While working a class a number of years ago we had a bonded couple. The female was a first time shooter and her other half, the more “knowledgeable” shooter, put the love of his life in a Smith & Wesson 2inch J-Frame. The first day went ok (or so we thought) but the second day not so much. As we worked the shooting line we noticed her gun hand had a bandage on it and after further investigation we was discovered that a rather large blister had developed on her hand.
After some discussion is was decided that she should give a Browning Hi-Power a try as it would be a more comfortable firearm for her to continue the class. One of the instructors let her borrow her Hi-power and proceeded to instruct her on the workings of that fine gun.
The rest of the class that day continued without incident. The next day low and behold she showed up at the class with her very own brand new Browning Hi-Power. She completed the rest of the week with great success and a lot less pain. And in the end she was awarded High Lady shooter in the class and third overall. Although the 2 inch revolver is a great little concealed gun for many in this case it was NOT the right gun for a first time shooter to take a week long course.
I’ve noted a lot of posts on the web and social media regarding folks interested in purchasing a firearm for defense. Hopefully this game plan may help with the process.
Do your research before rushing out and buying a gun. Revolvers are good as far as ease of operation, but limited in capacity. Semi autos have the capacity but operation can be somewhat difficult (not impossible but require more training in operation). Glock, S&W M&P, Ruger SR9 & Springfield XDM are four semi auto handguns in 9mm that I suggest. It is only a suggestion but they really top the market in ease of operation and reliability. Go to an indoor range that rents handguns, explain you’re a new shooter and ask for a basic introduction lesson to go along with your rental (some will, some will not). Rent the handgun, along with eye and ear protection and purchase your 9mm ammunition and a target from them.
Do NOT fall into the trap of buying a gun then and there. Ask if you can rent two guns on the same visit and have a note pad and pen to put down your likes and dislikes. Next visit do the same with the other two guns. Then go home and look at your notes and make your decision.
Along with the gun you’ll need a good gun belt, holster, mag pouch, (I like International Handgun Leather at IHLUSA.com) eyes and ears, a baseball cap, ammunition and cleaning supplies.
THEN most important go and get yourself some TRAINING from a qualified trainer in the basic handling of a firearm, most quality ranges and clubs will offer or know where to direct you.
After this you should START to learn how to shoot, moving on to how to tactically shoot, finally how to FIGHT with the gun. After doing all of this you are now ready to really learn more about your equipment and more importantly to have a warriors mind set.
I’ve often watched my husband Jim Krueger, a natural lefty who can shoot ambidextrous (with either hand), and wished that I could do that too. I mentioned it to him one day and the response I got back was “Well try it!!” That chance came when we went back to Gunsite a number of years ago.
Due to an error in communication regarding pre-requisites we needed to start from the beginning with their 250 Tactical Pistol course. “Well”, Jim says, “this is the perfect opportunity for you to learn how to shoot left handed! Since we have to start from the beginning you may as well have them teach you the right way!” There were other reasons voiced in favor of this as well: “You’ve had lefty’s in your classes wouldn’t it be nice to know how to instruct them!” and “Think about tactics and how this will help overcome some of the day to day obstacles.” Needless to say after a few more good reasons I went off to Gunsite with my Glock 19, a left handed rig and 1000 rounds of ammunition ready to learn.
At first it was a little confusing for me but after awhile it began to make sense. Think about it!?!? Normally you use your strong hand to hold the gun and pull the trigger then you use your weak hand to do all the dexterous tasks. For example, racking the slide, handling the magazines during tactical and speed loads and in some cases working the safety. But when you work with your offhand you are now doing all the dexterous tasks with your strong hand and the only thing that you have to worry about doing with your offhand is holding the gun and squeezing the trigger. Makes sense, huh??
Well it continued to make more sense after the first shots were fired. From the leather, 2 shots to the center of mass … bang! bang! Right in the middle and right next to each other. Then again, and again… Results the same. As we moved back I continued to be pretty impressed but of course I have to admit that this was not timed and my focus was pretty intense. You see when you try something new like this you automatically go back to the basics: front sight, trigger squeeze, breath control, grip, stance and safety… safety… safety!! Your focus is incredible. If it isn’t it SHOULD BE!
As the week went along it became much harder but I never even considered switching over to my dominant hand to complete the course. The challenge and the learning experience were awesome! Through the week we ran speed drills and I was actually able to draw and fire 2 rounds from the leather faster with my left hand than my right… 1.6 seconds! My tactics were slower but not bad and in tactics slow (cautious) should not be a bad thing. Overall my performance wasn’t too bad and I was very pleased to have successfully completed this type of course. One of my earlier instructors suggested that “…everyone striving to be an instructor should try taking an entire course with their offhand to put themselves in shoes of a new shooter … it can be a humbling learning experience”.
Besides realizing that I could shoot left handed I also learned how important good and patient instructors are. With the right coaching, solid basics and a lot of patience this was one of the best training activities that I have put myself through.
On February 13, 2016 the Supreme Court and the United States lost a great American. On that day Justice Antonin Scalia died and with it one of the strongest defenders in the Supreme Court of the US Constitution.
Yesterday a new defender was selected. Yesterday a man of character officially become the 113th Justice to the Supreme Court. He has be chosen to fill this very important seat and bring back the balance to the Court.
Justice Neil Gorsuch has had a sterling record throughout his life. He and his siblings had a strong christian upbringing, he is beyond highly educated and even met his wife while they were in school at Oxford and he has a love of the law. His mother Anne Gorsuch Burford (1942-2004) was a Colorado Representative who was appointed by President Ronald Reagan to be the first female Administrator of the EPA in 1981. He comes from tough stock.
He believes in the Constitution and does not believe that a judge should make law, only uphold the law. For that alone I’m thrilled to see this man appointed to the Supreme Court. We may not ALWAYS agree with his rulings but we know by all his prior judgments that color, creed, gender, wealth or background do not matter to him… only the law.
Yesterday, not only was Justice Gorsuch sworn in by Justice Kennedy but that swearing in was historic in the sense that Justice Gorsuch once served as Justice Kennedy’s law clerk. This is the first time in Supreme Court history that a former law clerk and Justice have gone on to serve on the Supreme Court together.
This is a great day for America because the Supreme Court is back to a full court. There are a number of 2nd Amendment cases that will be addressed along with some religious freedom cases and with all probability a few immigration cases as well. So now it’s time for the SCOTUS to roll up their sleeves and get to work on clearing up the backlog.
Congratulations and God bless to Justice Neil Gorsuch!! May his journey be a long one.
Recently I have stopped watching the “news” on any channel because they all sound alike. News used to be important events around the world, local accidents and other things out of the ordinary day to day activity. Now it’s the same stories over and over and over again until you can hardly stand it anymore. And when there are news worthy events occurring nothing ever comes of them.
For example: Fast and Furious one of the first of Obama’s scandals started in 2009 and “misplaced” more than 2,000 weapons across the Mexican border and cost the life of Border Agent Brian Terry… The Administration is still fighting in court today refusing to release documents from that fiasco. And so far the only ones who paid for that are the whistle blowers.
Then let’s not forget the IRS vs Tea Party Patriots where the IRS targeted conservative and TEA Party groups and businesses based on their political beliefs. This is also STILL being fought in the courts today. And Benghazi… what has happened to this country when no one comes to rescue a sitting US Ambassador and other Americans when they send out a call for help? But more than that what is wrong with a State Department refusing to add security when asked by a sitting US Ambassador? Who knows the lay of the land better than that Ambassador? Then not only did they refuse but they cut the security down to less reliable local (non-US) security. And I could go on…
Today we are watching the candidates for the highest position in America. For the first time Americans are getting a real glimpse of who REALLY selects the politicians who supposedly speak for you. I always thought I knew how that process worked but boy even I’m getting an education.
Hillary, in spite of Bernie Sanders amazing (and scary) run, has it all but sown up on the democratic side and as for the republicans… That should prove to be very interesting. Trump has it right it is a very crooked and nasty process. I’m not a fan of Trump but America is speaking and it doesn’t appear as if anyone is really listening.
HEY FOLKS… KEEP YOUR EYE ON THE END GAME… this is a serious situation and although he is not my first pick if he gets the nod I’m voting for him. I DO NOT WANT HILLARY IN OFFICE… I LIKE MY GUNS JUST THE WAY THEY ARE…which is in my hands. I DO NOT WANT HILLARY filling the SCOTUS position that is open or others that will open over the next few years…
If your guy is not the one chosen YOU MUST STILL VOTE!!! I don’t like this process but we need to change the team (dem vs rep) before we can make any other changes.
So no matter how dirty or nasty this crappy process is KEEP YOUR EYE ON THE BALL AND VOTE.
Elections are some of the most important times in this country’s history. They are a favorite time of mine because I get to see this country in action. Unfortunately it’s not always at its finest during elections because the “All Knowing” establishment (those who have made a career of politics, elitists who run the show) believes they have to control the results because “We the People” don’t know what we are doing.
Now let me say this before I really get going here… I’m not a fan of Donald Trump. I didn’t even watch his TV shows because I always thought he was a bit of an arrogant bloviator. But with that said the American people are making a statement right now and voting in caucuses and primaries across this country and based on delegates there is only a small difference between Ted Cruz and Donald Trump with Mr. Trump in the lead.
It appears that the “Establishment” like Romney, McCain, Graham and others are making a fuss that the American people are being conned by a con man and they (us) don’t understand what this could mean to the country and the GRAND OLE PARTY… That if Trump gets the nod at the convention it is a slap in the face of Republican Values… WHAT VALUES?
You see the “Establishment” has been shoving moderate Republicans (AKA RINO or Republicans in Name Only) down our throats for so long that they are starting to believe THEY have CONSERVATIVE values…
What are Conservative values? Conservatives believe first and foremost in the building blocks the Founding Fathers left for us; the US Constitution and the Bill of Rights. They believed in small government; they believed in the people; they believed that the People were the “Sovereign” and that government should answer to them; they believed in very limited power for the Federal government; they believed in States Sovereignty as mandated by the People; they believed in limited taxation, freedom of speech and religion, the right to bear arms and many more truly conservative ideas.
Through the years many of us have watched this amazing country change. Liberalism has overtaken our educational system and our large city governments like Boston, New York, Baltimore, Detroit and most of California. We all know how well those dens of socialism are working.
But I digress… These elections are being hijacked by the elite. The RNC is in a conundrum … they don’t want Trump but they really don’t want the next closest candidate to him either Ted Cruz. The chosen ones like Graham, Bush, Kasich and Rubio have either fallen or are falling by the wayside. Oh what to do what to do…
If the RNC decides to intervene at the convention and allow it to become a brokered convention and a candidate like Rubio or Kasich or even Romney wins I personally believe they will be making a huge mistake (especially if they give it to Romney). The Republican Party that started with Lincoln and real conservative values will never be the same. The Grand Ole Party will end up being nothing but a bunch of Grand Old ‘Pharts’…
This election is more important to this country than taking over the White House and turning things around (especially Obamacare) but it is MOST important because the person who wins will most probably be picking at least 2 if not 4 Supreme Court Justices and that is a legacy that will live long past this election. This election could be a turning point and if the Republicans don’t get their act together and stand behind the People’s Choice then they will lose again.
But quite honestly I don’t believe they care about losing or about this country and most importantly about the people that put them there. I believe they only care about keeping the status quo, their cushy jobs and special benefits, their great pensions and all their little perks (like insider trading).
We the People need to let them know LOUD AND CLEAR that we will not stand for them stealing our election process from us. We need to tell Rubio and Kasich to step down and stop dividing the vote! We need to start writing on Romney, McCain, Graham, Ryan and all the other elites Twitter and Facebook pages and let them know NOW that we will not stand for it and they need to hold their proverbial nose and coalesce behind whatever candidate ends up with the most delegates! What the heck we’ve had to do that for the past few elections and now it’s their turn.
Saturday February 13, 2016 was a very sad day in America. It lost its greatest champion of interpreting the Constitution as it was understood at the time of its adoption, Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia who died at the age of 79. In today’s timeframe a relatively young man but the real loss is in his larger than life personality, his outspoken defense of conservatism and the US Constitution, and his “take no prisoners” dissents that left no one in doubt of his thoughts on the matters.
Justice Antonin Scalia was appointed to the Supreme Court by President Ronald Reagan and served this country for three decades, sadly leaving this earth at a turning point in this countries struggle to hold fast to the Founding Fathers intentions of freedom and liberty. And leaving many of us concerned over the continuation of their principles, our freedoms and the countries greatness.
For us as gun owners, his majority vote on District of Columbia vs Heller declared the 2nd Amendments rights of an individual to bear arms, turning the tide of gun laws. After Chicago vs McDonald reiterated the ruling declaring that Chicago’s handgun ban violated the 2nd Amendments right of the individual to bear arms, it locked in the DC vs Heller ruling for the States. But the big question now is how will his death impact these rulings and the longevity of the 2nd Amendment? Is this the death knell for our rights?
Its a frightening turn of events that leaves these decisions in the hands of the most Liberal Administration in the history of this country. Will the Conservatives in the Senate fight any liberal candidates to replace Scalia? Do they even want to?
RIP Justice Antonin Scalia; your voice of reason will be sorely missed.
Sorry it took so long for this follow up but like many who came back from SHOT we were also stuck with the creeping crude that goes around some of these events … LOL but its past time for my Part 2 review…
I left off with Springfield XDS series and as I said I can no longer be a naysayer… but let’s chat about some of the other offerings that I was able to test. There were many AR15’s out there and some of you will think I’m pretty mean but if you’ve shot some of the best out there it’s hard to judge 30 more variants of the same platform and be wowed. Different rail systems, barrel lengths, suppressors, triggers, dot systems, side chargers, stocks… not many changes. It could be that I work with a group of guys at Strategic Ops Group in Gilbert, AZ that build a very nice custom AR and do some gorgeous Cerakoting too so I guess I’m a little jaded about them. So other than Daniel Defense, Barrett and Colt I won’t be talking about AR’s this year.
But until I get to them let’s talk about a little gun that surprised me this year. Kimber’s K6s revolver is a 6 shot hammerless 357 magnum revolver that performs. It is stainless steel and weighs in at 23 oz but doesn’t feel that heavy. It’s been crafted with smooth edges for non-snag when removing from concealment and the trigger is no less than you would expect from Kimber smooth match grade with a clean action. I was able to shoot it with 357 magnum rounds and, of course, my expectations were that it was going to hurt. But, once again, I was surprised and it delivered much more controlled recoil than anticipated. Now it is 23 oz and it is stainless steel but I’ve shot 357 magnums out of other small heavy revolvers and it hurts. So call it voodoo magic but I was impressed. It comes in on the high dollar scale for a 2 inch revolver but for those who love Kimber it will not be a stretch.
Another manufacturer that I just cannot resist visiting is Barrett. This year they were unable to bring the 50 caliber due to range restrictions but did bring a beautiful MRAD in 308. And I just want to say that thank God for young men with a great deal of patience because as I stepped up to shoot this great piece of equipment the hardest part of the whole exercise was finding the target at over 900 yards. It appears that bifocals, old age and some of the scopes don’t always coordinate in a smooth sight acquisition but a little help from my trusty helper from Barrett I was successful and managed to pick off the long shot. It was a frustrating but had a very satisfying finish.
Our next stop was Ruger to check out their newest additions the Ruger “American” striker fired pistols in 9mm and 45ACP. I’m not sure why Ruger felt that they needed another full size 9mm and 45ACP but we took the time to check them out and there is really nothing to rave about. We actually liked the SR9 and SR9c pistols but we were completely under impressed with these new ones. They are big and heavier than other polymer framed guns. The trigger is nothing to write home about and to be perfectly honest they were not worth much more time or effort. Sorry Ruger but better luck next design.
Armscor / Rock Island is another brand that keeps delivering. If you want to get into a 1911 and you don’t have $1000
plus to do that thengive these guys a try. They’ve got them from the GI model down to the carry version Baby Rock 1911. They are performers but they are affordable. I had the opportunity to shoot one with a suppressor and one of the original GI series and truly had a blast. Great products … Great prices!! Check them out.
And I generally save the best for last stopping at Daniel Defense and they did not disappoint. I started with their beautiful DDM4 / MK18 300BLK SBR in Tan. What a sweet, quiet piece of high quality equipment to shoot. On to their DD5VI 7.62X51 (308) not only good looking but a reach out and touch kind of firearm that the 50 yard bay did not do justice to. But the accuracy and quality shines through. Daniel Defense has some great looking furniture that has very good ergonomics as well. And last but not least their DD4M in 5.56 full auto all in basic black. All I can say about this firearm is that they never give you enough ammunition. Sweet to shoot, accurate, functions smoothly and very easy to manage…can’t ask for much more.
The next day we spent at SHOT Show proper and checked out some new knives by Benchmade and visited with old friends like Bill Murphy of Surefire Institute, touched based with Medal of Honor recipients, Gold Star Moms, some of the industry’s great shooters like Julie Golob and some outstanding bloggers and podcasters like Kenn Blanchard “Black Man with a Gun“. By then I was really running out of steam but so happy that we were able to make the trip. SHOT Show is a huge hassle but the common bond and joy of being part of the gun industry is worth the hassle. Over the years I don’t believe I’ve ever felt a camaraderie like the one with other gun owners, whether it’s at a local match or at one of the top events of the year. I’m thankful every day that I’ve had the opportunity to be a part of it all.
Although my visit this year was short it was full of interesting new products, meeting new people and visiting with old friends.
We started out on Monday for Industry day at the Range and it was busy, dusty and loud as expected. Lots of walking but more importantly lots of shooting and I didn’t have to bring the ammunition. There were a great list of vendors that included 10X, 5.11, Action Target, Crimson Trace, MyTopo, Kimber, Glock, Daniel Defense, Federal Ammunition, Amscor and the list goes on…
There were a couple of obvious goals to meet and those were shoot Kimber’s new revolver, Ruger’s new pistols, Glocks CMOS additions and for me to stop at Daniel Defense and shoot full auto. Well I can say that those goals were met and more. We took our time and chatted with friends here and there and then got serious by checking out some of Federal’s ammunition. I tried their very cool 9mm 115gr TSJ range ammunition they refer to as Syntech with red plastic coating. It’s an easy shooting round to be sure but the one that really caught my attention was Federal’s 9mm 150gr JHP… that’s right 150gr. It really surprised me because as I cautiously shot it through a Smith & Wesson M&P Shield I was expecting a bit of a kick instead it was very easy to control. I really like the idea that I can carry a more powerful round in my own Shield and not take a lot of punishment shooting it. Nice Job Federal!
At the same booth Federal was utilizing its ammunition in a little survival rifle that I’d only read about. The Savage Model 42 Takedown… it’s an over/under 22LR / .410 that breaks down and can be carried in a back pack. It’s a real sweet shooting little gun. You will have to forgive me but I will be darned if I can remember the stats on the ammunition as I was too busy enjoying the gun. Nice Job Savage!
Photo by Brian Kovacs
My husband and I then stopped at the Glock booth to see what they had this year and I chose to shoot the Glock 43 again and did enjoy it (they never give you enough ammo) but my husband fell for the Glock 40 10mm long slide with CMOS. He just loves to shoot 10mm and has a particular fondness for Glock’s long slide models and this was no exception. He was also glad to find out that the model could be purchased without the dot sight.
Now as a favor to a friend I promised I would shoot Springfield’s XDS models … which I did. And those of you who know me well know that I’m not a huge fan of Springfield’s XD lines. BUT I have to be honest I did enjoy shooting the XDS line. The 9mm was an easy shooter, smooth, not a bad trigger (I’ve shot better triggers and worse triggers) and not much recoil. The 40 S&W on the other hand was a handful but not uncontrollable which did surprise me. Now the 45 ACP was the true surprise as I was expecting more bulk, more recoil and I got neither. In fact, it was a smoother shooting gun than the 40 S&W and I enjoyed it. So I guess I can no longer be a naysayer… LOL.
I’ll write some more tomorrow but wanted to start getting some of this posted so you didn’t think I was goofing off.
OK I’ve listened to the news and I’m finally at my ranting point so here I go! I’m sick and tired of listening to this garbage about “mass shootings” they are “mass murders” or “massacres” or “attacks” … I’m a shooter that goes shooting on a regular basis but I’m not a bad guy. He or she that attack in Gun Free Zones are the criminals with murderous intent, they are also the cowards because they only pick targets that don’t shoot back. They should try going to Texas, Arizona or other gun friendly states but they won’t because (you got it) we’d shoot back.
I’m also sick of listening to these idiots who don’t know a darn thing about gun owners talking about a couple of thousand rounds, 2 pistols and 2 rifles as enough to arm a small army. Now I’m not out to raise a red flag but that would be a pretty small army. Obviously they haven’t been out for a day at the range with a group of buddies.
I’m sick of listening to the drivel about being disrespectful for showing the face of the murderous female who took baby shower gifts from good people than went into their Christmas party and started killing as many as she could. AND I’m sick of listening to the media looking for a logical reason for a pair of radical Islamic terrorists to just go out and hurt people. They are RADICAL ISLAMIC TERRORISTS and they hate the American way of life (but they’ll take our money and hospitality when available).
I’m also sick and tired of listening to other leaders show more strength and reason than our weak kneed, mealy mouthed, American hater, Muslim sympathizer President who would rather make deals with our enemies than support our allies and continues to apologize for our way of life and continues to believe that we are too aggressive and the cause of all these world issues today.
But mostly I’m sick and tired of waiting for the other half of this country to grow a spine and brain and realize that we need to stand together no matter how much this administration tries to divide us. I believe they will find out that we have more in common than not. The more we allow our government to divide us by race, religion, gender, age, education, income and anything else they can devise the more we lose. We need to stop looking at what divides us and start looking at what binds us.
Speak out on social media and let everyone know how you feel and when you do remember to look at what binds us… after all it’s one of the things that made this country great in the first place when we stood together against a King.