Caw Of Duty

I got nothing of any consequence today (Hey, even Babe Ruth struck out every once in a while).

I did make an appearance on the Radio Deplorable podcast earlier this week, talking about how the culture around guns has changed over the last dozen or so years, and how bump stocks might have actually made the shooting in Vegas a little less horrid than it might have been.

Go listen, and be sure to come back on Monday.

Magpul Dynamics... sorta.

Discrete CCW Update

quietly armed

Two things happened recently that have affected my choices of gear in discrete environments. One was listening to legendary mustache lawman Chuck Haggard talk about how he would advise people to carry a spicy treat dispenser rather than a reload, and the second is reading John Correia of Active Self Protection talk about how, out of the 10,000 gunfight’s he’s analyzed on video, a civilian has never had to reload, not even once.

This is why I no longer carry a spare mag for the LCP2. When I’m in business casual, I can carry stuff in my pockets, and that’s about it, so I have to keep my gear down to the absolute minimum.

Current Discrete Carry, Clockwise from Upper Left
Sticky Holster Pocket Holster, strong side pocket
Ruger LCP2 With Crimson Trace Green Laser, in holster
Streamlight 2xAAA Stylus Pro flashlight, clipped to weak side pocket
LCP2 magazine, in gun
6+1 rounds of Hornady Critical Defense .380ACP, in magazine
CRKT Pazoda 2, clipped in weak side pocket next to flashlight
Sabre Red pepper spray, weak side pocket
Leatherman PS multitool, on keychain
Keys, weak side pocket
Wallet, weak side pocket

All of that disappears fairly easily into the pockets of my work khakis. I’m not 100% satisfied with carrying that pepper spray rattling around loose in my pocket, but it will do until I come up with something else. I had been carrying around a Photon Micro-Light II on my keychain, but I realized that I wasn’t using it, and if for some reason I needed a backup flashlight, there’s an app on my phone that will work just fine for that task.

USCCA Elite CCW Insurance Versus NRA Carry Guard Gold Plus

USCCA Elite CCW Insurance Versus NRA Carry Guard Gold Plus

This post shows up early and often for searches on “self defense insurance.” It’s a good post, and I’m proud of how it’s helped a bunch of people find the concealed carry insurance that was right for them.

But that post covers just the lower-end of the spectrum, not the “Cadillac” plans, and so I thought a follow-up post might come in handy so people can see for themselves how things shape up at the top end of the scale, and compare USCCA Elite CCW insurance versus NRA Carry Guard Gold Plus concealed carry legal insurance.

As always, remember that I am not lawyer nor do I give legal advice. Both companies post copies of their policies on their websites, and I urge you to read them over very carefully before you sign up for anything.

NRA Carry Guard Gold Plus

Aside from all the benefits listed below, NRA Carry Guard Gold Plus comes with a one-year membership in the NRA. The NRA also recently had a “Carry Guard Expo” featuring training opportunities and a trade show, and instructors can also add NRA Carry Guard training to what they teach.

Coverage costs EITHER $550 a year OR $49 a month, and the NRA is promoting Carry Guard very heavily right now. The NRA’s coverage is “first dollar” coverage: You will have to pay for your lawyers in someway, then, if you are acquitted, the NRA will reimburse you. NRA CarryGuard also covers your spouse if they need to use a firearm to defend a life, and it covers firearms only, not the use of other means of lethal force.

USCCA Self Defense Shield Elite

USCCA membership comes with a subscription to Concealed Carry magazine (my first article for them should show up early next year), and coverage costs EITHER $497 a year or $47 a month. The USCCA puts on a “Concealed Carry Expo” each year, and has so for the past four years. The USCCA also has their own cadre of trainers with their own training program as well.

USCCA self-defense insurance covers your spouse and also covers anyone under the age of 21 in your household if they need to use lethal force to defend a life. They cover most means of lethal force (knives, pointed sticks, fresh fruit) as well as the use of a firearm. The USCCA’s coverage starts immediately, which means there is no out-of-pocket expenses incurred by you up to the limits of your policy if you are acquitted.

 NRA CarryGuard Gold+USCCA Elite
Monthy Fee OR$50$47
Yearly Fee (Not Both)$550$497
Criminal Coverage$250,000$250,000
Civil Coverage$1,500,000$2,000,000
BailYesYes
"First Dollar" CoverageNoYes
Spouse Also CoveredYesYes
Any WeaponNoYes
Wage Compensation While In CourtYesYes
Training ResourcesYesYes
Choose Your Own AttorneyYesYes
SIGN UPSIGN UP

Usual Disclaimer: I am an NRA member, though not a Carry Guard subscriber, and I am an affiliate of the USCCA. 

… And You Will Be Invincible

During the spring and summer months, it’s common practice for Euro fashion catalog shooters to come out to the U.S. to shoot the fall / winter catalogs. They liked AZ because of 300 days of sun a year, and I’d make a decent amount of $$ off them as their RV Driver / local guide. There was one guy I assisted, Bob somebody, a Welshman (funny as hell… a rarity amongst fashion shooters, in my experience), who was shooting for one of the German catalogs. The results from a week-long shoot out in Arizona was riding on his shoulders, and expenses involved included a dozen Euro models (HOT Euro models…), an art director, me, his assistant, three stylists… and he shot everything on Kodak 100 chrome using (wait for it) a half-dozen Nikon Quicktouch point and shoots. Yep, not an F4, not a Hassie, a consumer-level compact 35mm camera, about as basic and boring a camera as you could get at the time.

No manual settings. No external light sources beyond fill cards and reflectors. His assistant would get an incident meter reading, they’d note it, and then it was off to the races.

He shot that way because he wanted to focus (no pun intended) 100% on what the model was doing and how she was interacting with the camera, and didn’t want to bump something and have a whole session ruined. And it worked for him. He got some great shots from his models, and the chromes looked really good when all was said and done.

He could do this because he knew every single step before, during and after the shot, and knew how to play within the limits of his gear.

I’ll leave it to you, dear reader, to figure what all this has to do with your gear, how you use it and what’s the “right” gun for self defense.

It’s The Little Things That Make All The Difference

Hi, my name’s Kevin, and I have a turtle draw: I hunch my shoulders up and drop my head down when I draw a pistol, and that’s affecting the speed and accuracy of my first shot. Why? To be honest, I blame the Combat Focus Shooting class I took way back in the day, where you’re taught to hunch up and hunker down as the first part of your draw stroke.

It’s affecting my speed because I’m moving more muscles than I need to in order to get my gun on-target. I don’t need to move my head, I need to move my hands and arms so my gun comes up to the level of my eyes and I have a decent enough sight picture to make the shot.

It’s affecting my accuracy because of my nearsightedness. I wear bifocals now, and part that sees close is the part at the bottom of each lens. When I turtle, because of angle of my head, I’m actually looking through the TOP of each lens, and as a result, my front sight is blurry.

Whoops.

Fortunately, a friend of mine on social media posted this video of Max Michel: Watch how his head moves during the draw.

Hint: It doesn’t.

A brief dry-fire session over the weekend with my new stance had me making consistent sub-1.5 second draws from concealment into the down zero area of an IDPA target that’s 7 yards away, including one that was darn close to one second flat.

I’ll take it.

Ruger LCP2 2000 Round Challenge: Rounds 938-1038

Ruger LCP2 2000 Round Challenge

I’m doing a review of an accessory for the LCP2, and I took it as another opportunity to put some more rounds through this little gun. This time, rather than shoot on an improvised outdoor range, I shot in a new indoor range that’s popped up near my workplace.

The gun, as usual, was ridiculously easy to control for pocket-sized .380, and I was putting round after round after round into the center-chest area of a target 10 yards away and upper head zone of a target 7 yards away. Even those this gun is about the size of a chocolate chip cookie, based on how fast I get rounds on-target from the pocket and how accurate this little sucker is, I don’t feel underarmed when I carry it. Sure, I’d like something with a little more oomph, a few more boolits and a little more ability to reach out and touch someone at 20+ yards, but that is just not an option for me on most days of the week, so I carry a pocket gun and I learn what I can and can’t do with it.

I shot 100 rounds of Winchester White Box from Lucky Gunner on this session, and I ran into two hiccups with the LCP2: On the 37th and 56th shots on this range session, the LCP2 locked up with a Type 2 malfunction, which I was able to clear the usual way and then continued on shooting.

All in all, this was another successful range session with a gun that’s a lot of fun to shoot, and one’s that’s gone over a thousand rounds now with four malfunctions. Not bad for a gun that pushes the boundaries of both form and function.

Rounds Fired: 100 Rounds Winchester White Box .380 ACP

2000 Round Challenge Results
Total Rounds Fired: 1038
One possible failure to eject on round 116
Failures to eject: Rounds 400, 489, 974, 993
Failure to feed: Round 873

UPDATE: This was the gadget I was testing, the new green laser for the LCP2. An instant-on green laser on a gun this size really, really improves its utility as a fighting weapon.

So This Happened.

I am the last person you’d describe as a “Tactical Timmy.” However, a few months ago, I wound up owning a couple of soft IIIA bullet-resistant armor plates, and rather than have them sit around on a closet shelf, I bought something to carry them in. Yes, it’s Condor gear, but it will suffice for now as this is my first plate carrier and I’m still figuring out what works for me.

This will NOT be a regular use item for me. At best, it’ll sit in my safe room until needed, or taken to the range for a class. The two smaller pouches will probably contain a handheld light and a spicy treat dispenser, and I may swap out one of the rifle pouches for a tourniquet.

AR500 plate carrier

It’s a start.

The Marching Morons.

A friend of mine posted a link on social media to yet another Antifa/Black Block armed defensive league that’s popped up as of late. I’m not going to link to them because I see no reason to give them any more notoriety, however, that’s their photo up there at the top of the post. These guys look a lot more squared away than others I’ve seen who have showed up to demonstrations with airsoft rifles, but that’s really not saying much, is it?

When these wannabe revolutionaries first started showing up on the scene, my initial impression of them was that they are pretty much a joke. However, the shooting of Rep. Scalise should serve as a warning to us that while they might be a joke, that doesn’t mean they’re not dangerous. Groups like this look and act like a bunch of pathetic losers, right up to the point where they shoot a sitting Congressman, park a Ryder van outside of a federal building or fly a plane into a building in New York.

And then suddenly, they’re not losers, they’re a serious threat.

One thing that did pop into my mind, though, is that while most of the people in groups like this (and their polar opposites in the Threeper / Militia movement) will eschew any formal firearms training and look down at the rest of us from their perch high upon Mt. Stupid, there will be a few who realize that their skills at violence are not up to fulfilling their dream of violent revolution, and they’lll seek out better training.

As such, it might be a good idea for my friends in the firearms training community to do a quick glimpse at the social media footprint of everyone who signs up for their class from here on out, just so you can say you tried to screen out the nut cases. While it probably wouldn’t have helped in the case of the most recent incident in Las Vegas, if one of the people in your Intro To AR class spends his time on social media complaining about the worldwide Zionist conspiracy and asks around for places to get Tannerite in bulk, you might want to think about refunding his or her class fee.

There probably ain’t a whole lot of firearms trainers out there who would like be known as an unindicted co-conspirator (or worse) for the rest of their lives. Yes, some sanitation of background is possible, but at least you can testify in court that you did your due diligence. It kinda sucks that we have to worry about such things, but that’s the world we live in now.

That’s Why They Play The Game

So the NRA decided to cut the post-Vegas gun control argument off at the knees and make a play for national reciprocity instead.

Good. They should. As I said elsewhere, we’re winning now, and that requires different tactics. NOT ONE INCH MORE! was a great order to give the troops at El Alamein or at Stalingrad, but it would kinda suck to hear if you were stranded somewhere on the Tarawa Atoll. Moving forward will require something more from the NRA than just circling the wagons and refusing to move. There are a number of my friends who are saying “Yeah, right, like the NRA is EVER going to get national reciprocity and the SHARE Act passed. They gave up bump stocks, and in return we got bupkis.”

To which I say, if you travelled back in time to 1997 and told gun owners who were suffering under the restrictions of the Assault Weapons Ban, that 20 years from now, they’d be buying $400 AR-15 rifles, $500 AR “pistols” that were effectively SBR’s and that 30 round mags would cost less than $10 apiece, they’d lock you into the looney bin and throw away the key.

It ain’t over ’til it’s over, and to borrow a line from the best movie of all time, nothing is written.

Let’s see how this plays out.