Friday, June 8, 2012

One In The Pipe Is Worth Two In The Mag

For many years, the debate about how to carry concealed has raged. The battle centers around whether or not to chamber a round. My answer is "yes, duh".

The argument against chambering a round has a couple of central points: 1) carrying a loaded gun is dangerous; 2) the mere sight of a gun will send a would-be attacker running for the hills.

My counter arguments are as follows. Point one, danger. Guns are dangerous. Period. If you can't deal with that, then don't carry one. Get a decent holster, follow Cooper's rules for firearms, and use your brain. You won't have any problems. I think it's more dangerous to try to chamber a round while an attacker is contact distance away. In my mind, if I draw my gun it's because I'm going to shoot right now.

Second, drawing and racking the slide will intimidate an attacker. What if it doesn't? The root of this argument is that all criminals react with "flight" in the "fight or flight" circumstance. To my  mind, it is equally possible that the sight of a gun will incense the attacker with resolve to kill you, or make them try to close the distance even faster, or try to grab your gun before you can shoot--after all, a lot of self-defense situations aren't on the 10-yard-line. Oh no, they're inside 3 yards. Nine feet. Two steps until they can grab you. What if you're ambushed? A good example is when I was a policeman, I arrested a guy for attacking a random person. The attacker put on brass knuckles and crouched behind a trashcan outside a convenience store and whacked the first guy who walked past. What then? You're dazed and bloodied while trying to find the threat, draw, rack the slide, and fight off a drunken little punk. What then, indeed. Once again, if I draw my gun it's because I need to shoot right now.

In truth, there is a very, very small chance of any of us law-abiding CCW'ers needing to draw at all. However, I think we should stack the deck as heavily as possible in our favor. Chief of which is loading your damn gun.


James said...

Carrying a gun with an empty chamber seems to imply that you believe it's safe. Believing a gun is safe leads to breaking rule number one. Breaking rule number one breeds contempt of the other rules. Breaking more than one rule at a time leads to a second hole in your ass.

Don't put a second hole in your ass. Switch to chambered rounds today. < /commercial >

The Flatland Gun Nut said...

I have seen a few M9 ND's, and not one of them was loaded at the time. "It wasn't loaded!" was usually the first sentence after the barracks-pop.

I think the worst possible carry habit is to alternate between chambering and not chambering a round. That seems like a deskpop waiting to happen.