Welcome to the Hump Day Reading List! Here are what I believe to be the three most important articles you can read this week to enhance your personal and family safety:
This week in Defensive Equipment:
A bullpup rifle review
It’s been a long while since I’ve featured any gear reviews here on the List. I intentionally don’t do much talking about gear, because I believe skills, knowledge and concepts are generally more important. Sometimes, though, a piece of gear can be a concept unto itself, and I think that’s a especially true of the bullpup rifle.
To recap, I’ve become a fan of the bullpup rifle for home and perimeter defense (the latter being the focus of my book, “Protecting Your Homestead: Using a rifle to defend life on your property”.) Their compact size (especially measured from the control point to the muzzle) and neutral weight balance make them much easier to maneuver in confined spaces and around obstacles than even a short-barreled AR-15.
(And let’s face it — when we’re talking about defense in and around the home, confined spaces and obstacles are the rule, not the exception!)
You may recall that I’m a fan of the Steyr AUG rifle, and was not all that impressed with the original Tavor bullpup. The Tavor X95 bullpup rifle, however, addresses quite a few of the concerns I had with the first Tavor and appears to be a much better choice than the original. I’ve had so many requests for information on the X95 that when I ran across this review from Richard Johnson, I felt it was a good candidate for sharing.
Whether it’s “better” than the world’s most-proven bullpup, the AUG, is a matter of debate. I don’t think you can go wrong with either one, which is not something I could say a few years ago. Read Richard’s review for the whole story.
This week in Security:
Staying out of jail is part of security, too
Many people have incomplete or downright incorrect ideas about self defense and the law. I see it almost every day in the news, and I’ve shared a number of “negative outcome” stories here on the blog.
In reality, a majority of the bad outcomes I see in self defense incidents come not from a lack of shooting ability, but in the form of poor judgement stemming from ignorance about the law. From people shooting at shadows in their backyard to people chasing petty thieves down the street to shoot them (two stories I saw in the last couple of weeks), all kinds of bad defensive behavior can be found.
That bad behavior can (and does) result in arrest and prosecution, too. The two stories I referenced were both about the charges which had been brought against the shooters in both cases. They thought they were justified in defending themselves, but their actions were outside the law. They will pay the price for their poor choices.
This week, then, I’m sharing this roundtable discussion on Self Defense and the Law. I thought they brought up some excellent points that I don’t always see in such discussions. Definitely worth reading — and I think everyone should.
This week in Preparedness:
Do you have a Preparedness Notebook?
It’s a great introduction to the topic, but I do need to make a few comments. Understand that the author of the article is a big believer in the idea of bugging out and of stored caches of food and equipment. Hence, some of the recommendations I would consider very much over the top (such as maps to hidden caches along the bugout route. Since I don’t recommend such things, there is no need for the map.)
He also leaves out a few things I do consider important. If you’ve taken the advice in the article I shared last week and have started your threat map, that should go in the binder. You should also have photocopies of all your credit cards, licenses, and certificates (front and back), as well as copies of insurance policies and any other important documents. Numbers aren’t enough; put in actual copies. A USB thumb drive with all of this information, along with any irreplaceable family pictures, should go into the binder as well.
Needless to say, with all of that confidential information, the binder needs to be stored in a safe place!
(One final nit-pick: you cannot contact first responders with a ham radio. What you can do is contact people who are in a position to notify authorities for you. It’s a subtle difference, but I didn’t want anyone left with the impression that they can talk directly to police, fire, or EMS personnel on their amateur radio!)
– Grant Cunningham
P.S.: If you’re attending the NRA Annual Meetings in Indianapolis this weekend, I’ll be appearing with my Praying Safe co-author, Joshua Gideon, at three book signings! We’ll be appearing:
Friday, April 26:
- 2:pm at Evolve Range Solutions (Booth 2707)
Saturday, April 27:
- 10:am — iMarksman (Booth 3605)
- 2:pm — Evolve Range Solutions (Booth 2707)
Then, on Monday & Tuesday of next week (April 29 & 30), Josh and I will be teaching a Praying Safe Workshop in New Castle, IN — just a short drive from Indianapolis! This hands-on workshop will teach you how to develop a comprehensive security plan for your house of worship. We’ll be using an actual church for part of the class, giving students a chance to see how things work out “in real life”. Josh tells me we can still fit in a few more people; sign up for the Praying Safe Workshop at this link.
The next weekend, May 5 & 6, I’ll be teaching my Threat-Centered Revolver course (also in New Castle.) This is THE class to learn how to use a revolver efficiently, with an emphasis on self defense. You can get more information, and sign up, at this link.