2nd Amendment to the Constitution of The United States of America

A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.

"I ask sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people except for a few politicians."
- George Mason (father of the Bill of Rights and The Virginia Declaration of Rights)

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Ad Libing a bit here...

In the spirit of the Lenten season.  I hope nobody takes any offense to this.  Is not that I think Jesus would advocate violence or anything...just using a well known verse to make a point.

From the Book of John Huey..

"Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life covering fire for his friends"

Instead of giving ones life for his friends, couldn't one work with them in a coordinated retrograde action in order to get everyone out of the trouble they find themselves in? Not that I wouldn't have taken a bullet for anyone I have served with or anything like that...maybe not in the chest for all of them...but you get the idea.

Got some?

In a tactical environment "covering fire" (aka "suppressive fire")  is that fire used to suppress an enemy (keep his head down) in order for a friendly unit to maneuver.   It is often used to fix an enemy so an adjoining force may outflank them and engage their weaker side defenses, and ultimately sweep over them and destroy them. If you have ever watched Saving Private Ryan the term and command is used several times in the movie.  I remember many, many hours practicing as a a member of rifle teams, squads and platoons the art of maneuvering in 3 to 5 second rushes or laying down fire and shifting fire off to the opposite end of the objective from where the friendlies would come from in order to catch the enemy as they tried to escape the charging unit.  Its use can be scaled from large combat team forces at division level (remember the "Hail Mary" attack in the first Gulf War) down to a few soldiers against each other. 

This concept is part of the "bread and butter" of maneuver warfare as taught in the military. It seems pretty common sense once its pointed out to you but how many times have we seen movies where soldiers just blindly charged ahead into oncoming fire...well, a lot of WWI was fought like that I guess. Think of it like this, you want to have chicken for dinner but no way that chicken is just going to sit there and let his head get chopped off.  The suppressive fire is the hand that holds the chicken down while the maneuver force is the ax that comes down and puts the clucker in the stew pot.   In a way, fire and maneuver utilizing suppressive fire is kind of a "fix all" type solution to most field problems when encountering an enemy.  It can be used for both offensive and retrograde operations as well as for other specialty scenarios.  The only other generally as useful tactic I can think of is the "hey diddle diddle, everyone up the middle" tactic, where you just focus all of your efforts on a single point in the enemies line or defense as quickly and violently as you can.

A couple of German Maxim machine gun crews on high ground...a Tommy and Doughboy's nightmares were made of things such as this....

The tactic really got its modern start when the machine gun appeared on the battlefield and a weapon was capable of producing such a withering amount of fire while still conserving manpower.  No longer would an entire company of riflemen staged in box formations or a single long line be required to lay down fire so another unit could maneuver around its large perimeter to engage the enemy up close.  Now that job could be done by as little as 2 or 3 soldiers. Over time as the weapon developed and more smaller and compact versions of it became available it was integrated lower and lower into the hierarchy of the units.  At first the heavy, water cooled and cumbersome machines were only available at the battalion or company level in fixed positions, but air cooled and smaller versions of these weapons (like the famous M1919 .30 MG compared to the M2 .50) enabled them to be attached to the company and then platoon.  The Germans really took the concept forward before and during WW2 by basing the squad element around their lighter machine guns instead of the rifle and the US followed suit after the war by the introduction of the M60.  Later even smaller weapons, like the M249 SAW, meant that even the individual fire teams (3 or 4 soldiers) had at least one fully automatic weapon for a base of fire to suppress the enemy with.  Neat-O.

The way that obtaining covering fire is done varies slightly from unit type to unit type...an Armored unit may have a different SOP than an infantry unit...but the same basic principle is maintained...pin them down and then bum rush them once you outflank them.  The method for actually employing covering fire is pretty straightforward.   

  1. Initially you put an large amount of rounds downrange to get the enemy to stop firing at you.
  2. You start engaging likely areas of return fire as you identify them with beaten zone fires 
  3. You then selectively engage any shown positions and targets
  4. Once and if the enemy size is determined and positions pinpointed individual weapons or platforms can be assigned to each target to engage until destroyed using precise, aimed fire.

Many times you will not get much beyond #2 above, depending on the pace of the battle and speed in which units may maneuver unhindered.

If you read this and think that I have given you a nugget of tactical knowledge, well, you're partially right.  This isn't super secret tactical knowledge only given to Rangers and SEALS, its freely available on the internet for anyone to find.  I just had an itch to talk about it and I did.  This is not intended as, nor should it be implied as, training or used in any way other than just recreational reading.  That is all....seriously, end. 

Idiot kills his wife with AK...CNN's Nancy Grace goes nuts...par for her course..

OK, first off, somebody died here needlessly.  I don't want to lessen or make light of that fact.  As I often point out being a gun owner is a serious responsibility people, as this preventable tragedy demonstrates.  Shame, she looked like a real pretty woman too.  Story here...notice the guy is a convicted felon too.

Secondly, I would urge you to stop eating or drinking during this video as being shown clips of Nancy Grace has been proven to be a nausea inducing experience...

Just some observations over this entire tragedy...

"9:17 AM, isn't that a little early to be showing off your AK-47 in the bathroom?"  - Please point out the statue of the law that says that firearms may only be handled at certain times during the day and locations in your own home.

Showing videos of a fully automatic AK - No sense even trying to explain this to a non-gunnie type like Nancy...even though she was a prosecuting attorney (until she was run out of that job for being an idiot) she still doesn't seem to know that the majority of Americans do not possess them.  And of course this probably would have not made such big news for her if the weapon had not been the feared AK-47..

"If Carson Merrill is a gun buff, and apparently he is because he has over a dozen guns there in the home, wouldn't he know the gun was loaded" - First off, by that definition, I'm a gun buff - yeah! Secondly, apparently he didn't know the gun was loaded, hence the shooting.  You're talking to a family friend who is telling you that the shooting was most likely an accident, and you basically throw a inclination of murder right at her, classy.

The guy was a convicted felon.  There is no mention if he had applied and had his rights to own a firearm restored or not, or even if that is possible under Florida law.  Either way it paints a bad picture for this entire scene to have been played out under.  This will be another instance the anti's will use to close the "gun show" loopholes and private sales.  Also, and I hate to point this out, but if the guy was a felon still under ownership disability, shouldn't his wife of had an obligation to turn him in?

Lastly, and most sadly, the couples three year daughter effectively lost both her parents here.  Mommy is gone forever and Daddy will be put away for a long time after which she needs to come to grips with the fact that he killed her Mommy.  I hope the girl has some solid grandparents or other family members that can take her in so she doesn't get tossed into foster care.  This is the real tragedy in this case.

What we have here is predatory journalism.  Nancy takes high profile or sensational topics that fit her own political mindset and exploits them for her show.   Not once in that clip did she mention the child whereabouts or well being, it was all about "the gun" and its misuse and even possession in the home if you read deeper into it.  In another day or so this will be off her radar and she will cease to care about it as she moves onto another morsel of tabloid information.

I wonder if she still thinks Whitney Houston was murdered?

Does a proposed Ohio law outlawing "hidden compartments" target CCW holders?

Recently here in the Buckeye state there has been a stir about a proposed bill sponsored by State Senator Jim Hughes (R-Columbus).  Senate Bill 305 (you can read it here) is aimed at helping to target the transportation of illegal drugs here in Ohio by making it illegal to have any type of hidden compartment installed on your vehicle that might be capable of concealing drugs from law enforcement officials.  What it may do in some peoples interpretation is to make the transport or storage of firearms in lock boxes or other such containers illegal.  Take my lock box that is in my truck and used to secure my CCW pistol while I am not using it.


In the context as it is currently written, the law forbids

(c) Any compartment, space, box, or other closed container that is added or attached to existing compartments, spaces, boxes, or closed containers integrated or attached to a vehicle.

That box seems to fit in that description as it is attached to the vehicle via a steel cable to the bolted chassis of my seat to prevent its easy removal if the truck is broken into or stolen.

Some people would have you believe that this is the first step in a process to erode our basic rights as Ohioans, or so the comments and posts across the internet would have you believe.  In truth, while I think the law as written could be a horrible tool used by certain jurisdictions to enforce their anti-gun agenda by local interpretation of it (I am looking at you Cleveland and the surrounding People Republic of Cuyahoga), I do not believe the bill is "evil" as written.

The bill's sponsor, Senator Hughes has a strong pro-gun record and recently voted to pass Ohio's expanded CCW restaurant and vehicle carry law.  He carries an "A" rating by the NRA.  It doesn't seem logical that a legislator with this background would introduce such a bill with that intent.  What I think we have here is a simple case of poorly worded first draft that can be fixed before being passed.

I am asking anyone in Ohio that may be affected by this law to take a few minutes and contact Senator Hughes with our concerns.  His email address and office phone number is located in the link in the first paragraph.  My letter as written is as follows, feel free to copy it or to be as brief as you need to be to get your point across...I can be one long winded SOB when the mood hits me...

Dear Senator Hughes, 
I am writing you in regards to SB 305, which you recently sponsored and entered into the legislative process.  I would first like to commend you for taking a stand on the war on drugs here in Ohio.  I feel that by cracking down on the trafficking of drugs in out state that the overall use will decline as well.
However, as I am sure you have realized by now, many of us in the 2nd Amendment arena are worried about certain aspects of the bill as written as they pertain to the legal transportation and storage of firearms in our vehicles under current state law.  We fear interpretation of the law as currently written may be used by some entities to charge otherwise law abiding and licensed CHL holders with crimes for nothing more than exercising their rights under current Ohio law.  In particular the following section I.2(c) as it pertains to the description of a "hidden compartment" under the proposed law:
 Any compartment, space, box, or other closed container that is added or attached to existing compartments, spaces, boxes, or closed containers integrated or attached to a vehicle.
Under my interpretation of this passage (and apparently many others by reactions on the internet) the lock box I currently have stored in the center storage compartment under the seat of my 2008 GMC Sierra would be considered one of these prohibited spaces (picture attached).
 I use this box to secure my firearm while I am at work and it is left in my truck in the parking lot.  I have the gun disabled by a key safety, locked in this box which is secured to the truck's seat frame via a cable, in the locked storage space in the truck, which itself is logically locked.  In this way I try and assure that if my vehicle would be stolen that the weapon could not easily be used for any criminal purpose.  The lock box itself is a very large part in this chain of protection.   
May I suggest that the above quoted portion of the bill be amended to include some additional wording at the end to the effect as such..
 (c) Any compartment, space, box, or other closed container that is added or attached to existing compartments, spaces, boxes, or closed containers integrated or attached to a vehicle in such a manner as to be designed to avoid detection under scrutiny of inspection.
I feel that this would remove any ambiguity from the distinction of compartments used for the transportation of illegal substances and those used for otherwise legal uses, such as transporting licensed firearms.  
In addition may I also suggest that an additional portion be added that makes the disclosure of any such compartments to law enforcement officials when interacting in the performance of their duties render those compartments void of enforcement under the statute of this law.  This would allow people to carry firearms in containers under their seats for security and not worry about any issues if stopped for a traffic violation.  This would coincide with the duty to notify aspect of the existing law as it applies to the transport of firearms in vehicles.
I know that you are a strong supporter of the 2nd Amendment as both your high standing with the NRA as reflected in your rating with them and past voting record on 2nd Amendment issues in our state.  I am sure that this issue was merely an oversight in its initial drafting and can be easily rectified to protect our rights while still maintaining the original intent of the bill as envisioned into law. 
As a matter of note, I am a 30 year resident of Ohio, a retired member of the Ohio Army National Guard and a licensed CHL holder in this state.   
Your kind attention to this matter would be greatly appreciated.

Monday, February 27, 2012

RIP Lynn "Buck" Compton

In an assembly area somewhere where paratroopers don't need chutes there is another soldier reporting for muster...

Another member of Easy Company 2/506th PIR, the famous "Band of Brothers" portrayed on the HBO mini-series has died.  "Buck" Compton passed away this past weekend on the 26th of February.  Unlike many of his contemporaries from the unit, he did live a live of somewhat notice after the war becoming a prosecuting attorney in California and even prosecuted Sirhan Sirhan for the assassination of  Robert Kennedy before eventually retiring as a circuit judge.

Lynn D. "Buck" Compton
December 31, 1921 - February 26, 2012

More and more of these warriors of yesterday are leaving us on a daily basis.  Its just time, that's all...you can fight the mightiest foes on this planet but against time you are defenseless.  Being a noted veteran only makes his passing that much more noticeable to the people who pay attention to such things.   It was pointed out on the forum I received this information from that in his hometown as of today there was no special mention as of yet.  I had the pleasure of talking to a WW2 veteran of the 17th Airborne Division while waiting for my wife and daughter to finish up shopping.  These guys (and gals) are truly leaving a vacuum of history behind them, I hope all of them get at least a passing notice of their partings and a chance to tell their story to somebody, whether it be for 10 minutes at a Kohl's store on over many years to their grandchildren. Those who forget the sufferings of the past will one day endure their own foolishly.

Thoughts on The Walking Dead from tonight...

A few minor spoilers, just to warn anyone who has the show on the DVR for later....

OK, first off...take at look at this image from the show (sorry about the quality, snapped a pic on my iPhone of the screen)..
Finish the rhyme..."this is how I carry my Glock, right before I shoot off my......"

WTF Shane!  WTF Producers?  Firstly, didn't Shane start the series carrying that pistol in a holster on a duty belt?  I can't image as attached as Shane is to guns and gear that he wouldn't hold onto a belt and way to carry his pistol that he had trained with.  And the other bad thing about this is that some idiot out there will copy this method of carry because it looks cool and end up doing a "Plaxico" on himself...

To his credit, Mr. Burress has served his time and used his position to warn other other the dangers of firearms when used improperly and illegally. 

Remember with all handguns, especially Glocks and the like that do not have manual safeties or a long double action trigger pull, that a holster that fully covers the trigger guard to prevent activation of the trigger mechanism is the only safe way to carry them!

Secondly, some stabby issues...

In the show Rick tells Shane that they need to start conserving their ammo and not drawing attention to themselves by using their knives to dispatch lone zombies instead of just shooting them, which draws in more zeds.  He then takes out the next zombie through a fence with his knife after baiting it with his blood on a section of the chain link to keep it steady for him to target.  Shane follows suit and quite a few are taken out that way in the show.  My issue is this...they seem to be able to plunge those blades through skulls like running them into watermelons.  I do not have any first hand knowledge on the specifics of the subject, but I cannot believe that it is as easy as that.  Based on my own internal k-pot, the human skull seems to have been created to protect our brains, and it seems to do a pretty decent job at that.  To penetrate it seems to me to be a matter not to be taken lightly.

Ooh, that's gonna leave a headache....

It seems to me that I need to go to that skull cracking expert and resident lunatic from Cold Steel, Lynn Thompson, to get a demo here....

OK, Lynn and crew go ahead and chop and pound that knife through ribs and the hood of a car I got to think, OK, maybe this can be done.  However, if you look at the remainder of their videos (not that you have too mind you) you would see that they don't start "cracking skulls" until they start getting into tomahawks and such.  Also, any video with a folding knife (like Rick and Shane use) are not subjected to these penetrating/pounding tests and the locking mechanism may fail and cause the blade to fold back over onto the users hand.
Against the zeds..this would make the term "bust some heads" really come to life..

Overall, there are better choices that Rick could be making as I have pointed out before...  My recommendation for the party would be to stock up on hatchets, long handle hammers, axes, clubs and the like..all better able to smash in zombie heads than a knife.  Of course, they will probably do something else totally stupid anyway on the show...like shove Glocks down the front of their pants.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Forbes posts the fallacies of gun control

When he has sought public attention on his political beliefs Steve Forbes has always been pro-gun.  Its should be no surprised then that his namesake magazine/website published this article describing how gun control advocates are misleading the public by facts and figures that simply do not reflect the truth.  Still, I think it takes a bit of personal or professional courage to post this kind of message on an otherwise "firearm ambiguous" site that could draw the expected over reaction by the anti-2A zealots.

Good for you Forbes, Inc.

Disarming the Myths Promoted By the Gun Control Lobby

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Well...it was Toledo....

Toledo (noun)...a Southern Suburb of Detroit sitting on the Maumee River on the Western shore of Lake Erie in Ohio....

Boy, 5, brings gun to day care

Police say he found it at his apartment complex

Glad nobody got hurt in this...this could of turned out bad. 

This what the boy thought the gun was...pretty lame way to light a smoke to begin with IMHO....

And before anyone says anything...I love my Toledo friends and lived and worked in Northwest Ohio for several years in the 90's

The lost art of the boot shine...

I was reminded the other day about a story I heard that was about a Sergeant Major that on soldier of the year and promotion boards would routinely bring a troop to attention, get up from his chair and peer over the table at him and then dismiss the soldier without a word.  What was he doing? Looking at his shoes or boots to see how well they were shined. I guess he figured most people will take care of the parts of their uniform that they see reflected back in the mirror, but if a soldier going before a board wouldn't put more time into his appearance than a rough coat of polish on his shoes than he (or she) wasn't what he was looking for.

This type of story harks back to an Army era where OG 108 uniforms were expected to be highly starched in garrison, shining shoes and brass was a routine part of life in the military and indeed most civilians think it such an intristic part of military life the acts are constanlty lampooned in popular culture to show the military as a bunch of mindless laborers doing menial work.

I saw a couple of troops in the airport when we went on vacation a few weeks ago.  Like me when I retired in 2008 they were wearing the Army ACU uniform with the rough side out tan boots.  I did like to wear these as they did require less daily maintenance in theater, especially when stuck at Camp Arifjan where everybody thought that they were at some deployed version of the Pentagon or something and "on-the-spot" corrections were thrown around like sand in the wind (and there was a lot of that to begin with!).  The boots did not require polish to maintain, but a stiff bristle brush to remove the dirt in the nap of the leather and maybe and eraser to remove errant marks on the leather.   Matter of fact the entire ACU ensemble was designed with low care maintenance a feature with the uniform actually engineered originally to be replaced every 6 months in the field with velcro name tapes, rank and unit patches en vogue for the troops.

This initiative started almost 2 decades ago when the Army started to preach (at least in theory) the "buff and puff" mantra of appearance with the "old" BDU uniform.  This meant that soldiers were expected to keep a polished brush shine on their boots and that the BDU uniform was permanent press so once removed from the dryer it was hung on a hanger and hand smoothed as best possible.  The "new" combat boots at the time supposedly differed from the older black LPC boots (that's Leather Personnel Carrier boots to you non-Infantry types) in that it was impregnated with some chemical barrier in the leather and would not take a shine to begin, with...that was hogwash...I knew enough people that got shines on them.  Probably another basic training lore like putting saltpeter in the food to dissuade...well, you know.  Despite this, soldiers of the "old guard" and some of their subordinates that they influenced kept the tradition of ironing, starching (against regulations, although "sizing" spray was allowed) and spit shining boots alive and well...for a while.

All of this knowledge lost because we changed boots...sad...

All of this was meant to help dispel the notion to the "newer and smarter" recruits of the all volunteer Army that came about post Vietnam that they were simple laborers and that their time was better spent learning and soldiering than polishing and ironing.   Not that I have a problem with that in principle..I mean these "kids" going through basic training (now 10 weeks instead of the 8 during most of my career) are being trained to go directly to units deploying to combat zones.  I get it.  Teaching a soldier how to keep himself alive or his battle buddy does take precedence over shining some boots or making sure a gig line crease was correct on a pair of trousers.

Still, I can't help but shed a tear a bit at the loss of a bit of Army culture from my generation.  Sure, jump boots are still spit shined by Airborne personnel and worn with their dress uniform pants blouse in them, but for most of the Army this is now a mostly forgotten legacy.  Low quarter (dress) shoes have been issued as a permanently shined plastic version for a while (I used to pay for those to wear them with my dress B uniform, which was my duty uniform for a few years), brass is not also a high gloss, no touch item and lord knows what else by now.  I fondly remember Infantry OSUT training at Ft Benning sitting outside our barracks shining out boots...it was a time of peace and calm for the most part in an environment that surely did lack it.  It was, for me at least, almost a form of zen meditation where I could collect my thoughts and think a bit while deftly moving a damp cotton diaper in circles over the polish on my boots bringing them to a glossy shine.

So today we are a far different force that the one I swore into 26 years ago...mostly for the better I think but with these little rituals of military life disappearing there will be soon little to culturally differentiate the soldiers on the battlefield from the civilian contractors that are so abundant over there.  Maybe new rituals will take their place, but I doubt it. Can anyone in the "new Army" actually tell me why a soldier would iron a crease going from shoulder to shoulder across their back in their BDU blouse?  Didn't think so.....


This 6 picture meme thing is going around the internet...one where you see 6 different views of something that is supposed to be funny...generally don't post this stuff too much, but this one just made sense here...

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Some 'Splodey action...

Love demo in action.....an old bridge comes down between Steubenville, Ohio and West Virginia over the Ohio River.  They picked a great time to do it with the lighting, you can see the det cord rip down the line...

The difference between Police and Citizen defense...

Here is video taken at a Burnsville, Minnesota police station by a video unit that officers must wear to protect themselves against lawsuits by recording their encounters.  It shows a man who apparently decided he wanted to die by "suicide by cop" (where a despondent person cannot bring themselves to actually kill themselves for whatever reason and present a menacing action to a police officer in hope that the officer will shoot and kill them).  In the video you see the man come in, the officer questions him about his injury, sees the knife, and orders the man to drop it.  When he refuses the officer immediately draws his Glock (??, blurry video) and summons help.  I am assuming he is using his support hand to work the radio and that's why you never see a fully supported grip in the beginning.   Another officer emerges close to the man holding the knife, retreats and then reappears a moment later taking the attacker down with a shot from his tazer unit.

As I have pointed out before, the difference between most of us and these officers is that they have the ability and training to de-escalate this confrontation like they did, not to mention a belt full of tools to do just that.  If that had been me standing there looking at another guy with a knife staring at me and me with my pistol...well, something about bringing a knife to a gun fight rings here...but basically, unless the other guy retreats or I can leave the confrontation (a better choice) one of us would be leaving that area on a stretcher.

This shows the importance of knowing your legal rights and limitation as a CCW holder in whatever state or jurisdiction you live or find yourself in.  A lot of people make a big deal that their particular CCW license means that they have reciprocity (meaning another state recognizes your license to carry in it) with XX number of states.  This may be true but do you know the legalities of each and every state and what constitutes a justifiable defensive shooting and what will have you looking at a felonious assault or manslaughter charge?  

This is also an example to reinforce the mandate that your CCW license is not a badge.  I cringe when I see someone talk online about how much safer the world would be if everyone who could carry could have arrest powers or be a deputy or whatnot.  I cringe, seriously. I do not want to be an LEO in that respect.  Sure give me 20 years back and I might decide to go into law enforcement (and do a BUNCH of other things different as well), but I do not want the OBLIGATION of being a peace officer without officially being one, which is what this nonsense means.  I carry to protect myself and my loved ones.  Yes, if I observe a heinous crime while armed I probably will intervene once I have called police.  This is not only out of a moral obligation I feel I have as a christian and a citizen, but also because legally I may do so in my state to protect the life of somebody else when they are clearly in danger...and I am sure that they are not the aggressor.  Yep, you read that right.  Remember the part above about knowing the laws.

Scenario: I come upon a guy getting the crap beat out of him by another guy and draw and fire to "protect" him because, like I said, he is really getting the crap beat out of him and fear for his life.  Police show up and find out that this guy is a known, wanted felon for assault and robbery and had been in the process of mugging the guy I shot moments before at gunpoint before the victim got the jump on him and began to beat the living snot out of him in defense until I showed up.  Oops.  An Oops that could very well find me in jail and on disability to own another firearm the rest of my life once released.  Yeah, know those laws folks.

Remember, onnce you have made the mental decision to engage an attacker you don't have many solutions to the problem with a gun other than hoping the attacker turns tail, surrenders or your aim is true and trigger finger solid.

Having to actually shoot another human being in self defense should never be a goal of any of us.  But between having to do that or suffer the loss of our own life or that of a family member it is clearly the superior position to end up in. Just as precaution I urge you to read this article as a primer of what to do after a shooting, if you so find yourself involved in.  Its written by Massad Ayoob, who is one of the foremost experts on defensive shooting and its aftermath.  Its time well spent.

Important Note: As you already know, I am not a lawyer, a self defense instructor, a law enforcement official, a ninja, superman or anyone else that could be considered an "expert".  The only belt I have is brown and I got it at Meijers, it occasionally supports a holster with a weapon that I am licensed to carry.  As such I make a conscious effort to become not only proficient with my weapon, but my mind as well.  One is useless without the other in self defense.  I offer my opinions on this blog as my thoughts on what material and experiences related to self defense I am exposed to.  Please consult professional training and legal advice before attempting any form of armed self defense.  

Monday, February 20, 2012

OMG..The Army went full retard...

"You never go full retard..."

Soldiers don fake belly, breasts to better understand pregnant troops' exercise concerns (Stars and Stripes)

Seriously from the WTF files...Totally dumbfounded here.... I mean somebody actually thought this through...in the Army...and it became real...  check it out...even a video...is that chorus line dancing?!?!?

I am all for females in the military and supporting them in any way we can, but what is supposed to accomplish other that embarrass the poor schmuck who has to don this thing?  I mean we all know soldiers that get pregnant are not able to do the same level of physical activity as other soldiers...profiles, non-deployment status and the like are handed out when you get pregnant.  I have seen both soldiers who got pregnant and took care of themselves and did PT within their limits and came back after their baby was born strong as ever, to others that used it as an excuse to hit the all you can eat buffets for 9 months and then complained that they were being discriminated against.  80% of a soldiers ability to return to duty has to do with them and their attitude and the rest on unit attitude to their reintegration back into the "fighting force" after they give birth.

2 things that stood out in the S&T article:

  1. The female soldier that said her unit told her to sleep in during PT..wrong 
  2. The soldier who doesn't have females in his unit but said that the 25 pound pregnancy suit is easier to wear than body armor...and that there is no excuse for females to to participate in PT..wonder if that is the response that the PC Guru who designed this thought that they would get...before the guy probably didn't have and opinion, not it seems instead of being "understanding" he will have even less tolerance to pregnant soldiers in his unit. 

Look, I am not trying to say women in the military shouldn't have babies, far from it.  What I am saying is that instead of making soldiers try and become some type of social workers by donning this stuff and trying to "feel" for their troops, the Army should get some better standards and guidelines for training in from the Docs in conjunction with pregnancy and get it to the units so the soldiers can reference it like they do with most other issues.  We have actually made rule and regulations one of our specialties in the Army and should play to our strength on this one.  This would allow them to do what they are supposed to be doing with clear guidelines on dealing with these soldiers and cut the crap with this nonsense.

I tell you what, looking at this crap makes me almost wish more and more I had turned left into the USMC recruiters door instead of right into the Army's...almost.

Man Cave visitor.

My sister-in-law came over this weekend with my nephew to visit.  He and I sat in front of the tube for a while playing xBox and then I gave him a guided tour of the man cave, aka "Der Bunker".  I think he enjoyed the visit...and don't worry safety Nazis, I checked and double checked it clear before I handed it to him for the picture...and the blade is "issue sharpened".. = no razor sharp edge!

Start 'em young so that they respect firearms and don't fear them.  How young?  That's a parents responsibility and not mine to determine when best to introduce the next generation to firearms.  I think my wife and I have come to a understanding that when my daughter is 12 and able to do a project for 4-H on them that she will get on the range with me.  Your mileage may vary and that's fine.  As long as its done safely, shooting sports can be an enjoyable past time for the entire family to enjoy.

I think one of these will be under the tree for my daughter in the years coming...

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Is having too many guns illegal? No, but being stupid is...

Sent to me from a friend...

Police, SWAT nab ‘doomsday preppie’

For anyone wondering where Worthington, Ohio is..its a Northern Suburb of Columbus...a few miles South of my homestead...

In the email string that my friend started the first question asked was "since when is a semi-automatic AK based rifle considered an "automatic weapon" ".  Well, under Ohio Revised Code any weapon in this state that can be loaded with a magazine capacity of more than 31 rounds (unless a .22) is considered an "automatic weapon"..I know, I know...don't get it either.  From the ORC..

2923.11 Weapons control definitions.
As used in sections 2923.11 to 2923.24 of the Revised Code:
(A) “Deadly weapon” means any instrument, device, or thing capable of inflicting death, and designed or specially adapted for use as a weapon, or possessed, carried, or used as a weapon.
(B)(1) “Firearm” means any deadly weapon capable of expelling or propelling one or more projectiles by the action of an explosive or combustible propellant. “Firearm” includes an unloaded firearm, and any firearm that is inoperable but that can readily be rendered operable.
(2) When determining whether a firearm is capable of expelling or propelling one or more projectiles by the action of an explosive or combustible propellant, the trier of fact may rely upon circumstantial evidence, including, but not limited to, the representations and actions of the individual exercising control over the firearm.
(C) “Handgun” means any of the following:
(1) Any firearm that has a short stock and is designed to be held and fired by the use of a single hand;
(2) Any combination of parts from which a firearm of a type described in division (C)(1) of this section can be assembled.
(D) “Semi-automatic firearm” means any firearm designed or specially adapted to fire a single cartridge and automatically chamber a succeeding cartridge ready to fire, with a single function of the trigger.
(E) Automatic firearm” means any firearm designed or specially adapted to fire a succession of cartridges with a single function of the trigger. “Automatic firearm” also means any semi-automatic firearm designed or specially adapted to fire more than thirty-one cartridges without reloading, other than a firearm chambering only .22 caliber short, long, or long-rifle cartridges.

Well, from what I understand this is not normally employed as a "primary" weapons offense in most instances, otherwise cops would just stake out ranges and wait for people to load large mags and arrest them.  Instead I believe its mainly used as a secondary offense to another offense, even though its apparently a felony offense in and of itself.  This is akin to adding a seat belt violation to a speeding offense in our state (mandatory seat belt law is in effect here for anyone traveling through). 

What really got this guy in trouble is when he told the Netcare worker on the phone that he would shoot them if they showed up.  Yep, that's pretty stupid folks.  Tell someone you're armed and you will shoot them and they call the police...you're getting some guests at your door.  This guy may have had some valid mental issues for the cops to ship him off to a mental ward, an assertion backed up by someone else that responded to the original email that is a local LEO in the circle of shooters I associate with. 

What burned the biscuits for me reading this (and others) was the sensationalism that this guy was a "doomsday prepper", he had "8 to 10 guns" (guess the author had a hard time with counting), batteries (I know, how shocking!) and had "go bags" in his house.  I wonder if I went to someones house that had a hobby garage out back and had multiple vehicles and oil, gas, tires and such I would concern myself that he might be planning to go Twisted Metal on the world...probably not.  But change that garage to a gun locker and the media goes haywire. The fact that a show has showed up on cable called "Doomsday Preppers" which shows these types of folks in a not-so-favorable light probably didn't help.

Just as a side note, an Army buddy of mine fancies himself a prepper...1OldArmyGuy.  I should point out that he's not that old (younger than me)..or really that crazy either...just kidding on the crazy thing there!

Prepper Porn?!? Get your mind out of the gutter!

I have talked about Go Bags before... Just because you happen to prepare for the apocalypse or just to defend yourself and your home does not mean your a criminal...well, maybe in the media's eyes you are but not in front of a judge.  If you open your mouth and prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that you are a threat with a gun you are then a criminal under most jurisdictions in this country.  Don't be stupid people.  This guy just gave everyone that happens to keep a gun and ammo (or two, or three or ???) a bad name that won't be so easily dismissed by the media.

Friday, February 17, 2012

From the "do as I say and not as I do" files...

From Fox News...

Brock and the Glock: Armed men guarded Media Matters boss as he took $400,000 gun control donation

So you got a lot of money to collect for your anti-gun group and you are paranoid to boot...what to do?  I got it! Hire armed security guards to protect you while telling others that guns are bad!  Yeah, that's the ticket! You know I love it when we catch these anti-gunners telling us we can't have the right to own a firearm for our own defense while be afforded the luxury of an armed escort for their own security (and in the case of government officials most times at the tax payers expense!).

Its almost as good as pointing out to anti-gun celebrities and actors how much money they have made peddling violence and gun play in action movies.  Check this out...

Tell you what Media Matters....give me the $400,000 you got walking around all paranoid like and I will give you all of my guns and will even pledge not to buy or own any others for a 2 year period as I will buy my own personal bodyguard for that much cash and consider myself safe....sound fair?

Just wondering...do you think David Brock knows Judge Breyer?

The Glock 911

Read this post from The Mad Ogre, all will become apparent....

Some damn good logic there George.... if the Glock is so messed up as some people would have you think, then why the hell would it still be used as much as it is?

Disclaimer:  as you might well guess, I am an unabashed Glock user on this site...G34 and G19 in da' house!  My personal favorite things about it? 1) the pistol fires every time I pull the trigger without fail, and 2) only 34 parts, in a SHTF type scenario I can work on it myself since I have a stockpile of parts for it.

The Sad Sack

Watched an old Jerry Lewis movie called The Sad Sack from 1957 last night on Netflix.  Pretty funny movie he did back in his heyday after he "broke up" with Dean Martin.  The story centers on a "sad sack" (term used during and after WWII as a shortened version of "a sad sack of sh!t" - eg. worthless) soldier, Meredith Bixby, who is assigned to an Army Psychologist and a couple of malingering soldiers to turn into a useful fighting man for the Army.  The film ends up with Bixby and his unit being sent to Morocco where he inadvertently saves the day and all ends up well.

It portrays the Army in what I like to call the "Khaki Days" or "Glory Days"...back when the Khaki service uniform was still in use (although I would of loved to wear the brown jackets like in WW2), we had won WW2, Korea was recently resolved in a "satisfactory" manner, Vietnam had still not even appeared on anyone's radar and the US Military was viewed as a massive, undaunted - if sometimes bureaucratic -  machine of democracy.  I also like the fact that the M1 Garand was still the general issue weapon of the film...there is even a cool part where the very unskilled Bixby tries to qualify with it...

Again, the movie all ends well with Bixby and his pals getting medals, but he once again goofs up and the film closes on him peeling a mountain of potatoes (see pic at the top of the post).  this reminds me of another "sad sack" that this film may have been based on....Sergeant Manyard H. "Snuffy" Smith, Medal of Honor recipient, WWII.

"Snuffy" Smith was an enigma of WW2.  Never a satisfactory soldier, he was largely loathed by his fellow soldiers both before and after he was awarded the medal for his lack of basic soldierly values and inability to try and work as a member of a team.  Hell, he had even entered the Army when given the chance by a judge to "Go to war or go to jail"... literally.  Despite this on May 1st, 1942 as a ball turret gunner on a B17 over Europe he performed feats of bravery that helped save the lives of fellow crewman on his plane as he fought both flames and Focke-Wulfs heroically after his aircraft suffered immense damage.  Upon returning and being nominated for the MOH Smith did not try and correct his ways and was on KP on the day his medal was to be awarded for missing a mission due to a long night of drinking in a nearby town.   Even after he was awarded the medal he was known in the "MOH community" as "that guy" that did not shy away from the attention it sometime brought but actually relished it and actually embellished his accomplishments the farther time took him away from them.

Oh well, it was a decent enough way to spend 90 minutes last night.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

I got a Cabelas coming my way!!

Sure, its not until next year, but will still be within miles of my house...over a hundred miles closer than the next closest one.....hmmm...I can hardly wait to find out what a "gun library" is...

Cabela's coming to central Ohio in 2013

The proposed location...

The best gun for home defense is.......

....tell you later.....

the best gun?

I came across one of the defense oriented gun rags at the supermarket the other day touting an article with a title something like "The Best 10 Guns for Home Defense"...well, you open the magazine up to the article and its kind of what I expected.  The selections were as spread apart as firing shot through a rifle slug barrel....  The author had listed everything from J-Frame revolver, Glock, 12 gauge shotgun and an AR patterned rifle.  Really?  I mean I understand that sometimes you have to throw some "fluff" articles out there to fill the space between the covers in order to get an issue to print...I really do, just look at some of the posts on this blog to verify that fact.  But this seems to be a common article theme that pops up on more than a few occasions not only in print but on the web as well.  "Top picks for a sniper rifle", "Your best choice for a deep concealment gun", "Choosing the right gun for your spouse"...and the list goes on.  I remember reading one a year of so ago after the law was changed to allow CCW in national parks and an magazine listed "choices for carrying in our national parks".  The article went on to showcase everything from a .380 pocket gun to a S&W .500 magnum carried in a shoulder holster...pretty large range their to select a "best" choice wouldn't you say?

Whenever these type of articles appear I always seem to find the "best choices" they list come in two varieties:

  • Guns so diverse that it would be hard to group them together in any real way to say they are all equally good as "best" choices.
  • Guns so similar that there is very minimal difference between each choice.

Maybe the writers are playing to the desires of the audience in general to think that their choice was best and validate the hundreds and hundreds of dollars that they plunked down on their pistol?


Reader 1:  "hey! my Glock made the list of best pistols ever made!" 
Reader 2:  "hey! so did my 1911!"
Reader 1:  "but Glocks are so much better than that old pistol!"
Reader 2:  "take that back!!"
Reader 1:  "but its true!  last issue said so!"
Reader 2:  "Yeah but the issue before that said the 1911 was the combat pistol preferred by special forces!"
Reader 1:  "Did not!"
Reader 2:  "did too!!"
Reader 1:  "I hate you!"
Reader 2:  "ARGHHHH!!"
Reader 1:  Bang!
Reader 2:  "Hey!....you shot me...twice"           
Reader 1: "had to, its a G19 in 9mm..."
          Reader 2:  BOOM!
Reader 1: "Ah dang it!! big hole!"
....and you can see how this plays out...

Anyway, its just frustrating to see that some of these magazines have prices upwards of $7 - $8 and still play middle of the road with selections like this.  One guy, Mike "Duke" Venturino, wrote an article in 2010 or 2011 entitled something like "The .44 Special Ain't So Special" (or similar) in which he laid out why he did not think highly of the caliber and even had a pic of him holding his nose while holding a pistol chambered for it in disdain. Certainly did not make him popular with some of the readers of the article for sure, but at least the guy made a stand on paper.

I myself have probably been guilty of writing something similar to the above bitched about articles on here.  In the future when I do write about such a subject I will try and be as precise as I can if I list a gun by name and give reasons for my choice.  Other times I may go purposely vague in order to allow you to draw your own conclusions.

As for the best pistol for home defense that I opened with?  Here are my choices...

#5.  The pistol you have
#4.  The pistol you have that is available
#3.  The pistol you have that is available that you have reliable self defense ammunition stocked for.
#2.  The pistol you have that is available that you have reliable self defense ammunition stocked for and that you have trained on.

and the #1 Pistol for home defense is....

The pistol you have that is available that you have reliable self defense ammunition stocked for and that you have trained on and know you legal responsibilities in defending yourself and your family with according to the laws of your state or locality.

Of course your opinion may vary on my choice, but the guy with the Beretta .22 Tomcat that can put 6 rounds rapidly into a pie plate at 25 yards with HP rounds in it sitting in the nightstand along with a flashlight and cell phone in a home secured with deadbolt and an alarm system is better than the $2000 custom 1911 in a case in the closet that you don't shoot because you don't want to hurt the reseal value of,  with the ammunition in the basement in an unlit home with overgrown bushes covering the windows..

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Anti-gun Supreme Court Justice robbed on vacation...

Anti-gun Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer was robbed last week while vacationing on the island of Nevis in the Caribbean by a machete wielding assailant who confronted the 73 year old Justice, his wife and two others and made off with $1000.  This crime happened despite the fact that Supreme Court justices are afforded protective services by both the US State Department and U.S. Marshall service while traveling.

Hmmm?, I wonder if the Justice would of liked to have a firearm to defend himself in this situation?  Given that Nevis is a sovereign nation with its own laws regarding the ownership of firearms aside, I wonder if given the choice, when confronted with an armed intruder with his spouse present, if Justice Breyer would not of preferred to be able to defend himself with a firearm?

Maybe he never foresaw this happening?  I mean he is a respected member of the US Government under its protection, in a country with a high literacy rate (98%), strong economy and with much stricter ownership laws in regards to firearms than the US it would seem that violence would not be an issue while on his vacation (or holiday to you European readers).  Even if the conditions on the island were vastly different would he of still preferred, given the choice, to go unarmed....given that in his dissenting opinion he rendered on the DC vs. Heller ruling stated that

 "there simply is no untouchable constitutional right to keep loaded handguns in the house in crime-ridden urban areas."

The simple fact that criminals do not necessarily play by statistics...or reason...or fairness...or any other logic you can think of in many cases.  They operate outside of the boundaries of society and therefore do not obey its laws and regulation by definition. You cannot dictate your safety or need for protection solely on what the "statistics" say about your position on a map or in society in general.  Actually, "statistically" speaking..the inhabitants of "crime-ridden" urban areas" have more to gain from ownership of a firearm to defend themselves than those of us in middle class suburbia or appointed to the United States Supreme Court....yet many Americans in that middle class suburbia and this particular justice find themselves needing one from time to time.

So to Justice Breyer I say God Bless that you, your wife and your guests were able to escape this incident unharmed.  I hope that maybe you take away something from this event to make you rethink your position in regards to the rights of individuals to protect themselves with firearms in this country.  Maybe now instead of seeing yourself as part of a "protected class" of persons making regulations against firearm ownership while being provided armed security on your behalf, you can maybe understand the concerns of the citizenry that you preside over and our need to be self reliant in this regard.

Oh, and Justice Breyer..if you do change your mind and decide you would like to own a firearm after this please contact me, I have a very good S&W .38 in my safe I would be happy to make an offer to you on to provide protection for you and your family.  Of course me being a resident of Ohio and you of your state we will need to conduct the transaction through a valid FFL holder.  You see, unlike the criminals that we seek to protect ourselves from, the vast majority of gun owners like myself do obey all lawful regulations concerning our firearms.

Season 3 of The Walking Dead begins...Nebraska

Spoiler Alert!!

OK, you've been warned...

Season 3 of The Walking Dead began this past Sunday with the season premier episode "Nebraska".  The show did quite well in the ratings and AMC decided to bolster the season with 16 episodes.  After a 2nd season that struggled a bit to get momentum going I was looking forward to seeing how this season began.

Unfortunately I fell asleep early Sunday night due to the early return flight we had coming home from Orlando that morning.  Thankfully, I had it on DVR....

OK, the third season starts right where the 2nd left off, with Rick putting the zombie Sophia out of her misery after Shane initiates a all-hands-on-deck zombie turkey shoot with Herschel's family and neighbors that had been turned and kept in the barn the entire time our group of survivors had been there.  After an all too predictable moment when a zombie who wasn't shot in the brain - but decided to play dead for a bit anyway - almost bites someone and has to be killed again, thus keeping the agony for Herschel's family going a bit longer, the show gets down to its normal "lets talk all the time" format.

"Rick's survivors" try to sort out there feelings about the entire affair and whether Herschel had lied to them all along about Sophia being in the barn or not, all the time Shane and Dale snarling at each other....get a room guys.  Basically the majority of them think that they did the right thing by shooting the barn zeds....I agree.  While they all agree that Herschel was wrong to think that the zombies were simply "sick" and needed to be put down, the do all show that his views about respecting the deceased were partially founded by disposing of the bodies of their family and friends by burial while burning the other bodies...makes sense.

"Herschel's survivors" fare a bit worse with one going into catatonic shock, Maggie wondering about her future with Glen now that Rick's group has no further reason to stay and Herschel reverting to a former vice.  Upon realizing that his hopes for a cure or a better future were pretty much in the outhouse, Herschel travels to town to go to a bar for the first time since his daughter's birth.  As he is the closest thing to a doctor that both groups have, with the catatonic girl and pregnant Lori present, Rick and Glen go to find him and bring him back. They do find him at his old watering hole with Rick even taking the time to mention that Glen volunteered to come get Herschel, possibly hoping to make sure a union between Glen and Maggie with Herschel's blessing and agreement would be possible...and possibly solidify both groups on the farm.

The bar is also where a interesting event takes place.   While sitting there having yet another long discussion about wright and wrong, hope versus death, blah blah blah...in walk two armed strangers, Dave and Lou.  Both are tough East Coast types from the Philadelphia area that have been traveling from place to place trying to find a safe haven from the undead.  One of the rumors they followed was that trains were taking survivors to Nebraska.  "Why Nebraska" Glen (I think) asks.   Low population (less people to turn into zeds), high gun count is the answer.  Like all the other red herrings that they had followed, the Nebraska rumor turned into a dead end for these two travelers.  If Dave looked familiar its because he was portrayed by the same actor that played Rene in the first season of HBO's True Blood series, which I am sure many of you also watched if The Walking Dead is on your viewing list.

Anyway, the initial conversation between the two groups is casual enough with even a toast between all of them saluting their departed friends and family.  As the conversation goes on Dave begins to try and home in on exactly where Rick and crew are staying and asking if they can stay there as well.  Rick flatly refuses to tell them the location and refuses to offer shelter to the men...this despite the fact that this is the same request he made of Herschel just a few episodes (days in terms of the show) before.   The tension grows between the two parties as Dave's questions get more and more direct and Lou decides to relieve himself in front of them on the floor while at the same time asking if they had women that he could have sex with.   You could feel a palpable sense of desperation from Dave wanting to do anything to secure some safety, or at least some refuse from the life he had been forced to live, even after he basically admits that he and Lou had been forced to "do things to survive"...indicating some undeclared by obviously not really honorable actions.

The tension comes to a head when Dave goes behind the bar supposedly to get something else to drink and it appears he is trying to get a drop on the armed Rick.  He grabs for his gun on the bar and is shot dead by Rick, who also turns and shoots Lou at the same time and calmly walks up to him and puts another in his head from close range.  This tells me 2 things about Rick....#1 he is making claim to Herschel's farm as their home (don't expect much traveling this season) and #2, the Rick is a deeper character than we had been lead to believe.  In earlier episodes in Season 1 where they had to interact with others he had tried to talk his way out of situations (Latino gang), here he simply killed them.  Kind of a pity because while I saw no use for Lou, at least they way he was portrayed for the 5 -10 minutes on the show....Dave definitely had a good vibe about him as a character I might of liked to see come along.

Anyway...to me that was the big part of the show I remember...oh, yeah Lori gets stupid and goes looking for Rick, hits a Zed in the road and flips her car and gets trapped in it...end of baby I guess?  Maybe a good thing seeing how its Shane's for the story line....he is once crazy guy these days...

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Almost forgot, Happy Valentines Day!

Don't forget to get that special someone in your life a little something today...I hear ammunition really lets them know you care.  Even if you don't spend any money on them, let them know you enjoy "range time" with them...