Friday, November 17, 2017

Monthly Read: Book Review For November

Once a month I will review and recommend a book. I know in this digital world that paper books are a little out dated. Most hard copy books are now in digital form, often in PDF. I would recommend a good well rounded hard copy library in your home. Some of the best books are old and out of print. There are certain publishers and authors I really like. This will be books I like and really only my opinion. If you’d like to recommend a book for me to review e-mail me and we can make it happen. The subjects will be varied but will have to do with the theme of this website, LDS Gunsite. Guns, preparedness, LDS History, security, self-defense, and patriotism are just a few examples. I have a big library of mostly reference books so I will draw heavily from that. Some books may be old and out of print. But most will be books you can find on Amazon.

"LDS Preparedness Manual 2012" Compiled By: Christopher Parrett

Publishers review:
This manual has been prepared for, and is intended to be read primarily by, the active members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

Please Note
The contents of this booklet are intended to assist individuals and families in coping with emergency preparations. However, final decisions on preparation for actions taken during an emergency are the sole responsibility of individuals. No one knows your needs or can take care of you better than you can-nor does anyone else have that responsibility. Information and examples contained within this booklet are provided for illustration and advice only. Therefore, no liability is assumed by the Editor or any of the Authors for the use or misuse of any information or products contained in this publication.

This publication has not been endorsed or produced by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, and its contents and the opinions it expresses are those of the Editor and the separate authors. While it should not be construed as an official church publication, effort has been made to ensure that all materials are in accordance with general church guidelines on food storage and family preparedness.


LDSGunsite Review:
I love this manual because of its thoroughness. It covers a broad spectrum of preparedness subjects and is great reference. I believe in finding good books for your preparedness library and having the actual hard-copy books. Putting together an electronic library and keeping it on a portable device or stick is a good idea, but I also like an actual hard-copy of these things. I don’t necessarily believe in the end-of-world, everything goes down scenario, but I do believe in contingencies. It may not be probable, but it is possible. I like that this manual covers so much. It’s the great variety that makes it so valuable. The Fact that it is free is also a wonderful bonus. There is a LDS leader version that can be obtained by contacting the author. I would wholeheartedly recommend this manual. I'm also under the impression that this manual will be updated from time to time so look for new editions in the future.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Stats, Reality, And Always Being Armed

I was looking around the internet the other day. I came across a website that was written by LDS women. It spoke of the scriptural story of Ammon and those that buried their swords and would rather die than shed blood again. They made a covenant with God and were protected by others. It’s a great story. The writer, a young mother living in Provo, Utah, then brought out studies and statistics to prove her belief that guns were bad and Mormons should stop liking them. Don’t get me wrong, I believe killing is wrong. It’s breaking God’s and man’s laws. But her idea is flawed when we talk of reality. Liberals, progressives, or left leaning people believe if we regulated guns we would stop these bad things from happening. You cannot regulate evil or mental illness. They would argue that keeping guns away from more people would reduce violence. If you did take ALL the guns away you would reduce gun violence, but criminals would not decide to go straight and mentally ill decide suicide is not the answer because guns were gone. Reducing guns would not reduce crime or suicide. People are not criminals or suicidal because guns are available. This woman would argue with her statistics. She even said she believed statistics and studies can be manipulated but still stood by them. Without trying to be personal, that is an educated idiot. Statistics mean nothing to an individual. I know from personal experience that guns save lives. They do so with civilians, law enforcement, and military members. When the police are called because of violence and they are able to stop violence it is because of a gun. Our freedom in this country is because of people with guns. We are a strong country because of guns. Those are facts especially to those of us who were in the military and know firsthand. No study or statistics can change the facts of experiences. She also made the statement that we don’t need to protect ourselves against violence because violence is down. Clearly someone who has never experienced violence has no idea what they are talking about. If this person lived in certain parts of Chicago I believe their perspective would be changed even in the face of statistics. Being naïve because you read articles and studies is pretty crazy. I’ve read that people think locks and lights will stop a burglar or a home invader. These are false senses of security. Most locks are completely inadequate yet we think they will actually keep out a determined criminal. These things are only a deterrent not a defense. She also said if you’re scared to get pepper spray or a stun gun. Clearly again, she has no idea how these weapons work or what they actually do. If she did, she would not recommend them over a gun. Non-lethal weapons don’t always stop a threat. Most of the time they don’t even have the potential to stop a threat because it all depends on the attacker. I’ve watched men get Tasered and hardly miss a step. I’m not saying that is the rule and not an exception, but do you really want that as your one and only weapon? I do not wish bad things on anyone. But sometimes I wonder if people that have this skewered idea that those who have experience could not possibly be right over studies and statistics, that maybe they would change their minds with some of that experience. I know no other way to do it. Logic does not work with cold hard, possibly manipulated, facts. Do not be fooled by the educated idiot. They will deceive you into a false sense of security and keep you away from true ways to keep you and yours safe. Mass shootings are always stopped with a gun. Either the mass shooter coward ends themselves with a gun or the police end them with a gun.
Denial kills you twice. Once during the incident, a second time (if you survive the incident) because you will blame yourself for not taking the steps to train and prepare. Those that lean on studies and statistics are truly in denial. They are under the delusion that because the numbers say one thing and experience says another, that experience loses and numbers win. If that were not true then they would have to face the fact that evil exists and will become more prevalent in the last days. As Mormons we believe we are living in the last days before Christ comes. We talk about it all the time until it comes to disaster and evil. Those are two things that are hard to face so instead they choose to deny. Some will put all their faith in God without lifting a finger to care for themselves. Faith cannot work without works. We must depend on God after all we can do. Quoting numbers is not what I consider works.
Do liberals know why conservatives call them names like Sheep and Snowflake? Yes it is fun and yes it is being a jerk. But it’s out of frustration for your point of view being so illogical. It’s out of frustration that you think a study is a good substitute for real experience. It’s out of frustration that you see life through rose colored glasses and then when things go bad you yell for the guy with the gun to come and save you. That is why we call you names. We’re trying to get your attention Snowflake.
I am probably preaching to the choir here I know. I would hope you can see past the emotional hype of relying on statistics to relieve you of the responsibility of caring for yourself.
If you have a concealed license then carry. Always. Get into a routine of always having your gun. To me it is silly to roll the dice and say, “Today I won’t need my gun…” Carry everywhere you can legally carry. You may find it necessary to carry where you are not allowed. I am not advocating breaking the law but there may be a situation where you feel you need to have a gun with you. But know this, if you are caught you could lose your gun rights and license. So be very careful with that.
Licensed carriers need to be better at being armed always. You can be the first line of defense and you got that license for a reason didn’t you? You probably want to defend yourself and others. How can you do that if your gun is secured at home or in your vehicle? If you’ve taken this responsibility on you should also practice. Training is always available but it does little good without practice. Shooting is a perishable skill.
Like the old commercial for American Express credit cards, “Don’t leave home without it.”
Semper Paratus
Check 6
Burn

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Changing Hearts and Minds: Teaching Shooting

What to do if your wife (or girlfriend, significant other, spouse, mother, for this article I will use wife) doesn’t want you to protect your family with a gun?
I have been a gun guy, shooter, hunter, instructor, for many years. The other night I was a possum killer. (A possum had killed a chicken in our coop.) I like guns and they have been my passion for many, many years. A coworker bought a concealed gun and got his license a few years ago. He is former military so he has a little experience and training. His wife is also former military but is liberal in her point of view. So these two were at an impasse and it was effecting their marriage a little. He came to me and asked if I would teach his wife about guns and try to change her view of them. I said I would teach her safety, how guns work, and how to shoot a gun, but as for changing her view, that was up to her.
I’ve read stories or have seen videos where a person (usually a woman) has been taken to the range for the first time and have been treated pretty poorly by spouse/boyfriend, and instructors. I think the last thing we in the gun world should ever do is try to show off, intimidate, or scare a potential shooter. We have enough problems fighting what stupid people do with guns, what uneducated people and politicians say about guns, without ruining another person who is honestly giving shooting a try.
My experience with my co-worker and his wife went like this.
I told them to meet me at the range and I was a half hour early. I set up some simple targets, just 10 inch paper plates. I brought several handguns with me and even a rifle and shotgun.
The guns I brought were a .22 rifle and pistol, a .380 pistol, a few 9mm pistols, a .38 revolver and an AR and a 20 gage shotgun.
I had the pistols in cases in a bag and had the .22 pistol on the shooting rug. The rifles and shotgun were still in the truck.
When they first arrived we sat on some benches and just chatted. I wanted her to know this is not a high stress environment and to be at ease.
I told her a little about my experience not to brag, but to let her I knew what I was talking about.
I then talked about how I teach safety and even brought out my visual aids that I use. I told both of them the 4 safety rules:
1. All guns are always loaded
2. Never point a gun at anything you’re not willing to destroy
3. Keep your finger off the trigger and out of the trigger guard until you have sights on the target
4. Know your target and what’s beyond that target.
I then gave my usual mini-quiz.
Me: We never point a gun at something we’re not willing to destroy because of what rule?
Answer: Number 1
Me: Correct. Why do you think it’s a good idea to know what’s in back of your target?
Answer: Because paper, cardboard, wood, and even some steel, does not stop bullets and you are responsible for every bullet that leaves your weapon.
Little questions along these lines. Throughout the “course” I continue to ask these questions pertaining to the safety rules. It helps people to know why we have the rules and helps them remember them.
I taught a mini lesson on the parts of a gun, and how to hold, and aim. Some of this was a refresher.
I then had them pick up the .22 and pointed out the controls of that particular gun. I had her load the magazine, and then load the gun, all the time reminding her of aiming techniques and safety.
She shot the .22 and was pretty good. I instructed her to press the trigger instead of slapping it. She shot several magazines and we evaluated her shooting. I then brought out the .380 and 9mm’s. We went through the same routine all the while talking about safety and her experience. I asked about her likes and dislikes. This was turning into a fun experience for her. I threw in some funny stories of experiences I’ve had teaching others and my kids. We moved up in caliber and talked about it. She asked how long I’ve carried and why I carry. I answered honestly and as best as I could. I told her about an experience I had where I used my weapon as a defense. She asked what I carried and why.
I then brought out a .22 rifle. She shot that after a little instruction. I then pulled out an AR-15. She was game to shoot anything by then and she liked the AR experience. I then pulled out the shotgun. I had a hand clay pigeon thrower and we played with that a little.
When we finished I asked her what the 4 safety rules were and she knew them. I then asked which gun she would like to carry and she picked a SKKY CPX-2. I asked her if it was because it was turquoise? I was joking and she did laugh.
I asked her if this experience ended up different than she had anticipated. She admitted that she felt different about guns now. I asked why she thought she felt that way now? She said, “Because I’ve been better educated and I had a positive experience.”
I think that this experience speaks volumes. As gun enthusiasts we need to stop being gun snobs. We need to understand that many people are not as acquainted with guns as we are and that we should patiently teach them. The more positive experiences we can give, the more people we can get who are not hysterical about guns. The more people that will be able to look at guns as tools instead of living organisms with a mind of their own.
As instructors we should be actively looking for ways to make our training less stressful, more fun, and more positive. Guns are a serious business and I’m not suggesting we sacrifice any safety but I’ve been to some courses and ranges that are like shooting in Siberia! I love shooting and enjoy it so much. Sometimes I’ve seen instructors that thought I was betraying the brotherhood of nuclear secrets club because I interjected a little humor into shooting! It’s my passion so let me enjoy it! We win friends and recruit advocates if we teach shooting to be serious but fun. Serious with safety but fun with shooting.
Let me mention jargon. I’ve served on military bases my entire adult life and I use a lot of jargon and acronyms. Shooting is similar. It has a lot of jargon that someone on the outside does not understand. I have a shirt that says “Happiness is zero at 300.” The average person doesn’t know what the heck that means! There are many things I know nothing about. I’m just as ignorant on those subjects as some are about guns. I would hope that someone would patiently teach me or at least speak in laymen’s terms for me to understand. We need to cut out that jargon when training or just taking someone to the range for the first time. There’s no need to humiliate them or to show off our expansive knowledge by using slang, jargon, and acronyms. Be clear in your instruction especially concerning safety.
Caliber is one thing that seems to be the “thing” with guys and their girlfriends at the range. Don’t hand a .44 magnum pistol or a 12 gage short barreled shotgun to a 94 pound, 5 foot 3 20 year old girl! If she wants to shoot it you shoot it first and show her. Warn her and make sure she has a good grip on the weapon and it won’t kick into her face! It’s not funny and it’s potentially a danger. Remember the girl who killed her instructor in Vegas with a full auto weapon? Now he is dead and this poor young girl is scarred for life! How stupid can you be? Gun people have no excuse. Actually most people have no excuse.
Most girls and women are better marksman right out of the box than any guy. They are easier to teach and easier to get along with as an instructor. I remember one particular guy who would not stop arguing with me. He paid for this training! I finally told him I was going to stop the course and give him his money back. He finally shut up. It’s not that he was completely wrong either. But there can only be one teacher because it’s not fair to others.
Make sure if you have not been trained as an instructor that you cover everything. Remember safety first. There are many schools of thought here. I like the Gunsite Academy rules because they are precise, short, and easy to remember. The NRA has their rules that are not bad but I feel more difficult to teach and retain when being taught. Their fundamental rules are exactly like Gunsite’s.
Get a hold of a curriculum and change it to meet your needs. If you’ve been taught you can probably teach. But not necessarily. I’ve heard many who have said that family should not teach family. Especially husband with wife. I think this is absurd. Because you are married to someone does not mean you can’t be patient, tolerant, and kind in teaching them to shoot. I think it may not be for everyone, but most couples may need to re-evaluate their communication skills if they can’t go through a session without damaging their relationship. Some men need to swallow their pride, stop trying to impress everyone, and teach without being condescending and a jerk. Our goal is to arm our spouse and make them safe, not feed our stupid egos.
The topics of a very basic course is:
Safety rules
Different guns and actions (usually a semi-auto and a revolver)
How to shoot (grip, stance, aim, recovery)
We need to change the hearts and minds of most people who are anti-gun. Most of them are not just plain stubborn and only want political gain. Most citizens understand that the police, as good and dedicated as they are, will normally not be able to be there in their time of need. I’ve heard some smugly say we don’t need defense in this day and age. These usually comes from people who have never experienced violence or live in a place where there is little violence. They are under the delusion that it can never happen to them or that it doesn’t happen in this country. That is a pretty crazy notion to most law enforcement. They know the truth about how violent the world is. It seems to be getting worse also. Trying to change people will go no where by insulting and berating them. I admit it’s tempting when they say such stupid things. “A clip should not hold more than 10 rounds.” “No one needs a machine gun.” “There are gun show loop holes.” Yes it’s easy to insult their ignorance. But we should resist and try to intelligently educate them. It’s the only way we can win the fight!
Semper Paratus
Check 6
Burn


Saturday, November 11, 2017

Current State Of Our Lives: Church Security

These are previous posts because the current problems dictate that we be careful everywhere, at school, at work, at a concert, dancing at a club, and even in church.

This is a letter I sent my kids the morning of December 8, 2011. By that afternoon the news of a shooting at Virginia Tech. This information is indeed timely. I present the information to you for your consideration.
I just had an e-mail discussion with an old friend of mine. We met in jump school in the military. He works now for church security but is ex-FBI. We originally were talking about concealed carry but then we got on the subject of recognizing when someone is armed. These are some of what I learned.
These are common behavioral indicators of an armed person:
1. Security Check - instinctively checking and rechecking to see if there weapon is still there.
2. Un-natural Gait - moving unnaturally due to being uncomfortable.
3. Jacket Sag - pistol in a pocket causing the coat to hang unusually.
4. Hunchback Stride - Stock of the long gun protruding from the armpit.
5. Bulges and Outline/Weapon - The imprint of the weapon against clothing.
6. Visible Weapon – My friend had a partner who once called this being over exposed.
7. Palming - Concealing the weapon from frontal view; hiding behind the leg.
These are the ABC’s response
A - Stands for Action; this consists of #2, 4 and 7 gunman signs.
B - Means Behaviors; Gunman characteristic #1, or anything else relating to it like looking to see repeatedly if a weapon is in their waste band. Other suspicious mannerisms count as well.
C - Denotes Clothing the suspect is wearing; #3, 5 and 6.
Applying the seven characteristics of a gunman to the first three letters of the alphabet allows for the rapid recall, and affording a life safety reaction quickly.
Being aware of others in certain situations is something I’ve talked about a lot. Situational awareness is something few practice, but most of us should. Especially in places we are comfortable. I’ve talked about the Cooper color code. Here’s a reminder.
CONDITION WHITE- White is the lowest level on the escalator. In Condition White one is unaware, not alert, and oblivious. This state can be characterized as "daydreaming" or "preoccupied". People in White tend to walk around with their heads down, as if watching their own feet. They do not notice the impending danger until it literally has them by the throat.
CONDITION YELLOW- This is a relaxed state of general alertness, with no specific focal point. You are not looking for anything or anyone in particular; you simply have your head up and your eyes open. You are alert and aware of your surroundings. You are difficult to surprise, therefore, you are difficult to harm. You do not expect to be attacked today. You simply recognize the possibility.
CONDITION ORANGE- This is a heightened state of alertness, with a specific focal point. The entire difference between Yellow and Orange is this specific target for your attention. Your focal point is the person who is doing whatever drew your attention to him. It might be the fact that he is wearing a field jacket in August. It might be that he's standing by a column in the parking garage, instead of going into the building, or getting in a car and leaving. It might be that you have been in five stores at the mall, and saw this same guy in every one of them. His actions have caused you to take note of him, so you must assess him as a potential threat, just as the fighter pilot assessed the blip earlier.
CONDITION RED- In Red, you are ready to fight! You may, or may not, actually be fighting, but you are MENTALLY PREPARED to fight. In many, or perhaps even most, circumstances where you have gone fully to Red, you will not actually physically do anything at all. The entire process of escalating from Yellow, to Orange, to Red, then de-escalating right back down the scale as the situation is resolved, occurs without any actual physical activity on your part. The key is that you were mentally prepared for a conflict, and thus could physically act if the situation demanded.
Unfortunately we can be in white too often. Some places may include, our living room, at church, at work, or at school. Places that are very familiar we need to ensure we are alert and have situational awareness. When someone is out of place, or seems wrong, that’s when we should be ready for anything and applying the ABC’s above.
My friend Choirboy knows firsthand the dangers of complacency. He was caught unaware at a restaurant in Salt Lake City. An armed man tried to rob the register. Choirboy said he was lucky he was semi-concealed from the man and was able to draw his weapon and stop the situation from getting worse.
Remember to keep your eyes open and always have a plan. Stay in Yellow.


Choirboy and Burn's List of Security At Church 8/23/2017 This is a re-visit from the original from 2014.
Security In An LDS Church 5/19/2014

I refer to my good friend all the time because of our history together (we were the only LDS members in our jump school class back in the day) and his perspective (ex Law Enforcement, currently Church Security). His call sign is Choirboy. He and I talk about scenarios and “what ifs”. We were just discussing how LDS members are so lax in their family security at church. It’s true that this happens in places we are very familiar with. Parents that would never let their small children just run through a park or a mall, let those same kids take off in Church buildings and leave their sight. We discussed this at length and came up with our own list of how to be more secure at Church.

1. Lock your car, take your keys
Can’t believe there are people that still don’t do this. I’ve lived in small towns and big cities. Lock your vehicle and don’t leave your i-pad sitting on the seat!

2. Lock the building behind you
If you will be alone or even just having a Presidency meeting, after everyone has arrived, if there are no other meetings going on, lock the door behind you. I know the sign says “visitors welcome” but there are times when you don’t really want someone off the street to just be able to walk in.

3. Always ensure your children are being watched
Your children should be watched by a leader, a teacher, a family member, or yourself! That’s all there is to it. Don’t let your children just run (I know it’s easier said than done!). Use family “Code” words so your kids will know who they can go with. I don’t care if it’s the Bishop’s wife, if they don’t know the word, no go!

4. Always ensure there is a priesthood member (man) at all activities.
I know, this is a sexist thing to put on this list. But fact is, men can do things differently than women. Some men may not be the right match for this job. I mean, it IS security! You do not just need a warm male body. Someone that fills this assignment should have an idea what they are there for. He should be aware of someone who may be out of place or acting different. Some activities men should not attend. So a man at a Relief Society meeting is out of place (Unless he is a priesthood leader or possibly a husband). These “security” men should have some sort of idea what they should be looking for and what they should do if they see something odd. At the least, a cell phone should be in this security guys pocket. Any other skills or gear is up to the priesthood leader in charge. I’ll be honest with you, the average leader will not think that anything more than a priesthood holder needs to be there. I don’t agree. It’s only a matter of time before something serious will happen. That seems “doom and gloom” maybe but even our Prophet says we live in difficult times.
5. Be aware of strangers
Again, the sign outside says “visitors welcome”, so visitors will come. Usually visitors come with members or missionaries. Be very aware of someone who is not with someone, or has not been asked to attend. Usually there will not be a problem, but a Bishop in Vasalia, California was murdered by someone that no one really knew. The killer was a mentally unstable ex-member. This was a random act but particular to the Church. The assailant believed he had been wronged by the Church in the 1980’s. This kind of thing is why being aware is very important. (Don’t even get me started on being armed at Church!)
6. Train your family
This is controversial. Some people do not feel the need for something like this. I feel different. All my children (many are grown and adults now) have been trained in the use of firearms. My wife has been included in this. Also, other weapons have been introduced to them. One of my rules is “Never leave home without a knife, or a gun.” Guns, knives, batons, stun guns, and pepper spray have been taught.
Choirboy agrees with me. He has trained his whole family too. If we are truly a self-sufficient people, we will take our security into our own hands. When someone asks why I carry a weapon my answer is “Because I don’t carry a policeman”.

7. Ensure that doors are locked when the last person leaves.
This seems like a no-brainer but my wife has taught early morning Seminary for years. Nothing bothers her more than to find the building door left unlocked. Now she has to discern whether someone is in that building! I’d like to teach her how to clear a building but that would take a lot of time in a building of that size. We have at times assigned a person living near the building to drive by and check it for lights on and doors locked. That may have to be the answer if your building is constantly left open.

8. Emergency Planning
Make sure a plan is in place in case of fire or other disaster. This is something that the Church has given leaders direction on yet I’ve found it ignored more often than not. You can be a catalyst for this to happen. Your Stake/District and Ward/Branch should already have this in place. If they do not, you could suggest that you would work with counsels to make this happen. Maybe you have a Stake or Ward preparedness specialist that you could work with. Perhaps a High Councilman is assigned emergency preparedness and is not sure what to do. There is some direction from the Church on this that could help. Once a plan is in place ensure that leaders and families know what their part in this plan is and maybe even practice it. Make sure your safety features are in place. First Aid kits, fire extinguishers, fire alarms, marked exits, all these and more should be in place. In the U.S. and other countries these things are checked by fire inspectors. Some areas have more than one unit attend that building and assign the unit not meeting with parking lot patrol.

9. Law Enforcement
Make sure to touch base with any law enforcement that are in your units. They can help with these plans and other security concerns. They can also ensure that someone is armed in your building. That depends on the number of members who are in law enforcement in your unit. We happen to have several.

10. Carry If You Can
If you are a law enforcement officer and can legally carry anywhere, you should carry in church. The Church officially recognizes that you can carry in Church buildings. Now this is also something controversial. I will not tell you to carry at Church. If you are in Utah you cannot legally carry in any Church building. Other states have their own laws that you need to know. The Church’s position is that it is not appropriate to carry in Church. You must decide for yourself what that means. I can tell you that the wording means to me. If the Church wants you to do something, they will say “should” or “shall”. The Handbook of Instruction was not just written flippantly. I know prayer, inspiration, and legal advice was used. So I’m not trying to justify ignoring instruction. One thing I do know, most members don’t know that instruction exists. Is this any reason to “do what I want”? No. I will tell you I am not a law enforcement officer. All my training is military. But I carry everywhere I can legally carry. This is something I’ve thought about and prayed about for some time. Until I’m asked by someone to not carry, I will carry. Here’s my reason and you can take it for what’s its worth.
I knew a law enforcement officer who was a large metropolitan city cop. He has a friend who is a sheriff’s deputy in his county. This deputy was in church when a deranged man came in and shot several people during a service. He told us he couldn’t live with himself if that had ever happened to him. This is exactly how I feel and so I carry. I do so with the blessing of my state, but not with the blessing of the Church. You must decide for yourself. I do rely on my Heavenly Father after all I can do. Does it make any sense that our Heavenly Father, who loves us, would want us to leave it to Him alone? We need to do all we can so God can take care of us when we need Him.

These are “reprints” from previous posts. I try to stay away from this but with the current shooting in a Texas church I decided to post them again. I hope they are helpful and maybe will stimulate ideas and dialog. If you want, I can and will write to your LDS Church leader. I’m not sure it would really do any good, but I’d be willing to influence a leader into changing the way they do things in their meetings.

Thes articles have been geared toward LDS members as is the name of the blog “LDS Gunsite,” but most of these things can be considered in Church’s of all denominations.

Stay safe my friends!

Semper Paratus
Check 6
Burn

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Utah State Firearm: 1911 and John Browning

State Guns

There are 7 states that have adopted a state firearm. They all have to do with history and guns manufactured in the state. Tennessee is controversial because it’s a .50 cal. I guess I should say it’s controversial because left leaning people are appalled by guns. Hammers, knives, and trucks they don’t mind (even though they kill more than guns) but guns? “How could you?” To me that’s overdoing their liberal, weenie attitude toward everything. Of course, that is just my opinion.

2011 Utah Browning 1911
2011 Arizona Colt single action Army
2012 Indiana Grouseland
2013 Kentucky Long gun
2014 Pennsylvania Long gun
2014 Alaska Pre-64 Winchester 70
2016 Tennessee Barrett .50

In March 2011 Utah adopted the M1911 pistol as its state firearm. This gun was designed by Ogden, Utah native John Browning. The adoption was supported by Republican Utah State Representative Carl Wimmer, who said, "It does capture a portion of Utah's history" and "even bigger than that, it captures a portion of American history. "The adoption was opposed by Democratic Utah State Representative Brian King who said, "When we are talking about a state symbol we would do well to come up with one that is more unifying than divisive and this is a very divisive symbol for obvious reasons. This is just a poor choice for a state symbol".
Someone needs to inform Mr. King that Utah has a state bird and flower too. I guess he’s not politically opposed to birds and flowers. I don’t understand the inordinate obsession that left leaning people have with guns. I’m a gun guy, so at least I have an excuse! There are many items that can be used as weapons but guns are the fixation. I think it’s silly and churlish that someone would always equate an inanimate object with evil ALL the time! Drunk drivers kill with vehicles much more than guns yet no one thinks a car is evil. Unless it’s Christine… And thus endeth the rant.

The history of this gun is amazing.
From the Browning website:

“The History of the 1911 Pistol The Model 1911 .45 Automatic Pistol is the world’s most respected handgun, and has been designated by many authorities as the finest service pistol design of all time. The Browning 1911 was yet another revolutionary gun by one of the greatest gun designers of all time, John Moses Browning, the founder of today’s Browning Arms Company.
This great legacy is now reflected in the new Browning 1911-22 pistol. Introduced 100 years after the original 1911 pistol, the Browning 1911-22 is proudly made in the USA, at a state-of-the-art factory located only a few miles south of Ogden, Utah – the same town where John M. Browning lived and where the genius of all of his greatest firearms inventions began.
Let’s spend a few minutes exploring the rich history of the original Model 1911 .45 Automatic, and discovering how the world’s greatest handgun came to be.

Any complete history of the Model 1911 must start a decade or more before that legendary year, and half a world away in the Philippines. It was here in the tropical heat of those islands that US Soldiers and Marines found themselves locked in combat with fanatic local insurgents and the immediate need for an effective, large caliber defensive pistol became sorely evident.
In the wake of the sinking of the battleship USS Maine in Havana harbor in February of 1898, the United States went to war with Spain. Along with an invasion of Cuba, US Navy forces engaged, routed and destroyed the Spanish fleet at Manila Bay in March 1898, in one of the most lop-sided victories in naval history. US ground forces then went ashore to overthrow the Spanish colonial government and occupy the islands.
Continuing the armed resistance they had previously shown against the Spanish, the Moro tribesmen of the southern islands (reportedly fueled by a dangerous combination of religious zealotry, ardent tribalism and potent opiates) engaged the American forces in a long bout of guerrilla warfare that ultimately lasted nearly 15 years. Much of the combat was at close quarters, where the Moros’ long-bladed kris knives were used to lethal effect.
At the time US troops were armed with either .30 caliber Krag or Springfield bolt-action rifles and .38 caliber double-action revolvers. While the .30 caliber rifles proved effective in stopping the attackers, the US troop’s handguns demonstrated an unnerving lack of stopping power, resulting in numerous reports of Moro warriors absorbing multiple pistol bullets while they continued to hack away at the Americans. Obviously the US troops’ morale suffered badly in this situation.
The combat pistol situation became so acute that old stocks of Model 1873 Colt revolvers in 45 caliber, many of which dated back to the Plains Indian Wars were returned to active service, where they quickly demonstrated a much better track record of stopping an attacker with one well-placed shot.
The battlefield experience against the Moros resulted in the famous Thompson-LeGarde tests by the US Military in 1904. In these tests a variety of military cartridges of the day were tested for their penetration, ‘stopping ability’ and energy transfer, using both live and dead cattle at the target medium. While somewhat subjective by modern standards, the tests resulted in an official recommendation “…that a bullet, which will have the shock effect and stopping effect at short ranges necessary for a military pistol or revolver, should have a caliber not less than .45."
About this time two new armament technologies were also emerging - smokeless powder and the autoloading pistol. In 1906 the US Military, under the direction of General William Crozier of the Ordinance Department, began evaluating several pistol designs along with the suitability of a new cartridge that was designated the .45 Automatic Colt Pistol (or .45 ACP for short). As these military tests continued over the next several years, the Colt pistol began to emerge as the clear favorite.
The Colt pistol that was submitted for these military tests was designed by John M. Browning. Without a doubt the most innovative and visionary firearms designer of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, John M. Browning earned the lasting reputation as “The Father of Automatic Fire.” Browning’s design genius was not limited to pistols. Among his other military inventions were the Browning Automatic Rifle (BAR), numerous .30 caliber and .50 caliber Browning machine guns and the legendary Browning Hi Power, the first successful high-capacity autoloading pistol that soon became a worldwide standard for military sidearms.
Based on the short recoil principle of operation, the John M. Browning design for the US Military pistol trials was a magazine fed, single action semi-automatic pistol with both manual and grip safeties that demonstrated a level of durability, simplicity and reliability that no other pistol design of the era could match. In fact, during a 6,000 round test fired over two days in 1910 that was personally supervised by John M. Browning, his sample pistol became so hot that it was simply dunked in a pail of water to cool it for further firing. Browning’s sample reportedly passed the test with no malfunctions.
Since cavalry troops were going to be the primary combat users of the pistol, several specific design features, like the grip safety and lanyard ring, were mandated by the horse soldiers. (Nothing will turn a cavalry trooper into an infantryman faster than shooting his own horse by accident.) The Browning pistol design was formally adopted by the US Army on March 29, 1911, and thus became known officially as the Model 1911. The US Navy and US Marine Corps adopted the Browning-designed pistol in 1913.
The Browning-designed 1911 pistol was first tested in combat in Mexico in 1916. At that time Mexico was wracked by revolution and the most prominent of the rebel generals was Pancho Villa. During the early morning hours of March 9, 1916, Villa and his men attacked, looted and burned the small town of Columbus, New Mexico, resulting in the deaths of 18 US soldiers and civilians. Further attacks by Villa’s rebels in Texas resulted in the deaths of several more US soldiers and officials.
In response to the attacks, President Woodrow Wilson ordered General John J. “Black Jack” Pershing to lead a force of nearly 5,000 US soldiers onto Mexico to capture Villa. Many of the next generation of US military leaders got their first combat experience on this operation, including an ambitious young lieutenant by the name of George S. Patton. While the Punitive Expedition ultimately failed to capture Villa, it did provide the first major combat test of a number of new military technologies such as the airplane, wireless telegraph, motorized truck transport and the M1911 pistol.
The following year marked the entry of the United States into the Great War in Europe. American forces, again under the command of General Pershing, joined with Canadian, French and British troops to push back German forces on the Western Front. In all more than a million US troops served in this worldwide conflict.
WW I, as the Great War soon came to be known, proved a brutal face-off between new weapons and outmoded tactics. Much of the ground combat on the Western Front was conducted as trench warfare, in which small-unit raiding and close quarters combat were common tactics. The Model 1911 proved more than equal to the task, and the powerful pistol quickly became a favorite of American servicemen. During one legendary engagement Sergeant Alvin York used a Model 1911 pistol to stop an attack by six German soldiers with as many shots, in the process winning the Medal of Honor. Lieutenant Frank Luke of the US Army Air Corps was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for his excellent air combat results and his fight to the death with a .45 pistol against a German infantry onslaught after his SPAD biplane was forced down onto a muddy French battlefield. Other new weapons that emerged from the WW I conflict included tanks, fighter aircraft, rapid-firing artillery, machine guns, poison gas and submarines.
The post-war era saw subtle refinements to the basic Model 1911 design, including the addition of improved sights, an arched mainspring housing, shorter trigger, longer grip safety spur and other ergonomic improvements. Collectively these improvements were completed in 1924 and resulted in the Model 1911A1. Not long after those modifications were formalized, John M. Browning died of a heart attack at the Fabrique Nationale (FN) factory in Herstal, Belgium, on November 26, 1926.
As the United States began to emerge as a major world military power, the Model 1911 saw combat service in a number of different conflicts, including many small brushfire actions in the Caribbean, South and Central America. These interventions were considered necessary to provide political, social and economic stability to the region and were sometimes called the Banana Wars.
During this era the Model 1911 also became a favorite sidearm of law enforcement officers nationwide, first in .45 ACP and later in the fast-stepping .38 Super. Among the more notable law enforcement users of the 1911 were members of the Texas Rangers, as well as federal agents of the Border Patrol, Prohibition Service and the FBI.
December 7, 1941 brought the Japanese air attack on Pearl Harbor and US entry into WW II. The conflict represented the largest war mobilization in US history, with more than 16 million American men and women serving in the armed forces in every theater of the conflict. The Model 1911 was the standard sidearm for almost all US military forces fighting on the ground, at sea and in the air. Total military production of the Model 1911 was nearly 3 million pistols. Combined with the millions of Browning machine guns and BARs produced over the decades, it is easy to see that the guns designed by John M. Browning played a major role in defending freedom and crushing tyranny. The Model 1911 continued to serve with distinction at the side of American servicemen for most of the remainder of the 20th century including Korea, Viet Nam and other conflicts.
With the end of WW II, millions of US servicemen returned from combat service around globe, eager to enjoy a new life of peace and prosperity. With that post-war prosperity came plenty of leisure time for recreation, and the shooting sports in America literally boomed! Shooting clubs and leagues sprouted up in every city and town, at colleges, high schools, factories and local ranges.
One of the favorite shooting competition formats of the day was NRA Bullseye Pistol, which was modeled on the military pistol qualification courses as taught to millions of GIs. Bullseye pistol required expertise with a .22 rimfire pistol, a centerfire pistol and a .45 pistol, often the Model 1911. Post-war economics also helped build the popularity of the 1911, as it could be used in both the centerfire and .45 phases of competition. Plenty of Model 1911 pistols were readily available as military surplus or as battlefield trophies brought back by GIs. Pistolsmiths who had learned the gun inside and out in the military began to experiment on how best to turn the 1911 into a target range tack-driver, and their improvements often produced one ragged hole in the target. An entire cadre of suppliers like Pachmayr and Kings Gun Works were soon filling the demand for custom accurized 1911 bullseye pistols.
While formal bullseye competition ruled the roost in the post-war era, another movement was quietly taking shape – a movement that soon came to be known as Practical Shooting. For many decades prior to the 1950s much of the combat firearms training doctrine for law enforcement officers was based on a fast draw followed by unsighted or instinctive one-handed firing from the hip. While this technique may have some application at very close ranges, the hit potential quickly became marginal as distances increased.
One of the first to realize the limitations of hip shooting was a young Marine officer by the name of Jeff Cooper. He understood that in order to stop an assailant, one had to accurately and rapidly deal him a telling blow before he could complete his attack. Cooper’s WW II combat experience in the Pacific and his visionary thinking lead him to develop what became known worldwide as the Modern Technique.
Drawing upon the wisdom of some of the best pistol shooters of the day, Cooper’s method was to use a smooth one-hand draw moving to a strong two-handed hold, then make a quick eye-level sight alignment on the target and rapidly fire with accuracy. While the Modern Technique is adaptable to most handguns, the ideal instrument to exploit its full effectiveness is the .45 ACP Model 1911 – a pistol with the power, accuracy and reliability to prevail in a confrontation. Cooper codified the concept of the Modern Technique in the Latin motto Diligentia-Vis-Celeritas (D.V.C.) which translates as Accuracy-Force-Speed.
Cooper’s prolific writings and teaching on the subject, along with those of Charles Askins, Ray Chapman, Jack Weaver, Thell Reed and others helped shape the thinking of an entire generation of law enforcement and military trainers, and today it remains the basis for virtually all training doctrine for combat pistol shooting. The spread of the Modern Technique was also the major factor in the transition of American law enforcement from the revolver to the autoloading pistol during the 1980s and 1990s.
Cooper also played a major role in the creation of the International Practical Shooting Confederation in 1976 and served as its first president. IPSC created a framework for organized competition and quickly became the competition format of choice for hundreds of thousands of avid pistol shooters. Offshoots of the formalized practical shooting sports have blossomed in recent years, including Cowboy Action Shooting, IDPA, USPSA 3-Gun and many others.
An entire industry based on parts, accessories, custom gunsmithing, training centers and formal competition has grown up around the Model 1911, and today the 1911 design remains the world-wide standard for competition pistols. In fact, the emergence of the Modern Technique, practical shooting and concealed carry have resulted in a virtual rebirth of interest in the 1911 pistol design.
With the growth of practical shooting came a greater awareness of personal security and taking responsibility for one’s own safety. Rising crime rates in the 1980s and 1990s helped spark a broad national movement towards civilian concealed carry licensing. Today almost every state in the Union offers some form of civilian licensing to carry a concealed firearm, and for many of these millions of CCW licensees the choice is some form of the Model 1911, often in a compact version for easier carry and concealment.
In 1985 the US Military adopted the 9mm M9 pistol as their standard sidearm in hopes of creating greater ammunition interoperability with its NATO allies. Hundreds of thousands of servicemen and servicewomen dutifully turned in their Model 1911 pistols, and no doubt many a tear was shed in memory of the 1911’s seven decades of service.
Alas, the painful combat lessons of the past now came full circle. The marginal stopping ability of the 9mm ball cartridge is no more potent today as when it was first introduced in 1902. In light of this, the US Military has again turned to the venerable Model 1911 and the .45 ACP to arm their special operations troops. Two more Medals of Honor were awarded in 1993 to US Delta Force operators, Master Sergeant Gary Gordon and Sergeant First Class Randall Shughart, for their actions in Somalia, which were later immortalized in the book and motion picture “Black Hawk Down.” After Shughart was fatally wounded, Gordon continued his fight to the death using a 1911 to protect one of the wounded helicopter pilots.
Today, when America’s finest go into harm’s way after radical terrorists, chances are a Model 1911 is riding on their hip or MOLLE gear. After 100 years the Model 1911 design is more popular than ever, and remains the standard by which all other autoloading pistols is measured.
We think John M. Browning would like that.”
John Browning was born on January 21, 1855. The son of a talented gunsmith, John Browning began experimenting with his own gun designs as a young man. When he was 24 years old, he received his first patent, for a rifle that Winchester manufactured as its Single Shot Model 1885. Impressed by the young man’s inventiveness, Winchester asked Browning if he could design a lever-action-repeating shotgun. Browning could and did, but his efforts convinced him that a pump-action mechanism would work better, and he patented his first pump model shotgun in 1888.
John was always an active member of the LDS Church, including serving a mission to Georgia beginning March 28th 1887. John was baptized into the Church 18 September 1867. He died November 25th 1926 Liège, Belgium.
The gun world owes a great debt to John Browning. He is sometimes referred to as the “father of modern firearms.” Many of the guns manufactured by companies whose names evoke the history of the American West-Winchester, Colt, Remington, and Savage-were actually based on John Browning’s designs.
During a career spanning more than five decades, Browning’s guns went from being the classic weapons of the American West to deadly tools of world wars. Amazingly, since Browning’s death in 1926, there have been no further fundamental changes in the modern firearm industry.
Semper Paratus
Check 6
Burn

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Some Phone Apps To Consider

There are several apps available for your phone or pad that have great preparedness applications. I’d like to review three.
The first is an app called “First Aid” and it is produced by the American Red Cross. This is a great source for first aid information. I like the idea of having this information with me as long as I have a phone and battery power.
Accidents happen, and honestly no matter what your training may be, we don’t always know what to do with everything. That said, the Red Cross’ official First Aid app provides simple step-by-step instructions to guide you through everyday first aid scenarios. It covers asthma attacks to broken bones. It also supplies you with a host of informative quizzes and safety tips regarding natural disasters such as hurricanes, and given that it preloads all content in advance, you never have to worry about whether you have a tower signal. The app puts expert advice for everyday emergencies in your hands. It has videos, and simple step-by-step advice.

Features
• Easy to use Spanish language toggle to switch translation directly inside the app.
• Simple step-by-step instructions guide you through everyday first aid scenarios.
• Fully integrated with 9-1-1 so you can call EMS from the app at any time.
• Videos and animations make learning first aid fun and easy.
• Safety tips for everything, from severe winter weather to hurricanes, earthquakes and tornadoes help you prepare for emergencies.
• Preloaded content means you have instant access to all safety information any time, even without reception or an Internet connection.
• Interactive quizzes allow you to earn badges that you can share with your friends and show off your lifesaving knowledge.
I like this app. It is done well and has a lot of information at your fingertips. I would recommend it.
The app is called First Aid by American Red Cross and is available in iOS (iPhone) or Android operating systems.
The second app is called Disaster Alert (PDC).
Disaster Alert is an app from the Pacific Disaster Center (PDC). It displays information on current global disasters, including droughts, floods, wildfires, earthquakes, and heavy storms.
An overview of natural disasters is shown on an interactive world map. You can click on the disaster alert symbol to receive a summary of the current event status, when it was first reported, and when it was last updated. By Active Hazards the developers mean current and real-time incidents that could be “potentially hazardous to people, property or assets.” This includes everything from hurricanes, earthquakes, and tsunamis to areas of drought or serious health risk.
For more information, you can visit a page dedicated to the event on the PDC website by clicking the blue arrow symbol.
Like the First Aid app this app is available in iOS (iPhone) or Android operating systems.
I can also recommend this application. I have a separate app for earthquakes. It’s called Quake Feed Earthquakes. It only covers earthquakes though and I wanted more.
Last but not least is The Free Shot Timer. This is a shot timer for shooting at the range.
The Free Shot Timer is the best shot timer app for multiple reasons. The best part is that it’s free. The Free Shot Timer App is easy to install on your iPhone, making it one less gadget you have to remember to bring to the shooting range. The display is very easy to read and utilize, and it uses different colors and sizes of numbers to quickly portray data and comparisons for the user. The start can be delayed from zero to four seconds, and there’s even a random start that buzzes two to five seconds after you press the start button. All of your shooting data can be saved, and you can even email results to yourself or others. If you have AirPrint, then you can also print your data right from your phone! The Free Shot Timer is a fantastic app that’s perfect for anybody who is new to collecting data on their shooting. If you’re simply someone who wants to enhance their skills and know more about their abilities, then a free app may be a much better choice than shelling out over $100 for a manual shot timer. Obviously, if you’re a serious competitor, then a shooting app probably is not the best buy you could make. However, I think the Free Shooting Timer app is the timer with the easiest display to read and the most memory storage. Unfortunately this app is only available in iOS so it’s limited to an iPhone.
Information is always important in being prepared. These apps can help.
Semper Paratus
Check 6
Burn