Gabe Suarez knows more about guns and gunfighting than I’ll ever know. He is, unquestionably, a better advisor on all things firearms than I’ll ever be. But seriously Gabe, WTF? On December 13, the gun guru dropped this blogging bombshell on warriortalknews.com: “I am well aware of all so-called safety rules, but being anal retentive about this sort of thing only hurts your survivability n the real world for which we train. Lets set the dogma aside and actually think about this. Certainly there is a place for ‘finger off trigger,’ but holding an adversary at gunpoint while he decides how to respond to your challenge and determines whether you will shoot him or not may not be it.” Well, he did say “may.” Yes, BUT—he was just getting warmed up . . .
Even earlier, gunmen of the pre-modern technique world did not suffer from fear of their triggers as is evidenced by the photos and data from that age. Look at the lead photo. It is of a young Rex Applegate in his “ready position”. Notice the finger. Did we all suddenly become a nation of jittery butterfingers in 1976? Are we lesser men today than the Jordans, Askins, and Applegates of a bygone era? No..I don’t think so. But I think a great deal of gunfight knowledge has been suppressed by the politically correct, guru worshippers, and liability ninnyhammers of the gun world today . . .
I have never pointed a gun at a bad guy with my finger off the trigger, just like I have never challenged anyone from low ready. And I had plenty of opportunity when working night watch patrol, gangs, dope, crime impact and SWAT.
I also went to all the schools that taught the finger – off methodology. Yet everytime I challenged a bad guy I did it “pointed in” and with my finger firmly touching the trigger. Everyone I worked with did the same thing.
Know what? Nobody ever got shot that didn’t have it coming.
As for you, amateur gun slinger, Gabe wants to know: do YOU have what it takes to take aim at the BG with your finger ON the trigger?
. . . as always…a man has to know his limitations. If you can’t trust yourself, then default to “always off” until you have decided to shoot. But if you are above the “entry level”, see what is possible. Don’t take anyone’s word for it…see for yourself. Test yourself in Force On Force and report back.
Gabe’s underpost acolytes are down with that. They reckon if you’re aiming a gun at a bad guy, you intend on shooting him so . . . having your finger on the trigger’s OK. Mr. Suarez revisited the topic yesterday.
To reiterate. I am advocating the finger off the trigger as a default position. In other words, unless there is a better place for it, the finger will be indexed along side the frame of the firearm. This is where it would normally be when moving or generally covering a danger area. But when approaching a specific danger point, or challenging or covering a human adversary at gun point (only a fool covers from low ready) the finger should be touching the trigger to reduce your reaction time, and thus increase your safety.
Setting aside the well-documented work on the trigger finger and the sympathetic nervous system (when you clench one hand, the other tends to clench automatically), I’ll say this: studies have shown that there is no appreciable difference in response time between shooters with their finger on or off the trigger. But every single negligent discharge by both civilians and police—of which there are many—involved someone with their finger ON the trigger. And no, negligent discharges are not something that happens to “the other guy.” IMHO.