30 December 2018

Why I Like Glocks...

This blog entry is dedicated to a specific handgun. One that I like very much and have a tremendous amount of experience with. Having been involved in competitive shooting, hunting and other types of recreation with handguns since 1975, owning a gun shop for 10 years and being a defensive firearms trainer for almost 25 years, I feel that I am quite qualified to share my opinion with you. This is not just another Ford/Chevy argument. Its not like the constant, age-old 9mm vs. .45 ACP controversy. To me, it's much more than just personal preference. I am also a factory-trained Glock armorer and designed my own "after-market" Glock armorer class. During the course of my gun shop tenure, we customized over 2600 Glocks in some manner or another. I'm a Glock guy. Hard core. My mind is slammed shut like a steel trap on this subject, at least for me and mine. Let me tell you why...

The Glock is exceedingly simple in both construction and operation and it is virtually maintenance free. That doesn't mean that you should never clean it and take care of it but it is VERY forgiving in that regard. I have seen Glocks that have fired thousands upon thousands of rounds without so much as a quick wipe-down and still perform flawlessly. Glocks are so ridiculously reliable that is hard for some people to grasp. I have personally put some of my Glocks through some pretty rigorous testing. I have shot them underwater. I have taken one out of a 70 degree building, disassembled it, thrown the parts down in the snow at 38 degrees below zero, retrieved the parts, chipped the ice out of the slide, reassembled the gun and flawlessly fired a full magazine of ammunition downrange. I boiled a frame once, put it back together and shot it. I disassembled one, threw the parts down in the dirt and kicked them around for a bit, found all the parts, reassembled and fired a full mag out of it. The first round didn't chamber completely but after that, it dumped the remainder without a hitch. All of the above is documented on my YouTube channel at Desertscout1.

The Glock has approximately 36 parts altogether, depending on model, including the  sights and the disassembled magazine. The 1911 for example, has over 80 parts.  Most of the internal parts of the Glock are interchangeable with other models, particularly for all models of the same caliber except the G42 and G43. Many of the parts are interchangeable between all calibers with the exception of the 42 and 43. The internal parts are also inexpensive. If you have a serviceable frame, slide and barrel, you can replace every part in the gun for around $150 and essentially have a brand new Glock.

The polymer grip is much more comfortable to handle in both extreme cold and extreme hot weather. I have seen both extremes where a metal framed gun is most assuredly not comfortable to handle bare-handed. The Glock is highly modifiable and there are a tremendous amount of after-market parts for all models except the newer G42 and G43. The grip can be reduced and customized, the trigger can be changed, sights, controls, pretty much everything in the Glock can be replaced or modified to suit you.

The Glock is middle of the road priced compared to many other manufacturers.The polymer frame also makes the gun lighter than most comparable sized guns and it flexes to some degree under recoil, adding to the pleasure of shooting the Glock.

 The axis of recoil is lower on the Glock than any other manufacturer, model or caliber of handgun on the planet. That means that the centerline of the bore is closer to the hand than any other handgun. This gives the gun less mechanical advantage over you during recoil upon firing.  This enables small framed women and children to be able to handle a full sized gun comfortably.

The G42 (.380) and G43 (9mm) are great for deep concealment but are not great as a fighting gun or for field use. Size wise, they may be OK for children and smaller framed women but the low capacity and diminutive size diminishes its usefulness as an effective fighting gun, at least during extended engagements. They are both still plenty good for most scenarios that the average CCW holder might find themselves involved in. They are also both as accurate and reliable as any other Glock. The 43 also has a little bit of a bite to it. The recoil sensitive people may be able to put up with it for a few rounds but I'm afraid they may be flinching and become distracted during a prolonged shooting session.

The Glock 26 is what my wife carried as it small, double stack and equally suitable for concealment and field/recreational use. It may not be ideal but if you are only able to have one gun, the G26 will fill all roles adequately. It is small enough to conceal yet big enough to handle in field situations. The 26 will also accept the magazines from a Glock 19 or 17 which gives you tremendous versatility. To me, interchangeability of magazines is critical in a group or family long term survival environment. All that being said, if you're looking for a 9mm, the G19 is a better choice for most applications. 15 round capacity, small enough to conceal easily but big enough for all field use. The 19 will also take the higher capacity G17 magazine.

Is a Glock accurate enough? Well, yes. I have fired 5-shot, one-hole groups at 7 yards that can be completely covered with a dime. I have also fired a 21" group at 300 yards with my Glock 34. That boils down to 1.75" at 25 yards. I'm OK with that kind of accuracy. Yes, it's on my YouTube channel.

Understand that there are many good, reliable handguns out there but when you consider weight, capacity, durability, reliability, accuracy and price, the Glock is the clear winner to me.

In Liberty, Cope Reynolds (Desertscout)
Southwest Shooting Authority of Arizona

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Colts and Kimbers are what you show your friends. 
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29 November 2018

AIWB vs. Strong Side IWB

There are a number of things that I don't like about appendix carry, inside the waistband or AIWB, not the least of which are  the safety concerns. There is at least one top level trainer that strongly advocates it and all his disciples go right along with it. Let's first look at the things that I personally don't like about it then let's take look at this little experiment.

1. I think it's safe to say that the overwhelming majority of negligent discharges with handguns occur while either holstering or drawing. It happens pretty much on a daily basis across the country. Many of them are simply "training moments" that cause embarrassment but no injuries. IMNSHO, AIWB is more for the exceedingly well trained pistolero, not the beginner or even the mediocre shooter.

2. AIWB limits your movement. More for some than others but at least somewhat for anyone. Repeated or prolonged bending over would be uncomfortable, especially with a full-sized gun. Yes, I have tried it. Front snap kicks could be restricted by a gun worn AIWB, again depending on the size of the gun and the build and experience of the shooter. Many will find that even just sitting will be uncomfortable, especially for longer periods of time.

3. Concealing a properly worn AIWB pretty much requires a closed-front garment. An open-front concealment garment will reveal the weapon every time you reach away from your firing side or when the wind blows. Generally speaking,  one would need to wear an untucked shirt or sweater most of the time or a partially zipped jacket or vest.

Now, let's check out this little experiment.

The holster is not worn properly. Of all the people that I have seen wear AIWB, I have NEVER seen one worn vertically. Of course, for the experiment, that would be the safest way. Worn at the angle that most shooters do, there is also the very real  possibility of launching a round somewhat laterally, possibly towards another shooter on the line or a bystander.

The shooter in a video that I saw once was demonstrating his prowess with AIWB. He said that you should step back with your firing-side leg and lean back slightly to reholster. What if that is inconvenient due to time, confined area, restraining a bad guy or some other factor? Why should I have to teach my students all these extra moves just to safely reholster the gun? During the proper, aggressive presentation of the weapon,  the upper body should be bent slightly forward at the waist similar to a boxing stance to maintain balance and "get into your gun" as they say. Should one have an ND at that moment, the chances are high that you could injure the twins or even launch a round into the femoral artery of the support side leg.

The shooter in the video also has the gun outside of the pants which helps maintain just a tiny bit more distance away from the body.

He was doing everything very slowly and deliberately and carefully. In a dynamic situation where you can't be as careful and choose your position all the time,  he may not be so fortunate.

Strong-side hip holster, on the other hand, has NONE of the above inadequacies and if, in the event of an ND with drawing or reholstering,  the worst that would likely happen would be a crease on a butt cheek. Yes, occasionally someone runs a round down their leg but it practically never results in a serious wound. Reference Tex Grebner on YouTube and you'll see what I mean.

It can be argued that no method of carry is perfect for 100% of the people. AIWB is not for me. YMMV...

07 November 2018

The Point of No Return

About 10 years ago or so, back when I was still on AM radio, I made a prediction that I feel manifested itself and was confirmed yesterday, 6 November 2018.

I said the time is rapidly approaching that "they" will outnumber "us" and when that happens, we will have reached the point of no return. What do I mean? I said every year that goes by, we lose more of us. The number of people that are willing to fight and understand what they are fighting for is dwindling. The WW I vets are all gone. The few WW ll vets that are left are are not able to do much anymore. The number of physically capable Vietnam vets is diminishing as well. While I fully and wholeheartedly support our modern day troops, the ones that understand and are literally fighting to defend the Constitution are not as numerous as they once were. When many men used to run away from home and lie about their age when they were 14, 15, 16 years old so that they could have the opportunity to fight for their country, many "men" now cower and come up with pitiful excuses why they cannot or will not join that fight. I now believe that there is very little or no possibility of restoring this Republic to anything that remotely resembles what it once was without violence--without a full scale revolution.

Some do not see yesterday's mid-term elections as quite as big of a loss as I do. Yes, we retained the Senate but we still lost the House and it will be a constant, vigorous, uphill battle to keep this ship from sinking. Trump is a genius and I have confidence that he will keep our nose above water, at least for a while, but that will also come to an end in the relatively near future.

I studied the results and maps of various areas around the country including here in Arizona and I saw many places that were once predominantly red that are now pinkish or light blue. It is happening. It is slipping away. Just as Olympia and Seattle dominate the political pendulum movement in Washington; Denver and Aurora in Colorado; Albuquerque, Las Cruces and Santa Fe in New Mexico and so on, the larger population centers on both coasts now dominate the political well-being of the Nation more than ever before. The next 2 years will probably be the most difficult and perilous for liberty-minded Patriots in over 200 years. The elections of 2020 may very well drive the final nail in the coffin of this Republic and leave no choice but to engage in the unthinkable.

Some say that it is all in God's hands and that we shouldn't worry about it. Que sera, sera, they say. I vehemently disagree. Yes, it is in God's hands but not in the manner that the defeatists think it is. God gave each and every one of us the ability to think, act and fight and the free agency to choose which one to use and when to use it. Yes, I believe that we are entering the final testing time but I do NOT believe that God has planned for us to just give in and wait to see what He will do.

I believe that the liberty-loving Patriots of the world and particularly the United States, are expected to exhaust every possible avenue of resistance to retain what is rightfully ours. To grab on to the collar of Liberty as it slips over the precipice, dig-in and pull with every ounce of energy that we can possibly muster and then scrape up just a little bit more. THAT my friends, is why is it in God's hands. Because WE are in God's hands! Because WE are the tools that God will use to right this ship, bail the water out of the hold and set it sailing for Liberty again. The Constitution is truly hanging by a thread. If, IF it is to be saved, we'd better damned well get off the couch and get busy!

02 November 2018

Alma 59:13

I wrote this a very long time ago, about 20 years ago, but I think its time to dust it off and put it out there again. Many of you know that I belong to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints...I'm a Mormon. Always have been, always will be. 

This piece is about an issue that I was struggling with a long time ago in a land far, far away. Well, kinda. A few hundred miles anyway. The story pretty well speaks for itself and tells you the why. If you're not LDS, it may or may not have the same impact on you...                                     *********************
Alma 59:13

"And it came to pass that Moroni was angry with the government, because of their indifference concerning the freedom of their country."

Don't ask me why but I have felt very strongly compelled to express my sentiments on a few subjects that I wish were more important to every American; the Constitution, gun control, revolution and the end times.

I have never sent out a religious oriented commentary of my own making before and I don't want you to think that I'm preaching or trying to convert anyone. It's just some things that I need to get off my chest. I don't think that it's as important that anyone reads this as it is that I write it. This letter is only going out to those that I know are LDS members or whom I know have had a passing interest in the Church at some time or another. Two or three of you have at least read part of the Book of Mormon so you qualify. There are at least two pagans or atheists that I consider friends that are receiving this letter and I'm not sure why but please feel free to hit 'Delete' if you don't want to read it. You will still be my friends, at least as far as I'm concerned.

All my life I have been preoccupied with the founding, history and well-being of this country. When most kids my age were crying over Bambi, I cried all the way home over Tora, Tora, Tora (a 60's movie about the bombing of Pearl Harbor). I felt an overwhelming sense of pride which I could not contain when I saw a man in a military uniform or saw the heroes going home in a John Wayne movie. I'm now almost 45 years old and I cried again when I tried to explain to my 5 year old son and 6 year old daughter what the flag stood for and why we put it up and take it down every day. I never did get quite finished. I'll try again soon.

I wasted a lot of my best years drinking and carousing when I should have been serving my country but finally did wake up and join the Army in '82 at the age of 26. When I got out, I always felt a little ashamed that I didn't stay and retire or at least until Komrade Klinton took office and then I didn't regret it anymore.

Many years later, as I sat one night with my guts churning with anxiety over the state of the Nation, I decided that I needed to do something, however small, in the service of my country again. At my age, re-enlisting was out of the question so I started researching the legitimacy, legality and mission of the citizen's militia. Boy, talk about an eye-opener! I found that not only was it legal for me to be a part of the militia but that I was actually obligated under 10 USC Chapter 13, Section 311 which states:
(a) The militia of the United States consists of all able-bodied males at least 17 years of age and, except as provided in section 313 of title 32, under 45 years of age who are, or who have made a declaration of intention to become, citizens of the United States and of female citizens of the United States who are members of the National Guard.
(b) The classes of the militia are-
(1) the organized militia, which consists of the National Guard and the Naval Militia; and...
(2) the unorganized militia, which consists of members of the militia who are not members of the National Guard or Naval Militia.
A little more research showed me that my state Constitution also provided for a militia:

Article 18, Sections 1-2 of the New Mexico State Constitution states:

Section 1. [Composition, Name and Commander in Chief of Militia.]

The Militia of this State shall consist of all able-bodied male citizens between the ages of eighteen and forty-five, except such as are exempt by laws of the United States or of this State. The organized Militia shall be called the "National Guard of New Mexico," of which the Governor shall be the Commander in Chief.

Section 2. [Organization, Discipline and Equipment of Militia.]

The Legislature shall provide for the organization, discipline and equipment of the Militia, which shall conform as nearly as practicable to the organization, discipline and equipment of the Regular Army of the United States, and shall provide for the maintenance thereof.

Well now. Is there anything about that any of you didn't understand? It seemed quite clear to me so I decided that I would try to put together a group and start training. I had no idea how to go about it but with a little more research, found a group in Albuquerque that did that very thing. The commander of this unit was an honorable, Christian man that I have a great deal of respect for even though we have since had a parting of ways. I am still active in the militia and have no fears or regrets for getting involved.

I'm sure by now that you are wondering what in the world that all this has to do with Mormons. Well, plenty. When I first got into this movement, I struggled constantly with whether or not what I was doing would interfere with Church doctrine and what I was going to do if it did. Not to worry.
After a tremendous amount of scripture search, prayer, reading Church approved books and even a call to Salt Lake, I am 100% at ease and confident that what I'm doing is not only accepted but supported in every facet. Maybe not by every member but, I believe, by the Lord. When I started searching scriptures, I actually TRIED to find something that would tell me that I was barking up the wrong tree but try as I may, no matter which way I turned, I could find nothing but support.
While going through some scriptures in the Book of Mormon, I came up such things as:

Helaman 5:2 -- "For as their laws and their governments were established by the voice of the people, and they who chose evil were more numerous than those who chose good, therefore they were ripening for destruction, for the laws had become corrupted."

Alma 60:14 -- "And now behold, I say unto you, I fear exceedingly that the judgements of God will come upon this people, because of their exceeding slothfulness, yea, even the slothfulness of our government, and their exceedingly great neglect towards their brethren, yea, towards those who have been slain."

Alma 51:6 -- "And those who were desirous that Pahoran should remain chief judge over the land took upon them the name of freemen; and thus was the division among them, for the freemen had sworn or covenanted to maintain their rights and the privileges of their religion by a free government."

These are just a few but should give you an idea. Does this not sound like we have come full circle? Are the times now any different? These are the words of ancient prophets but what does that have to do with now and what do the more modern prophets have to say about this?

In the Doctrine and Covenants 134:1 & 2, we read:

1. "We believe that governments were instituted of God and that he holds men accountable for their actions in relation to them, both in making laws and administering them, for the good and safety of society."
2. "We believe that no government can exist in peace, except such laws are framed and held inviolate as will secure to each individual the free exercise of conscience, the right and control of property, and the protection of life".

D&C 134:11 tells us:

"We believe that men should appeal to the civil law for redress of all wrongs and grievances, where personal abuse is inflicted or the right of property or character infringed, where such laws exist as will protect the same; but we believe that all men are justified in defending themselves, their friends, and property, and the government, from the unlawful assaults and encroachments of all persons in times of exingency, where immediate appeal cannot be made to the laws, and relief afforded."

Please read that one again...

"...but we believe that all men are justified in defending themselves, their friends, and property, and the government, from the unlawful assaults and encroachments of all persons in times of exingency, where immediate appeal cannot be made to the laws, and relief afforded."

Now this seems pretty cut and dried to me. Lest anyone confuse the "government" with the people that run the government, remember that we believe that God put select men on this earth just for the purpose of organizing this country and writing the Constitution and supporting documents(D&C 101:80). By my way of thinking, the people in control now are part of "all persons" as referenced above and we are justified in defending ourselves against them.

77. "According to the laws and constitution of the people, which I have suffered to be established, and should be maintained for the rights and protection of all flesh, according to just and holy principles;"

78. "That every man may act in doctrine and principle pertaining to futurity, according to the moral agency which I have given unto him, that every man may be accountable for his own sins in the day of judgement."

79. "Therefore, it is not right that any man should be in bondage one to another."

80. "And for this purpose have I established the Constitution of this land, by the hands of wise men whom I raised up unto this very purpose, and redeemed the land by the shedding of blood."

The Lord made it clear to us through Joseph Smith on 6 August 1833 just what the law of the land was in D&C 98:4-11...
4. "And now, verily I say unto you concerning the laws of the land, it is my will that my people should observe to do all things whatsoever I command them."

5. "And that law of the land which is constitutional, supporting that principle of freedom in maintaining rights and privileges, belongs to all mankind, and is justifiable before me."

6. "Therefore, I, the Lord, justify you, and your brethren of my church, in befriending that law which is the constitutional law of the land;"

7. "And as pertaining to law of man, whatsoever is more or less than this, cometh of evil."

8. "I, the Lord God, make you free therefore ye are free indeed; and the law also maketh you free."

9. "Nevertheless, when the wicked rule the people mourn."

10. "Wherefore, honest men and wise men should be sought for diligently, and good men and wise men ye should observe to uphold; otherwise whatsoever is less than these cometh of evil."

11. "And I give unto you a commandment, that ye shall forsake all evil and cleave unto all good, that ye shall live by every word which proceedeth forth out of the mouth of God."

I shouldn't have to go into anymore detail on that one but for anyone that didn't catch it the first time, here's what Joseph Smith said in his dedicatory prayer at the Kirtland Temple on 27 March 1836:

D&C 109:54
"Have mercy, O Lord, upon all the nations of the earth; have mercy upon the rulers of our land; may those principles, which were so honorably and nobly defended, namely, the Constitution of our land, by our fathers, be established forever."

And that's all I have to say about that.

Now let's take a quick look at the right to self defense.

Alma 43:47
"And again, the Lord has said that: Ye shall defend your families even unto bloodshed. Therefore for this cause were the Nephites contending with the Lamanites, to defend themselves, and their families, and their lands, their country, and their rights, and their religion."

How about Alma 48:13-14?:

13. "Yea, and he was a man who was firm in the faith of Christ, and he had sworn with an oath to defend his people, his rights, and his country, and his religion, even to the loss of his blood."

14. "Now the Nephites were taught to defend themselves against their enemies, even to the shedding of blood if it were necessary; yea, and they were also taught never to give an offense, yea, and never to raise the sword except it were against an enemy, except it were to preserve their lives."

In the Bible, Luke 11:21-22 advises us:

21. "When a strong man armed keepeth his palace, his goods are in peace:

22. But when a stronger than he shall come upon him, and overcome him, he taketh from him all his armour wherein he trusted, and divideth his spoils."

And further, in Luke 22:36,

"Then said he unto them, but now, he that hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise his scrip: and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one."

OK, now that I've written half of the BOM, we might as well talk about the end times for a few minutes.

I'm often asked my opinion on preparedness and the possibility of seeing more turbulent times during our lifetimes. Some of the stuff that I found links not only our food storage and preparedness programs to these troubled times but also, again, my involvement with the patriot movement.

Between the scriptures and a book called "The Coming of the Lord" by Gerald N. Lund (which I strongly recommend that you read ASAP), I have found some astonishing things that put the final nails in the coffin of my indecision and lit a fire under the Minuteman in me. I've quoted most of the things in the BOM that have inspired my decision to be prepared but please let me give you just a couple from the Bible that specifically deal with preparedness.

We are admonished in 1 Timothy 5:8 to provide for our families:

8. "But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel."

Or maybe Proverbs 27:12:

12. "A prudent man foreseeth the evil and hideth himself; but the simple pass on, and are punished."

Heber C. Kimball described it as being like a curtain which would drop between the church and the United States...

"Lay up your stores, and take your silks and fine things, and exchange them for grain and such things as you need, and the time will come when we will be obliged to depend upon our own resources; for the time is not far distant when the curtain will be dropped between us and the United States. When the time comes brethren and sisters, you will wish you had commenced sooner to make your own clothing. I tell you, God requires us to go into home manufacture; and, prolong it as long as you like, you have got to do it."

Elder Orson Pratt tells us why when he explicitly described the conditions that would sweep the nation to it's destruction...

"......it will be a war of neighborhood against neighborhood, city against city, county against county, state against state, and they will go forth destroying and being destroyed, and manufacturing will, in a great measure, cease, for a time, among the American nation. Why? Because in these terrible wars, they will not be privileged to manufacture; there will be too much bloodshed -- too much going forth in bands and destroying and pillaging the land to suffer the people to pursue any local vocation with any degree of safety......."

There is much, much more but you need to read the book. 
Recently, on a bulletin board that I frequent, some misinformed individual claimed that the Constitution is the root of the problems plaguing this country. Latter Day Saints are privileged to know that the Constitution, while severely damaged and "hanging by a thread" will survive and be brought back to strength by the Elders of Israel. A few more quotes from various Elders and Presidents of the Church and I'll start trying to close.

Concerning war in this country, and this one really got my attention, in the 1967 Priesthood Conference of the Church, Elder Hugh B. Brown of the First Presidency said, in part, "....and some of you young men are going to engage in that battle. Some of you are going to engage in the final testing time, which is coming and which is closer to us than we know..."
I was 11 years old at the time.

A little more on the Constitution. Brigham Young said: "Will the Constitution be destroyed? No; it will be held inviolate by this people; and, as Joseph Smith said, ' the time will come when the destiny of the nation will hang upon a single thread. At that critical juncture, this people will step forth and save it from the threatened destruction.' It will be so."

David O. McKay said in 1956, the year I was born, that "Next to being one in worshipping God there is nothing in this world upon which this Church should be more united than in upholding and defending the Constitution of the United States."

HA! That clinched it for me. Color me  camo and put a rifle in my hands.

Lastly, President John Taylor tells us: "When the peoples shall have torn to shreds the Constitution of the United States the Elders of Israel will be found holding it up to the nations of the earth and proclaiming liberty and equal rights to all men, and extending the hand of fellowship to the oppressed of all nations. This is part of the programme, and as long as we do what is right and fear God, he will help us and stand by us under all circumstances."

My mind and my path is clear. The consequences of what may happen in the not too distant future are of little consequence. What my co-workers, church members, the police or the feds think of me is of little consequence. I have to do what I have to do. Far be it for any patriot to fire to the first shot, especially in anger, but he should be prepared to damn well fire the second one. Come to think of it, I'm not so sure that the first shot hasn't already been fired. 

For whatever this is worth to anyone, if anything, I've shared my reasons that I do what I do and am who I am. If any thing that I have said helps any of you to work out a dilemma that you may be having trouble with, I will be pleased and honored to have been of assistance. If it has made things worse for you in any way or offended you in some way, I make no apology for it but it was absolutely not my intention.

Please know that I am here to offer my hand to any of you that may need it. I know that this is the true Church and that Joseph Smith was and is a true prophet of God and that President Hinckley is our living prophet today. I can attest that the Book of Mormon is another testament to the word of God. I am comforted by the fact that I am guaranteed to be with my family for all time and eternity. I pray that I can be guided to have the strength and courage to make the right decisions in troubled times and do the best things for my country and my family.

I leave this with you, humbly, in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

In Liberty, Cope Reynolds (Desertscout) Southwest Shooting Authority of Arizona If you'd like to help support our efforts, you can do so by donating to The Shooting Bench by clicking the "DONATE" button below!

Listen to Cope live on The Shooting Bench Mon and Wed, 8 to 9pm Pacific/11pm to midnite Eastern and Friday, 8 to 10PM Pacific.

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Colts and Kimbers are what you show your friends. 
GLOCKS are what you show your enemies!

20 August 2018

Shooting vs. Gunfighting

by Cope Reynolds

Sadly, few people really have even the remotest concept of just how critical proper defensive training is in a fluid, dynamic situation like an active shooter scenario. I don't care how well you can shoot. I don't care if you're an NRA instructor. It doesn't matter that you used to be in the military or were the captain of your college pistol team (yeah, they used to do that!) or even if you were a police officer. What matters is how well you can address a violent threat in the midst of a mass of screaming, hysterical people.

Now, I don't mean to be disrespectful to NRA instructors, cops or soldiers. I would never try to take anything away from them. They are each well trained and qualified to do specific things for specific reasons while working with specific people. It's just that defensive shooting, especially when it involves active shooters, is not the same as combat in the jungles and deserts, shooting on a range or walking the streets of the city. The majority of your rank and file police officers qualify maybe twice a year at a stationary target under very strict supervision and very, very few of them had even the smallest modicum of active shooter training outside of classroom discussion. That is the one thing, one of the biggest myths in the firearms world, that just because someone spent years in any of the above professions that they are automatically, uniquely qualified in defensive shooting instruction or active shooter interdiction (I'm going to call it ASI for the remainder of this article). Experience is a great teacher but that doesn't always mean that the experienced are great teachers.

Good accurate shooting is a very small part of this equation. Virtually anyone can shoot reasonably accurately in a matter of just a few hours with good, patient instruction. However, standing on a level range with the sun shining and the birds singing, shooting at a paper target that is not particularly angry with you hardly prepares you for neutralizing one or more religious zealots or drug-crazed fanatics in a crowd of people who are desperately trying to get out of the building and make it home safely. Target shooting does NOT prepare you for this! There are just way too many things that can go horribly wrong in a heartbeat. Think about this, can you reliably make a head shot on a person from a standing position at 15 or 20 yards, or even more, in a room full of terrified people? Can you do it when you can only see half of the head in a hostage situation? Can you reliably engage multiple moving targets while you are also moving? In all honesty, no one can 100% of the time but I think I make my point. Without competent training, practice and the proper mindset, there is literally no possibility of accomplishing any of these feats outside of that “one-in-a-million” lucky shot.

The tactics employed in defensive shooting, especially ASI, are best described as an art, not a science. In saying that, it means that sound tactical decisions are for the thinking person. One can study tactics to help in making those sound decisions but there may be 100 ways to accomplish the same goal correctly. You will rarely, if ever, do the exact same thing in any 2 scenarios and it would be impossible to plan or study for everything that you may run into. If it WERE possible, it would mean that, theoretically, everyone could have read the same book, including the bad guy, thereby making the possibility of ever achieving a tactical advantage very difficult.
So, with that in mind, let’s look at what Merriam-Webster’s dictionary says are the 2 definitions of tactics:
1:  a device for accomplishing an end
2:  a method of employing forces in combat

Both of these definitions apply to some degree to defensive handgunning in that when our assailant made the decision to cause us or someone else harm, the confrontation has turned into a combat situation and whatever strategy that we employ will be the tactics that we hope will be accomplishing an end... an end to the threat.

Why do I share all this with you? Because if you carry a gun for self-defense (which I strongly advocate) and have not had some degree of training outside of recreational shooting, you are more likely to be a liability (read danger) to yourself and everyone around you if you try to be a hero in one if these crucial, dynamic situations. Personal defense is one thing, but ASI is quite another. For your own safety and everyone around you, you may find that retreating to a room or safe area away from the shooter and using your weapon only for the defense of yourself and others in your area, may not only be the safest thing to do but would make it less likely that you would interfere with those that are more qualified to deal with this event.

It doesn't make you a coward, it makes you smart and responsible!

17 August 2018

Calling All Patriots!

I hear a lot of talk about abandoning the name Patriot because of all the division and backbiting going on in the patriot community.

Let me make this crystal clear... NO! Not just NO but HELL NO! You're telling me that we're going to give up a term that has described us since before the first Revolution?  We're going give up a title; a respected, well-earned title, bought and paid for with the blood of good Patriots over the last 250 years because some snot nosed, delusional, self-centered punk like Gavin Seim? So he wins just like that, huh? That yellow-bellied coward tucks his tail between his legs and runs off to Mexico and sits in relative safety and destroys the patriot movement just like that? Oh, we should be so proud! We let a curr dog and all of his scroungy pack mates and supporters lead us around by the nose and convince us that we shouldn't be called Patriots anymore? LMAO! I'll bet the feds are having a big laugh about this!

You're telling me that you could stand before George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison and the rest of the founders that sacrificed so much to give us this Republic and tell them that you are abandoning the moniker of Patriot?

There are good, better and best Patriots. Anyone that doesn't fit in one of those categories is a traitor or a tyrant or both. ANYONE!

Well, understand this... I am a Patriot. I will always be a Patriot. I come from a long line of devout Patriots and pioneers. I absolutely will NOT dishonor my family, friends and the long and distinguished line of Patriots before me by shelving the term Patriot and letting it be soiled and dishonored by the likes Gavin Seim and his ass-kissing compadres!

So there's division and backbiting. Unfortunate, but so what? We have to pay closer attention to who we accept within our close circles and research our intel more thoroughly but other than that that, we have bigger fish to fry right now than worrying about what we call ourselves. Not really so much different than Revolution 1.0 is it?

Believe me, this dilemma will work itself out. Don't be part of the arguing. Don't contribute to the division. Stay focused and be part of the solution.

Be proud to call yourself a Patriot!

13 August 2018

In Tumultous Times, How Safe is Your Church?

Active Shooter in Church

OK, the time has come to discuss a very serious and grossly misunderstood subject. Active shooters... even the name is misunderstood. What if an attacker uses a knife or machete or a chainsaw or a baseball bat? Maybe active assailant would be more appropriate.  The general response by the ”attackees" and the results of the attack will be much the same regardless of how it is perpetrated. However, for the purposes of today's discussion, we are going to specifically address an active shooter.

To earn the title, active shooter or active assailant, one typically has to conduct their evil deeds in a place where there are lots of people, generally unarmed people like a school, or a mall... or a church. Yes, sadly, society has degraded to a point where we are not even safe in our places of worship. Every major religion, and many of the lesser knowns, has been attacked right here in America. Catholic, Protestant and Jew as the saying goes. Baptist, Church of Christ, Mormon; none are exempt. The only real difference is how the church and/or the congregation responds. Some have policies against guns, some have security staff on the payroll and others just pretend it will never happen to them. After all, if we live righteously, isn't God supposed to protect us?
God will do what He will do. Bad guys have the ability to make their choices, good or bad, just like the rest of us. If God were to protect us each and every time they (or we) made a bad decision, our reason to be on this earth to begin with would be negated. Our free agency, and theirs, would no longer have meaning. So what do we do? Stay home? Pray a little harder? Post guards at the doors? Carry a gun?

As mentioned above, some Churches have armed security on staff. Not a bad idea. Maybe not ideal but multiple well-trained, highly visible individuals could certainly be a deterrent. Some Churches have adopted the "flee, hide, fight" philosophy that the Department of Homeland Security introduced a few years ago. Let's talk about that one for a minute...

Speaking strictly for myself, I think "flee, hide, fight" is grossly flawed. I see this doing nothing but instilling panic and creating a "fish-in-a-barrel" effect for the shooter. A large congregation cannot all fit through one or two doors before the shooter has time to inflict many, many casualties. Add that to the fact that all the chaos and people running every which direction would make it very difficult for anyone to address the shooter whether they physically, bodily attack him or respond with weapons of some type. Even if you made it out the door, down the hall and outside, are you sure that there are not more shooters outside prepared for just such a response?

Hide? Really? Where in the world are you going to hide from one or more determined attackers in a building with almost bare rooms save a few folding chairs and a table? Do the doors even lock in the rooms that are available? Yes, if you're lucky, you might delay them finding you until the police or others arrive. You may also just create another "fish-in-a-barrel" shooting gallery.
Fight? OK, now we're getting somewhere! Let's talk about that for a bit and look at some different scenarios. I've been to a few other churches other than my own as a guest and it seems like one thing is fairly consistent... and predictable. Most of them have some sort of an opening exercise in a larger, more open area and then split up into groups and retire to their respective classrooms. Let's take them in order. If you were a shooter bent on achieving a respectable body count, wouldn't that large room be a logical place to start? The congregation would generally do well to sit away from the outer edges of the seating arrangement, whether it be wooden pews or folding chairs. Select personnel, whether they be former or current law enforcement, veterans or just men or women determined not to allow a catastrophe to happen while they are present, should sit in strategic positions where they can best respond if necessary.

If the worst case scenario were to happen, GET DOWN! Right where you are, GET DOWN! This puts some visual interruption between you and the shooter and throws a monkey wrench in his plans. He was counting on you all jumping up and piling up against the door. Don't make it any easier for him than you have to! Will getting on the floor guarantee that you won't be shot? Not necessarily but it will most decidedly cut down on the number of casualties that are created. Men, shield the women and children as much as possible. STAY DOWN until you have some indication that it is safe to get up. Don't try to be a hero. If you are not trained and armed, stay out of the way of those that are and let them address the situation without having to worry about innocent people gumming up the works. If there is no one in the congregation that is either armed, trained or both, you must take it upon yourselves to either subdue the shooter or make life so miserable for him that he runs away.
What can you do? How effectively do you think he can shoot through a hail of hymn books, shoes, briefcases, scriptures, baby bottles and cell phones? As you throw, advance towards the threat. Keep throwing and keep advancing. Some of you will get shot but I promise many more will not. You have made your choice to stand and fight because he made his choice to attack God's people. I think it wouldn't be unreasonable to think that God may lend a hand at this point. Maybe the fact that you are brave enough to fight IS God's response.

OK, what happens if you're in the hallways or classrooms when the shooting starts? Get in the nearest room and lock or barricade the door as best you can. Take stock of your resources. Weapons? Chairs, music stands, pencils, briefcases, fingernails, water bottles, staplers, etc. Be prepared to relentlessly introduce the shooter to all of the above if he manages to breech your doorway. 
SURRENDERING OR COMPLYING WILL NOT SAVE YOU!! It is most unlikely that he came there to take hostages. The statistics are abundantly ​clear. In 100% of situations where one of more individuals with weapons have tried to kill or control a group of people, people that fight have a much better chance of surviving than those that cower. An excellent example is the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising of 1943. Read up on it...

I have a few more thoughts on this that I will share in the next segment of Southwest Freedom.

Follow me on Gab.com, @Desertscout1 




28 July 2018

SHTF Weapon Cleaning

Think preparedness. Think urgency.

I'm going to give you some ideas on how and when to clean your rifle when time may not be a luxury that you can afford. We will not be concerned with deep, detailed cleaning right now. We're more concerned about quick cleaning and how to best keep your weapon rust free and working for a very long time when you're basically doing it on the run. No matter how desperate things become, at some point, you will have to take just a couple minutes to clean and lube that weapon.

For the purposes of this tutorial, we are going to concentrate mostly on "field guns". The ones used primarily for self-defense, hunting and recreation. I am going to exclude precision, long-range rifles and also assume that you are using modern, domestic ammo. Although much of this advice will apply to handguns and shotguns as well, it applies primarily to rifles. 

It has commonly been accepted since the dawn of time, or at least since guns were invented and started being used regularly, that you MUST clean your weapon each and every time you take it out and shoot it. Back in the day, in a time when black powder, cordite and corrosive primers were the norm, this was true. Those components were pretty quick to damage a barrel. Although many people still do clean after each trip the field or range, either out of habit or a sense of tradition, it is simply not necessary anymore. With modern smokeless powders and non-corrosive primers, you no longer have to fear the build-up and corrosion that the components of yesteryear created. With a very few exceptions, you can shoot your rifle quite a bit before you have to take the time to clean it.  What's "quite a bit"? Well, lots of variables. To name a few; how smooth is your barrel? What kind of bullets and powder are you using? How clean was it when you started? How long is it going to sit before you use it again? The point is, you don't need to freak out or cancel any dinner dates because you forgot to clean your gun. There are some things that you should pay attention to though! 

The first and most important thing is the outside of the gun. Surface rust can start to form literally in a matter of hours and will rapidly spread and ruin your finish if ignored. If your hands are sweaty or bloody or it is very humid, that process could speed up considerably. Generally, it is imperative that you do a quick wipe-down of the weapon before you put it away. A 20-30 second wipe-down with a soft cloth, slightly dampened with Breakfree, Militec or just about any kind of light oil will be fine, even motor oil. DO NOT USE WD-40! If the gun was dunked in mud or water or rained on, you should remove the stock and wipe down all exposed metal. Be careful not to get any oil on your scope lenses. It will attract dust terribly. If you do accidentally slop a little on a lense, use a very soft, lint free cloth with a little rubbing alcohol, a couple drops of gasoline or even hot water if you can't find anything else and get that oil off. 

The least important thing about cleaning your gun is the action or internal workings of the gun. Unless it was really soaked in the mud, blood or beer, that can usually wait for quite a while. Maybe even a year or more, depending on what type of gun it is and under what kind of conditions it is usually used.

Now then, the barrel...

To stay in line with the premise of this article, I have one word for you... Boresnake, or something similar. Fast, easy and convenient, the Boresnake of the proper caliber is a complete, one-piece cleaning apparatus that will easily fit in your shirt pocket! Just put something like Hoppe's #9 on the brush of your "snake" and some more on the leading part of the rope, right where the transition between the lighter string and the heavier material is. Then put a few drops of light oil on the last few inches of the trailing end of the snake and you're ready to clean!  Simply pull your Boresnake through the bore 2 or 3 times and you're all done! It's a good idea to keep a Boresnake in a heavy-duty Ziplock bag in your field gear or hunting vest as well, just in case you need to give your barrel a quick cleaning on the go. Of course, it will not replace a cleaning rod for knocking obstructions out of the bore. Probably the most compact rod for that purpose is the little 5-piece military steel cleaning rod.
Again, this is not to take the place of a good, deep cleaning but when you're in a hurry or have multiple guns to do or maybe even while you're in the field, this will do the trick and do it well!

Also there are lots and lots of excellent cleaning products out there that will do the job just as well. This is just how I do it.

17 July 2018

Assault Weapons

People are constantly correcting others over the use of the term, "assault rifle" or "assault weapon". I think some of them are desperately trying to make themselves look more knowledgeable than they really are. It's nothing more than an annoying word game. They are making way too big of a deal out of this trying to prove a point. The point is, it's starting to make them look silly.

Their big argument is that a rifle cannot "assault". They say assault is verb, not a noun. OK, fair enough, I get it. However, when you carried that rifle onto the beach at Normandy to conduct the assault of the enemy thereon, did your rifle not become the tool to facilitate that assault? An assault rifle, so to speak? And not just semi-automatics. Your bolt-action rifle became an assault rifle at that point.

Golf club is a noun. It's used for golfing, that's why they call it that. Do you know what they use a cutting board for? Yep, it facilitates the cutting of meat and potatoes. How about punching bag? Anyone want to hazard a guess as to what those are used for? You got it! Punching! This noun's only job is to hang there and let you punch it. How about fishing pole? And so it is with the assault weapon.

Oh, and guess what a "hunting" rifle is used for. Hunting, is a verb. How can that be?

One last thing before I go, the AR in AR-15 does NOT stand for assault rifle as the lamestream media would have you believe. It stands for Armalite Rifle, the original manufacturer of the weapon.

13 June 2018

What Happened to my Country?

The World We Live In...
What has happened to my country?
The John Waynes, Clint Eastwoods, Audie Murphys and Alvin Yorks of yesteryear are pretty much gone and are not being replaced. The men (MEN!) that I looked up to and tried to emulate over the entire course of my life hardly exist in the 21st century. Oh yeah, once in a while a real live hero comes along but they are about as rare as chicken lips anymore. They are being replaced with whiney, liberal cry babies that couldn't beat their way out of a wet paper bag. The "heroes" of today are not worthy to shine the boots of the men of my day.

Just when I think they've taken stupid to the apex of reality, literally to edge of another dimension, some other idiot comes along and tops it. Just when I believe that the ultimate feat of brainlessness has been achieved, somehow, some way...another mental midget leads the charge to help push mankind to the brink of extinction. We've gone from moonshine and beer to LSD to bath salts and now we're eating laundry soap. That seemed like it was about as dumb as it get but NOOOOO! Now we're snorting condoms! Really!? What's next? Never mind, they're​ bound to think of something.

What happens to liberty when college students can no longer name the three branches of government or even their own senators? What happens to America when one more generation passes? Its bad enough now but if things keep going the way they are going, after one more generation, there will be, MAY be, a precious few men left that can build a fire, sharpen a knife, gut a rabbit or shoot a gun. "Men" will have no idea how to defend their families, nor will they have testicular fortitude to do so. When society finally collapses, there will likely be little hope of restoring it if things don't make a dramatic turn soon.

It is imperative that we teach our sons and daughters the importance of hard work, the rewards of personal sacrifice and importance of liberty now. NOW! Not next month or when we retire, but today! The Founding Fathers are depending on us to protect what they sacrificed so much to give us.

In Liberty, Cope Reynolds (Desertscout)
Southwest Shooting Authority of Arizona

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Listen to Cope live on The Shooting Bench Mon and Wed, 8 to 9pm Pacific/11pm to midnite Eastern and Friday, 8 to 10PM Pacific. "The Shooting Bench" Podcast: The Shooting Bench    

Colts and Kimbers are what you show your friends. 
GLOCKS are what you show your enemies!

28 February 2018


This year will bring us the biggest, most devastating battle for our gun rights in the history of guns. Every freedom loving American needs to get involved HEAVILY AND NOW!

Large companies are severing ties with the NRA. Sporting goods companies suspending or completely halting sales of modern sporting rifles. Gun owners who previously supported gun rights are starting to turn on us... all because 3 levels of government failed to act on solid information in Parkland, FL and allowed a 19 year old man to murder 17 innocent people, most of them school kids.

It is time to stand up, act and be seen and heard!!


15 February 2018

The Solution to School Shootings

Well, I've been watching the comments from both sides concerning the latest school shooting and one thing seems certain. Liberty is in jeopardy no matter who wins the coin toss. I'm seeing people that I thought were solidly on our side now willing to make compromises that are diametrically opposed to liberty. It is demonstrably disturbing to see and hear  some of the comments from previously 2A supporters.  People willing to dilute our constitutional rights just a little in exchange for the safety of the children. That concept sounds vaguely familiar. One of our Founding Fathers once said something similar. And of course the opposition has no problem calling for more gun control, liberty be damned. It's interesting to note that virtually every mass shooting ever perpetrated in this country was done by a Democrat. Go figure...

Some are saying Congress should be addressing this. Wrong. Congress has been addressing it for 40 years and it has just gotten worse. In fact, congress' meddling is largely to blame for what happened in Parkland, FL yesterday. We'll talk more about that in a few minutes.

Others are saying we should have resource officers in ever school. Wrong. There have been shootings in schools with resource officers before and it didn't help. There was, in fact, an armed resource officer at Parkland High School. They cannot be everywhere at once and they are another unnecessary burden on taxpayers. Still others are insistent that EVERY teacher and staff member be armed and trained. Wrong. Some teachers don't want to carry a gun and should not be made to. They would be a detriment and likely a hazard to everyone around them in a crisis situation. Not the perfect solution but you're getting warm!

One said, let's put a couple of military vets or retired LE in every school. There are many that would walk the halls for free and many of them are already adequately trained. OK! NOW were getting close.
Liberty IS the solution:

The perfect solution is 4-faceted:

1. Immediately repeal the federal Gun-Free School Zone Act with prejudice. This is the most important part of the solution and where the meddling of Congress has once again done more harm than good.

2. Arm and train select staff members in every school. Every teacher does not need to be armed. Some simply do not have the desire or the mindset. It shouldn't be forced upon them. Armed staff members should be psychologically sound and have some small modicum of physical fitness. They should not just be trained to shoot but to respond appropriately to an armed assailant in a crowded environment.

3. In addition to armed staff members, military veterans, retired law enforcement and a select few others should be employed as "roving guards". Armed, trained, dedicated individuals with radios, roaming the halls when classes are in session. They will be there an hour prior to first bell and a half hour after the last bell.  How will we pay for that you ask? It's not the feds responsibility to pay to it. Every district will have to figure that out. Many, many vets would work very cheap or free and be damned glad to do it. I am one of them. Some cities or states may pay for it by bringing in a new tax to pay for at least part of it. A great many vets can only make a certain amount of money before it interferes with their retirement or disability anyway. Those vets would be tickled to death to work for $10,000 a year or whatever their max is. $15 an hour only works out to less than $30,000 a year so it wouldn't be hard to find quality, dedicated people to protect our kids for that. Again, I would do it in a heartbeat and I'm sure I'm not alone.

4. Many mass shooters kill themselves or are killed during the commission of their crime. The ones that survive should be punished swiftly, surely, severely and publicly after they are found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt by a jury of their peers.

Friends, that would dramatically reduce or eliminate school shootings in America.

Now, let's change gears a little.
Apparently, the shooter in Florida displayed warning signs numerous times far in advance of the actual shooting. Kids at school knew and the FBI knew literally months before Valentine's Day, 2018. Too many people are afraid of being labeled or hurting someone's feelings. This time, it cost 17 lives.

“Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety” -- Ben Franklin