Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Home Defense, Crystal Balls and Time Travelers

So there I was, perusing the morning news feeds as I usually do (you may picture me doing so in a stately smoking jacket if you wish) and I came across an article espousing the new Sig Sauer MPX over the shotgun for home defense.

Yes, the author made some reasonable points to why the shotgun isnt for everyone and how something smaller, with a larger ammunition capacity would serve a better purpose.  I do not disagree.  The author, in case you didnt click on the link, is Robert Farago of The Truth About Guns...I have agreed (at least in part) with Robert Farago....didnt see that coming.

....Anyway, the article isnt what bothered me.  Despite some contextual issues with his reasoning behind choosing what is basically a handgun with a stock over a shotgun, it was the comments on the article that got my attention.  More pointedly, comments that leads the reader (me, in this case) to believe the writer has a plan and that plan is based on what they think is going to go down when someone kicks in their door.  As some of them are written, these men/women are obviously one of two things:

1) From the future

2) Clairvoyant

Below, for your reading pleasure are some of the more interesting comments.  

 The big takeaway I got from the article posted a few weeks ago by the combat medic was: A 12 gauge is the only firearm that will reliably incapacitate an attacker with just one shot.
The sound of me racking my Chinese pardner pump will scare the hell outa most lowlifes. $200…except I keep it ready to go with safety on :-)
He IS clairvoyant
The average, run of the mill home invasion will be committed by people with hand guns, just by having a long gun you will make them the limited ones.
 And nothing beats the sound of a shotgun being pumped for intimidation, especially if you follow this up with gleeful, psychotic laughter. Ham it up, go full Disney villain with it. The psychological effects of laughing at your assailants while preparing a ballistic eviscerator is unbeatable. Inspires confidence on your part, and nobody who grew up watching daytime television sticks around in a dark house with what can only be a heavily armed crazy person (this is supposed to be you).
Plus having a BG hear the cycling of a pump action as he’s in your house is unmistakable. So the butt pucker factor is well,,,,,,,Priceless.

Now, in all fairness, not all of the comments are like this, some are well educated, thought out, show obvious training/experience, or provide a common sense argument to common nonsensical arguments.  Also, some are just hilarious, like this one.
The shotgun is a fantastic HD weapon. But it has the most complicated manual of arms of any type of firearm. It requires much training to become and remain competent in its use. Have you practiced reloading it? In the dark? Covered in baby oil? On a boat with a goat? Have you, Sam I Am?
What I see most of all is people having a plan and their plan is based on what they assume will happen.  Some may envision themselves being instantly aware of a home invasion as soon as the dirt bag enters the home (see option 1, or option 2 as to how this would be), others have an idea about stalking through their home (perhaps in cammo, baby oil and vest like Dutch from commando) to confront and engage the intruder (who WILL be armed with a handgun, I hear).

And of course we have others who like the idea that simply racking the shotgun will scare off even the most brazen of stereotypical home invaders like some sort of reverse pied piper device.  the truth, of course is somewhere in the middle.  All of these fantasies/plans are possible, but how likely?  A plan is a thing to have no doubt, but that plan needs to be based on what a bad guy is capable of doing, not what you think they will do.
The fact is, many people dont interact with criminals, especially violent ones and because of this dont understand the mindset and motivations of such a person.  A criminal, a violent felon, is not some cardboard cutout Hollywood villain that is programmed with conditioned responses based on what someone wrote in a script. Many felons are not strangers to having guns pointed at them, even felons-in-training have likely been witness to more gun violence than the average person (veterans of course exempted).  What someone is capable of is almost impossible to know and all practice and training should be done with that in mind.

Pictured:  a high probability of zero fucks given when threatened with a gun
Firearm choice is an important decision.  Ive weighed in on the shotgun for home defense before and dont see any reason to beat that horse here.  Whats more important is planning of realities and those things you can control.  In a home defense situation there are far more things you cant control than things you can.  For example, heres just a short list of things out of your control:

Time of break in
Entry point of intruder
Your location when break in occurs
Your state (awake/asleep)
Number of intruders
location of family members at time of break in
Weapons intruders are armed with
Initial response of intruders to you

Your plan needs to account for these probabilities, otherwise its a horrible plan that will put you dangerously behind the power curve when what you thought was going to happen, doesnt.

Train accordingly.

1 comment:

  1. Yikes, I didn't expect to see my TTAG comment on this blog! I wrote the one about the shotgun being more likely to incapacitate with one shot. I'm either tragically misunderstood or I deserve to be mocked - probably the latter. Here's why I wrote that. I expect that any SD encounter will be clumsy and chaotic. And I expect that I won't perform to the level of my training due to fear. All of that is to say I do not rate myself as highly as some of the commenters at TTAG who write with confidence about compensating for quality with quantity (ie achieving multiple hits with less lethal rounds). So I thought my comment was applying a needed dose of reality to that thread. I was wrong. It was poorly-worded and too brief to convey all that was wrapped up in that thought. I often craft brief thoughts that are woefully incomplete b/c of my own reading habits (When there are 100 comments, AI often skip the long ones b/c they are wordy and boring). Does this clarification help at all?!