Every once in a while, a column stirs up some chaos. Last week we talked about guns, both in hypothetical terms about why we need them to ensure our freedom and in practical terms about which ones to use. I got a lot of input. Well, suffice it to say that people agree with me about the need for every armed, able-bodied citizen to pack some freedom heat. Sure, Townhall VIP is probably just a bit of a self-selecting demographic, but the sheer number of folks arming up for the first time – or increasing their already substantial armories – was a true testament to the effect of the Great Awokening that the leftist cold war has sparked among Normal Americans.
There are a lot more not-yet-cold, dead hands out there these days.
Let’s get into the practical gun stuff, shall we?
But before we do, since the marketing people have a (figurative) gun to my head, could you take a sec to pre-order my new non-fiction book from Regnery, The 21 Biggest Lies about Donald Trump (and You!). It drops next Tuesday and perhaps if I rack up sufficient sales they will release my family.
Just kidding. Or am I? In any case, it’s really funny and mean and you’ll dig it.
Back to guns. I got an avalanche of responses and I can’t quote them all, so if I missed out on you, nothing personal. I just had like 100 emails and I nearly drowned in a massive tsunami of people telling me why I’m wrong. I’m not wrong, people! I recommended three proven, simple guns for basic, barebones capabilities – the Glock 19 pistol, the Remington 870 shotgun and the AR-15 semiautomatic modern rifle. When you’re right, you’re right.
Navy veteran Chris, along with Karl, Ben and Steven agreed with my suggestions. A reverend who presides over a non-gun free church also agreed with me, so that’s powerful validation. I’m not a theologian so I’m not saying that its Biblical, but there you go. Mark agreed too, and he recommends knowing like-minded neighbors for mutual support in a crisis. This is wise, and something we will talk about in future VIP columns.
Some people kind of agreed, but elaborated. Jim has all the guns I recommended, but wonders if a pump shotgun is superior to a semiauto. I like the simplicity of a pump!
Robert likes revolvers and wonders why I did not show them any love. I have nothing against revolvers – you know, diversity and such – but I’m a semiautomatic kind of guy, as opposed to a clownish “fully semiautomatic” one. Ugh, generals.
Then there was the great caliber controversy…
Yeah, we went down that rabbit hole. I like .45, but my view is the caliber is not incredibly important since it’s pretty much always bad to get shot. But Alexis, who writes on police issues, weighed in on the great .45 versus 9mm debate with this terrifying story:
A cop I interviewed shot a sober suspect who was not wearing body armor 14 times at close range with .45 ammo including through the heart, both lungs, pelvis, kidney, liver, and diaphragm with no effect. It took three more headshots to stop the suspect. After that gunfight, the cop got rid of his .45 Glock and got a 9mm. He learned the hard way that ‘The more ammo, the better’ and 9mm firearms allow more ammo. I have nothing against .45 handguns or ammo; to each his own. However, 9mm is easier for most people to shoot, and is cheaper for practice.
That was my thinking recommending a Glock 9mm. But Christina wonders if a .380 is better for women than a 9mm. Patricia, you were worried about your size so this might be an answer to your conundrum. Regardless, I think 9mm and .380 are pretty similar –you’ve just got to use what’s most comfortable for you.
Lots of people had a pistol preference over the Glock. Timothy and Don suggest the Beretta 92F pistol, which us Army guys recognize as the 9mm M9. It’s a good gun and I carried one for many years. The fact is that most modern pistols from reputable makers are likely going to do the job.
James reminds us that some people might have physical limitations to keep them from using a 12-guage shotgun. One option is a smaller one, like a 410.
In place of a M4, Marvin suggests an advanced idea, which is the Ruger PCC 9mm carbine which can use Glock magazines. It’s basically a small rifle that shoots pistol bullets and I have read good reviews of it.
Bob sent a cool picture of his weapons, which generally correspond to the ones I recommend. He brings up a good point – you need sufficient ammunition. Kevin agrees, and as Franklin observes:
Just as important as the handgun you carry, are the number of spare magazines you carry on your person. Always carry at least (1) loaded spare magazine, and (2) if you can. Misfires, Jamming, weakened springs, or other mechanical failures will happen, and more often than not, when you really don’t need it.
I’m not going to list all the weapons that Stephen suggests, but apparently he’s very concerned about being attacked by elephants because all of them have the knockdown power of a bulldozer! Not that there’s anything wrong with that.
Tim advises realistic practice:
Encourage people to practice a lot. Start simple. But work up to realistic scenarios under pressure. We use a Pocket Pro timer to make it fun and competitive. Draw, engage, fire 5 shots then compare times. Folks start out nervous and end up improving dramatically. It’s surprising how few people have practiced pulling a pistol from a holster and engaging a target. Many ranges forbid it.
And David mentioned that his West Point class was getting commemorative Kimber .45s. My OCS class would probably get a commemorative beer stein.
There were more gun suggestions. Puneet went with a .357 revolver. Christopher is a revolver guy too. Mikey has pretty much everything, including an AK-47. Kevin has an M1A rifle - a solid choice. Kendall suggests a Gatling gun - count me in.
The bottom line – get armed, and trained, and prepared. The worst-case scenario is still a possible scenario…
Like I said, go on and pre-order a copy of The 21 Biggest Lies about Donald Trump (and You!). It drops on July 7, and you know you’re going to get it anyway so do it now!
Also, check out my VIP podcast “Unredacted” every Monday, and my free podcast “Fighting Words” on Wednesdays! And don’t forget my 2A-woke novels People's Republic, Indian Country, Wildfire and Collapse!
My super-secret email address is Kurt.Schlichter@townhall.com!