The grasshoppers are already coming after the ants

A few days ago, I noted: Another big problem is the unintended consequences of government policies to address the pandemic.  For example, many local and state governments are releasing lower-level inmates from prisons, to alleviate overcrowding and forestall the spread of COVID-19 in such close quarters.  That’s a legitimate health objective . . . but it disregards public safety issues.  Those inmates are going to have to start earning a living on the street again, just when almost all businesses have been shut down under quarantine.  What are they going to do?  You know as well as I what they’re going to do

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Online sources for those seeking a firearm

With the current shortage of firearms for sale, caused by the coronavirus pandemic and the panic buying it’s sparked, I know some people really need a firearm, but can’t find one at a price they can afford. There are two major online sources I’ve used in the past, that aren’t seeking to profiteer from the current panic, and ask fair and reasonable prices for their goods (at least, they do at the time of writing).  They are, in alphabetical order: Buds Gun Shop   CDNN Sports There are many more online vendors, of course, but I happen to know these

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The pandemic leads to an explosion in firearms and ammunition sales

I’m frankly astonished at the sudden, huge increase in demand for firearms and ammunition as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.  Gun shops are reporting land-office business, and ammunition vendors – even the largest online-only operations – are so swamped by sudden, massive orders that they’re running out of stock.  Some sample headlines: Fears Over Coronavirus Pandemic Driving Up Gun Sales It’s not just toilet paper: People line up to buy guns, ammo over coronavirus concerns Coronavirus triggers massive spike in firearms and ammunition sales Crime Craze: People are Buying Guns in Preparation for Coronavirus Violence It’s not just in

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A major enhancement to an already good pistol

Last year I wrote about the new Glock 43X pistol, and mentioned that it had supplanted my long-time favorite pocket carry pistol in 9mm Parabellum, the Springfield XDS. There were a lot of rumors last year about an aftermarket higher-capacity magazine for the 43X.  They proved to be correct.  After much testing, Shield Arms released its S15 model, increasing the magazine capacity of the Glock 43X and 48 to no less than 15 rounds – a full 50% improvement over the factory offering.  Click the image below for a larger view. Shield Arms did away with the polymer outer layer in which

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Rape, political correctness, and the real world

Yet again we’ve seen the usual suspects scream in outrage at even the suggestion that women’s behavior might just possibly contribute to their getting raped.  This time it’s in Kenya. A top Kenyan university has apologised after blaming “reckless” female students for becoming victims of rape. The security memo, which was sent to all students on Tuesday, was “insensitive”, the University of Nairobi’s vice-chancellor admitted. A petition started in response to the memo questioned how women could be blamed for their own rape. Popular media personality, Adelle Onyango, posted on Instagram: “This is what victim shaming looks like.” . . .

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“The problem with small self defense guns”

That’s the title of an article in Shooting Illustrated.  (It’s also a topic I’ve addressed in these pages from time to time, as regular readers will know.)  Here’s an excerpt from SI’s article. [Some of] the biggest obstacles to shooting subcompact guns well [include] the grip size, recoil control, sight system and trigger system. Some you can improve upon such as the sights or trigger. Subcompacts are notorious for having poor combat-style sights. As these subcompacts grow in popularity, sight manufacturers continue to adapt to consumer trends and offer upgraded options. The trigger is a bit more challenging. Few subcompacts come with a

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More about smatchets

I’ve had a few questions from readers about the World War II “smatchet” combat knife developed by William E. Fairbairn for Allied special forces, after I mentioned it in passing last week.  (You can read more about this remarkable man and his contribution to self-defense here.)  Here’s an authentic smatchet, issued to Corporal R. T. Petteit of the Z Special Unit, which was active in the Pacific theater of war.  It’s now in an Australian museum.  Click the image for a larger view.   (Image credit: Australian Military Knives) The smatchet is a very large, very specialized knife.  Its sole purpose is combat – it’s not easily

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Updating the US Army’s shooting training

The US Army’s new publication TC 3-20.40, “Training and Qualification – Individual Weapons”, has been temporarily withdrawn to amend a few politically incorrect entries;  but it nevertheless appears to be a fairly substantial revision to the training standards for modern US soldiers.  Strategy Page has more. What it comes down to is that troops must demonstrate not just shooting accuracy each year, but a larger array of related skills. These include firing night and day as well as while wearing a gas mask. Troops must not only seek to hit the target on the firing range but to do so while moving and changing firing

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A new favorite deep concealment pistol – Glock’s 43X

Over the years I’ve tested most of the smaller, more concealable pistols to reach the market, with particular emphasis on ease of handling and concealment by partly disabled shooters.  Almost all of them were comparable in terms of magazine capacity, available calibers and cartridges, accuracy, and so on.  My ultimate criteria was always ergonomics;  how well did the pistol fit the hands, grip and physical capabilities of the shooter?  Since there are so many variations in shooters, I couldn’t say that any one model was better than another across the board.  My personal choice for several years was Springfield’s XDS model, which fit

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Follow-up links on self defense in a mass shooting situation

Courtesy of more than one reader, here are some links with additional information to go with the three articles I posted earlier about personal security in an era of mass shootings: Personal safety during a mass shooting Everywhere is a potential danger zone – so prepare accordingly Ammunition selection for small handguns Greg Ellifritz wrote two articles some years ago that directly address some of the same issues.  I recommend both to your attention: “Mouse Gun” Gelatin Testing Results Stop Worrying About Overpenetration! I note that both articles confirm my preference for my standard .38 Special and .380 ACP loads,

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