Your Hump Day Reading List for April 8, 2020

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Hump Day Reading List

Welcome to your Hump Day Reading List! 

This is your refuge from the impersonal Google and FaceBook algorithms that seem to run our lives these days. Instead of a machine deciding what you’ll see, I personally go out and look for great articles that actually have value in the quest for greater personal and family safety.

From all of the articles that I find, I weed out the “fake news” and those that don’t have direct application to some aspect of preparedness. Then, to fight the growing scourge of information overload, I distill everything down to what I believe to be the three most useful articles you can read right now, explain the context of those articles, and identify any bias so you can trust what you read. 

It’s a more personal, more targeted, and more efficient way to get the information you need!

Here’s what I’ve found for you this week:

This week in Defensive Training and Gear:

Choosing buckshot loads

Last month I shared an article about shotgun chokes, and just this week got an email from someone asking about what buckshot loads I’d recommend. Since every shotgun is different, and the presence of interchangeable chokes adds variables to the equation, I thought I’d share an article on how to select a load based on your shotgun and your use.

Luckily, I didn’t have to go to the trouble of writing such an article myself — Greg Ellifritz posted this just last spring, and it’s a good guide to how and why you need to test the shells for yourself. (Just remember that every shotgun is unique, and that you can dramatically affect performance by using a different choke.)

This week in Personal Safety and Security:

Protecting yourself while dealing with small children

The presence of small children — particularly pre-toddlers — significantly complicates self defense against a violent attacker. Incidents where lethal force becomes necessary expose the child to extreme risk, and reduce the options for the adult defender.

I don’t think anyone has thought about this more than Melody Lauer, a mom and defensive firearms instructor. In this comprehensive and well-researched article, she lays out the realities of self defense with and around children, focusing on the use of defensive firearms.

If you have children, this is a must-read. (I’ll add that it requires practice, too — and Melody has some good recommendations about that as well.)

This week in Preparedness and Health:

Scam legal threats are great lures

Using a threat of legal action is a very common — and very effective — method that financial and identity thieves use to take advantage of people. 

As I’m writing this, my area is experiencing a rash of fake phone calls where the scammer tries to convince people that he’s a police officer (usually a Lieutenant), the person being contacted has warrant for “unpaid parking tickets”, and that it can be taken care of by “posting bail” right on the phone. You’d think people wouldn’t fall for something so obvious, but they have and do.

This technique can also be found on social media, and especially in emails. In fact, it seems to be particularly effective that way; Krebs On Security looks at legal threat emails and how to protect yourself from them.

– Grant Cunningham


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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