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!
....and you can see how this plays out...
Reader 1: "Ah dang it!! big hole!"
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..