After watching forty TV shows about killing Bambi (albeit on fast forward) and a NRA-supported program so dull it should have been named The [Non] Adventures of Ambien and Zolpidem, I am SO ready for Down to Zero. Joan Armatrading absolutely nailed that one. Oh wait, I mean Down Zero TV. As far as I’m concerned, gun nuts can’t have enough shooting shows with personality, attitude and flair (preferably Rick). I like the fact that the cameraman for this new Sig-sponsored program gives Caleb shit about his not-so-epic Top Shot fail. I can’t wait to see what else they do besides Jackass-like sarcasm and someone standing still and shooting at a target we can’t see. Meanwhile, NO! That is not how you release the slide after a reload . . .
OK, yes it is if you’re in a competition or you need to reload as fast as possible to take out a cameraman (kidding), go for it. But it is absolutely not the way to reload if you’re in a gunfight, or you’re ever considering using your firearms for self-defense.
As the rabbi has pointed out many times, your fingers turn to flippers in a gunfight. It’s a natural, normal reaction to stress; the blood flows away from your extremities towards you internal organs. This feeds your engines (heart and lungs) super-oxygenated blood suffused with endorphins. It also allows you to suffer damage to the parts of your body most likely to be injured without a lot of bleeding and/or pain.
Again: in a gun fight, your fingers = flippers. Which is great if you have time to pause for a game of pinball (after removing the playing field’s protective glass). It’s not so great if you’re trying to manipulate a tiny metal catch on the side of your gun. While you’re moving. Looking for cover. Getting shot at. Protecting your family. And/or simply wondering if you’re going to die.
My take: train as you mean to fight. Every. Single. Time. Rack the slide by placing your weak hand on the top of the slide (behind the ejection port), pull it back and let it go. Use this racking technique whenever you safety check a gun. Never use the “slide stop” as a “slide release.”
For me, the question becomes “should Caleb use the slide stop”? I would imagine that demonstrating the former Top Shot hot shot’s reloading speed was the point of this segment. Releasing the slide with the slide stop is the fastest way to do it. Period. Yes but—I reckon slide rackage is such an important point for self-defense that Caleb should have at least mentioned it.
People watch these shows to gain knowledge, including impressionable newbies and kids. Do they know the difference between competition and combat techniques? No. And how you rack a slide can be a matter of life or death. A simple disclaimer—“Don’t try this at home, when someone’s shooting at you”—would do the trick. Am I wrong?
Oh, and if there are any TV producers reading this, we’ve got “The Truth About Guns” TV show (based on Top Gear) ready to go.