloody enough for most news organizations.

Take Nick Meli, another man who saved dozens with his rapid response to a lone gunman. As a concealed carrier, he recognized the threat at hand and acted accordingly. The gunman managed to take two innocent lives, but that number could have been much higher if not for Meli and his defensive gun use.

When the media churns out a never-ending volume of anti-gun stories, these positive firearm reports will be simply pushed to the side. This forces the public to dig for the truth. To hear every story, and to really look at the numbers before blindly following mindless media moguls.

Illinois Concealed Carry Weapon (CCW) Class

$250 - Illinois Concealed Carry Weapon (CCW/CCL) License Training Class


Get your Illinois Conceal Carry License / Permit.... Plus get 3 other CCW's licenses FREE! (Utah CCW, Arizona CCW & Florida CCW) - together safely and legally conceal carry a handgun in over 35 States...!!!

Price: $250 (NO other class fees), 
price includes;
1. Range fees ($25)
2. Illinois Livescan digital fingerprints ($70)
3. Utah & Arizona ink fingerprints ($25)
4. Passport photos ($15)
5. CCW application paperwork 
6. Assistance with CCW application paperwork 

Class Date: August 8-9th (16 hours)
Location: VFW- Villa Park, Illinois 

331-642-8110 / www.IllinoisCC.com

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Concealed Carry is the answer for the violence in Chicago

Chicago: A Real Life Gotham - Defend and Carry

Jun 23, 2015 | 

3 killed, 33 wounded in weekend gun violence in Chicago

By Chicago Tribune Staff

Three people were killed and at least 33 were wounded by gunfire in the Chicago over the weekend. A total of 1,187 people have been shot in Chicago so far this year, also up from 1,045 people shot in the same time period last year.

Here we have another weekend-long massacre within Chicago’s city limits.

Three killed and 33 wounded is barely enough to make the front page of the Chicago Tribune.

This is not the first time we’ve covered this ongoing crisis, and we still stand by our claim that this atrocious spat of violence comes as a result of Chicago’s incessant desire for more gun control.

Chicago must learn that the tighter they clench their citizen’s firearms, the more the city’s criminals will win. Gang members could care less about abiding by the law. While the law abiders struggle to acquire a gun for defensive purposes under Chicago law, it’s the felons that benefit from this thoughtless policy.

Take Dallas, a city that welcomes concealed carriers across the board. Ever since 1995, the city has become increasingly safer after a move to arm their citizens.

It’s a proven fact, my Second Amendment friends: the more concealed carriers, the better.

It forces criminals to think twice about committing a crime. These skeevy bastards find themselves wondering ‘will one of my victims have a gun under that shirt?’

Chicago is dying. Their citizens are suffering. It’s time to change city policy before more preventable deaths occur. The Chicago Tribune’s obituary section is growing at a staggering rate, and it all comes back to law abiders having trouble acquiring firearms.

A young Chicago man died when shielding his mother in a Chicago street last weekend.

My blood boils when I read this shit.

This could have been prevented with a quick fix of the law. This kid could have pulled out his legally issued firearm against the criminal who undoubtedly collected his through illegal means.

Chicago streets run red with blood, and city officials think they’re doing the right thing. Something just doesn’t add up here. This troubled city could get better if officials loosen their death grip on gun control, but they wont. Chicago citizens caught in a bad neighborhood or a back alley can start protecting themselves like those in Dallas.

Instead of cowering behind a cell phone or attempting to flee from the scene, they can make a stand against the criminals of Chicago.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Conceal carry and moral questions...

Conceal Carry Moral Questions.

Guns are mechanical devices that propel aimed projectiles with more force than you could accurately throw a rock. They are designed for different tasks and, in concert with various types of ammunition, can effectively stop dangerous criminal acts. Guns are effective tools. They are used by police officers as self-defense tools. When law enforcement officers have to apprehend someone, or go after criminals, they take pistols, rifles, and shotguns. Their sidearm, thought, is personal and almost always backed up by another gun (or guns) you can’t see.

“Civilians that choose to protect themselves need no less than what the police carry for their personal defense equipment. Guns prevent an estimated 2.5 million crimes a year or 6,849 every day. Often the gun is never fired, and no blood (including the criminal’s) is shed."Source: Targeting Guns, Dr. Gary Kleck, Criminologist, Florida State University, Aldine, 1997”

Deciding to carry a concealed firearm does bring with it great responsibility. As a law-abiding citizen, you must consider how you will secure the firearm when carrying it. You must learn the laws where you reside. You must learn when and how to use the firearm you are carrying. It goes beyond basic marksmanship and safe gun handling. A concealed carry holder should understand terms like “reasonable man,” and “use of force” that will come up in court if and when you have to use your firearm. That knowledge, or that lack there of, will either exonerate you in court or lead to your conviction, even after you’ve survived what could have been a lethal encounter. Yet the courts’ decisions, for many of us, are not the last judgments we will face. We have to answer to others, and ourselves. This is an extremely personal decision. It will test your understanding of Holy law, or your own moral code. As for me, I believe God has prepared me to act in accordance to my abilities and training.

The ultimate question for someone considering carrying a concealed firearm will always remain unanswered until it is tested. Could you shoot another human being if you or someone you love was being physically harmed? This question isn’t just for a citizen that is considering carrying a gun for personal defense either. This question comes up on the battlefield with military personnel, and with law enforcement officers. It is extremely personal and is based on your moral and core values. What does your gut tell you?

One of the differences between citizen law enforcement officers and an armed citizenry is that police officers have a sworn duty to go into bad situations and the rest of us do not. Carrying a concealed gun is a survival option. You can get through life and never carry a gun. In all the states that allow citizens the opportunity to carry, only one in four citizens does. That ratio is sufficient enough to deter an unknown number of crimes. Criminals prefer unarmed victims. After passing their concealed carry law, Florida's homicide rate fell from 36% above the national average to 4% below, and that rate remains below the national average (2005). Source: Shall issue: the new wave of concealed handgun permit laws, Cramer C and Kopel D. Golden CO: Independence Institute Issue Paper. October 17, 1994

The act of carrying a firearm for self-defense does not mean you will have to kill a person when are attacked or confronted. The mere presentation of a firearm has been known to stop the attack. Simply having a firearm, and adequate training for how to handle hazardous situations can help you survive a potentially deadly encounter.

It can happen anywhere. Concealed Carry holders have prevented or curtailed mass public shootings – Pearl, Mississippi (Pearl Junior High School), Edinboro, Pennsylvania (Parker Middle School), Winnemucca, Nevada (Players Bar and Grill), Colorado Springs, Colorado (New Life Church).

In the rare instance you would have to use your sidearm to protect your life or prevent serious bodily harm or rape, the death of your attacker is not a guarantee. Shooting a person does not guarantee death. Each circumstance is different. A person that has been previously shot, or that is under the influence of alcohol or drugs, may not act as if they have been shot. They may continue to advance until the body succumbs from the damage inflicted.

History and data have shown that having a gun will deter criminals.

“Every day 400,000 life- threatening violent crimes are prevented using firearms. 60% of convicted felons admitted that they avoided committing crimes when they knew the victim was armed. 40% of convicted felons admitted that they avoided committing crimes when they thought the victim might be armed. Source: Armed and Considered Dangerous: A Survey of Felons and Their Firearms, James Wright and Peter Rossi, Aldine, 1986"

These same criminals may test your martial arts skills. They may be angered by your chemical spray, and be able to fight you although you delivered it technically accurately. Few criminals will tempt the effectiveness of well-placed bullets. Sometimes, making them think twice about their actions is enough.


Tuesday, June 23, 2015

$250 Illinois Concealed Carry Weapon (CCW) Class

$250 - Illinois Concealed Carry Weapon (CCW/CCL) License Training Class


Get your Illinois Conceal Carry License / Permit.... Plus get 3 other CCW's licenses FREE! (Utah CCW, Arizona CCW & Florida CCW) - together safely and legally conceal carry a handgun in over 35 States...!!!

Price: $250 (NO other class fees), 
price includes;
1. Range fees ($25)
2. Illinois Livescan digital fingerprints ($70)
3. Utah & Arizona ink fingerprints ($25)
4. Passport photos ($15)
5. CCW application paperwork 
6. Assistance with CCW application paperwork 

Class Date: June 27-28th (16 hours)
Location: Elmhurst, Illinois 

331-642-8110 / www.IllinoisCC.com

Monday, June 22, 2015

Utah, Arizona & Florida CCW Class

$135 Utah, Florida & Arizona Concealed Carry Weapon (CCW) License Class

Get your non-resident Utah, Florida & Arizona CCW permits / licenses - legally and safely conceal carry handgun(s) in over 34 States. 

Location: Elmhurst, Illinois 
Date: June 28th (8AM - Noon)

Cost: $135.00 includes fingerprints and passport photos and non-resident paper applications

331-642-8110 / www.IllinoisCC.com

Guns are better...than no guns

Prefer Gun Ownership Over Gun Control - Defend and Carry

Apr 27, 2015

Americans More Supportive of Protecting Gun Rights

via  ANDREW KOHUT at Pew Research

For most of the 1990s and the subsequent decade, a substantial majority of Americans believed it was more important to control gun ownership than to protect gun owners’ rights. But in December 2014, the balance of opinion flipped: For the first time, more Americans say that protecting gun rights is more important than controlling gun ownership, 52% to 46%.

The numbers are clear: protecting gun rights is more important than controlling the ownership of guns to the American people.

Some major media moguls may not report on this credible data for democratic reasons, but the Pew Research Center proves that the majority of American citizens not only want to protect our Second Amendment right to bear arms-they also feel that a gun makes a household safer.

It’s nice to see numbers prove this fact once and for all.

The article also proves that the public is wildly misinformed on the amount of crime committed within our country, which correlates directly to their stance on gun control.

This comes as a product of violence-packed news coverage and inaccurate political hyperbole.

As the public becomes more worried of the encroaching of crime, the more they support the loosening of gun control.

Owning a gun and using it as a protective measure has become more popular within recent years, and for good reason.


Saturday, June 20, 2015

6 ways to conceal carry your gun!!!

6 Ways to Carry a Gun Concealed (And the Holsters You Need)

 By  Leave a Comment

How do you choose which holster is right for you?

If you listen to the internet, you might think that belt carry is the only sensible way to carry a gun. Any other way sucks on general principle, will get you killed, or result in Pluto plummeting from the sky into western Kansas. That’s probably OK though, considering Pluto isn’t a real planet anymore.

I like to be more understanding. While I do believe belt carry is probably the best all-around option, assuming you can, it’s simply not feasible for all people all of the time. Women may need to wear a dress instead of pants. Men may spend most of their day sitting or in a vehicle. Men and women may have work dress codes that make belt carry difficult or impossible. There are a million reasons why traditional belt carry may not be an option at all times.

Sometimes you just have to accept other carry options due to your circumstances. You might have to adopt a carry method that is a little slower or that offers more difficult access to your gun. Might that be less than ideal? Yes. Is it better than not carrying at all? Yes.

For example, if your work environment forces you to carry very deeply concealed, you might choose to carry my gun in an undershirt holster rather than not carry at all. Is that as fast as belt carry? No. Is undershirt carry better than not carrying at all? Yes. Could it make a difference in a surprise mugging? Maybe not. Will it help if you’re sitting at your desk and hear gunshots down the hall? Yes.

With that said, let’s look at a number of carry styles that may work for you, based on your particular situation. Note that I’m not including off body carry options like purses, packs or day planners. While I understand these might be necessary for certain scenarios, I would always choose a different non-traditional carry method. I prefer using a carry method that keeps my gun on my body, not in a bag that could be left unattended or taken from me. But that’s my personal decision and your mileage may vary.

Belt Carry

Notice how this Blackhawk! Check Six cants aggressively? That makes it easier to conceal.

For a single carry method, you’ve actually got a number of choices. There are inside and outside the waistband options. You can choose different locations on your belt line ranging from cross draw to appendix to behind the hip.

For inside-the-waistband carry, my number one pick is the Galco KingTuk. The large leather panel of the hybrid design stabilizes your gun and spreads the weight around. The use of Kydex for the gun pocket keeps the whole rig as thin as possible and your gun securely in place. For small to medium-sized guns, check out the super comfortable N82 Tactical holsters.

For outside carry, I like a good pancake-style holster. The large area and spread-out belt loops offer plenty of stability. One of my favorites is the Blackhawk! Check Six. It’s designed to be worn behind the hip and is heavily canted. This minimizes the length of cover garment you need to cover it up. If you prefer a less aggressive cant angle, take a look at the Mitch Rosen 5JR-EXP. If you want the convenience of easy removal, try the Galco Side Snap Scabbard. You can put it on and take it off without removing your belt.

Body Carry

A belly band like this Galco model provides a number of ways to carry.

There are a number of ways to carry a gun around your torso or belly area. The standard Belly Band is amazingly versatile if you invest some time experimenting with different placement locations while using an unloaded gun. You can wear it low, so it acts like a tuckable inside-the-waistband holster. The best part? When you tuck in a shirt or blouse, there are no telltale clips to give you away. You can also try wearing it higher, underneath a shirt or blouse. Last, but not least, a belly band can make a good cross draw solution.

Compression shirts for men and women feature an elastic holster under the arm. While harder and slower to access, concealment and gun security are both excellent. Your gun is completely hidden under a shirt and your arm aids in total concealment. If you evaluate this method, you must practice – a lot – with an unloaded gun. Drawing from under a pullover or buttoned shirt is a skill to be learned. Check out models from 5.11 Tactical and Undertech Undercover.


Illinois Concealed Carry Weapon (CCW) Class

$250 - Illinois Concealed Carry Weapon (CCW/CCL) License Training Class


Get your Illinois Conceal Carry License / Permit.... Plus get 3 other CCW's licenses FREE! (Utah CCW, Arizona CCW & Florida CCW) - together safely and legally conceal carry a handgun in over 35 States...!!!

Price: $250 (NO other class fees), 
price includes;
1. Range fees ($25)
2. Illinois Livescan digital fingerprints ($70)
3. Utah & Arizona ink fingerprints ($25)
4. Passport photos ($15)
5. CCW application paperwork 
6. Assistance with CCW application paperwork 

Class Date: June 27-28th (16 hours)
Location: Elmhurst, Illinois 

331-642-8110 / www.IllinoisCC.com

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Semi auto reload procedures

Load, Reload, Rinse, Repeat

Let’s talk about semi-automatic pistol reload procedures. Bam! I just started a huge argument. Also, just to be ticklish, I want to propose a change to how we as a police/military/CCW shooting community train reloading our semi-automatic handguns.

To start off, there are techniques and there are procedures and by the way, they are not the same thing. Techniques are non-prescriptive ways or methods used to perform functions or tasks.

A procedure is the physical and prescriptive “how” of doing that particular something.

For instance, my technique will be, “Keep my weapon loaded at all times. Speed load my firearm whenever it runs empty and avoid running empty by proactive thinking and action whenever possible.”

The procedure is how, exactly, to do that speed load. As in, “Step 1 is this, and then Step 2 is that,” etcetera. In fact, there are a couple of different procedures to speed loading a handgun. Which one I choose to use depends on the exact conditions I’m encountering. We adapt procedures to the specific environment, our abilities, and of course, the threat we face.

Also, there are strengths and weaknesses to all procedures. There is not one perfect procedure that solves problems 100% of the time. You evaluate them under the conditions you are in right now and you pick, frankly, what may be the lesser of two dangers. Hopefully with training you pick the right procedure for a specific environment which matches your abilities to counter the current threat – and that means you survive a little longer

Don’t get bored, I’m getting to the meat of things.

Okay there are a thousand names or labels for every procedure and I’m not married to any of them but for the sake of my TAG, LLC students I have my stock names. For instance, under the heading of Administrative Loading Procedures there is the “Range Reload.” This is a training-only or range level reload, not used under real hostile engagement type environments. Go to CCWGuardian.com and look for the training video, “Load and Reload a Semi-Auto Handgun.”

A Range Reload is where during a pause in training (and only if allowed to do so by the instructor) a student with a holstered weapon and has a chambered round, needs to top off their weapon with more ammunition before the next series of firing events. They reach around and pop their mag release and remove the magazine while the weapon remains fully in the holster. If they can’t do this safely without un-holstering (even a little bit) or disengaging their holster’s safety devices, then they are not allowed to perform this procedure.

Understanding the above, the shooter pops their mag release and removes the magazine leaving the weapon holstered. They then either insert a fully loaded mag back into the weapon, ensuring it’s fully seated, or top off the mag they just removed with more ammunition and re-insert it fully. Bingo, a safe and practical Range Reload.

Why do a Range Reload? The technique is to keep the line hot, weapons topped off, and keep the training moving along as efficiently as possible to make maximum use of limited training time. The procedureis comprised of the steps above.

I tell my students on the range all the time, “Ammunition management is a problem; it’s just not my problem!” Now you get the idea of techniques versus procedures.

Next is the area where there was a lot of agreement for years but now, not so much. I’ve heard this stuff called ‘Combat’ reload, ‘Emergency ‘reload, ‘Slide-lock’ reload and a half dozen others. But let’s focus first on the technique. The technique is to rapidly reload the weapon whether the slide is locked to the rear or not. For here let’s call it “Speed Reload.”

Now, a Speed Reload is just how it sounds. Rapid, under dynamic or let’s say, austere conditions, you need to load. Fast. Sure, ninety-nine percent of the time this is due to an empty mag bringing the weapon to slide-lock, but I’ve also seen this used with the slide forward to quickly top off a weapon where you may have only a round or two left, but are still in an active and deadly engagement.

Therefore there are two different procedures under the technique of Speed Reloading.

First let’s describe a “Slide-lock” Speed Reload. While firing in real-world conditions you will not likely be counting your rounds and can easily shoot to empty. You’re indication of this is the weapon’s slide locks open and to the rear. Cops often call this a “clue” but hey, let’s not get too technical yet. This should generally be your most practiced reloading procedure as it requires some dexterity.

SLIDE LOCK SPEED RELOAD: First, move! Don’t ever, ever, reload standing still. Be hard to hit. Next, keeping the weapon high and up in the lower edge of your line of sight, let go with your support (non-firing) hand and go for your spare mag. Simultaneously with your primary shooting hand still holding the weapon, press the mag release as you bend your elbow to snap the firing arm sharply back and vertically twist the firing hand and weapon to forcibly expel the empty magazine. Ideally it should fly 2-3 miles before hitting the ground.

This is better demonstrated than described, because you are using centrifugal force and inertia to send the empty mag flying and out of the way of your support hand bringing that reload quickly towards the magazine well. It requires some timing and practice to hit the magazine release right at the pivotal moment you are snapping the weapon back and over to take full use of the centrifugal and inertial forces. Bottom line, get the empty mag gone and out of the way.

Now the flat side of the weapon’s mag well is facing to your support side and you have correctly grabbed a spare mag with your supporting hand. Move the flat side of the magazine to the flat side of the weapon’s mag well and insert. Slam it in, don’t finesse here, making sure it’s fully seated. Again, we have videos to help illustrate this.

Next you have to get the slide back forward and chamber a round. This is where we as a defensive shooting community have evolved a bit based on competition. I used to teach to bring the support hand up and over the slide serrations and grab the slide there with the support hand thumb closest to the eyes and pinky forward. Then pull back aggressively to rack the slide back a bit and release it to allow the recoil spring inside to ‘sling-shot’ the slide forward. However, this leaves my support hand moving rearward towards my shoulder and out of place to quickly re-establish a solid two-handed grip.

Instead, I now teach a pinch-style slide grab where, after inserting the fresh mag, rotate the weapon slightly inboard to the body’s centerline, still high up at head level and still aimed towards the threat. The support hand runs up the support side of the weapon to grab the rear slide serrations with the support thumb pointing forward and the top of the slide in the palm. Now, pull back and ‘sling-shot’ the slide forward. If done right your support hand is in position to re-acquire good two-handed grip a bit faster this way. This should be your most practiced reloading procedure.

Wow, that should start some fights. Many of you are already going to CAPS LOCK to respond! All I ask is to try it first before calling me a Commie.

Some tips: Keep your head up and use only your peripheral vision to accomplish this reload. Move the whole time you’re reloading and when possible move to hard cover. Don’t stare at your gun, keep moving and watch for a threat to appear. Don’t ride the slide with your support hand during the ‘sling-shot’ forward. You can cause a stoppage. Smooth is fast and go only as fast as you can do it right the first time instead of rushing. But, well, don’t just stare at it…reload the darn thing!

Okay, so can you use these same procedures for when you want to reload but the slide’s not locked open on an empty magazine? Yes!

SLIDE FORWARD SPEED RELOAD: As I discussed above you don’t normally count rounds when in an active hostile engagement. You shoot to stop aggressive, deadly action against you. But if at some point you say to yourself, “I’m about out” you have to fix it. In other words, a fully loaded weapon is preferable to a weapon going to slide lock at the worse possible moment. If you can prevent having to do a Slide Lock Reload, why not? Remember our overarching technique from page one?

“…avoid running empty by proactive thinking and action whenever possible.”

So, follow all the procedures discussed above except you initiate a Speed Reload on your own volition, not due to a slide lock. You decide to reload because maybe the weapon starts feeling lighter. The slide’s still in battery and there’s a round still in the chamber.

Move and snap the weapon back as before while reaching for the spare mag and pressing the magazine release all at the same time. Keep the weapon high and at head level in the lower part of your vision. Insert the full mag and seat it fully, then run your support hand back out and into a good two handed grip. Boom, a one second reload with practice.

The technique is the same; rapidly reloading your weapon under hostile or deadly threat conditions, but the procedure is slightly modified to avoid running empty. Do you throw away a few rounds in favor of many rounds? Yes, that’s a consideration. Strengths and weakness, eh?

But wait, you say, “Isn’t this Tactical Reload” territory.  And here’s where the fight will start.

TACTICAL RELOAD: I have taught Tactical Reloads (also called a “Tact Load”) for years and now I rarely teach it. (Blasphemy!) For the unwashed, let me explain briefly the concept. If there is a lull or pause in the action (huh?) or the action is possibly over but you have to move into additional threat areas, you will want to top off or replenish your weapon. Sound familiar? It’s the situation I described above for Slide Forward Speed Loading; partially expended magazine, a desire to top off.

So keeping the weapon pointed at the threat, moving to cover if possible, the shooter first retrieves a full spare mag and brings it up to the side of their weapon. The weapon is brought rearward and kept high by bending the firing arm elbow to gain some dexterity and allow the shooter to retain observation of the threat area. Now, place the little finger and ring finger of the support hand (that’s holding the full spare mag) under the weapon and pop the mag release to allow the support hand to grab and retain it. Smoothly give it to the little and ring finger of the weapon hand (that’s holding the gun) and then insert the full mag up into the weapon, thus topping it off. Grab the partially expended mag from the weapon hand back with your now empty support hand and stick the mag in a pocket – but not in the mag pouch where it could be mistaken under stress for a full magazine. Ta Da. This is essentially a “hot swap.” Like refueling a car while still driving.

The purpose is to top off the gun while retaining the depleted mag should you really, really need those couple of remaining rounds. A very common variant of this is to conduct the swap completely with the support hand. Grab the partially expended mag with the pinky and ring finger as illustrated above, but then pivot the support hand palm and insert the fresh mag. Keeps the mags all in the support hand and leaves the

weapon hand alone. I can do this with 1911 magazines but not easily with double-stack mags like Glock or Sig’s. My hand is a bit too smallish to manipulate fat mags under stress like this.

The famous Gunsite training center in Arizona is the ‘World Leader of Tactical Reload Instruction’ (Capitol letters intended). They often joke that if you go to slide lock you owe the cadre a case of beer. I am a multiple course graduate of Gunsite and will go again, but I argue this with them a lot. Jeff Cooper, hear me out. I no longer believe in Tactical Reloads, unless you’re on your way to the car, the station, or the house. Fight’s 100% over, okay, now you can Tact load.

But in any kind of hostile environment, or possibility of continued engagement, I’m either shooting to slide lock or I will speed load with the slide forward when the gun feels light. To wit: I can execute a slide lock speed load in 1 to 1.5 seconds on a bad day. On a good day, three quarters of second! Tactical reloading takes me 3 to 5 seconds and with about three in ten attempts I fumble a mag under stress while moving anyway.

And I’ve been doing this for 35 years! 

I’ve seen cops and CCW students take 10-15 seconds to fumble through a tact load. Crazy, right? But why? Usually it’s because some mediocre range instructor said so. So, where an agency policy is such they insist I train their members in Tactical Reloading, I teach a variant called “Reload with Retention.”

RELOAD W/ RETENTION: So start from the same premise: bad day to be you, lull in the action, ammunition mostly depleted, a desire to top off, yada-yada.

Move to cover, heads up, gun up high but rearward, and while doing this release the partially expended mag into your support hand and quickly pocket it. Grab a fresh, full mag from your pouch and seat it smartly into the gun. Pow! You’re done.

Try it and have someone clock the entire time the gun is without a mag. Now do the traditional Tactical Reload and clock the time where the gun is without a mag. With a little practice, it’s the same. Plus it’s the same skills used to Slide Forward Speed Reload except you pocket the mag instead of slinging it away. It also reduces the error rate of dropped mags and reduces the stress of trying to apply a fine motor control procedure while under stress. Boo-yah!

In closing, there are, oh, seventy thousand or so more potential variations of defensive reloading, each one with its own name. I have students and colleagues come up to me and say, “Have you heard about the new ‘Monkey-Flip Snag’ procedure? It’s taught by Special Forces in Antarctica!”

Or, “Joe Bigrep is a former Elite Lean Six Sigma team leader and he says on TV that this stuff sucks!”

Yeah, yeah. Look, I try to teach simple, workable, life-saving skills and while open to evolutionary thinking, I do not jump on fads quickly. If I teach it I want to know I’m teaching something that is already proven to work and solves a critical problem.

So I answer politely, “No, I haven’t seen a Monkey-Flip Snag reload. And neither should you.”


Is bigger...better?


In the handgun forums and magazines, a new narrative holds that .45 and 9mm are virtually the same in “stopping power,” so we should all carry the 9mm for its (relatively) lighter recoil and larger cartridge capacity.  While lighter recoil and more ammo are certainly good reasons to go to a 9mm instead of something larger, are smaller bullets really as good as bigger bullets?

The answer, of course, is “it depends on the bullets.”  Historically, it takes superior bullet design and/or higher velocity for the smaller bullet to do as much damage as the larger. The smaller round is much more demanding of careful ammo selection, in my experience.  Any deer hunter will tell you that you have to carefully select .243 loads for quick, humane kills on deer, while there is a broader spectrum of .308 loads that will do the job.  Any soldier with a specialty in small arms will tell you that much more money and research has gone into making effective anti-personnel ammo in 5.56mm NATO than was ever needed for effective 7.62mm NATO.  In the same vein, while I’m usually perfectly comfortable carrying a 9mm for personal protection, I’ve found myself having to be MUCH more picky to find street proven ammo for that chambering than for my old favorite .45.

I’m not alone in that. A fellow writer,Charlie Petty, wrote 25 years ago in American Rifleman magazine  of FBI’s research at the time, “As the testing progressed, another factor became obvious. No 9mm loads came close to the 10 mm and .45. ‘We expected that there would be a gap,’ said (FBI’s Urey) Patrick, ‘but we didn’t expect it to be so large.’ In the first series of tests, the best a 9 mm could do was 67.5%. The .38 Spl. fared just as poorly, and the standard FBI-issue .38 Spl. (158-gr. lead hollow-point +P) also achieved a 67.5% success rate. Among the initial rounds tested, only the 10 -mm, .45 ACP and a single .357 Mag. round were able to score consistently above 90%.”

Time went on. Ammo got better, and the new designs probably benefitted the 9mm proportionally more than the bigger calibers, but all were made better. A famous wound ballistics specialist whose work was pivotal to the FBI’s testing protocols was Dr. Martin Fackler, who died last month. In a 2012 interview Dr. Fackler said, “The size of the hole the bullet makes, the .45 is bigger than a nine-mill. But how much bigger, by diameter, it really doesn’t give you the measure of how much tissue it disrupts.  What does is the area of a circle. Area of a circle, it was pi-r-squared. It’s the radius squared. So, if you take your .45, your point four-five-one and your nine-millimeter as your point three-five-five, take half, take the radius, square that, and what you’ll find is that the volume, or the area, of damaged tissue made by the .45 is about sixty percent more than made by the nine.”

Another recognized authority, Dick Fairburn, recently wrote in Police One.com, “I will always carry the largest drill I can, so my choice for open/duty carry is either a .45 for social work or a full-power 10mm in the boondocks. When I need a small pistol for concealment, a 9mm with high-tech ammo will do.”

Bearing in mind that where the bullet strikes is probably more important than anything else, and there is a wide range of experience and ability to control rapid pistol fire, I’d be curious to hear what all y’all think about this.  Since this tends to be a very contentious topic on the gun related internet, I’ll remind everyone that informed opinion, experience, and facts are welcome here, and ad hominem argument is not.


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Tuesday, June 16, 2015

$135 Utah, Florida & Arizona Concealed Carry Weapon (CCW) License Class

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