Interesting

I was on a gun store’s web page, checking out their firearms, and saw an advert for Front Sight . I clicked the advert, and was presented with a ‘Basic Firearms Quiz’. I took it, since it certainly had a self defense feel to it, and I thought it would be interested to see how my ideas compared to what they had to say.

Here is the quiz. The choice I selected I bolded.

1) Which of the following handguns would you consider the best for general self defense?

  • Single Action Revolver, example: Colt Peacemaker
  • Double Action Revolver, example: Smith and Wesson Model 29
  • Double Action Semi-auto, example: Beretta 92F
  • Single Action Semi-auto: example: Colt 1911
  • Safe Action Semi-Auto: example: Glock
  • Action Adventure Hero Auto: example: UFP2000

2) Which gun would you consider the best for immediate general home defense?

  • Handgun
  • Shotgun
  • Rifle

3) What method do you consider the best for everyday carrying of a concealed handgun?

  • Ankle holster, covered by pant leg
  • Belly band holster covered by shirt
  • Fanny pack holster worn around the waist
  • Holster on outside of belt covered by shirt, vest, or jacket
  • Inside the waistband holster covered by shirt, vest or jacket
  • Shoulder holster
  • No holster, gun tucked inside pants

4) On a new defensive handgun, fresh out of the box that seems to be shooting a few inches low at 10 yards, what do you feel is most likely causing the low shots?

  • The barrel needs to be oiled
  • The sights need to be adjusted
  • You are not pressing the trigger correctly.
  • The gun needs to be sent back to the manufacturer
  • Most handguns out of the box shoot a few inches low at ten yards

5) What should you do if you are “Cross Dominant” and shooting a handgun?

  • A. Learn to shoot with your non dominant hand
  • B. Learn to shoot keeping both eyes open all the time
  • C. Close your non-dominant eye, turn your head slightly and use your dominant eye
  • A and B
  • See a psychiatrist
  • None of the above, close both eyes

6) What will tend to improve your accuracy with a handgun the most?

  • Purchasing a newer gun
  • Buying better quality ammunition
  • Placing a laser sight on your gun
  • Learning the “Three Secrets”
  • Shooting more

7) What will make you less likely to ever have to use lethal force to defend yourself or your family?

  • A. Being alert and aware of your surroundings
  • B. Being mentally prepared to defend yourself
  • C. Being armed with your gun
  • D. Being skilled with your gun
  • All of the above
  • A and B Only
  • None of the above: Hire a body-guard

8) What handgun would you recommend for a woman who wants to protect herself?

  • Pocket Pistol
  • Small Revolver
  • Single Action Semi-auto
  • Double Action Semi-auto
  • Safe Action Semi-auto

9) What do you feel is the best handgun caliber for general self defense?

  • .45 ACP
  • 10mm
  • .40 S&W
  • .357 magnum
  • 9mm
  • .38 Special
  • .380
  • .25
  • .22

10) What do you feel is the standard response in using a defensive handgun when you must shoot to defend your life?

  • A. With a major caliber handgun, two quick hits to the thoracic cavity
  • B. With a minor caliber handgun, three to four quick hits to the thoracic cavity
  • C. With a sub-caliber handgun, three to four quick hits to the cranio-ocular cavity
  • All of the above
  • A and C only
  • None of the above: You keep shooting until your attacker stops moving

At the end of the quiz, I got the results. According to them, I had 5 correct and missed 5.

Their answers, and why they believe what they say is correct. I’m not quoting their entire support paragraphs, just enough so you get the jist of what they believe. I’ll put my opinions on their answers at the end of their answer quote block.

1) Which of the following handguns would you consider the best for general self defense?

  • Safe Action Semi-Auto: example: Glock

What you want in a defensive handgun is reliability and simplicity. Why? Because in a real gun fight you will only be about half as good as you are on your best day at the range, simply from the stress of a lethal encounter. This is due to the adverse effects of adrenalin on your dexterity. Gross motor movements become stronger, but fine motor coordination deteriorates. Manipulating your gun and hitting your target require fine motor coordination. With nothing more to manipulate than the trigger, slide release and magazine release, the “safe action” semi-auto Glock is by far the simplest to use, and therefore is what I consider the best choice in a defensive handgun. I get no benefit at all from Glock for endorsing their weapon. I’m just telling you that I can carry and shoot any gun extremely well and I choose to carry a Glock because it is simple to shoot well in a gun fight.

Nothing really to add, because they are right. Simpler means easier to use.

2) Which gun would you consider the best for immediate general home defense?

  • Handgun

The best gun for general home defense is the one you have in your hand at the time you need it. If your guns are so inaccessible as to take you 30 seconds to 1 minute or more to access them when you hear breaking glass in the middle of the night or someone pounding down your door, it really doesn’t matter what gun you call your home defense gun because you won’t have the time to get to it. There is also the question of maneuverability with a gun. The longer the gun, the more difficult it is to use in the close confines of hallways and doorways.

A better reason to choose a shotgun for home defense is because the pattern of the shot doesn’t require as precise an aim as a rifle or handgun, especially in low light conditions. Also, the stopping power of the shotgun is significantly greater than the handgun while not presenting the problem of over-penetration that the rifle creates.

 So, “shotgun” is a good answer if you can safely access it immediately. However, most gun training experts first reach for a full-size, major-caliber handgun with a dedicated light attached so they have something of power and target identification immediately in their hand, then they move to secure their shotgun, submachine gun, or rifle.

I answered shotgun. The problem with handguns is, 99% of the time, they aren’t just laid out on the nightstand or under your pillow. They are in a draw or some kind of holster. Mental aspects aside, as they said, in a stress situation, a shotgun is going to do a lot better, since it is easier to aim, and if you’re using buckshot, the chances of overpenetration aren’t neverly as severe. I believe its worth that second or two you’d lose to grab the shotty.

3) What method do you consider the best for everyday carrying of a concealed handgun?

  • Inside the waistband holster covered by shirt, vest or jacket

The most common method of carrying a concealed handgun is “no holster, gun tucked inside the pants.” While this is the by far the most common method, it is not the best method. In fact, it takes advanced training and skill to carry in this manner and still be able to consistently present the weapon quickly and efficiently from concealment.

I go into great detail on the pros and cons of all the methods of concealed carry in my Gun Training Reports. But the short answer here is this: You want a balance of the utmost concealment in all manners of dress and weather conditions with allowing a consistently fast presentation of the handgun. Therefore the best method for everyday carrying of a concealed handgun is “inside the waistband holster covered by shirt, vest, or jacket.”

Only issue here is, any CHL holder or off duty LEO is going to carry in some kind of holster, not gangsta style stuck in the waist band. I’d love to know where they came up with “The most common method of carrying a concealed handgun is “no holster, gun tucked inside the pants.””

4) On a new defensive handgun, fresh out of the box that seems to be shooting a few inches low at 10 yards, what do you feel is most likely causing the low shots?

  • You are not pressing the trigger correctly.

The reason the gun shoots low for the student is because the student is not getting a “surprise trigger break” and instead is “making the gun shoot” which causes the gun muzzle to dip ever so slightly. As distances increase, this slight dip at the muzzle results in hits that are a few to several inches low at 10-15 yards and complete misses at 25 yards.

No issue here, it’s just a matter of learning the pistol.

5) What should you do if you are “Cross Dominant” and shooting a handgun?

  • C. Close your non-dominant eye, turn your head slightly and use your dominant eye

“Cross Dominance” is an interesting situation that affects over 10% of the shooting population. It occurs when the dominant eye is on the opposite side of the body from the dominant hand. If you shoot right-handed, it works best if your right eye is dominant. In over 10% of the cases, a right-handed shooter has a dominant left eye or vice versa. So the correct answer is to simply squint or close the non dominant eye (in a “cross dominant” this would be the eye on the side of the dominant hand) and tip or turn your head slightly to sight with your dominant eye.

Again, no issue here.

6) What will tend to improve your accuracy with a handgun the most?

  • Learning the “Three Secrets”

 Most people think that you have to shoot more to improve your accuracy. This is incorrect and an extremely expensive mistake to make because shooting more can actually degrade your accuracy and cause you to develop bad habits that take more time and training to fix.Once you learn what tens of thousands of our students now know as “The Three Secrets” and I reveal to you “The Biggest Secret in the Firearms Training Industry” (which I will gladly share with you in my Gun Training Reports) you will know that wasting money on another new gun or the latest, greatest ammunition, or placing a laser sight on your gun will not improve your accuracy as much simply applying the little known and rarely talked about techniques that I share with you in my Gun Training Reports and that we reflexively train into our students at Front Sight.

I agree and disagree on their statements. If I took a training class with instructors, took what I learned from that class and applied it and practiced on my range days, I’d get a lot better. However, it’s ambiguous since we don’t know what their “three secrets” are.

7) What will make you less likely to ever have to use lethal force to defend yourself or your family?

  • All of the above

We teach more than just how to shoot better than the vast majority of people who carry a gun for a living. The “Front Sight Experience” — as our students so fondly describe — is a life changing four days that leaves you with a “comfort of skills at arms.” This change in your level of awareness, mental preparedness, and armed skill creates a confidence that is not cocky, but rather quietly self-assured — and that confidence translates into every aspect of your life. The people you come in contact with, both good and bad, can sense it. The good people want more to do with you and the bad people want nothing to do with you.

In my Gun Training Reports, I will share with you the same information we provide our students — the Color Code of Mental Awareness and Combat Mindset. Once you adopt the Color Code of Mental Awareness and the Combat Mindset as you own, you will be less likely to ever need to employ the skill we teach you in the use of the gun you carry, because criminals will see you are alert, aware, and prepared — and will leave you alone.

Meh, nothing worth adding here.

8) What handgun would you recommend for a woman who wants to protect herself?

  • Safe Action Semi-auto

This is a trick question for all you macho male chauvinists who feel a woman can’t handle a full-sized semi-auto handgun and need to be relegated to a “Lady Smith” revolver, or .25 Auto pocket pistol.Guess what we place in the hands of women who have never shot a gun before coming to Front Sight and rent our equipment? A safe action semi-auto — in other words a Glock. Why? See the answer to #1. Reliable and simple to use are what you need in a lethal encounter, whether you are a man or a woman.

By the end of the Two-Day or Four-Day Defensive Handgun Course, the women who have never shot a gun before are remarkably proficient in their ability to present the weapon and deliver two quick, fight-stopping hits. They would be insulted at anyone suggesting that they try a small revolver or pocket pistol.

I said “small revolver”. Why? Women’s minds are wired different from men’s. Sorry ladies, that’s just the way it is. It’s a physical fact. We think different, act differently in general, and when put under stress, those differences are made that much more apparent. Men tend to do better under stress. I’m not trying to say anything bad about women, that’s just the way the different genders are set up. Male minds have a tendency to do better at analyzing threats and making gross movements. Because of that, men are generally better at clearing jams and other such problems a pistol user might come across. That is why I said revolver. With a revolver, it’s point and pull until it goes click. In the LE reports I read for my ‘Ballistics’ article, there were several cases where it was a female OIS. In several of those female OIS cases, the lady officer would pull the trigger multiple times after her duty pistol had either ran out of ammo or jammed. You could argue that the lady officers in those cases need better training, which is true, but then you get back to the physical aspect of it. Am I saying ladies shouldn’t carry a pistol or are inferior to men? No! We just need to evaluated what the lady in our life is best at, and go from there. For instance, my mom does better with a revolver than an auto pistol. But, my grandmother can operate either one with the same effectiveness. So in those cases, I’d get my mother a good revolver, and my grandmother a good auto pistol.

9) What do you feel is the best handgun caliber for general self defense

  • .45 ACP

The debate over “the best fight stopping handgun caliber” will never end as long as there are ammunition manufacturers willing to pay for advertising in gun magazines and the “vanity articles” for their products that are written to encourage more advertising.I go to much greater lengths to explain handgun stopping power and caliber selection in my Gun Training Reports, which I wrote for you. But, let’s say for right now that ALL handgun rounds are woefully inadequate stoppers compared to a shotgun or rifle. We carry handguns because we can conceal them and maintain an emergency defense weapon on our person.

The best answer of the choices given you above is the .45 ACP. Our grandfathers knew it in World War II and our grandfathers’ grandsons are figuring it out again in Iraq. A .45 ACP stops ‘em best.

There are a number of factors that I cover in My Gun Training Reports to further explain the best caliber, bullet weight, bullet shape, etc., to look for in your particular situation.

He’s right on the aspect of handgun calibers suck, however, as I said in my Ballistics article, caliber doesn’t matter, it’s shot placement. A .380 to the spine is a lot more combat effective than a .45 to the shoulder. Sure, you wreck that person’s shoulder, but they can keep fighting. A .380 to the spine is instant incapacitation.

10) What do you feel is the standard response in using a defensive handgun when you must shoot to defend your life?

  • A. With a major caliber handgun, two quick hits to the thoracic cavity
  • C. With a sub-caliber handgun, three to four quick hits to the cranio-ocular cavity

 If you “keep shooting until your attacker stops moving,” you may find yourself looking at excessive use of force charges and will certainly feel the liability of explaining why you continued to shoot after the threat ended. We shoot to stop the attack, not to kill. Once the attack stops, we stop shooting because that’s when excessive use of force begins. By “stopping the attack” we mean your opponent is no longer showing intent to injure you or is no longer able to injure you.

The standard response that you should train to have, with a major-caliber handgun (calibers with a “4” in them) such as .45, 44, 10mm (a hot .40 caliber) and .40 S&W, is two quick hits to the thoracic cavity.

That should be the standard response with minor calibers as well (calibers smaller than the “4’s” but larger or hotter than .380) such as 9mm. But be prepared to deliver a shot to the cranio-ocular cavity (between the eyebrows and moustache) to stop the fight if they don’t immediately drop. Our troops in Iraq are reporting that when using the 9mm Berettas, three or four hits to the chest are required to stop attackers.

With sub-caliber handguns, don’t even bother shooting your attacker in the chest as you are just wasting time, ammunition, and elevating his threshold for pain by inflicting a non-incapacitating wound. Standard response with a pocket pistol that so many people carry for convenience is three to four quick hits to the cranio-ocular cavity. There is nothing wrong with carrying a pocket pistol in a sub-caliber, you just have to train significantly more in order to shoot it well due to the smaller packages, shorter sight radius and because the standard response is delivered to a much smaller target.

Obviously, as you can tell, he is greatly biased against the 9mm. One thing to note, is he talks a lot about the troops using 9mm Berettas overseas. The problem is, they are using 9mm FMJ ammunition, NOT the advanced JHP your average CHL holder or LEO would be using. Heck, the German military used 9mm pistols through 2 world wars (the P08 Luger and the Walther P.38), and I don’t seem to recall anything saying the 9mm sucked for them. They even continued to use the Walther P.38 as the P1 through the 70s.

Yes, I did say “keep shooting until your attacker stops moving”, because they failed to define ‘moving’. If an attacker is still coming at me or is still standing with a weapon in their hand, I will keep shooting. Once they hit the ground or drop their weapon and are no longer a threat, I will stop shooting.

For the rest, refer back to my Ballistics article I linked to above. As long as it has the necessary penetration to hit the spine or other major nerve clusters, and your shot placement is on, your fine.

And see, this is the major problem I have with most of the literature I read for training schools like Front Site, they want to cram their agenda down your throat. Show me your way, explain the reasoning and logic behind your way, and if I like it and the reasoning and logic are sound, I have no problems doing it. But don’t sit there and say “The 9mm sucks because it’s not effective enough for the troops overseas!”, without giving me some cites, references, or reasoning. As I said earlier, the troops have to use FMJ ammunition, not the JHP ammo us civilians and LEOs can use. Or the “most people carry with their gun tucked in the waistband”. Again, where are the numbers and statistics to prove this?

Anyway, FrontSite can take their agenda and shove it.

One Response to “Interesting”

  1. Ooo… this is a good one.

    Let’s go down the list:

    1. How funny. Front Sight promotes the Glock here, yet they give away free Springfield XD’s with each enrollment.

    2. I’d agree with what they say here. You want what you can get at the fastest… the gun in your hand is better than the gun locked up. But of course, depending upon your home situation you can get long guns quickly. For instance, if say you lived alone, why not have the shotgun out at the ready? But then as well, when you’re at home, why not have a handgun on your hip at all times?

    3. Well yeah, the most common method of carry is that, if you include all the gangstas in the tally. :-) But I’ve also heard of more than enough stories of people carrying without holsters (Plaxo??). It’s more common than you think.

    4. Of course, it could always be the gun is off… a buddy of mine just bought a new Taurus and the sights were off from the factory. But in general yes, they’re right.

    5. Basically yes. Cross-dominance doesn’t matter in handgun shooting (rifle, shotgun, it does). But tilt your head? maybe, maybe not. For some people that’s irritating to their necks. You may just need to adjust your hands and other positioning. Really, there’s no one answer here, you just have to find what works best for you. But the main point is, it’s not a big deal for handgun shooting.

    6. Of course! Buy our product!

    One thing about Iggy and Front Sight is, all the marketing and sales stuff.

    7. Buy our product!

    Still, it’s generally true that “all of the above” is the right answer.

    8. Ah, but another problem with revolvers are the long heavy trigger pulls. It tends to require big and strong hands to pull those revolver triggers. Is that generally something for women? I would say not.

    But, there’s really no one blanket answer here. For some women, it’ll work fine. For others, not so much. And really, the same holds for men… it’s not a gender thing, it’s issues of: does the person have big or small hands? strong or weak fingers? etc..

    Frankly, the experience I’ve had with women shooters, especially beginning shooters, is they do better when the shooting doesn’t hurt. You give a lady a lightweight snub with +P loads (even just .38 +P) and they’re going to hate it. You give them a big all steel .45 ACP 1911, and so long as it’s not too huge for their hands (easy enough to remedy with grips and trigger adjustment… it’s a 1911 after all), they’ll enjoy it.

    9. Can a .380 even get deep enough to hit the spine? ;-)

    But I really don’t like how they did this. They say they all suck, then they say .45 is the best. Well, which is it? I say they all suck. But I carry a 9mm because it gives me more capacity, the recoil is more manageable so I can get follow-up shots faster, the ammo is cheaper for issues of practice/training.

    Whateva. Just fanning the flames of this religious war

    10. “Our troops in Iraq”… but, and correct me if I’m wrong, but don’t they have to use FMJ? If so, yeah I could see that being an issue. Very different for us civilians or LEO’s.

    And frankly, making two quick hits like that (no matter what the target) when the fur is flying, people are moving, etc…. much easier said than done.

    But hey… welcome to Front Sight. It’s all about their agenda. It’s not horrible, but well… it’s all about their marketing. Don’t forget to Google their links to Scientology and other problems they have.

    Meantime, there are other places to go train that come with a lot less baggage and drama. That said tho, a buddy of mine has trained there and there’s a chance I may go with him at some point in the future to try out their carbine course. I figure, why not… it won’t cost me much other than travel expenses, and I can see what Front Sight is like for myself (instead of just second-hand info). We’ll see…. but I certainly go in skeptical.

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