march for our lives protest gun control
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After a mass shooting is thwarted by an armed citizen who wasn’t wearing a badge, we often see the same debate with the same tired talking points. “Yeah, but that almost never happens!” Or, if they want to sound sophisticated, they’ll call the defensive gun use a “statistical anomaly” or maybe just a “rounding error.”

The ones who are more intellectually honest will admit that it’s complicated and that defensive gun uses are in fact real, but want to say that criminal use or accidents with guns are more common than successful defenses, making guns a net negative.

The other angle the Civilian Disarmament Industrial Complex uses is to simply cook the books. As John Lott, Jr. has pointed out over and over again, most studies of mass shootings count everything that can possibly be counted in the United States, but then leave out many shootings overseas. Or worse, when they find a study that gives results they don’t like, they just bury it.

One way I’ve seen pro-gun groups try to counter this bad information is to regularly share the good things people do with firearms. For example, there’s the NRA’s Armed Citizen stories, or the Heritage Foundation’s DGU Tracker . . .

I don’t have anything bad to say about efforts to debunk inaccurate or misleading “data” or giving the public regular links to stories of armed self defense. These are important ways to help sway public opinion toward the truth and away from deception. But there’s an important thing they tend to leave out.

This problem is often called “survivorship bias”, but I like to call it the “Napoleon, like anyone can even know that” factor.

The Things We Can’t Know

No matter how carefully we go looking for pieces of information, they just can’t all be found. Defensive gun uses are definitely among those. While it would be a nearly impossible task, I suppose one could go through every single police report in a given year in the United States and pick out all of the defensive gun uses, but even that would leave a lot out.

For example, there are people who merely uncover a concealed gun, and their would-be attacker flees. It’s probably a good idea to call the cops at that point, but not everyone knows that. So such incidents tend to go unreported. The same is probably true for people who point a gun at an attacker who then flees without the trigger being pulled.

Getting gun owners to call the police after a non-shooting defensive gun use is impossible. There are people who (often rightfully) don’t trust their local police. They may possess the gun illegally in a place like New York or Los Angeles, or they could themselves not be lawfully present in the country. Or, they could fear discrimination based on some other factor. Or maybe they’re in possession of something illegal, like marijuana.

Even the best estimates of defensive gun use are probably off by a significant factor, which means the ratio of defensive to offensive gun uses is actually even more in favor of the argument for gun rights. This is nearly impossible to prove, though, so gun control supporters never believe or acknowledge it despite the solid logic showing that we’re vastly undercounting DGUs.

The Open Carry Debate

Another gun debate that happens within the gun rights community is the open vs. concealed carry debate. While this isn’t really an anti-gun argument, I have seen it used in legislative debates over open carry in places that haven’t always had it. So, in cases where it’s used against others’ right to open carry, it frequently is an anti-gun position. As to the practical argument over whether open carry is a good idea, not so much.

There’s one big problem with this debate…once again, “Like anyone can even know that” comes into play.

While we certainly can find anecdotes of people who were shot first or targeted for theft because they were carrying openly, we can also find anecdotes of people who prevented a crime through open carry deterrence. I’m one of those rare people who can give you a first-person account of this happening and may do that here some time in another article. The Pulse shooter’s ultimate choice of a target is another great example of being deterred by the presence of an openly armed opposition.

But, these stories are difficult to find compared to stories of open carry going wrong. Why? Because when it goes wrong and a citizen has their gun stolen or they’re killed, those incidents almost always make it into a police report and probably a media article. When a criminal decides not to rob a store or a terrorist decides to not shoot up a place, they’re not going to call the police or the local news station to tell that tale for very obvious reasons.

Does this mean open carry is a good idea? For most people, probably not. Comparing a quantifiable risk against an impossible to measure reward only leaves a big question mark. Add to this the fact that most people have little or no training in retention and defensive tactics and the answer shifts from a question mark to a fairly solid “No.”

But, that doesn’t mean we know much. We still have to admit that we’re making an educated guess.

More importantly, we also shouldn’t assume the opposite: that concealed carry is safe from theft or being attacked first. There are plenty of stories of people losing a gun in a scuffle and having it stolen…or worse things happening. Plus, many people carrying concealed might keep the gun hidden, but wear types of clothing and carry other equipment that makes it obvious that they’re probably carrying.

In other words: If you don’t know how to keep your gun from getting stolen, carrying concealed isn’t a good substitute for the failure to get the right training. In that case, what you don’t know really can hurt you.

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63 COMMENTS

  1. I hear folks say they’ve never seen statistics about how many lives were saved by a good guy with a gun. Hopefully they see this comment, because I can explain why.

    It’s impossible to know how many more people would have died if a bad guy with a gun doesn’t get stopped. Maybe the most recent mall shooter’s gun would have jammed after the next shot and our good guy with a gun didn’t save anyone. Maybe he would have shot 30 more people and our good guy saved dozens of lives. It’s impossible to measure things that didn’t happen.

    Plus, DGUs often go unreported. If a would be robber runs away after seeing a gun tucked into my belt, that’s not news worthy. If a would be murderer takes a shot in the shoulder and runs before killing anyone, that’s barely worthy of local news.

    • It’s not rocket science to understand why a good guy with a gun doesn’t make the news and it’s not rocket science to understand why there aren’t studies on how many lives are saved.

    • Tim in Texas,

      Plus, DGUs often go unreported.

      I was waiting for my spouse in my car close to a grocery store entrance (in the “fire lane”) when a beater car pulled up behind me and parked. I watched (in my mirror) the driver lean forward, pull out something from underneath his driver’s seat, stuff it in the front of his pants, and then exit his car. He started walking up behind a half-wall on the passenger side of my car. When he got close to the classic passenger-side “blind spot”, he stopped walking, dropped down below the half-wall for a few seconds, and then popped back up looking straight at me. By that time, I already had my arm extended in his direction (which he could plainly see) although he could not see if I had anything in my hand which was just below the edge of my car windows. (I will leave it up to the reader’s imagination whether or not I had anything in my extended hand.) He immediately turned around, hurried back to his car, pulled something out from his pants, placed it under the driver’s seat, and literally burned rubber leaving the parking lot.

      Another time I exited an office supply store and walked across the otherwise empty parking lot to my lone vehicle. When I pulled out my keys to unlock my driver’s side door, I noticed a cagey looking dude in a hoodie with the hood up and wearing a COVID-19 mask. Both of his hands were in both of his hoodie pockets. He was walking straight toward me and closing the distance quickly. When he was still about 30 yards away, he asked me for something. I replied with an unfriendly and assertive, “No.” He kept closing the distance and asked for something again, to which I replied with an even more unfriendly and loud, “No!”. He kept coming. When he was about 15 yards away, I moved around my vehicle (for cover) while reaching toward my hip getting ready to draw, although I had not yet moved my cover garment to expose my handgun on my hip. His body language IMMEDIATELY changed and he immediately broke off his approach while mumbling about being sorry about something.

      I am 100% convinced that the men approaching me in both cases were absolutely committed to armed robbery of me. I never fired any shots in righteous self-defense. No one called police. No one reported either incident to news outlets. As far as civilian disarmament proponents are concerned, neither incident happened. And yet both incidents did happen.

  2. I’ve used a gun a couple of times as a civilian to ward off a bad guy without firing a shot. There is so much pure bullshit spread about DGU’s by all involved including the pro gun side.

    I interrupted a commercial burglary once by accident. Dude was trying to break into a mom and pop shortly before daylight and I was footing to work. I was not a concerned citizen and was not intent on stopping the bad guy. But when he realized I was there he turned on me with a crowbar raised like a sword. The only gun I owned at the time was a .22 revolver. But the bad guy did not stop and discuss brand or caliber. He dropped his weapon and ran like hell.

    I did not have a permit so I left it at that. No cell phones in those days and far fewer security cameras.

    I also awoke to the sound of breaking glass early one morning. 2 story house. Me, wife and kids upstairs. Pulled a shotgun from top of closet and positioned myself at head of stairs.

    When I racked the action bad guy unassed the place in a hurry. According to the hollywood experts and the guys that make a good living from training with guns I should have died in a hail of bullets.

    I did not. Because the hollywood villains do not exist in real life. What we have are low iq drug addicts looking for a quick and easy score. You know. The kind of folks that vote for joe biden.

    • I’ve drawn twice over the last 30-odd years, with identical results as yours.

      The next battle with the Leftist Scum ™ will be over normalization of guns and gun carry. We need to use tricks from the civil rights playbook and keep the pressure on.

      Our biggest gains can be in the return of .22lr rifle teams in high schools. Teaching actual gun safety, not that fake crap they claim is ‘safety’…

      • “the return of .22lr rifle teams in high schools“

        I think that’s a great idea, safety classes taught by school resource officer, with volunteer retired veteran/LEOs to assist.

        Start with classroom safety and air rifle training in middle school.

        • “Start with classroom safety and air rifle training in middle school.”

          *Obvious* fake ‘miner…

        • MinorIQ (see, when you post only MARGINALLY idiotic comments, I treat you with more respect),

          ” . . . safety classes taught by school resource officer, with volunteer retired veteran/LEOs to assist.” Good start, but how about we get somebody more competent to instruct??? And maybe start with “Eddie the Eagle” training in primary school?

          Or we could rely on minimally-trained gummint employees, because “the gummint is our FRIEEEND!”. Or not; YMMV.

      • Ive had to draw and fire several times in my life, last time was a few years back now saving my wife. There have been a few times too when brandishing did the trick and was enough.

        • .40 cal Booger,

          I want to ask you if you believe that firing your handgun multiple times to save you wife caused any permanent hearing loss. If so, what kind of hearing loss and how extensive?

        • @uncommon sense

          “.40 cal Booger,

          I want to ask you if you believe that firing your handgun multiple times to save you wife caused any permanent hearing loss. If so, what kind of hearing loss and how extensive?”

          Yes, it did.

          The area where it happened was a parking structure. The sound energy hit me twice for every shot fired, once when I fired and then what bounced back off the concrete walls.

          I felt it immediately, a sudden sharp pain in my ears twice with each shot. Everything echoed in there, so when they moved around and were talking/yelling to each other I could hear them.

          By the third shot though I could not hear well at all so I had to start relying completely on visual which meant I had to expose myself more sometimes, but I had to get to her before they could.

          My ears hurt for days after, every sort of loud sound seemed to give me a sharp pain. A sort of loud buzzing started and was constant but the sharp pain went away, that eventually settled down to an always present very low level low frequency sort of ring like tone. I lost some hearing in the high end frequency ranges, and have trouble hearing some ordinary sounds clearly and in speech as well. Hearing aids help a lot though.

          The last thing I remember hearing clearly was when as she was fighting to get away from them and saw me coming when they had not yet seen me, she screamed at them “he’s gonna kill you sons a bitches”. That’s when they looked around and saw me coming and she broke free and ran for cover but unfortunately that cover was between them so she could not run out of there without getting shot or knifed by them.

          So I fired and advanced on them, kept them pinned down so they could not get to her, putting rounds in them along the way but not enough to stop them completely, finally the one with the knife was not moving around any more and I had gotten to a position where more of the one with the gun was exposed and he got stopped for good.

          Each and every shot I fired damaged my hearing more and more. It wasn’t so much the shots the other guy fired but when I got close that contributed to the damage as well due to the echoing off the walls.

        • .40 cal. My military experience has left me with the ringing ears and some trouble with hearing, I run a box fan year round in my bedroom as white noise. It helps me sleep through the ringing.

          Gunfire and explosions are not a good thing for unprotected ears.

      • Never drawn a gun in a defensive situation. But I’ve been close. Like waiting to see if BlackLootersMurder would show up on my street from a few blocks away some 2 years. My rifle was quite ready. I’ve had a few kerfuffle’s driving and had my hand on my loaded gat. Recently too. Insanity’s rampant. The world is going to he!!

    • I hope you kept the nice free crowbar. Too bad the BG did not end up INSIDE the locl CrowBar Hotel. cooling his heels for a spell. Oh well, YOU walked away clean, and most likely not even late for work. Which SURELY would have happened had the local flatfoots come round and got “interested”.

  3. I also love the “badass” folks who talk about shooting an open carrier first in a robbery. Same energy as the “I couldn’t join the Army cause I’d punch a Drill Sergeant if he got in my face.”

    Yeah, I’m sure if you’d make a loud noise that would alert more people to your actions, give the workers more notice to call the cops and immediately tag on murder charges to your armed robbery. Sleep like a baby after too no doubt. What an absolute badass. Why wait for the guy to leave and skip all the trouble? Lol

    • “I also love the “badass” folks who talk about shooting an open carrier first in a robbery.”

      Agreed. Every year, open-carrying police experience a few dozen murders, while deterring literally millions of crimes. Do the “Grey Man” scolds honestly believe those overwhelmingly favorable odds derive from the average donut-chomper’s elite ninja skillz?

      I’d say it’s the guns, combined with the fact that a huge majority of crooks are not glory-seeking heroes, but cowardly opportunists with their pick of defenseless victims.

      • It’s often mentioned around here how the police are only good for showing up after the fact. The police don’t deter crime by someone threatening to dial 911. Their presence deters crime. When a would-be gas station robber sees a cop car there, he leaves for an easy target elsewhere. That’s why it’s a good idea to give cops a discount and free coffee. Social workers don’t have the same effect.

        • The old joke about the donut shop being the safest place in town has some basis in reality.

        • “The Mouse that Roared”

          I would point out, if memory serves me correctly, in that particular story the ‘mouse’ conquered the United States of America with 20 longbowmen.

  4. I take issue that peaceable citizens may “illegally possess” firearms in certain cities.

    In certain cities illegal laws are enforced by illegal regimes running roughshod over many freedoms besides just gun ownership.

    In that scenario it would not be prudent to announce yourself to the jackboots in those regimes if you can help it. You know you are going to open up a big can of worms if you do.

    Also, in many rural settings, problems just get solved without involving the sheriffs department as their response time is off the chart. Those aren’t reported either.

    • Some counties have deputised EVERY citizen resident in the county. SO why report, you are part of the solution, details not necessary.

    • Mudhunter:
      I once was rousted out bed to rescue one of daughters who had been involved in a wreck on the freeway. It was already a dark night when I got to the scene, and the state police were already there. They didn’t like the spot I picked to park my car, and one of the officers approached me to find out what I was all about. As required by state law, I immediately informed the officer that I am licensed for concealed carry and was armed. To which he replied, “Yeah, my partner told me that you are armed.” Then he told me where to park my car, and that was it.
      My point is, you may think you pistol is concealed, but maybe not even in the dark.

      • “My point is, you may think you pistol is concealed, but maybe not even in the dark.”

        There’s another nuance on that, in Florida if you’re pulled over your status as a concealed carrier pops up on the same screen that shows if you have an outstanding warrant for your arrest.

        I have to believe the Homeland Security folks also have a national database as to who’s a carrier, and share that with law enforcement in other states conducting traffic stops…

        • Yeah. Now in TX of course the question comes up whether any such notification still exists, since we first got “car carry”, not requiring a license, and now Constitutional Carry, so that EVERYBODY in the area may be carrying concealed. Personally, I think LE having to assume that everybody they meet is legally armed would be a good thing, and that any officer who expresses objections should be convinced to seek other employment.

  5. Such DGU rarely makes the news. Its not sensational enough that a brandishing caused the bad guy to run away, its not sensational enough that an armed citizen stops a mass shooting by brandishing causing the shooter to run away or commit suicide, its not sensational enough that armed citizens fire less than 5% of the time and the rest is brandishing that deters and stops the bad guy. Nope, the media wants blood and death, and so do the anti-gun which is why their ‘studies’ and ‘research’ only credit an armed citizen with stopping a mass shooting if they actually shoot and hit the bad guy. Brandish has stopped a mass shooter too, has many times but the police show up and catch the shooter as they are running away and its instantly ‘police stopped a mass shooter’ when all they did was show up. Yep, but no blood and death and injury then its likely not sensational enough for the news.

    Just a few that made the news (some from this year that most people never heard of even though they made the news) > https://crimeresearch.org/2022/07/uber-driver-in-chicago-stops-mass-public-shooting/

    I posted others in another articles comments.

    • At one point in Sun Tzu’s Art of War, he makes the observation that the military leaders who are honored the least, yet deserve to be honored the most, are those who achieve victory “with a sheathed sword”, who resolve a conflict without need for open battle. The more things change.

  6. I normally carry concealed, but occasionally I do open carry.

    On Saturday morning a friend and i were on the way to the range. We stopped at a convenience store to get some gas and grab a cup of coffee. We were open carrying fitted out for the range. While inside we start conversing with the clerk who is also the owner, its early about 6 AM and shes been there all night because one of her employees is sick and shes short on people. Nice lady, her and her husband have always been nice to us gun people and even been to the range with us several times. She looks at the security monitor and sees two guys in a car pull up, get out with guns and says ‘gotta call 911’ and tells us. We ask if its one of us (meaning, one of us local gun people on the way to the range) and she says ‘pretty sure its not’

    About that time these two guys come busting in yelling ‘Give us da money or…” and didn’t finish because they see us aiming at them from behind two cover points and they just freeze. Then one of them says ‘they got guns’ and they turn around and out the door, get in the car, and pull across the street down the block juts a little ways to an empty parking lot way in the back next to the building and sit there for a while then start to pull away just as two police patrols pull up. We find out from the cop’s when they come over to talk to us these two pieces of crap had beaten and robbed a guy an hour before and he’s not expected to live, so the cops were already looking for them and high tailed it over to the store when they got the call.

    I’m pretty sure we stopped a robbery from happening, and with the nice lady helped catch two killers and kept that nice lady store owner from being beaten and maybe killed. Just by presenting and being ready and being aware, no shots fired. It went to the news as ‘police captured ….’ and not a mention of us or the convenience store. But, DGU it was.

    DGU rarely makes the news, and then when it does its because the defender actually pulled the trigger and that actually happens less than 5% of the time.

  7. I love information, I’d love to know what we don’t know and what we don’t know enough about. But when it comes to defending my life, I don’t care about statistics. All I care about is having the most efficient tool at my side for such a thing. Anyone who says I am not allowed to have a firearm can GFY.

  8. DGUs ending mass shootings in the favored GFZs would likely increase if otherwise permitted citizens would just ignore the signs and carry on. None the wiser if no incident develops, lives potentially saved if it does. Still waiting for Eli Dickens to be charged with ignoring the mall’s “No Firearms” signs. Not holding my breath.

    • Depends on how the state views GFZs (not all have the force of law) and the exact nature of the GFZ. Going into a mall in a state where the worst they can do is ask you to leave and only arrest you for trespassing if you refuse is a lot different from wandering into a schoolyard. Lots of people do the former ask the time, but few would do the latter – the consequences of being found with a firearm on the premises are too severe to risk it easily.

  9. I’ve said it many times in the past. No one can possibly have the situational awareness abilities to see behind them and 360 degree abilities around them. If you open carry, the bad guy will be able to take you out. You just can’t stop it. Especially today after the Bruen decision, you will be able to carry concealed. That is the key. I’ve talked to hundreds of felons and to a tee, they have all said they fear the armed citizen much more than the police. They know the police are armed. They have no clue which citizen is armed. Why in the world would you want to let the crooks know you are armed?

    • Marty,

      If you open carry, the bad guy will be able to take you out. You just can’t stop it.

      If that is true, then criminals should be assassinating thousands of cops every year–which of course does not happen.

      I was pumping gas into my car one time when some guy popped around the gas pump holding out several gold chains and asked if I wanted to buy one. Before I could even answer, he saw that I already one gold chain around my neck and that I had a handgun plainly visible in a holster on my hip–and then he mumbled something about the fact that I already had a gold chain and immediately vacated the area.

      I believe that your assertion is false. Where is your evidence? Where are the dead open carriers?

      • Common sense LOL and 31 years in law enforcement. And yes cops in uniform are targeted quite often. All you have to do is search law enforcement ambushes. It’s becoming more and more prevalent all the time.

        • Marty,

          What are the motivations for those ambushes?

          To steal the dead cop’s handgun?

          Or general malice because cops arrest criminals?

          I am very confident that the overwhelming majority of police ambushes are a result of malice–which criminals should not generally have against John or Jane Q. Public who happens to have a handgun plainly visible in a holster.

        • Marty,

          For reference an armed scumbag can take out anyone, whether or not they are armed (visibly or concealed), if the scumbag employs classic assassination technique.

          The relevant area of study to shed light on this is criminal motivation. If we are talking about utterly and totally depraved psychopaths, they might assassinate anyone for any reason or basically no reason at all. If we are talking about other types of criminals, they tend to have more predictable motivations with some level of internal restraints–some of which are conscience oriented and some of which are risk oriented.

          I would be curious to know about the latter type of criminal–would they just walk-up willy-nilly to open carriers and assassinate them? It all boils down to how much risk they perceive and whether they think the reward outweighs the risk.

        • “All you have to do is search law enforcement ambushes” to find that, in 2019, two cops were ambushed and five killed in “unprovoked attacks” of 48 total “feloniously killed” (not all shot) out of 800K sworn LE, the majority of whom open carry.

          It would be rather depressing to doubt that each of those cops deterred or stopped more than one crime, don’t you think? Let’s say, as a very conservative estimate, six per officer per year. That means a cop is 100K times more likely to deter a crime than to be murdered, and 685K times more likely than to be targeted (as opposed to engaged while in the course of active enforcement).

          https://www.fbi.gov/news/press-releases/press-releases/fbi-releases-2019-statistics-on-law-enforcement-officers-killed-in-the-line-of-duty

        • So, I ran a similar search for Open Gun Carriers ambushed and found zero cases.

          As Umm and uncommon_sense have both pointed out, we have about a million uniformed and open carrying cops in the US and a pretty small handful of incidents where they get ambushed and targeted.

          I have a very simple question for you though. Do you think of uniformed cops ran around unarmed that more or less of them would be targeted, ambushed, and shot? If you think more cops would get shot at if they were unarmed, then it becomes REALLY obvious that OPEN CARRY SAVES LIVES.

        • I carry concealed, not because I feel threatened with ambush by rampaging psychopathic killers but because I don’t wish for other victims around me to plan on me rescuing them. I carry to rescue me and my family, if they want to be rescued they can do it themselves. I am not a cop, and I am not your hired security, and I am not hoping for recognition as vigilante of the month. That said, I think (with no evidence) that the vast majority of violent felons are cowardly, stupid and under the influence of something that does not make you smarter or better coordinated. And that therefore any criminal who makes his wee mind up to ambush open carriers as an avocation, thereby surrendering time when he could be enjoying some good old robbing and raping instead, will have have a short career and ignominious funeral pretty quick. Being targeted by a criminal is far less frightening to me than being targeted by law enforcement.

  10. … [open carry deterring criminal attack] stories are difficult to find compared to stories of open carry going wrong.

    Everyone say it together with me now:

    Absence of evidence is NOT evidence of absence.

    We apparently do not have verifiable evidence of open carriers stopping 100s of thousands of violent crimes before they happen. That absence of evidence does NOT prove that it does not happen.

  11. I usually wear a revolver on a gun belt or shoulder rig around the homestead. And do wear it if I need to run into the small town for the feed store, tire shop, etc. If I am going further afield, like the other end of the country where I have property, or into the city, I change out and carry concealed.
    For me, open carry is just more comfortable while working. Concealed carry when in more populated areas simply avoids possible problems with frightened Karen types. As well as gives the concealed carrier a little element of surprise if the worst happens.

  12. I have genuine quality imitation snake skin cowboys holster and a gold plainted HiPoint with zirconium encrusted tweezer grips, I open carry everywhere.

    • “…and a gold plainted HiPoint with zirconium encrusted tweezer grips,…”

      Frank Zappa *approves* of zirconium encrusted tweezers… 🙂

      (“Nanook, a nanoo… Don’t be a naughty Eskimo…”)

    • “Bear Shot Nine Times”

      The article says that the owner used a .40 caliber handgun to repel the bear which apparently attempted to advance on the owner even after one or more hits–and the owner shot a total of nine times to finally stop the bear.

      I carry a semi-auto handgun with 4-inch barrel chambered in .40 S&W, loaded with 180 grain bonded hollowpoints. I have often wondered how effective my everyday-carry platform would be for stopping black bears up to 250 pounds. I imagine bullet weight and construction is a huge factor in the potential effectiveness of that platform. I am guardedly optimistic that my 180 grain bonded hollowpoints would probably be the most effective loading in that caliber.

      Having said all that, when I am camping, hiking, and/or hunting, I carry a BIG revolver with 6-inch barrel chambered in .44 Magnum (loaded with 240 grain softpoint bullets) in case a mountain lion, huge white-tailed buck, elk, or large (350+ pound) black bear decides to ruin my day. Why take a chance on a .40 caliber semi-auto handgun platform when you can be sure that .44 Magnum will handle the task?

      • charging bears on the hunt for food or on a rampage are a lot different from humans. Natural instinct takes over for predator animals and they tend to continue past a point where a human would have been stopped even though the same wounds (comparatively) in numbers could/would be present in both.

        Animals like bears tend to continue to rampage for a bit after being shot even though mortally wounded but still physically capable until they are no longer physically capable, natural instinct is driving them especially if in unfamiliar places and afraid. Its the ‘flight-or-fight at all costs until you can not longer physically do so’ instinct that is so dulled in the human species now. So its not that the .40 S&W did not wound the bear enough to stop it, but more that natural instinct driving the bear kept the bear going until it simply physically could not any longer due to the collective wounds

        But yeah a .44 mag is fine too, your chances in the same situation are going to be about the same as this guy had but you might get luckier and hit that right spot to stop the bear more quickly. But bigger does not always mean better or ‘assurance’.

        So its not really an ‘assurance’ that a .44 mag can handle a bear attack, its more of wounding enough to disable and stop which is what this guy did with .40 S&W which handled that task just as well as a .44 mag would have in the same situation, but maybe the number of shots needed would have been different.

        • .40 cal Booger,

          I agree on all points.

          … maybe the number of shots needed would have been different.

          That touches upon my main line of thought: I want the greatest probability of physically incapacitating a rampaging animal as quickly as possible.

          And I figure that .44 Magnum with larger, heavier, and faster bullets will be much more likely to physically incapacitate an animal (such as a bear) faster than .40 S&W.

          In this case, “faster” means each bullet is more likely to incapacitate sooner and fewer bullets are needed to incapacitate–both of which contribute to faster incapacitation.

          Note: for the unaware the reason that .44 Magnum bullets should incapacitate faster than .40 S&W is because .44 Magnum bullets should create larger diameter and deeper wound channels than .40 S&W. Larger diameter and deeper wound channels means higher probability of hitting the brain or spinal column as well as major arteries–and often causing more tissue destruction as well.

  13. People constantly pushing for “gun control” or more firearm restrictions have never been raped, mugged or home-invaded.

    The only way to level the playing field regarding rampant disparity of force, e.g. a physically larger stronger individuals using violence or the threat of violence to get their way, has been civilian firearm ownership.

  14. more related DGU stuff …

    (some) Top Defensive Gun Use Stories from 2021 > https://www.usacarry.com/top-defensive-gun-use-stories-2021/

    (a small fraction of) Defensive Gun Uses in the U.S. – Updated August 15, 2022 > https://datavisualizations.heritage.org/firearms/defensive-gun-uses-in-the-us/

    ” According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, almost every major study on defensive gun use has found that Americans use their firearms defensively between 500,000 and 3 million times each year. There’s good reason to believe that most defensive gun uses are never reported to law enforcement, much less picked up by local or national media outlets.

    This database, therefore, is not intended to be comprehensive. Instead, it highlights just a fraction of the incredible number of times Americans relied on the Second Amendment—not the government getting there in time—to protect their inalienable rights. Despite the limitations on data, these confirmed cases of defensive gun use help prove that the “good guy with a gun” is not a myth, but an integral part of American society. ”

    There Are Far More Defensive Gun Uses Than Murders. Here’s Why You Rarely Hear of Them > https://www.realclearinvestigations.com/articles/2021/09/22/there_are_far_more_defensive_gun_uses_than_murders_in_america_heres_why_you_rarely_hear_of_them_794461.html

    These 12 Incidents of Defensive Gun Use Prove Armed Civilians Make Situations Safer > https://www.dailysignal.com/2021/12/22/these-12-incidents-of-defensive-gun-use-prove-armed-civilians-make-situations-safer/

    There are literally multiple millions of ordinary armed citizen (not armed security or law enforcement) defensive gun uses annually – everything from repelling a violent criminal attack to stopping a violent robbery to stopping a rape to stopping a child abduction to stopping a car jacking to brandishing to stop a violent criminal to stopping mass shootings by firing or brandishing. Very much less than 1% ever makes the news.

    But even of those that do make the news, its obvious that the ordinary armed citizen ‘good guy with a gun’ does for a fact exist and DGU is a real every day thing in the U.S. and necessary when the threat presents its self and is not the myth anti-gun falsely claims it is and statistics and ‘studies’ intentionally leave out by defining their data sets requirements to exclude. Without firearms DGU millions of law abiding Americans would be killed or seriously injured annually.

    • and to add, even armed teachers are using DGU in school to stop threats. Most of those don’t make the news either, but sometimes they do for example > Armed teacher stops attempted kidnapping in Utah, police say > https://www.wkrn.com/news/armed-teacher-stops-attempted-kidnapping-in-utah-police-say/

      I personally know of one incident here locally where an armed teacher stopped a school shooting from happening. A disgruntled student came in armed with AR-15 dressed out in body armor and as he entered an armed teacher saw him and drew. The guy dropped his gun turned to run out and ran into the door frame and it dazed him and two other teachers grabbed him and held him for police. It made the news as a ‘student brings gun to school’ story with no mention of the teacher stopping him or the shooters written plans for ‘things and people to do while shooting up the school’ kill list.

      • all sorts of valid ordinary armed citizen DGU going on every day across the country, and a lot of times when police arrive they tend to arrest the armed citizen at first. For example >

        Mom Jumps Out Of Shower And Shoots Intruder Dead After Hearing Her Children Screaming > https://concealednation.org/2022/08/mom-jumps-out-of-shower-and-shoots-intruder-dead-after-hearing-her-children-screaming/

        According to news reports, the police initially arrested her but after a few hours of questioning they released her.

        • … police initially arrested her but after a few hours of questioning they released her.

          /begin_lame_humor

          Perhaps police were pressuring her to reenact the event exactly as it happened. After her tenth refusal to reenact the event without clothing, police finally relented and let her go.

          /end_lame_humor

  15. The way I handle anti-gunners and gun use for self-defense is:
    “There are between 600K and 2.5 million defensive gun uses each year. guarantee there are no criminal assaults and we can then talk.

    If we stop criminal activity in our many liberal cities, USA shooting numbers worldwide are one of the lowest.

    School shootings are because of the non-enforcement of kid criminals (see Parkland, others). Enforce the law at these young criminals’ first offenses and we’ll be getting somewhere, and we can then talk about the meaning of 2a.”

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