Guns are not magic wands, and yours won’t always scare the bad guy off.

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There is a perception amongst a large percentage of the gun-toting public that guns are magic wands: one shot and the bad guy flies backward, landing in an unconscious heap at the bottom of a wall or tree.

Think I’m exaggerating? Spend a few minutes at a gun counter sometime. Random samples would tend to support the supposition that the majority of people carrying guns get their information from Hollywood, not Paulden.

This incident from east Texas should serve to remind us that real life ain’t like “reel” life.

There are, of course, a number of unanswered questions: was the good guy’s gun not adequate for effective defense? Was he not able to draw and shoot in time? Did he make an effort to “get off the X” or did he simply “stand and deliver”?

We don’t know. Sadly, we may never know. All we do know is that something went horribly wrong, leaving the good guy six feet under and the bad guy getting three hots and a cot.

Let’s review how to avoid the same fate:

1) Select a gun and cartridge that are suitable for self defense. (At the risk of tooting my own horn, read my series on this topic.)

2) Learn how to be aware of your surroundings (it most assuredly does not come naturally to modern man); study and memorize the precursors to violent attacks.

3) Practice drawing and shooting from your holster; don’t carry your gun in an unaccessible place, and carry it the same way all the time.

4) Break the habit of just standing and shooting; learn to get off the axis of a violent attack. (This is dynamic, not the old PPC target shooting “move and shoot”. )

5) Understand that one shot is quite unlikely to do the job, and that the old “two shots center of mass, then evaluate” doctrine may just give your opponent the opening he needs. Learn how to quickly put multiple, accurate shots on target – while moving.

6) Understand that you can do everything “right”, and still lose. This is a concept that seems to be lost to even the best instructors: luck plays a huge role in survival. Do everything you can to put as much of it on your side as possible.

Be careful, stay safe.

-=[ Grant ]=-


About the Author:

Grant Cunningham is a renowned author and teacher in the fields of self defense, defensive shooting education and personal safety. He’s written several popular books on handguns and defensive shooting, including "The Book of the Revolver", "Shooter’s Guide To Handguns", "Defensive Revolver Fundamentals", "Defensive Pistol Fundamentals", and "Practice Strategies for Defensive Shooting" (Fall 2015.) Grant has also written articles on shooting, self defense, training and teaching for many magazines and shooting websites, including Concealed Carry Magazine, Gun Digest Magazine, the Association of Defensive Shooting Instructors ADSI) and the popular Personal Defense Network training website. He’s produced a DVD in the National Rifle Association’s Personal Firearm Defense series titled "Defensive Revolver Fundamentals" and teaches defensive shooting and personal safety courses all over the United States.
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