The 3 Golden Rules of Defensive Carry


opsspec1991

Active member
The 3 Golden Rules of Defensive Carry


How much handgun is too much? Or too little? Our expert answers these tricky questions


What’s the best defensive handgun? There’s no easy answer to this question, but if you had to shoot to save your life while being attacked, you’d probably like to have the biggest handgun you could find. I know I would. Of course, there are some problems with big and powerful handguns for defensive carry: They’re hard to carry and hard to conceal, and they recoil with enough force to twist your own wrists into submission. There’s a reason nearly every .44 Magnum revolver that’s for sale on the used market comes with half a box of ammunition.


Robert Ruark made the “use enough gun” phrase famous. In fact, it was the title of one of his books, published in 1965 after his death. Ruark’s reference to enough gun was about hunting dangerous game, and he did a good bit of it. He shot lots of buffalo, several elephants, two lions, and multiple tigers. He was even mauled by an Asian leopard. So Ruark had some experience to back up his advice, advice which has since been applied to hunting all sorts of big game and even to defensive carry.


Defensive carry works best when you have a handgun that you'll actually carry with you.


Even though a .38 Special isn’t the most powerful choice, this revolver is compact and easy to carry, making it more likely you’ll have the gun on you when you really need it.


Rule No. 1: Defensive Carry Means Having a Gun
When it comes to the self-defense handgun, the question naturally follows: What is enough gun? Can you have too much gun? Handguns effectively stop attacks in several ways. The first and most common is just their mere presence. Countless assaults are thwarted every year just because the good guy had a gun. Will it work for you? Maybe. There’s no way to know.


Another way handguns save lives is when they’re used to shoot the bad guy. This can result in a superficial wound so painful or terrifying to the attacker that they change their mind about doing bad things. A wound from a handgun can also cause voluntary collapse due to the attacker realizing they’re shot and succumbing to the fear of what the wound might ultimately cause. And then there’s involuntary collapse. This occurs about from a wound that breaks support structure, induces unconsciousness, and on rare occasions, causes near-instant death. In almost every case where the attacker is wounded, shot placement plays a huge role in the outcome. Maybe Ruark’s advice should have been “Hit ’em in the right spot.”


The .44 Mag might not be the best defensive carry option given its size, even if it is a powerful revolver.


A .44 Mag is indeed a powerful revolver, but one that’s often left at home because it’s so unwieldy. Richard Mann


Rule No. 2: Nothing Is Certain

The problem with shot placement is that little is guaranteed. While being assaulted and fearing for your life, it’s extremely difficult to shoot with assured accuracy. To compound the problem, unless the bullet strikes and sufficiently damages the central nervous system, the reaction to getting shot is mostly a dice roll. The mental state of the attacker and whether they’re under the influence of any substances also plays a role in the outcome.


The armed civilian must make a choice regarding the gun they will carry. Without question, a .44 Magnum, or some similar very powerful large-bore handgun, can inflict a very nasty and painful wound, even in a location that does not have a high potential of lethality or inducing collapse. On the other hand, as we mentioned, handguns in this power range are extremely unwieldy, difficult to conceal, and difficult to control during recoil.



Rule No. 3: Carry Whenever Possible
After having a gun, the next requirement for defensive carry is having a gun that’s compact and light enough you’ll actually have it with you all the time, because none of us know when a deadly assault might occur. Beyond that, the handgun needs to be compatible with your abilities. In other words, you need to be able to manage the handgun during recoil and quickly shoot it with a competent level of precision.


What cartridge should it be chambered for? We never really know what enough gun will be. Bad guys have been stopped with .22s and have also continued to fight after being center-punched with a .357 Magnum. The most powerful cartridge that will allow you to still do all those things well is the correct answer. Anything beyond that is too much gun. Worry about having a gun and being able to use it effectively before you worry about what kind of gun will be enough.


Read Next: The Top 10 Best Handguns for Carrying


Using a gun for hunting is entirely different than carrying a handgun for self-defense. When hunting, you control the outcome and only shoot when the situation is right, and then only because you want to. With self-defense, you have no control of when, where, and how the event will unravel. All you can do is react with what you have with you. If you have too much gun, you might have left it at home or you might shoot it poorly.


Read more: https://www.outdoorlife.com/guns/be...M8BTcfRjpM3VW3dXDvYYa3kznKsVS8uZVoAx6xYCUl0fI
 

mrbruno

New member
Thank you very much for sharing!
Was topical for me
The 3 Golden Rules of Defensive Carry


How much handgun is too much? Or too little? Our expert answers these tricky questions


What’s the best defensive handgun? There’s no easy answer to this question, but if you had to shoot to save your life while being attacked, you’d probably like to have the biggest handgun you could find. I know I would. Of course, there are some problems with big and powerful handguns for defensive carry: They’re hard to carry and hard to conceal, and they recoil with enough force to twist your own wrists into submission. There’s a reason nearly every .44 Magnum revolver that’s for sale on the used market comes with half a box of ammunition.


Robert Ruark made the “use enough gun” phrase famous. In fact, it was the title of one of his books, published in 1965 after his death. Ruark’s reference to enough gun was about hunting dangerous game, and he did a good bit of it. He shot lots of buffalo, several elephants, two lions, and multiple tigers. He was even mauled by an Asian leopard. So Ruark had some experience to back up his advice, advice which has since been applied to hunting all sorts of big game and even to defensive carry.


Defensive carry works best when you have a handgun that you'll actually carry with you.


Even though a .38 Special isn’t the most powerful choice, this revolver is compact and easy to carry, making it more likely you’ll have the gun on you when you really need it.


Rule No. 1: Defensive Carry Means Having a Gun
When it comes to the self-defense handgun, the question naturally follows: What is enough gun? Can you have too much gun? Handguns effectively stop attacks in several ways. The first and most common is just their mere presence. Countless assaults are thwarted every year just because the good guy had a gun. Will it work for you? Maybe. There’s no way to know.


Another way handguns save lives is when they’re used to shoot the bad guy. This can result in a superficial wound so painful or terrifying to the attacker that they change their mind about doing bad things. A wound from a handgun can also cause voluntary collapse due to the attacker realizing they’re shot and succumbing to the fear of what the wound might ultimately cause. And then there’s involuntary collapse. This occurs about from a wound that breaks support structure, induces unconsciousness, and on rare occasions, causes near-instant death. In almost every case where the attacker is wounded, shot placement plays a huge role in the outcome. Maybe Ruark’s advice should have been “Hit ’em in the right spot.”


The .44 Mag might not be the best defensive carry option given its size, even if it is a powerful revolver.


A .44 Mag is indeed a powerful revolver, but one that’s often left at home because it’s so unwieldy. Richard Mann


Rule No. 2: Nothing Is Certain

The problem with shot placement is that little is guaranteed. While being assaulted and fearing for your life, it’s extremely difficult to shoot with assured accuracy. To compound the problem, unless the bullet strikes and sufficiently damages the central nervous system, the reaction to getting shot is mostly a dice roll. The mental state of the attacker and whether they’re under the influence of any substances also plays a role in the outcome.


The armed civilian must make a choice regarding the gun they will carry. Without question, a .44 Magnum, or some similar very powerful large-bore handgun, can inflict a very nasty and painful wound, even in a location that does not have a high potential of lethality or inducing collapse. On the other hand, as we mentioned, handguns in this power range are extremely unwieldy, difficult to conceal, and difficult to control during recoil.



Rule No. 3: Carry Whenever Possible
After having a gun, the next requirement for defensive carry is having a gun that’s compact and light enough you’ll actually have it with you all the time, because none of us know when a deadly assault might occur. Beyond that, the handgun needs to be compatible with your abilities. In other words, you need to be able to manage the handgun during recoil and quickly shoot it with a competent level of precision.


What cartridge should it be chambered for? We never really know what enough gun will be. Bad guys have been stopped with .22s and have also continued to fight after being cente computer monitoring software r-punched with a .357 Magnum. The most powerful cartridge that will allow you to still do all those things well is the correct answer. Anything beyond that is too much gun. Worry about having a gun and being able to use it effectively before you worry about what kind of gun will be enough.


Read Next: The Top 10 Best Handguns for Carrying


Using a gun for hunting is entirely different than carrying a handgun for self-defense. When hunting, you control the outcome and only shoot when the situation is right, and then only because you want to. With self-defense, you have no control of when, where, and how the event will unravel. All you can do is react with what you have with you. If you have too much gun, you might have left it at home or you might shoot it poorly.


Read more: https://www.outdoorlife.com/guns/best-defensive-carry-handgun/?utm_medium=social&?utm_source=facebook&fbclid=IwAR3N7CcGnJ9gsGM8BTcfRjpM3VW3dXDvYYa3kznKsVS8uZVoAx6xYCUl0fI
 
Last edited:

Cyr

Member
Well, let’s see? Yup, I would definitely positively, absolutely be dead right now if I didn’t carry a gun, or sometimes even two guns!

As for Rule No.1? Yeah, I guess. Twice in my life someone has attempted to rob me and steal my guns while I was practicing at a remote shooting range. The first time I didn’t have a gun; I’d left it on the bench while I walked down to the targets; but, thanks be to God, the fellow I was with was carrying his!

The second time this happened to me I was walking out of the house when (Ready?) I heard a small still voice inside me say, “Stop!” “Go back into the house and put another gun on your belt.” So, I did. Later that day the second gun I was wearing on my left-hand side actually saved my life!

So that we’re all on the same page: 44 Magnum is my lifelong favorite handgun caliber. I love shooting it; I understand how it performs, and I’ve always been very accurate with any of my 3 S&W Model 29’s.

With this understood, I would never carry a 44 Mag for self-defense. Why? Because the recoil and front sight dwell time are way too long, and way too difficult to control during a rapid fire event. (I’ve actually lost PPC matches because of my personal insistence on using a downloaded, but still ‘healthy’ 44 Special revolver!)

After a lifetime of using and carrying handguns I have come down to predominantly relying upon only one caliber handgun: The 45 ACP. Sure, I own them all: 22 LR and 32 ACP handguns (which have their uses as secondaries), 380’s, 38 Specials, and 9x19mm pistols, too; and I’ve ‘fooled around’ with a few 40 S&W’s.

(I don’t like 40 caliber pistols. Why? Because I’ve got to pay too much attention, and ‘think too hard’ about what I am doing with a 40 in my hands in order to hit well with one.)

Sometimes I’ll carry my G19(RTF2), but I will NOT carry my 380 Walther, anymore. (It’s a beautiful little pistol, but I will never again carry it as a primary.) Not after my wife and I got into a life-threatening situation while I was carrying it; and, to my absolute horror, I suddenly realized that my puny little Walther 380 wasn’t going to help me to fend-off 4 angry men, their pistols, and a 12 gauge shotgun!

Rule No 2 is interesting! It is interesting because it cuts straight to the core of what I try to teach more advanced students about CQB pistol (or knife) fighting. In essence: Shot placement should NOT be questionable.

This is, in part, why a skilled pistolero practices as hard and as often as he does. In an effort to put this idea across I will say that from my own years training in a dojo, what a competent pistolero must learn how to do is to: BECOME ONE WITH HIS GUN! (Or whatever other weapon he is using.)

There is a lot more to pistol gunfighting (because THIS is what every self-defense encounter really is) than simply having a gun or being pretty good ‘on paper’ at the range every Saturday morning—A whole lot more!

The concept I have long tried to put across to more advanced students is that, in order to ‘take charge’ of a potentially dangerous situation, and be proactive rather than reactive, it is necessary to understand how to fight—how to habitually (or instinctively) act with a ‘COLD’ bend of mind.

There are only two initial reactions a self-defender can have as he goes into a gunfight: fear, or rage! In order to give readers some idea of how ridiculously silly some of today’s current combat psychology is, whoever heard of a Ninja warrior with a: loss of fine motor control, the shakes, auditory exclusion, time compression, or tunnel vision—Who! (The correct answer, of course, is NOBODY!)

Well, . . . THIS is how every self-defense pistolero should also be able to conduct himself when a worst case scenario actually happens; and, all of a sudden, a self-defense pistolero ends up fighting for his life!

In my own experience, whenever a self-defense gunman shoots with a ‘cold mind’ then his bullets are, at least, ten times more likely to hit the mark—Ten times more likely! The ‘trick’, the art of it all, is to learn how to (almost) instantaneously transform yourself into this ‘cold’, vitally necessary state-of-mind.

(Many of the methods used in basic military training are designed to induce exactly this sort of ‘cold’ preconditioned physiological response.)

In fact, after a long lifetime of doing and teaching these things I am personally convinced that understanding the importance of, and learning how to function with a ‘cold mind’ is the primary personal requirement behind winning (almost) every physical engagement between individual combatants.

Now, for Rule No. 3: Of course you should carry. This is, after all, planet Earth; and, in recent years, it’s become more and more insane with each passing day. There are days when I watch the broadcast news while the same two thoughts repeatedly occur to me: First, I am convinced that planet Earth is the collective insane asylum for the rest of, at least, this galaxy; and, second, because I am a person with a deeply religious mindset,

Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabitants of the earth and of the sea! For the devil has come down unto you having great wrath because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.” (Revelation 12:12)

(Thoughts like these are the only way I, personally, am able to rationalize all of the: confusion, disinformation, contradictions, and insanity that seems to be constantly increasing all around us!)

I am ‘old school’. Three United States Marines, all recently returned from combat in both the South Pacific, and Korea, taught me how to handle firearms and shoot. I used to greatly admire their scared bodies, and told myself that someday I would have bullet holes and shrapnel wounds on my own body, too. (Yes, I was a crazy kid!)

These are the men who taught me so much more than just how to handle a gun, or how to shoot. The biggest gift those Marines gave to me was that they taught me how to fight—how to fight—and not just how to use only weapons, alone!

To my own mind it has never been a matter of finding a gun that ‘fits me’ (what a ridiculous concept); instead it is a matter of ‘getting my mind around the gun, itself’. (Which IS, when you stop to think about it, exactly the same weapon philosophy that all branches of the military teach.)

For primary carry I recommend only three chamberings: 9x19mm, 45 ACP, and 357 Magnum; and, yes, I have taught many women how to wield a 357 Magnum revolver BETTER THAN most men that I watch shooting at the range! For secondary carry, almost anything will do: 22 LR, 32 and/or 380 ACP, 38 Special, 38 Super, and (again) 9x19mm.

The gist of being able to consistently hit the target is NOT about finding a gun that fits you, won’t be a bother to carry, and you feel comfortable shooting; instead it is about you BECOMING FAMILIAR with whatever gun is ‘THE RIGHT TOOL’ for you to enter into a life or death confrontation with. In other words, any gun that is ‘the right tool’ is probably not going to be comfortable for you to carry around all day long.

I know my enormous Glock Model 21 is neither comfortable to carry, nor easy to conceal; but—if I should ever need to actually use it, then—it is, unquestionably ‘the right tool’ for me to be carrying; and, as well practiced as I am in its use, at least two or three 230 grain bullets are going to go exactly where I place them.

THIS is what CQB pistol self-defense is really all about! The right gun, the right training, sufficient practice, and the right mindset. (Which IS, again, when you stop to think about it, exactly the same mindset and weapon handling philosophy that all branches of the military teach.)
 

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