view-of-rocky-mountain-natl-park-from-hotel-loveland

I’m from Colorado. The front range. Loveland, to be exact. That’s my “home turf,” above, and I miss it. Well, I miss the breathtaking beauty and majestic moods of the Rocky Mountains, not Colorado’s demographics. In the course of my short life, I watched the liberal influx of Californians transform a free state — as Western as they come — into one with unconstitutional gun laws and a punitive tax regime. Anyway, after a short stay in Alpine, Wyoming to visit my husband, I motored into my home state for the holidays. And I was happy . . .

I arrived at my parents’ house and my father was carrying. The next day, my sister and her husband came by to visit. Although he was concealing, I knew he was locked and loaded. My brother-in-law’s a security guard at the VA hospital, so he always carries. Once my brother arrived, there were four of us armed.

It was so much more relaxing than social events in California, where I know for a fact, without a shadow of a doubt, that I’m the only person who’s armed. In fact, unless I’m at the annual NRA banquet in Susanville, I’m the only one carrying a defensive firearm during my day-to-day chores. At the grocery store. The pharmacy. The bank. Walmart. Picking the kids up from school. At the playground. In my friends’ houses. Everywhere. Think about that.

The Golden State limits citizens to ten-round ammunition magazines. Ten. So if something life-threatening happens, if I’m forced into a defensive gun use, it’s up to me. With ten rounds. Alone. I’d do my best to survive and protect innocent life, but I’m more Callahan than McClane. I know my limitations. TTAG’s Charlie Hebdo simulation showed that one girl and with one gun (and ten rounds) might not even slow down the bad guys’ slaughter.

Gun rights people forget that it takes a village to protect a village. While the right to keep and bear arms is an individual right, it’s most effective when it’s practiced in a group of like-minded people. That’s one of the reasons I feel so relaxed around my gun-toting family: they have my back. It’s one of the reasons I can’t wait to move to Wyoming. I know I’ll be among friends as I go about my daily life. Armed friends. The best kind.

70 Responses to Home for the Holidays, Surrounded By Guns

  1. In MA we are also limited to ten round mags, although “pre-ban” mags are legal at any size. But there’s no limit on the number of mags I can carry, or the number of guns. A New York reload might come in handy.

    • Ralph, I think from reading previous articles that in CA you have to qualify with your carry gun and are only allowed to qualify with 1, maybe 2 firearms. NY reload may not be possible, or if 2 firearms. Or carry 7 of 1 type of gun?

      • That’s interesting. In MA, there’s no shooting practical or “qualification” and no limit on the number of guns I can own and carry. Well, there’s no legal limit, but there is a physical limit to how much weight my belt can handle. 🙂

        When I qualified in Nevada, there was (and still is) a shooting practical and, at the time that I qualified, I had to shoot a revolver and a pistol in order to carry them. My current Nevada permit is endorsed for “all revolvers” and “all pistols.” Previously, Nevada required qualification with a revolver, which entitled the owner to carry any revolver, and each and every pistol the owner intended to carry, and all every pistol had to be noted by name and caliber on the permit. That’s crazy IMO.

        • Ralph, Nevada has dropped that requirement in the last year or so, as well as the Clark County requirement to register your pistols with local law enforcement and obtain a “Blue Card” for each one.

          Nevada’s (unconstitutional) Concealed Firearms Permit now only requires an 8 hour classroom session and 30 rounds of qualification fire that’s dead easy. Many ranges (check your local listings) offer the class for free or some for free if you purchase ammunition. My class at The Range 702 was free if you brought your own ammo and they tossed in the non-resident Utah permit for $51.00 extra.

        • In mass you didn’t have to qualify at moon island with an old police issue heavy trigger rusty shitty revolver?

      • You would have to qualify with each gun by serial #. If you had two Glock 19’s you would have to qualify with each. As to the limit of guns you can have on your permit, the application has only three slots.So most people are of the impression that they will only allow three. The current hard card Ventura County issues has slots for 6, mine has 5 listed.

        • You mean pre-roster, yes. It also allows stuff that was on the roster (at time of original purchase) but dropped of the roster. If you moved into state with or bought a non-roster pistol from someone who moved into state, yes. Where it gets sticky is some people in anticipation of getting a license due to the Perutta decision went out and got SSE (single shot exemption) pistols. I think it matters by county, but Ventura will not allow SSE pistols on the a CCW by the original purchaser.

    • Unless you run into a rabid anti-2A gun grabber that is not legal to shoot. Polite is not in their lexicon, which is interesting considering how much they claim to fear people carrying guns.

  2. I get the feeling that I’m the only cc’er in Fort Collins. Everything bad about the liberalization of Colorado is doubled in Fort Collins. My normal carry weapon has a 10 round capacity but I also have many spare mags either on me or right next to me.

      • I’m not a sheepdog, but I’m not a sheep, either. I carry to protect myself and my family. If I can help someone else, I certainly will, but that’s not my purpose.
        Sheepdogs don’t scare me. I realize, though, that they are different from me. That IS a sheepdog’s purpose. I respect it, but I’ll never really understand.

        And Sara is right. It’s comforting to play “spot the carrier” at the mall. There are a lot of 4:00 IWB carriers if you know what to look for. God bless Colorado. But if I could earn a living in my field in Wyoming, I’d be there instead.

  3. CA. Coming to wreck a paradise near you. Like locusts. Only with enough money to drive up prices and influence elections.

    Be afraid. Be very afraid.

    • Californians. When their nest stinks too bad for even them to stand, they come and foul yours. Seems like it’d be easier for them to just learn to quit crapping all over themselves.

    • Saw this bumper sticker awhile back: “STOP CALIFORNICATING COLORADO” If I put bumper stickers on my car, I’d have to find one. This is still a great state, but it’s slowly being ruined by idiot’s who are fleeing the state they helped screw up, and are trying to do the same thing here.

  4. “it’s most effective when it’s practiced in a group of like-minded people”

    a.k.a. A well regulated Militia

  5. If you’re limited to 10rd mags, that means you’re limited to 11 in the gun and 10 per spare mag, right?

    Since I carry a 1911, I’m limited to 9 in the gun and 10 per mag (the spares can stick out past the grip, but I don’t trust the really long ones)

    • Don’t know where people here get the idea that the limit in CO is 10 rounds – it is 15. Ran into this last winter when buying a Glock 17. Found places that carried the .40 Glock G22, but not the 9 mm G17. Why? Standard for the G22 and G23 is 15 round magazines, while standard for the G17 and G19 is 17 rounds.

      • @Bruce

        Another key difference is that in CO, your old (pre-ban) mags are still legal. In CA you will get in trouble with any >10 round mag. A lot of places here simply ignore the ban, but wholesalers, and high profile LGSs, can’t.

        An annoying aspect about the 15 round limit is that although many manufacturers make ten-round “crippled” magazines for states with a limit, few make fifteen-round cripples. So if you buy a gun whose normal mag is 16 or more, you’re stuck with a ten rounder. Fortunately, here one can still get full-capacity G19s and CZ-75 compacts.

  6. I was as at a mall today in the Minneapolis metro (not Mall of America). Saw exactly one uniformed officer and one plainclothes (who stuck out like a sore thumb). There had to be in excess of 2,000 shoppers there. I felt extremely thankful that gunbuster signs do not have the force of law here, and can only hope that there were several other armed concealed carriers about.

    A question I plan to ask my retired leo stepfather over the holidays: how does it feel to be a leo in that situation? I mean sure, 99.9% of the time in that situation all you have to worry about is busting shoplifters and enforcing curfew, but if a half a dozen men with rifles come through the door, you have to know it is going to be a bad day and that shooting you is their first priority. Tough job.

    • I live in Minnesota, too! The only times I don’t carry are at the Post Office (well, most of the time) and at Ft. Snelling during drill weekends. At least those places I go regularly. I’ve mostly avoided sporting events, where I hadn’t before, especially now that MLB has installed metal detectors at all stadiums. Otherwise, everywhere. It’s a little odd knowing I’m likely the only person with a firearm almost everywhere I go. Have you seen MOA’s “no firearms” signs? They don’t even meet the basic, BASIC, standards MN has set for those signs. So I just ignore them. I’d ignore them even if they met the standard, since there is no force of law behind them.

      • Thanks for your service. The MOA signs are hard to miss. TTAG had a picture of one of them a while back for what was a pretty epic post. And you are right, they do not comply with the regs, not that they would carry the force of law if they did. I have no need to go to the post office. I don’t carry at work or sporting events, but everywhere else. I will not get into specifics, but there certainly are a number of public places around the metro that are very soft targets. Makes me nervous. I do think the level of security at Twins and Wild games is pretty stout, so I am good to go there, although obviously I would rather be able to carry.

        • Sport or concert events are soft targets regardless of security theater. Any terr worth his refugee status would pick the gate where there was the largest back-up at the metal detectors and either drive his IED van into the crowd or just unload his buddies and their AKs at that location.

          For the foreseeable future I will make every effort to avoid such events.

        • True, but the same applies in any where large groups of people congregate. At some point you have to try to live a normal existence. I would rather take the risk outdoors in an open area where I may have a chance to run away as opposed to an indoor venue where I am likely to be boxed in. And truly, the two sporting teams I just mentioned appear to have something approaching effective security rather than security theater (it helps that armed security is at the gate in the event that someone decided to bring a rifle into action). Without going into specifics, the same cannot be said for every team/event/venue/workplace.

      • You’re not alone. Not if I’m there, or at least a couple of the 211,000 and counting carry permit holders are there with you. But, yeah…have had similar thoughts.
        In a state that voted both Wellstone and Stuart F*cking Smalley…excuse me, Al Franken into the US Senate, one has to wonder how many of us out there have their head out of their asses, much less how many may be carrying…even though we lead the nation in extremist recruiting.

        • The fact that Franken and Dayton are electable anywhere hurts my brain. Glad our state house of reps has a Republican majority. Dayton apparently wants to jump on the “no guns for anyone on a watch list” bandwagon. He has no regard for the Constitution in any policy he considers.

    • Don’t dismiss the “non-victim” crime of shoplifting as inconsequential. Many times these encounters turn deadly violent to shoplifter and apprehender. If I were to witness a grab-n-run, I wouldn’t intervene or run after the perp. I’d call the cops with a description.

      • I love Internet forum discussions. At no point did I say that shoplifting is a “non-victim crime” nor did I say that it is “inconsequential”. Shoplifting IS an apple to the orange of a terrorist attack.

  7. IF you are going to claim to be from a specific place and then post an image purporting to
    be OF that place at least GET IT RIGHT. The image is not IN LOVELAND, NEAR LOVELAND
    OR OF LOVELAND. That image is taken in Estes Park which is a good 40 minute drive WEST
    of Loveland. Mistakes such as this make for zero credibility. ANYONE who actually knows
    Loveland could tell instantly that the picture you claim WAS Loveland is not.

  8. I was stationed at Carson in the early 70s. Even then there were protests of “Don’t Californicate Colorado”. Now I’m old(er!) and the climates, meteorlogical and political, of Florida suit me better.

    • Was there for college about the same time. It was in the middle of the Cold War (and as we wound down from Vietnam, which is why Fort Carson was so full at the time), and I would on occasion look across to Cheyenne Mountain and realize that we were withing sight of one of the top couple Soviet nuclear targets in the country. Not much chance of survival if they launched and tried to dig NORAD out of that mountain with nuclear weapons – figured the fratricide would be the only thing minimizing the devastation.

      I esp. appreciated the view on cloudless blue sky days, with Pikes Peak towering roughly 8,000 feet above the city. Somewhat the stark view of another 14er (Longs Peak) in Sara’s picture, only really bigger and more majestic.

  9. Can you guys do something about your freaking clickbait ads all over the page? The “Most outrageous pictures on the internet!” and “These girls wish these embarrassing photos would disappear!” have photo previews all of the the page that are seriously NSFW. I’m not going to try to explain to coworkers the cleavage and cameltoe shots. I’ll just stop coming here if you can’t clean this up.

  10. Not all of Colorado is Lefty Progs. Denver, Springs, Pueblo and Boulder are the worst. The rest of the counties are pretty conservative. Something like 60 out of 64 counties the County Sheriff said they would not confiscate guns no matter what.

    • You ever been to the Springs? Part of the most red county in Colorado and the most populated. The main counterweight to Denver. Even Pueblo doesnt belong in the same group since they are more union Democrats not limousine liberals like Denver/Boulder.

    • Colorado Springs and El Paso county have always been the biggest counterweights to Denver. When CCWs were may-issue on a county by county basis, the El Paso sheriff was the state’s leading issuer and most outspoken pro 2A advocate.

      What seems to have changed is the peaceful coexistence that used to rule. The various blue and red enclaves used to mostly respect each other. Now, not so much, and “Californication” seems to be a major reason behind that decline in civility.

    • One of the surprises after the Dems pushed through their gun control a couple years ago was the success in flipping the Senate back to the Republicans. Few were surprised that the majority leader from C. Springs got recalled, but one of their colleagues in Pueblo also got recalled. Plus, a third Dem Senator resigned instead of being recalled, giving the Reps the Senate, and reinstated divided rule (Dems still have the House and the Governor’s mansion).

      Also, note that the father of Dave Kopel represented Pueblo for a long time in the state legislature as a Dem. Kopel is one of the Volokh Conspirators at the WaPo, and writes routinely about and is considered an expert on gun laws.

      Which may be a long way of saying that even though Pueblo may have been a Dem mainstay for the last century (probably at least since striking miners and their families were machine gunned there), don’t try to take their guns away from them there. As noted, it is union country (formerly steel mills and coal mining). Yet, they would rather have a Republican representing them than a Democrat who helped pass that gun control legislation.

      • Plus, a third Dem Senator resigned instead of being recalled, giving the Reps the Senate, and reinstated divided rule (Dems still have the House and the Governor’s mansion).

        Your recollection is slightly in error. When that third dem (H*d*k) resigned, she was replaced by another Democrat. However, the senate did “flip” in the 2014 election, and the House almost did, too–it came down to one district that took days to finish counting.

  11. I don’t understand Sara’s whole “limited to 10 rounds” thing. So what? Pretty sure you can carry extra mags in CA. I’ve got a 15rd mag in my Glock 19, and I still carry 2 extra mags.

    The VA Tech shooter killed 32 people using a number of 10rd and 15rd mags. If an untrained killer could do that, then surely a trained concealed carrier could defend just as well with a 10rd mag in the gun, and one or two extra mags.

    • I don’t understand Sara’s whole “limited to 10 rounds” thing.”

      That’s Cali’s “thing”, not Sara’s. And that “thing” is a law.

        • The limit is on the number of rounds in the mag, not the number of mags, to my knowledge.

          But, give it time, the anti’s eventually will push for mag limits, too.

      • No, I get that CA limits mag capacity to 10 rounds. But Sara is saying she’s limited to 10 rounds, period. Which I know is not true, since CA does not have limits on how many mags a person can carry. Carry more mags and train with them! Instead of complaining about “oh i’m limited to only ten rounds”

        • So, she should just accept being a serf and be happy with what her Lords give her. Got it.

  12. The California Infiltration is a real thing. I saw it when stationed at USAF in the early 2000’s. Colorado Springs was densely populated, but well mannered. You could be sure that when you were cut off, the license plate was from CA.

    I purchased my first handgun inside of 40 minutes, from parking to leaving. I loved that place, and now I am stuck in California. Most of the Nor-Cal folk are like Sara-save for Sacramento and San Fran, which most of us up here would be happy if they relocated to the bottom of the Ocean floor.

    Now I see the infiltration into Colorado and the like, and I certainly yearn to move to Texas or North Carolina for the taxes alone, much less the gun laws.

    The fight is a national one, and I feel ashamed that my current state tops the list above.

    Stay safe brothers and sisters!

  13. I disagree on charlie hebdo. A guy with a camera sitting on a roof got the whole thing on video. He wasn’t 20 yards away. He could have fired on them if he had a gun, and proper training.

    Also remember that two UNARMED police officers were on the scene. The French politicians need to get their heads out of their asses and let their cops carry nationwide.

    A pistol has its limitations. But a rifle doesn’t put a magic force field around you.

    I hate speculation. I like real world results. Two terrorists in Garland, Texas were killed by a man with a 45 caliber pistol. A woman could do this just as easily with proper shot placement. Those terrorists had AK47 rifles. Simulations should be taken with a grain of salt.

    Do not give arguments for the gun control crowd. I’ll take my chances as an armed man.

    Keep training folks, and work on making head shots at further and further distances.

    • The whole area has gone liberal – I am in their Congressional district, and we are represented by Jered Polis, who is apparently the first married gay person in Congress (raising a kid or two). The district runs south from Larimer county (Loveland and Estes Park, along with Fort Collins with CSU) through Boulder county (includes CU), through the NW corner of JeffCo (includes CSM), thence west following I-70 to Vail (I believe). Definitely includes Summit County. Resort communities combined with college towns equals a safe district for someone as brain dead as Polis. The 2nd has been a safe liberal slot since maybe the 1970s or so, when Tim Wirth took it away from the Republican, but then, they could do it with mostly Boulder, and Larimer County was the center of a reliably Republican district that was primarily farming and ranching.

    • And, yes, I thought that it looked more like Estes than Loveland. Except that there are places in Loveland where you do get a good shot of Longs Peak and the rest of the ridge that Longs is on.

      I spent most of a decade in Fort Collins, the brother/sister city to Loveland. Fort Collins always tried to look down on Loveland. It had CSU, and, really more industry. But, all that we could really see was Horsetooth, and not much else. Loveland had a much nicer view, and you typically had to go through there to get to Estes Park and Rocky Mtn Nat. Park, thence over Trail Ridge, for the backdoor to Summit County. The interesting thing to me is that they prevented the two cities from growing together using green space. I think that most everyone was happy with the result, even though the population of both cities has more than doubled since I left.

  14. For all the Leo’s out there, I know a few “black market” gun magazine runners. Otherwise they are law abiding citizens. They tell me that if a Leo ever attempts to question them about the gun magazines… the officer will get shot.

    Something to think about.

  15. At this point, I’m a little bit disappointed that an article by Sara Tipton doesn’t have have her name in the title. I expect “Sara Tipton is Home for the Holidays, Surrounded By Guns, by Sara Tipton”. “I, Sara Tipton, am from Colorado. The front range. Loveland, to be exact. …”

    • Hahahaha! They did kind of drop the ball on this one, didn’t they?

      Still, I suppose if I “worked” for TTAG I wouldn’t mind “Bohucka’s Tips For Bowling Alley Carry” or somesuch.

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