Started out bad and ended worse

This happened about a mile away from where I used to live (via Jay). 

After the men started yelling at the woman, her husband attempted to come to her defense and was punched to the ground.

“This guy was punched, he was attacked,” Ramer said.

When one of the intruders threatened the man with a gun, he pulled out his own gun and shot the two men to death, Ramer said. Police said they have documents confirming that the men are gang members. 

A few thoughts… 

  1. Violence at an open-to-all keg party in the middle of a neighborhood infested with latino gangs: Go figure.
    As Michael Bane says, if you want to stay out of trouble, don’t do stupid things with stupid people. 
  2. Kudos to the homeowner for acknowledging the fact that he lives in a dangerous neighbor and keeping a CCW on him even during a party at his own home. 
  3. The bit about the CCW laws and licenses are a smokescreen: I am not a lawyer, but I believe that a homeowner in Arizona has always had the right to carry concealed on their own property, CCW laws or not. 
  4. Mega kudos to the homeowner for acting quickly and decisively under an unbelievable amount of stress, and may God (and his sidearm) protect him from the gang’s wrath. 

More …

Counter Strike Force

Not you're father's FBILook, I understand the need to make your vocational school more attractive to the younger generation. I also understand that making your offer more appealing and more exciting than it may be.

But maybe putting up a video game character in place of anything even approaching reality might be taking it a bit too far. And yes, that is a real ad.

Technically, there have been Italian supercars in police service, but no, you aren’t going to drive one.

I’m surprised they didn’t have Studly McFbidude over there pose with an H+K MP7 with a red dot sight and a Glock practical tacticles in .357 Sig.

Clothes make the man

Before I worked as a photog, I spent a couple of years behind the counter of a professional-level camera store. We had some of the best shooters in town buy from us, and some others as well. 

One guy I’ll always remember was middle-aged dude who’d come in at the same time each Saturday wearing a photog’s vest and chat cameras with us, a VERY common occurrence in a camera store. He’d talk about shutter delay and X-Sync and motor drive speed and then, after an hour or two, walk out the door back to his car, take off his immaculately clean and pressed photojournalist’s vest and drive off. 

Yep. He’d put on a shooter’s vest just to go into a store to talk about cameras. That was his idea of being a photographer.

He never came into the store during the weekday when all our other pro shooters would come in, and we never did figure out which camera this gentleman actually owned and used, but by gum, he could talk up a storm about every one on our shelves. 

So Tam’s story has a ring of familiarity about it

More …

Gun shots

One burr that gets under my saddle is people taking pictures of themselves holding guns. 

There are two three times when it’s ok to take a picture of someone holding a gun. 

– When you are posing with your trophy/trophies from a successful hunt (Mosquitos do NOT count)

– When you are taking a group photo of your military or law enforcement combat team. 

– During a course of fire at firearms competition. 

I have exactly one picture of me holding a camera, despite being around some really neat cameras for fifteen years (if you ever get a chance to pick up a Sinar P2, I heartily recommend them). To a professional photographer, a camera is a tool, as worthy of special recognition as a belt sander or joiner is to a carpenter. Sure, there’s some really nice cameras out there and yes, we get excited about the latest and great thing to come down the pike, but by and large, the nice qualities a camera might have is a result of their functionality and not from their innate beauty (Although the Contax G1 is just *gorgeous* and really useful. I digress.).

This is also my attitude with my guns. I have some guns that are really pretty to look at and some that are not, but I judge each gun I own (with one exception) according to it’s ability to do the task that I require of it, from busting clays to plinking to IPSC to 300 yard shots. The exception to the rule is the M1903 that’s in the photo I linked above: It’s not capable of being shot as the receivers from very early Springfields weren’t heat-treated properly, so it’s job is to be a family heirloom.

And no, I’m not a fan of “barbecue guns“, and I’m not a fan of tactical-for-tactical’s sake either: If a rail helps, use it, if it doesn’t, leave it off. I just don’t understand how we in the gun community (rightfully) criticize the anti-gunners for turning guns into killing machines possessed of their own will and then turn around and elevate what was and is a tool, a (very) refined blunt instrument into an object d’art and statement of our self-esteem.

More …

Down by one

So a mainstream environmentalist ecological terrorist takes hostages at the headquarters of the Discovery Channel and demands more TV shows about removing the stinking mass of polluting humanity from the face of Mother Gaia and wiping the Earth clean of human civilization. 

And the Maryland State Police Hostage Rescue Team grants him his wish, (in a limited sense), courtesy of a 7.62mm jacketed hollow point round. 

Civilization 1, Malthusian economics 0. 

More …

A Tale of Two Families

Two families ripped apart by violence. Two different outcomes. 

Dawnville, Georgia. (via Robb)

David Hartline, showed up drunk and armed at a birthday party for his ex-girlfriend’s daughter.

Hartline, a registered sex offender, was turned away from the party but returned with a handgun and killed Chattanooga resident Edward “Buster” Manz III and Cleveland, Tenn., resident Kenneth Simonson, authorities said. Hartline’s ex-girlfriend Mindy Bullard, who is also Manz’s daughter and Simonson’s ex-wife, was shot but survived.

Hartline died at the scene of at least two gunshot wounds that investigators believe were fired by Manz. At least five children hid in the attic and were unharmed. 

Bad guy dead and the lives of five children and their mother saved because a father and grandfather were prepared and willing to take action and if necessary, (and in this case, sadly, it was), to sacrifice their lives to save the lives of their loved ones. 


Lake Havasu City, Arizona

A multiple shooting at a Lake Havasu City residence late Saturday killed five adults and left one woman in critical condition who was later flown to a Las Vegas hospital.

The shooter, 27-year-old Brian Diez, of Havasu, kidnapped two young children, 13-month old Cole Diez and 4-year-old Kaia Diez, and fled from the scene. Brian Diez was located later in California after taking his own life.

The victims who died at the scene are Deborah Langstaff, 23; Primo Verdone, 24; Russell Nyland, 42; Ashley Nyland, 20. Brock Kelson, 20, died at Havasu Regional Medical Center.

As of press time, Deborah Nyland, 44, survived and was taken to Las Vegas.

Diez and Langstaff had the two children in common during a long-term relationship, but the two have been estranged as of late, according to a police press release.

Diez was arrested earlier this month for violating an order of protection that Langstaff had taken out on him, Harrold said. Both young children were at the residence during the shooting.

Bad guy dead only after taking his own life, five other innocent people killed and two children kidnapped and left without a family, all because a piece of paper wasn’t enough to protect them from an estranged boyfriend with anger management issues. These killings where horrible and heart-wrenching and they didn’t have to happen. 

And that’s the most heart-wrenching part of the story. 

More …

Is this worth your life?

This happened about 5 miles away from my house. 

Investigators say Selvy was robbed of alcohol scuffled with a man identified as 36-year-old Bobby Baughman.

Police say Baughman struck Selvy in the head with a wrench and Selvy retaliated by retrieving a pistol from his vehicle and fatally shooting Baughman 

The key phrase? 

“retaliated by retrieving a pistol from his vehicle” 

Whoops: Mr. Selvy’s life was not in danger at the point where he used deadly force. Therefore, he is facing second degree murder charges.

Bottom line is, a firearm is to be used only for direct and urgent threats to your life or the life of someone else. Getting attacked with lethal force, (and unless my years of playing “Clue!” were all wasted, a blow to the head with a wrench is considered lethal force), would be considered by most people (your jury may vary) to be reason enough to respond with lethal force. 

But getting conked on the noggin, walking to your car and THEN using lethal force isn’t. 

More …

Home on the range

Gail Drake (who is an essential part of practically every major match at Rio) has a great post up on about bringing up a family that shoots. 

My youngest will grow up to be a shooter, without a doubt. My oldest isn’t interested as much in shooting, but he loves camping and fishing. 

And that ain’t bad. 

More …


Whoever was in charge of telling just how much fun it is to shoot steel plates with a .22 semi-automatic pistol? 


Wow, was that fun. Nothing fancy, just a little practice with my S+W M22A before next month’s .22 match at Rio. Three plates at ten yards, two round on each, but wow, before I knew, it, I had put a hundred round through the little sucker and could have plinked for hours longer. 

Seriously, if you’ve not done it, do it. Most fun I’ve had with a firearm in my hand in a long, long time. 

On a semi-related note, I made a had’jj over to the local Cabelas (it’s over in Glendale, Arizona, which is the back end of beyond for an East Valley guy like myself) and was shocked, shocked to discover they didn’t stock spare magazines for my S+W M22a. 

I’d a bet money otherwise. Genuinely surprised about that. Oh well, shipping costs from MidwayUSA are about the same as what the local sales tax would have been, I just have a wait a bit more. 

And I hate waiting. 


Fourth Report

“90% of the game is mental, and the other half is physical.” 

– Yogi Berra 

I took a different approach to how I approached the Dot Torture drill this time. Rather than worrying about trigger press and front sight picture, I visualized the result I wanted to see, and then just shot. 

And it made a difference. 


Dot Torture Drill: 46 out of 50. 

And it could have been perfect if I had kept my mind in the game.

Thinking about the end result is far more natural for me than thinking about the process. When I was a shooter (of photos), I began every assignment with a pre-visualization: I saw the photo I wanted in my mid first, the rest was getting it done. Ansel Adams was the master of this; the Zone System is nothing more than a way of defining how you want the final print to appear before you even set up your tripod. 

If I can see it , I can do it, and I’ve known that this is the way that I think since my senior year of High School, when I’d get C’s in Algebra but A+’s in Geo-Trig. However, this is not how I’ve been training up to this point: I’ve been relying on the slow, methodical process of analysis so typical to left-brain thinking. However, I’m a right-brain thinker, and I learn via the creative process. 

Now, the fact is, the actual methodology is pretty much the same: Drills and practice routines are still a part of both disciplines, but how I approach training will change. Instead of relying on a slow progress and analytical thinking, I have to wait (and trust) for the “Eureka!” moments, and then build upon that. 

The first of which was today, when I remembered how I think. 

El Presidente Scores


CZ75 1

CZ75 2

P07 1

Target One

3A C

3A C

3A C

Target Two

3A C

3A C

2A C D

Target Three

3A D

3A C

3A C







































Avg. Split




Not a lot to say here, except that I’m happy that I’m not seeing a lot of swings in my scores. They may be low, but they’re not shifting into the utter horrible on occasion