Another good reason to always test your equipment, never trust anything until it has proven itself.
Today, while working as a Range Safety Officer, late in the day, a couple arrived to test their guns. Both had identical guns, a small five shot revolver, double action only, with a laser. Note that this laser was never used during shooting, only the traditional ‘iron’ sights. As I watched them to assess if they could safely handle their guns and not doing anything stupid, I noticed that the woman seemed to have a failure to fire but perhaps she had not fully loaded the gun, I didn’t know. She mentioned that the gun did not seem to shoot to point of aim and asked me to try it, I did. I fired two shots at twelve yards, one was right on, the other hit far to the left. I thought that the shot off to the left was perhaps me, my inconsistency. She then shot at a paper target which was placed at perhaps five yards distant.
Her group, that is, her cluster of shots, was satisfactory but far to the left of where the gun was aimed. The man seemed to be having problems also, I fired his gun and all my shots hit in the same place, far left, as had happened for the woman. I then shot the womans gun on the paper target and my hits were right on top of hers. I asked one of the other Range Officers to test fire both guns, he had exactly the same results. In addition to that, both guns occasionally failed to fire, that was with new factory ammunition by Winchester.
This model gun has the sleeved two piece barrel. When this design first came on the market, Massad Ayoob compared several of them to their older versions which used the traditional method of barrel construction. In his test, all the newer versions fired groups which were three to four times larger than the older gun, in other words, they were really bad. Supposedly this problem has been corrected, apparently not.
Consider this, one gun might have a ‘fluke’, a manufacturing defect, perhaps an oversight in the making, or someone got careless in construction but…two identical guns, each with the same two identical problems. One of the problems being that this is a gun designed specifically for last ditch self defense, to keep you alive and it doesn’t always go bang when you need it to. Add to that, not being able to put its’ shots where they need to go. Shame on you Smith & Wesson. Someone there needs to be taken out and beaten, or sued.
Congratulations Texas. Your incredibly pushy efforts to get open carry have succeeded in getting you a open carry provision added to your state CCW licensure. Open carry comes with certain responsibilities. In this handy guide, we will discuss the steps you need to take to avoid being a open carry douchbag. As our visible representation to the average joe, you are a walking billboard for the gun community. It is your responsibility to carry in a way that turns heads and changes opinions. So here are X steps you need to take to be a representative of gun owners everywhere.
The first point of discussion is the most important aspect of open carry: A holster made to carry the pistol in a responsible manner. THE WORST THING we can do is allow our weapon to fall into the wrong hands. Be that it is taken from you by force, or that it simply falls out of that shit nylon holster you got at Bob’s Guns, its high time to realize that if you drop that gun in a public place, or if you are shot or killed with a weapon taken from your person, YOU WILL BE NATIONAL NEWS. You will give countless liberal idiots everything they need to point and scream at how ineffective, dangerous, and meat headed open carry is. If that pistol makes its way out of that nylon holster in the wrong circumstances, you not only could lose your CCW license, but you will make us all look like idiots.
RETENTION is the name of the game. If you are going to open carry responsibly, you need a retention holster instead of that cheap hydrodipped skull kydex you got off Amazon. True, GOOD KYDEX has passive retention, and this is a good thing, but would it help you if a thug started tugging at the pistol? Active retention buys you security and time. Active retention gives you precious seconds longer to deny a thug your pistol. Good Retention will prevent that pistol from dropping out at the park. Active retention will prevent it from falling out at the park and keep it out of thug hands. Don’t make the news. Go for active retention with open carry. It just makes too much sense.
Dress for success
Dress for success. This is key. As our walking billboard, you need to show the community you live in that, as a gun owner, you are clean, good looking, hell even popular. If you dress like Slob McAllister, you continue to perpetrate stereotypes which work against us. Dress well. It doesn’t have to be business casual, but dress in a manner that represents us. The more loser you look, the more opinions will be re-inforced. We are on the offensive now. Gun ownership is experiencing a resurgence not seen in decades. Help that wave grow by looking damn good, and looking cool as hell. Yes this is a popularity contest. We have to make the other side look like sheepish morons, while we, the gun owners, look like American action stars (if applicable) at best, and at the very least… like an approachable all American guy or gal. Carry those pocket constitutions in your back pocket and hand out lollipops if necessary. This is a cultural war, and we have to be on the cutting edge and relevant to young adults and all future generations. So look good, and answer questions politely.
Put the Phone Down
Stop recording the cops… Or at least change the strategy. As an open carrier, your going to be approached by police. You may want to record the interaction because sometimes the police are wrong. I know you want to post every bad interaction on YouTube, but when your video starts out with a nice cop asking to see your CCW and you start screaming “AM I BEING DETAINED?? AM I BEING DETANED?!?!” you look like a douchbag. Stop it. You make us look unreasonable and further the impression of those who are on the fence that we may be, in fact, idiots. Quietly turn on that cell phone, put it in your pocket, and comply with the cops demands to all reasonable ends. If he or she was wrong and you are reasonable with your speech and actions, we, the gun community, will stand behind you. Post that to YouTube and contact your lawyer.
Remember, this is a popularity contest. I don’t care how much you think the Constitution protects your rights, the reality is that it does nothing if the public doesn’t believe in the rights written on it. Nothing could be worse than to let popular opinion of the gun owner turn against us. When the majority of the citizenry believes the constitution is a failed document, and begin to shred it by re-interpreting, restricting protections, and crapping over the brilliance of the founding fathers… then its protections mean nothing. The citizenry is doing that RIGHT NOW. We have to turn the tide. Your job, as a walking billboard for gun owners, is to carry responsibly, to look damn good doing it, and to change minds about what a gun owner is. We’re not rednecks. We are culturally relevant bad asses who pet kittens and kiss babies, yet are prepared to defend ourselves and possibly those around us from harm. Please represent us well Texas, and as a former Pennsylvania open carry resident, good luck with future legislative success.