The Best Guns for Home Defense

by Brett on July 23, 2009 · 692 comments

in Gun Skills & Safety, Manly Skills, Tactical Skills


Source Life

Editor’s note: This is a guest post from Jon at is an online firearms marketplace that helps users find buyers and sellers in their local market and effect transactions in the simplest way possible.

Disclaimer: This article is aimed at helping those who are not sure where to start their research process.  It is not a definitive guide to firearms purchases.  Some of the information is generalized and all readers should conduct further research before making any decision.

Nearly every American man has heard the story of the shootout at the OK Corral.  Wyatt Earp and his cohorts confronted a group of outlaw cowboys and emerged victorious.  While much myth and mystery surrounds the circumstances of this encounter, a few things are very clear.  Wyatt Earp was proficient with his Colt Peacemaker and Doc Holiday with the shotgun. While much has changed since the days of the Wild West, both the handgun and the shotgun remain top choices for clearing out ruffians who are encroaching on your territory. 

A man has always been the king of his castle and protector of his domain. When things go bump in the night, it’s your job to check on things. What should you grab when you head downstairs? Today we’ll the discuss the best guns for home defense as well as some of the pros and cons of each.


gunsafetyGun safety training is essential for every man.

Before you even think about purchasing a gun, it is imperative that you are trained on how to properly use it. Remember: guns are a weapon. With the right to bear arms comes the heavy responsibility of handling them with the precaution and respect they deserve.

Moreover, a gun in the hands of man who doesn’t know what he’s doing with it is a liability to him and to his family. Regardless of what you purchase, you should frequent the firing range, take a firearms course, and attend or even partake in shooting events. All of these tasks will help you to learn to properly handle firearms.

Here are some resources to check out to get started:

Appleseed Project, a grassroots marksmanship program:

IDPA, Defensive Pistol shooting:

The Best Guns for Home Defense

Pump Action Shotgun


Mossberg 500 – 12 Gauge Pump Shotgun

The general consensus in the firearms community is that the pump action shotgun is the top choice for home defense. They’re relatively easy to use and nearly impossible to break. More importantly, the sound of chambering a hot round into a pump action 12 gauge is sure to soil the britches of even the most hardened criminal.

The Mossberg 500 and the Remington 870 are extremely popular choices in this category.  Both are proven to be extremely reliable for a reasonable price, beginning at around $200.

Ease of Use and Reliability

The pump action shotgun is a relatively simple weapon to use.  Shotgun shells are loaded into the gun, and the pump action chambers a round. Pulling the trigger fires the chambered round.  The next pump ejects the spent shell and loads another round into the chamber.  These attributes contribute to the pump action shotgun’s reliability.


Shotguns are most commonly used to fire a number of projectiles, anywhere from roughly nine pellets used in 00 buckshot up to hundreds of bb sized pellets in bird shot.  At close range and with proper ammunition, shotguns can be extremely effective in defending you and your loved ones.

For more information on different types of shot and their ballistic qualities, refer to this article.

Verdict (out of 5)

Cost: 5

Ease of Use: 4

Reliability: 5

Effectiveness: 5

Bonus: (Sound of chambering a round)

Overall: 4.75



Smith & Wesson 686 .357 Mag 4″, 6 round

The next best weapon for home defense is the revolver.  Revolvers are the simplest and most reliable of hand guns.  One of the major advantages of the revolver is its small size which allows for easy storage and access.  Also, another benefit of the revolver is its price. You can find quality revolvers for as little as a few hundred dollars.

Ease of Use & Reliability

Revolvers are produced in double action and single action varieties.  Single action revolvers require the user to pull back the hammer manually before firing the gun.  Most modern revolvers offer double action operation which alleviates the need to pull back the hammer before firing the weapon. While there are advantages to using a single-action revolver, the double-action revolver is the superior choice for home defense because of its ease of use. When an intruder has entered your home, you don’t want to have to think about cocking a gun.

Because of it’s simple design, the revolver is an extremely reliable weapon. Unlike semi-automatic weapons, it is nearly impossible for a revolver to jam. If there is a round in the cylinder of a double-action revolver, pulling the trigger will fire the gun.  Simple as that. This simplicity is an important factor for use in already stressful situations.

One drawback on revolvers, or any handgun for that matter, is the skill required to properly and effectively operate them. Don’t be fooled by your hours of playing Duck Hunt. Hitting a target, even if it’s just a few feet away, is deceptively difficult.


Handguns are produced in a number of different calibers and the stopping power is dependent upon which round is used. Common choices are .38 Special (also available in a slightly stronger “+P” variety), .357 Magnum, .44 Magnum, and .45 Long Colt.  One advantage to buying a .357 revolver is that the owner can use .38 special, .38 special +P, or .357 magnum rounds as the gun accepts and safely fires all of them.  (Conversely, a .38 revolver cannot fire .357 magnum.)

It’s important to consider that larger caliber revolvers may be more difficult to fire accurately in quick succession.  Unfortunately, smaller caliber revolvers may lack the stopping power necessary to quickly incapacitate an attacker.

Visual comparison of common handgun cartridges. Left to right:

1) 3 inch 12 ga magnum shotgun shell
2) AA battery (for size comparison)
3) .454 Casull
4) .45 Winchester Magnum
5) .44 Remington Magnum
6) .357 Magnum
7) .38 Special
8) .45 ACP
9) .38 Super
10) 9 mm Luger
11) .32 ACP
12) .22 LR



Ease of Use: 3

Reliability: 5

Effectiveness: 3

Overall: 3.75

Semi-Automatic pistols


Les Baer Premier II 1911

Every AoM reader has seen these in movies and TV shows. They’re also the guns that most police officers carry. While semi-automatic pistols might be good for cops, they’re not a good choice for one’s first firearm purchase, at least not when home defense is the primary use. We’ll go into why that is further below.

Two iconic semi-automatic pistols are the 1911 variants and polymer pistols such as Glocks. The 1911 has seen action through two world wars and is still in use by US Special Operations and FBI HRT. Glocks have been heralded for their ease of use and reliability and have seen much use in law enforcement. Quality semi-automatic pistols can cost as little as a few hundred or as much as a few thousand.

Ease of Use and Reliability

The operation of a semi-automatic handgun is more complicated than a revolver.  An operator must become familiar with operating slide-stops and safeties, loading magazines, chambering rounds and clearing jams.  The additional actions involved make it less than ideal for those unfamiliar with hand guns.  This, combined with the skill required to accurately shoot a handgun, means that semi-automatic handguns are the least user friendly of the choices mentioned.

Because rounds are automatically loaded and the design is more complex, semi-automatic weapons are also more prone to jamming failures than revolvers.

Because of the semi-automatic handgun’s lower reliability and more complicated operation, first time purchasers should probably consider a shotgun or a revolver.


As with revolvers, effectiveness varies drastically with caliber.  There are many different calibers for semi-automatic handguns. The most common are .380 ACP, 9mm, .357 Sig, .40 S&W, and .45 ACP.  The 9mm is perhaps the most popular caliber, in use by military and law enforcement around the world. The .40 S&W was created by the FBI to allow for additional stopping power over the 9mm.  The 45 ACP came about during the development of the 1911.


Cost: 3

Ease of Use: 2

Reliability: 3

Effectiveness: 3

Overall: 2.75


This article is aimed at providing a starting place for those that lack prior knowledge of and experience with firearms.  Again, proper education, training, and practice are essential when deciding to purchase a gun.

For another take on what weapons are the best for home defense, see Primer Magazine’s article: Hero Training: Best Weapons for Home Defense.

What are your thoughts on the best guns for home defense? Do you prefer a baseball bat over a gun? Let us know in the comments.

{ 690 comments… read them below or add one }

301 Bill August 2, 2009 at 8:26 pm

I just found this website today and this was the first blog post that I have read on this site, and I’ve been thinking all day about how to respond to these comments. I would have to write a book to explain my viewpoint on guns, their uses, and safety. I collect guns and own several, but I try not to think of them as weapons for defense but instead I appreciate them more for their ascetic value, quality and craftsmanship. I don’t think that a gun is necessary for home defense.

Some people above say that a gun is built to kill and for nothing else and they imply that anyone who owns a gun intends to shoot someone in time. What if someone has a collection of exotic swords they may be weapons but you wouldn’t suspect them of wanting to use them to hurt someone. In my life guns are collectibles, heirlooms, sporting goods, and investments. I understand how dangerous they are but try not to think of them as weapons. I am painfully aware of how they can be misused in the wrong hands.

I don’t really like the way the author of this blog post suggest that you should grab your gun when you “hear something go bump in the night” I feel that people who do this are people who are liable to shoot someone by mistake. But I also think it’s a bit of an excessive how offended and unsettled some people were just because this was an article about guns. However I am not going to put those people down for their opinions because like the freedom to bare arms I also believe in the freedom of speech.

Personally I am less afraid of a person who owns a dozen or more guns and keeps them in an oak gun cabinet, and more cautious of people who own just one gun and keep it loaded on their bedside table saying it’s for “defense”.

302 Tuff August 3, 2009 at 2:14 am

Wow. I expected there to be some dissenting comments, but I didn’t expect so many to be so bitchy. Very dissappointing, men. If you don’t like guns and don’t want to own on, fine. Thats your right. I just wish you would respect my right to own one or two or ten or however many I want since my Constitution allows me that.

I don’t drink and I don’t support drinking. But when an article gets posted about alcohol, I don’t start whining and telling everyone how awful alcohol is and how many lives it destroys (even though drunk driving alone kills far more than guns do every year) and threaten that I don’t like this site anymore. I open up a can of man and move on. I wish some people would do the same.

And if you think the telephone is the best defense for you and your family, good luck with that. I hope you never get attacked in your home. If you ever do, the cops will most likely get there just in time for the clean up. Assuming the call got through, I would have to wait 15 minutes for the sheriff’s deputy to drive out to my place from town to get help. A lot can happen in 15 minutes. I think I’ll just be ready to protect myself, my family, and my property instead because thats my right.

303 j west August 3, 2009 at 10:12 am

The name of this site is “The Art of Manliness” If you don’t like manly things like guns or self defence then maybe you should collect your Barbi dolls and go to another site.

304 Arkanabar T'verrick Ilarsadin August 4, 2009 at 1:36 am

Regarding the article:

Semi-automatic shotguns make the exact same sound, when you pull the charging handle, as a pump shotgun makes when you rack the slide. The pump shotguns are going to be more reliable, and perform well with a broader variety of ammunition.

You still have to aim a shotgun. At ranges inside your home (i.e., under 5 meters/15 feet), shot spread is pretty much neglible. The vast majority of shot will hit in a single mass. And you may wish to consider the FBI standard shotgun: a 20ga loaded with #4 buckshot, vs. the usual police shotgun, the 12ga loaded with 00 buckshot. Recoil is significantly reduced. A children’s model 20ga is probably easier to handle than a full sized weapon. US laws require all shoulder weapons be at least 26″ in overall length, in addition to the barrel length laws — minimum 18″ for shotguns, 16″ for rifles.

Revolvers are not going to have reloading issues in combat, as even a good auto can when paired with bad ammunition. In that regard, they are more reliable. However, they typically are less durable, and will break down more often. Accuracy with handguns requires regular practice.

If you are going to get a semi-automatic handgun with a safety, practice moving the safety into “fire” when you pick up the gun. You avoid firing by not putting your finger on the trigger until you have your sights lined up on a target — a vitally important safety rule for ANY firearm.

Regarding the commentary:

Using a gun for self defense rests upon a presupposition: that if it is either you or the other guy who is going to die, it is right, proper, and just for you to slay your attacker. If you do not think this is so, you ought not to own a gun for defense.

However, this also suggests that you do not believe that protecting the lives of others, or yourself, is important enough to do yourself, but something you ought to leave to others. Never mind that response times for those you are relying upon to protect you and yours varies from 15 minutes and 48 hours, which is often plenty for an unopposed assailant to murder a number of people.

Part of proper gun storage is teaching other members of the household how to safely handle a gun. You need to teach them the following four rules:

1. Every gun is always loaded. You never assume that it is not. Teach them to presume that any gun they find is loaded and should be treated as such.

2. Never point a gun at something, if you do not want to see any holes in it. Point it at a floor or ceiling or a sturdy wall (and most interior walls, especially in modern construction, do NOT count).

3. Never put your finger inside the trigger guard or on the trigger unless your sights are lined up on a target you intend to shoot.

4. Never fire at ANY unidentified target, or towards an uncertain backstop.

Gun defenses: see Granted, this is for the US.

Overpenetration is a worthwhile consideration. This is one reason to favor a revolver — they will reliably fire frangible ammunition. It is also a good reason to pick a set spot to gather your family when you’re facing an intruder. Ideally, they will be behind the gun(s), and a narrow entryway in front of it.

“I bet Teddy Roosevelt had guns, and I bet he could outshoot Chuck Norris with them!”

I’ve watched enoug of “Walker, Texas Ranger” to be certain that Chuck Norris has almost no knowledge of gun use whatsoever.

If you are unwilling to use an illegal weapon, improvise with something that is legal — a hammer, a hatchet, a chair, a stick, a pen, a kitchen knife, a cricket bat, a shovel, whatever. That’s what most “martial arts” weapons are — a kama is a harvesting sickle, a sai is a pitchfork, nunchuku are a tool for knocking rice off of the stalks, and a tonfa is a handle for turning a millstone, and a bo is a walking stick.

Nonlethal weaponry has one very serious limitation: it does not frighten an attacker who is ready to make it either your life or his.

@ Punditus Maximus: I’m pretty sure the studies you are citing (if you can name them) are gravely flawed. Consider reading John Lott:

As to the .45 ACP Glock: the grip is REALLY large. I have large hands and could barely hold it straight and still reach the trigger. The .45 GAP has a grip the same size as the Glock 17 (9mm Para), which I could easily handle.

@Logan in San Francisco (#105): You are fortunate, that your attacker was sufficiently rational to flee a threat. That is the preferred outcome, of course. But make up your mind that if the next B&E is not deterred, that you will shoot him. Otherwise, you take the risk of arming him with your gun.

@Charles from Alberta (#107): In very restrictive US jurisdictions (e.g. Washington DC, New York City) approximately 1/3 of confiscated, illegal handguns are made by unlicensened machine shops. If you have CNC lathes, you have the capacity for local manufacture.

@Jack, #152: Substitute PCP or crystal meth for LSD, and it’s entirely valid.

@Charles, #153: “Before leaving the factory do a ballistic test, store the information. Note the serial number of each weapon.” The problem is that what allows the police to tell bullets fired from one weapon from those fired from another of the same model is a series of random scratches in the barrel. Those scratches are acquired through use and cleaning, and won’t be there when the weapon is new.

@N, #176: It’s worth noting that the main reason women getting injured when raped and women resisting rape correlate so much is because women tend to start violent resistance right after the rapist starts beating them.

@Pieter, #187: “How are you going to explain all those bits of brain and shards of skull in your livingroom to the police (or your kids, for that matter).” I’ll discuss it with my lawyer, not the police. I would much rather be tried by twelve than carried — in a pine box — by six. And I’ll tell the kids, “I wish he’d run away, but he didn’t. Would you rather it was him who was dead, or me?”

“How is your wife going to react when a rapist comes up, she tried to shoot him, but the jerk just grabbed the gun out of her hand?” I’m a lucky man, my wife is a hellcat. And, thanks to her law enforcement training, she knows gun retention techniques.

“How are you going to react when your kid just found your guns and tried to show off at school and wastes his best friend?” My kids know better than to show off with a gun, point it at anyone they haven’t decided to shoot, presume that it’s unloaded, put their finger on the trigger when they’re not aiming it at somebody they’re ready to shoot, or shoot at an unidentified target.

“How are you going to react when the burglar you just shot turns out to be your 16 year old daughter who sneaked out to go on date?” I never ever shoot or even AIM at an unidentified target.

Now, if you can’t handle those things, by all means don’t get a gun. But please don’t suggest that because *you* cannot handle them, I and/or my wife cannot either.

@Todd, #253: As of 1:00 AM EDT, 4 August 2009, there have been 1,428,926 defensive gun uses in the US -=>THIS YEAR<=-. Lethal gun accidents: 278. Gun homicides (which would include all people slain by guns, regardless of police, civilian, or criminal shooter): 7,535. Gun suicides (which are generally replaced by base-jumping suicides when guns are made unavailable): 9,944.


@Punditus Maximus #251: Fascism (a society where everything comes from and depends upon the national government) IS coming to America. Barack Obama is bringing it. I am not cheering.

@Fingersoup: Re #1, over 95% of negligent discharges result from placing finger on trigger/inside triggerguard before deciding to fire. Until you have decided to fire, trigger finger belongs on the frame. A gun you cannot use is, well, useless.

Re #2, teach your kids to handle guns safely. Trigger locks will not stop them. The rest of what you have to say looks quite rational.

@David #260: You are absolutely right, in that an unarmed society is ripe for exploitation. Gun restrictions largely tell criminal elements, "Go here for helpless unarmed victims in an unlimited supply!"

@Eurofag, #284: why do you think that police are so much better able to learn how to safely handle a weapon than everybody else? Is it because of the inherent nobility of the profession?

While having a gun makes gunfire in the home more likely (you can't shoot a gun that isn't there), it also reduces the likelihood of violent crime, overall.

@Bill, #300. The rule for not shooting at unidentified targets or in the direction of uncertain backstops applies even when you are awakened by by a potential intruder. But having the gun handy means you can use it if the sound turns out to be a threat, and you can not use it if it turns out to not be.

305 Brad August 4, 2009 at 2:06 am

The best weapon is a phone? Are you serious? Let me guess you live next door to a police station? One of my earliest memories is of my father shooting one of two men who entered our home with a crowbar and a revolver. I was only 7 but I remember very well. My mom called the police while her, my sister and I hid in the closet up stairs in my parent’s bedroom. They entered and my father shot one with a hunting type Remington 1100 that we still have today and they both fled, but were apprehended at the hospital. The police did arrive about 5 minutes later. Would you like 5 minutes with those men with nothing to protect yourself or your wife or your children. I’ll let you hope, pray and make calls all day long, but I’ll control my own life and not let another hold it in their hands.

306 Peter August 4, 2009 at 8:16 pm

I disagree. The people that are more likely to get shot at are the people not able to defend themselves. Think about it… If you were a robber and you were picking your next target would you choose the man with a 12 gauge next to his bed? Or the man with no gun. Another point is that if you shoot a man in purely self defense and can prove it there is no reason for you to have to go to jail. About the semis. My first gun was a semi and i loved it. The only switches i needed to know about was the magazine release and the switch that releases the slide. On mine when you griped the gun all the safeties were released. As for the shot gun I’d put that last. If the assailant is in your room it is much easier to reach to the night stand release the slide and pull the trigger. If you have a shot gun you’d have to reach over get into a comfortable shooting position cock it and then pull the trigger, plus you need two hands to operate a shotgun. NOTE the shotgun is an excellent home defense weapon IF it is stored in your office or some where where you’d have a warning and a minute or two to get ready. If i wrote the blog i would put the semi first (ease of use) revolver second (not enough rounds/load) and the shotgun last (not versatile enough).

307 Peter August 4, 2009 at 8:21 pm

Oh btw the Glock 21 is an EXTREMELY RELIABLE. Just look up G21 Torture test. A man buried his for 2 years dug it up washed it w/ some water and w/out lubricant bore cleaning or anything it shot 500 rds w/ something like 3-5 miss fires so your wrong about the reliablity

308 Peter August 4, 2009 at 8:29 pm

And I’ll wager that all you in favor of no guns are left wingers right?? If we take guns away from the people no one will get hurt. Am I wrong??? Well think about this how do the murderers, and all around creeps who kill people get guns anyway? Its probably no legally so take the guns away from the honest Americans the ones who just get them to defend themselves don’t have guns. And the guy out to get them gets his from the black market. The honest American is going to die. Where as if he got a CHLhe proably wouldn’t cause the insane kill isn’t gonna be after him hes carrying a 9mm

309 Peter August 4, 2009 at 8:45 pm

o yeah i was disagreeing w/ Tom and Pieter the ones at the top

310 FerFAL August 4, 2009 at 9:13 pm

Jimmy, Insecure men are those that feel scared/threatened by a gun.
A man must know how to handle firearms safely and a man must be capable of defending his family. PERIOD. You lack that ability, you’re not much of a man.
Your inability to calm down portraits you more like an hysterical women, rather than a man. Seems you have a metrosexual idea of a man, this is certainly not the place, according to what I’ve read so far.

Drew, nearly impossible means it’s not impossible. You don’t like guns, that’s your problem. Be a “man” about it and understand many other men, (such as the nice people in this blog) think differently, thank God.

Tom, you don’t like the blog, again be a man and just leave instead of crying about it.

Ben… leave, no one will miss you.

People from the AOM: Congratualtions!
Clearly you stand for what you claim, the rare ideal of a true man that certainly isn’t afraid of tools or weapons, or even taking a life in the gravest of situations. Soldiers and Police officers do that, so do fathers and husbands: Men. Real men.
Don’t let the cry babies that were just looking for a trendy manish style affect you the least.
A man stands for what he believes in, if these so called men feel hysterical about guns, it’s their own insecurities and nothing more.
I hope AOM never tries to change to adapt to that type of… men.

Keep up the good work!

Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre

311 FerFAL August 4, 2009 at 9:24 pm

For a manly website, I must say, there sure are a lot of hysterical gun fearing sissies. :-)

Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre

312 Marco August 5, 2009 at 2:45 am
313 Askilladden August 5, 2009 at 4:46 am

OK, so you think bringing a gun into your house is manly? If you think a gun can help you defend you’re family, you’re delusional:

* A properly and safely stored gun will not help you, when you need it the most (it should be locked away, separate from the ammunition).

If you keep your gun loaded and not locked away when not in use, I have just one thing to say:

* Your family needs protection against you.
* You are trying to defend your family at the expense of your family.

This is just another lesson in how medieval the American culture is, when it comes to protection. It’s like those pathetic kids bringing knives to school, it’s just for protection, right? Why how manly!

There are an abundance of non-lethal protective gear, an alternative not even mentioned in this article.

314 Jack B. August 5, 2009 at 8:26 pm

Thanks for the great post! Every real man knows how to defend himself and his family, and knowing how to use a gun is essential in the world we live in. I’d love to see mre posts like this!

315 Bauer August 5, 2009 at 8:32 pm

To those Brits who think it’s “Oh, so backwards” to own a gun: We Americans love our freedoms and have spent much blood to protect them, going so far as to use our “evil” guns to save your country and continent.

316 Gallett August 6, 2009 at 2:44 am

I don’t truly expect anyone to read this, but…
I live in what has been recently called the second safest city in these fine United States. My average Police response time: ~10 minutes.
In ten minutes, I and my family could easily become victims of an intruder. I couldn’t care less if I lived in a perfect city, with no crime whatsoever; it is, quite frankly, the epitome of irresponsibility, not to mention the antithesis of manliness, to fail to take seriously the safety of myself and, more importantly my family. To me, that means taking the most effective measures, legal or otherwise, to ensure no one I am responsible for is injured in any way, under any circumstances, in my home. Call me a psycho, a loose cannon, or whatever else you will, but my family is my priority. I love peace as well as any man, but I am proud keep guns, among them a 12 gauge, and if an intruder enters my house, I will not compromise my family’s safety for anything. I wholeheartedly support training in firearms; I also support law enforcement (as well as the right to refuse to keep arms), but I wouldn’t trust my family’s safety to anyone else, even if they have a badge. A police officer has no emotional stake in my family’s safety. I do.

317 Askilladden August 6, 2009 at 3:16 am

@Gallett: If bringing a 12 gauge into your house is your idea of putting your family first, you are psychotic. If you really did put your family first, you’d probably move to a safer country, where gun toting intruders are not so common, people living there are not so freaking paranoid, and your children would live in a firearms free (thus safer) environment.

318 Askilladden August 6, 2009 at 3:19 am

@Bauer: How free are you really if you need a gun to protect yourself in your own house? The Americans might have used their guns to protect Europe, but the Europeans are the ones who’ve truly learned to appreciate the freedom that was given to them thru this.

319 Timothy Wright August 6, 2009 at 6:17 am


England is full of cowards. I moved here years ago and am shocked by the absolute lack of courage among most men here. They will go out and get drunk and beat each other up, but to actually be a man, is to own the responsibility of not being a jerk and hide behind alcohol.

In the UK if you hurt the person who is attacking you in your home-you get arrested!

I think this post is great. America is filling up with wussies from what this blog represents.


320 Timothy Wright August 6, 2009 at 6:26 am

I want to make another point. Being in Europe where the govt does everything for you, the idea of personal responsibility is being bred out of people. In the the UK, homeless people are put up in B&B. The great majority of these people are drug addicts and alcoholics. Talk about removing personal responsibility.

This is what Obama brings to the USA-removal of personal responsibility.


321 Phil August 6, 2009 at 7:29 am

Remember guys (especially you folks in England, where crime is rather high now) that by the time the police get to you, the crime is ALREADY IN PROGRESS, and YOU must defend yourself against the criminal/criminals who are threatening you and yours with harm… Since the criminal is very unlikely to allow you access to a phone during the crime, you must rely on luck/fate to know the crime is in progress BEFORE you are attacked (hearing the bad guy rustling about downstairs, etc.)…

Fortunately, here in the US, we’re allowed access to firearms… A firearm, used responsibly, has stopped more crime/assaults than all the phone calls in history… Used irresponsibly, a firearm can cause great damage… I feel a deep swell of pity for those who live in countries where their own Government feels they aren’t responsible enough to protect themselves… That means that when the going gets tough, you’ll be looking for someone else to help you… Help that may or may not come…

And if you’re wondering about my background, I am an active-duty law-enforcement officer… And I realize full well, that despite our best intentions, police CAN’T be EVERYWHERE AT ONCE!! (And for those who think “Well, hire more cops”, remember, when there’s a cop on every corner, you live in a police state) Some of the responsibility for protecting YOU must be borne by YOU… In your home, a legal firearm is a very good deterrent to crime…

322 Matt August 7, 2009 at 5:43 am

I am appalled to see this kind of article on Art of Manliness. Guns are horrible things. I own 5 guns, and they all randomly kills dozens of people at a time. Guns clearly kill people. “The best weapon for home defense is a phone. If bad people try to get in: call the cops.” I totally agree with this, (in all actuality, I am laughing hysterically at your logic) because when someone is breaking into my house, I think that they’d be kind enough to wait until the cops get there about thirty minutes later before they attempt anything. If someone ever breaks in at night, I think I’ll leave my Kimber .45 on my nightstand and plead with them to allow me to call the cops and not do hurt me since the cops are coming.

And to say that if you have a gun you are more likely to be shot is the largest pile off bull that I have ever heard in my life. If you have a gun and know how to use it, how do you figure you have more of a chance of getting shot? If you don’t have a gun, you can’t fight back. Where the heck is the logic? I am 19 years old and cannot begin to understand how full-grown “men” think like this. If someone breaks into my house, I am going to protect my family and paint my walls with the intruders brains. >GASPS<

How dare you write an article such as this? (sarcasm intended).

323 Matt August 7, 2009 at 5:48 am

I would like to add that guns do not make a man manly, but guns are manly. I believe that males that are scared of guns are not men, but pansies, for lack of a better (harsher) word. All real men should own guns. Disagree with me, please. I’d love to hear what you “pansies” have to say.

324 Matt August 7, 2009 at 5:51 am

Askilladden wrote the following: If bringing a 12 gauge into your house is your idea of putting your family first, you are psychotic. If you really did put your family first, you’d probably move to a safer country, where gun toting intruders are not so common, people living there are not so freaking paranoid, and your children would live in a firearms free (thus safer) environment.

Please, tell me where this firearms free (thus safer) environment exists. I’d love to move there so that it would no longer be firearms free. Wait, there is no such thing as “firearms free.” CRIMINALS WILL GET A HOLD OF GUNS

325 Ron August 8, 2009 at 2:02 am

I can’t believe all of the emasculated and confused half-men in this thread denouncing the right of households to forcibly defend their lives and property. It’s a sad day when the first responses to a thread on a blog entitled “The Art of Manliness” are from people aghast at the obvious suggestion that the responsibility for one’s safety lies with the individual. Having lived all over the world in countries both advanced and backwards, I can’t help but recognize this as a troubling omen for the future of liberty.

326 Matt (USA) August 8, 2009 at 6:34 am

I was told once by a man whos opinion i hold in high regard something about decisions, namely those involving life and death. Usually these decisions have options, to be summed up in a very general way they tend to be either, stay and fight or run away. When considering these options, any man with a family I would hope would decide to stay and fight. All that being said, the advice given to me by this man was very simple and plain.

“It is always better to be judged by twelve, than carried by six.”

327 Doc G August 8, 2009 at 12:39 pm

First off, I didn’t read all the comments, I only got through the first couple of dozen. That said, I didn’t see the one critical element in this discussion, pertaining to the US, of course. Our constitution, 2nd amendment, gives us the responsibility to not only own, but carry, a weapon. I quote: “A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed. ”
Please note that the right of the people to keep and bear arms is inherent in the security of a free state. For those of you who live in other countries, I would offer that here in the US things are a little different. We don’t rely on the largess of a ruler for our freedom and security, we are tasked with that by our founding fathers. We, the people, are the well regulated militia, we, the people, are charged with the security of our state. That has been, and will continue to be, God willing, one of the responsibilities that men are charged with, the protection of themselves, their family, and their state. Our duty, gentlemen, is clear. If some of you choose not to carry, I can respect that, you are simply relying on the rest of us to protect you. I am comfortable with that. Talk to your local police, they will tell you that they are there for **backup**, not as a first line of defense. In the dark of the night, I don’t expect them to sit in my bedroom and protect me and my family, that is MY job.

Bottom line, if you choose not to own a firearm, if you choose to rely on others for your protection and the protection and security of your state, please don’t interfere with those of us who take that responsibility seriously. Please.

A long time ago I read a story about 3 kinds of people. There were the wolves, who prey on society, the sheep who are the prey, (that includes women, children, the elderly, the infirm, and those who choose not to protect themselves), and the sheep dogs. We sheep dogs, voluntarily, keep the wolves at bay. We put ourselves at risk to keep the sheep safe. Rather than berate us, I would simply ask that anyone who is NOT a sheep dog, just let us alone. Granted, the wolves want to pull our teeth for that will make preying on the sheep easier. Please don’t let them, don’t support your local wolf. And besides the wolves, always remember, “Politicians prefer unarmed peasants.”



328 Dave August 8, 2009 at 8:06 pm

Well said, Doc.

First, the story to which he refers is “On Wolves, Sheep and Sheepdogs,” by LTC (Ret.) David Grossman. He’s a psychologist. Here’s a link:

There is a saying that “When seconds count the police are only minutes away.” If getting rid of guns were a path to a safe society, then Europe should be really, really safe. But that isn’t the case. Indeed, completely apart from this conversation, I am of the opinion that Europe is entering a period of substantially increased violence. While the people who are bringing the violence to Europe will have no problem obtaining firearms, their victims will not be able to defend themselves. This is not new. It has been growing in Europe over the past couple decades. And in the U.S. the more restrictions that have been placed on firearms and firearms ownership, the more violent our society has become. Counterintuitive? Only if you don’t understand human nature.

The United States is not such a violent place. No doubt you in Europe are regaled by the stories, but remember that the U.S. is one of the largest single countries in the world, and had the most free press. What’s more, that press, by and large anti-gun, has a self-interest in inflating the stories. On top of having an agenda, that being making people afraid of guns, they practice “yellow journalism” to sell more papers. There certainly are more firearms in the U.S. than just about any other place in the world. But if they were made illegal, then the only people who would be unarmed would be the law-abiding citizen.

There are some basic differences between Western (meaning U.S.) and Eastern (meaning in this case European) theories of social order. The U.S. theory of governance, which springs from the Western social order is based on the idea that each individual has a God-given right to “Life, Liberty and Property.” It sounds almost like the line in the U.S. Declaration of Independence, doesn’t it? In fact, the term “pursuit of happiness” was intended as an expansion, or further explanation, of the right to property, and not a new concept.

The concept of the individual having a right to being secure in his property is possibly the most critical element that has led to the progress and prosperity achieved in the United States. A person has an inherent right to keep and protect that which he owns. An inherent principle in that right is the right to defend that which is yours. And that is the source of the Second Amendment.

My first responsibility to my family is to protect them. I’ll do so with whatever means available. My family is safer, and my property is more secure, because I can defend them. Am I paranoid? No. Am I safer than if I didn’t have the ability to defend myself? Yes.

Guns dangerous? Not really. It’s the people. Accidental shootings do occur, but far more people are hurt and killed in vehicle accidents, pool drownings, accidental poisonings, and many other things. Just as I have learned to drive safely, and swim, and read, I have learned to handle firearms safely.

Is a telephone an adequate substitute? No. See paragraph two above. Police dispatch recordings are rife with callers waiting for the police to arrive while somebody breaks in and assaults/rapes/kills the caller.

Is a firearm a cure-all? Hardly. But it is an important tool, and in trained hands, an effective one.

329 steven August 9, 2009 at 7:06 pm

I am an x-cop 8 years service in a small town. The phone call to the police is not going to save you it takes time for any pd to get to the address if it is the right address
and a lot of bad things can happen in the 8 or 10 min’s it takes for the cops to get to a crime!! Most police departments only come into play after the fact!!
So you have to be your owne hero!

330 Shaun August 10, 2009 at 8:10 pm

Well, well… Anyone who refuses to own a gun, to be responsible to use it safely, or rely on other men for their protection deserves what they get. The police have no obligation to protect you. Go ahead call the cops. They will come to discover either the evil men dead, wounded or fled, OR the homeowner robbed, injured or dead. Their job is to investigate the crime. How many people all over the world do not have such great a responsibility or right to defend themselves? The sheer amount of guns in U.S. homes correlated with the number of accidental shootings, illustrate that it is much safe to own a gun than to go to the doctor!!! There is nothing more manly than to hunt for your own supper or protect the ones you love.

Proper gun usage always takes into account what is behind the target. There are no lethal rounds that do not over penetrate AND stop the threat to your life. One must always think about what is on the other side. for exhaustive real world research on this, I submit the “box of truth” website. Here is not only real affects of various rounds on real world objects, but also proper and safe gun handling.

I would submit the addition of a rifle to the choice for home defense. With proper training and usage, nothing will stop the threat of your life like a good .308. Remember, you do not shoot to kill, that is for the movies and jail cells. You shoot to STOP THE THREAT TO YOUR LIFE!!! Thank you for your time.

331 Cody August 11, 2009 at 4:06 pm

Great article i cant believe what im reading on this website from all these so called men that would rather have a phone and call the police than to own a gun and be responsible with it like a real man that understands how to operate the gun efficiantly and safely a gun is not for someone trying to compensate for anything what is more manly than a gun are we really becomeing a nation of pansies for all the men that run this site make it a requirement to even look at this glorious site that you must own a gun come on guys let em klank be some real men

332 Hugh August 11, 2009 at 10:09 pm

I found the artical to be well writen and honest. The thought that anyone would call the police and run to personal safety baffels me. Police are historians, don’t beleive me, have you watched the current TV shows or read the papers or watched the news. The police arive at the scene after the worst has happened and then try to find guilty party. Unless you have a means of defending yourself you are a potentially easy target. Personally I would give my life defending my family, and I will do so with any means at my disposal.

333 benjamin August 12, 2009 at 9:01 pm

Truth is yes guns can be manly. But this website has been about being a good man a good father etc. When your kids finds your gun and accidentaly shoots himself or some other person. There is a problem. You want to be manly? You want to protect your family? Get a knife and know how to use it. If your kid finds it, maybe he’ll cut himself. Minimal injury as opposed to a gun. Now if you know what your doing with that same knife and somebody attacks your family, if your man enough you’ll win. If your a real man you don’t need something as easy as a gun to fight your battles.

334 Dave August 13, 2009 at 12:06 am

Benjamin, what you are advocating is very, very dangerous. There’s a saying that I hear occasionally, and I have dealt personally with cases where it was absolutely true : “Don’t bring a knife to a gun fight.”

Cutting edge weapons are, indeed, very dangerous. Never make light of them. But if you attack with a knife a person armed with a gun, the odds are that the gun will be drawn and probably pointing at you before you start. You’ll lose the race.

And being proficient with cutting edge weapons requires a LOT of training and practice. As important as it is to be trained and then practice with firearms, it takes far more effort to become and stay proficient with cutting edge weapons.

The concern about your children finding and firing a firearm is vastly overblown. With proper care on your part, it won’t happen. If you also properly train your children, the risk shrinks even further. It is true that a lot of teenagers and young adults are killed by firearms, but accidental shootings are relatively rare. Most such shootings are gang-related. That’s tragic enough. But they aren’t accidents.

In short – if you bring a knife to a gunfight, unless you are incredibly lucky, you die.

335 Shane August 13, 2009 at 8:47 am

I liked the article. You need to make your own decision about owning a gun or not. I have owned guns for 25 years and have never had to defend my home, but if I had to I would. The pump shotgun is my personal choice.
I would like to add that there is one other bonus of the shotgun. If loaded with birdshot, like #6 or #8, it can be very effective at close range, but the smaller shot loses energy much faster when going through walls than a pistol round, which makes it less likely to injure family or neighbors in the next room or next house.

336 Flippy Hambone August 13, 2009 at 2:44 pm

Well the sheer number of readers who were shocked and awed about an article about guns illustrates the massive wussification of the male species. I thought the article was accurate and responsibly written, what with the chapter on Safety (and the picture is hilarious).

For those who ask, “why have a gun in the home at all?” Here is an answer:

When you wake up at 3AM to the sound of glass breaking downstairs in your home that happens to be 10, 15, or 20 minutes away from the nearest police officer, and, even after you shout, the footsteps continue to get louder closer (in other words, you know they’re not just there for your jewelry or the plasma TV), your question will, to your horror, be answered.

To the men with the Mossberg 500, there is nothing like a conspicuous “chik-chik” of a pump action to ensure that those footsteps quickly fade in the direction from whence they came.

337 Hugh August 14, 2009 at 1:45 am

I was raised with firearms as a part of daily life, I was taught from an early age that they are not a toy. Now I am full grown and have my own family. Long story short, I have alwayse had access to a gun and I have never had one discharge unless I wanted it to, am I the exception? No, I just had a great involved father who taught me how to be a man, and not a dumbass. If a kid finds a gun in the house and god forbid shoots some one then I blame the parents for not doing their part as well as the kid. Its not society’s Fault!

338 Steve Doran Trail Boss August 17, 2009 at 12:32 am

A gun is an inanimate object it is not capable of thought or action. So to say that they are bad is like saying your toaster is bad because it could burn or electrocute someone. It is the person not the tool or piece of equipment. There are many uses for guns. Self defense is only one and it is one of the best. You look at crime world wide and guns are the least of our problems. Look at the genocide in Africa. Over 100,000 people were murdered or maimed, guess what was used Machetes and Farm Tools. Not Guns. So lets form a coalition to ban all farming and the tools used to do it. People have a right to defend them self in every situation without exception. They should be allowed to use whatever they see fit to do so. Don’t forget the person being attacked is the victim. Not the person attacking. The criminal is the one committing the heinous act the the person who is defending themselves or another.

339 Luke August 17, 2009 at 1:02 pm

It’s truly incredible the range or emotional reactions this stirred up. I read this article a long time ago and never thought twice about it… except for maybe some of the info on the guns… I guess the culture here in the United States is so supportive of guns that it never occurred to me that international readers would be so upset by it.

Nevertheless the ability to effectively protect one’s family is a decidedly manly trait and owning and being able to properly and effectively use a firearm is the best way to do that, hands down.

340 Brian Coppock August 17, 2009 at 8:37 pm

No one ever needs a gun, until they do. In a very large country like the US, with porous borders and more people and sheer size than a police force can effectively patrol, where violent crime is not an everyday or common occurrence-but it still happens- I thank God that I have the right to own a firearm to protect my family. It happens in the greater metro area where I live- violent home invasions where innocent people are often harmed and assaulted either sexually or physicallly. For no reason other than that some gang members or career criminals decide to go out and get some thrills and feel powerful. What kind of Man are you that you do not love your family or value your own life enough to defend them or your own life? How could you live with yourself if you won the lottery that day and your house was picked, and YOU were too cowardly to be prepared for an event that happens, a LOT in the US. Appalling? Yes. But shame on you when you could have been prepared and were not. Police will respond of course, and assuming the nice murdering scum allow you to make your call they will do their best to get there in a timely fashion. Sure, but that’s more than enough time to lose everything you care about in this world. Can’t believe this? Can’t put yourself in my shoes? Count yourself lucky but do NOT deign to condescend or look down your nose , we do what we have to do, because we are free Men in America, and we are by need self reliant. Other points above are completely relevant as well, and deserve respectful consideration.

341 Arkanabar T'verrick Ilarsadin August 18, 2009 at 12:25 am

you really cannot imagine anyone being able to safely handle a gun, can you? Trust me, the gun safety / handling / combat training that police get is not really all that extraordinary, and only a complete elitist would presume that only the very finest of men could learn such things. You can find all the rules you need for safe gun handling (there are only 4) in my earlier post, #304.

@Benjamin, #333:
It’s actually *easy* to teach children to be safe around guns. In fact, keeping children ignorant of safety rules leaves them likely to point and shoot, should they find a gun, instead of leaving them alone. This is one of the things the NRA does pretty well. You can find all the rules you need for safe gun handling (there are only 4) in my earlier post, #304.

342 Nick Reynolds August 18, 2009 at 3:57 am

Jimmy . . . you’ve said your piece about guns. I understand what you’re saying and totally disagree. First of all no “Manly Man” would go by the name Jimmy, he would go by Jim or James. Secondly, he would say his piece and then let everyone make his own decision. Thirdly, you’re not going to convince anyone who doesn’t already share your viewpoint . . . so let it go. We understand you’re afraid of weapons and the use of them. I for one am tired of your ramblings.

343 G21 August 19, 2009 at 3:21 pm

I think their are many sound people here. And a lot of “unsound” people here. Askilladden you are one of the unsound people here. Seriously a phone? If your worried about kids blowing their head off teach them not to. They’re a lot smarter than you think they are. Discipline used in moderate portions does the job. What good is a phone gonna do? Yeah call the cops wait five minutes for them to get there while the robber is taking everything you love. Just a question… are you a left winger? Anyway if (god forbid) someone does break into your home what are you going to do?

344 G21 August 19, 2009 at 3:25 pm

seriously Askilladden gun safety is not as complicated as it sounds…

345 CT August 20, 2009 at 4:16 am

This article has revealed a deeper truth about being a man that I think most readers have missed. As has been stated by many, being able to defend one’s family is a basic criterion of being a man and hence the article on the best firearm for performing that task.
What all the those who fear guns are actually trying to say is that they fear the possibility of taking a life. A firearm is a tool. An effective tool for killing at distance both for food and personal defense and requires only the most basic of instruction to become deadly in the hands of most (hence armies of the world abandoned the bow). At the core, a firearm requires little more than pointing the weapon in the right direction and pulling the trigger in order to harm or kill. It ultimately makes killing easier for everyone.
A knife in the hands of someone skilled in the art of knife combat can kill someone faster and more efficient than someone with a firearm. Most people who are shot do not die instantly. The victim bleeds to death slowly. A well-placed slash from a knife can drain a person of their blood in seconds.
This brings me to the fear of killing and the anti-gun people. They don’t fear the tool. They fear the great potential for killing the tool represents. Becoming proficient with a knife takes time and practice. A couple hours at a gun range can potentially turn someone into a capable life-taker.
I do agree with the anti-gun people who state owning a firearm doesn’t make you more manly. A firearm has nothing to do with manliness. It’s the ability and more importantly the mental capacity to be prepared to end another person’s life in order to protect your own life and that of your family.
Let me just say that if anyone were to attempt to harm my family or myself I would do everything in my power to protect them or myself with any and all means at my disposal. A Sig 226 with a full magazine would be a great tool in such circumstances but given the opportunity a pencil through the eye socket has great “stopping” power too.
“I don’t start fights, I just finish them.”-Anonymous

346 Will August 20, 2009 at 4:25 am

To everyone saying that people only push the 2nd Amendment for their own ends, consider this:

If you told me right now that I could have all gun legislation in the US permanently repealed right now, in exchange for me never being able to own, shoot, or even touch a gun again, I wouldn’t hesitate for a moment to say yes.

Penis jokes, redneck jokes, and “you just don’t want to lose your toys” arguments are insulting and childish, and no real man would ever be so base as to use them. I’m not a redneck and I don’t have a small penis…I’m a Patriot that believes so strongly and fundementally in freedom, that gun-rights is an issue I would gladly lay down my life for.

347 Greg August 23, 2009 at 7:59 pm

Having guns available to people is just a bad idea. Thats how mass killing sprees happen. A kid at school gets constantly bullied, he goes home and gets his dads gun… Don’t say its a matter of where you keep your gun. I’m pretty sure a teenage boy would be able to get his dads gun. Making it easy for a criminal is definitely not a good idea. It pretty much promotes crime. Would you honestly want to kill a man because he broke in to your house, instead of just calling the police. (THATS WHAT THEY ARE THERE FOR!) to arrest this person. Is it really manly to shoot a man, think of his family, their son/brother/dad is dead, just because he made one bad decision. I just don’t see the logic.

348 Mark August 24, 2009 at 1:15 pm

There is nothing wrong with protecting your family. Every man has the ultimate responsibility to protect his family from anyone and anything. Also, a real man will be responsible for it and for who touches it.

349 plentyspace August 24, 2009 at 3:49 pm

Having a gun only makes you less of a man.
I have taken this blog off my RSS reader.

350 Tim Shogren August 24, 2009 at 9:55 pm

Every single person who posted complaints on this article should be thrown in jail. Not only does AoM have the right to post about anything they choose, this is a great choice for all mankind. Shame on any man weak and spineless enough to be too afraid to defend their loved ones. Go find a blog titled the Art of Feminine Behavior, because this blog is too good for you.

351 asscore August 25, 2009 at 5:32 pm

Wow, you sissies need to STFU. This site is called the Art of Manliness. If you dont own a gun I don’t consider you a man, and i would love to spit in your face.

You god-damned armchair constitutional lawyers talking about “the militia” and what you think it means. I dont want to be the gun loving cliche here, but go read Jefferson’s writing and tell me what the militia means. It’s not guns that are unconstitutional, it is our modern military and police.

And whoever said a phone is the best home defense weapon, you sir are a total moron. I have the guns to protect me FROM the police.

352 TC3 August 26, 2009 at 1:11 pm

To our English friends-please explain why you all passed the Magna Carta?

353 k2000k August 26, 2009 at 4:11 pm

Florida state conducted study with a finding that firearms were used to defend property and person 2.5 million times a year on average from an assailant. Thats One person every 13 seconds. There are reams of information available for individuals to look at, none the least is a study that was released by Harvard.

To summarize it, gun control has never increased an individuals safety, and in certain instances, such as in the UK, has lead to an increase in the violent crime rate. Nor does loosening gun laws necessarily make the crime rate go down, though this has happened in the US.

Lastly, I gun doesn’t make a person more manly, nor does not having a gun make them less of a man. However, irrational fear of a tool does make an individual less manly, and real men will take whatever reasonable measures are available to them to protect their property, their life, and the lives of their loved ones.

354 Mike August 26, 2009 at 4:54 pm

Mossberg 12 ga. each morning goes back into gun safe. I have my CHL and carry a gun on my all day. Switch between Colt 1911 .45 acp or S&W modle 60. as back up I have a Kel Tec in my pocket.

Ruger mini 14 was over look. It shot the same round as the AR 15. But it does not look like an evil black rifle.

Mossberg is loaded first two rd. #5 shot, last three 00 Buck.

If you can drive a car you can lean to shot and gun. Once you start shooting you might be surprise how much fun it can be.

355 Sean August 27, 2009 at 9:34 am

This is my first time reading anything on this site. Every one of you who is complaining about this article is displaying the exact opposite of manliness….stop bitching like a bunch of WOMEN…if you don’t like the article, oh well better luck next time. It is every man’s god given right to own a firearm if he wants. All I am reading is Wah Wah Wah you are be insensitive towards our feelings here in England….take off the skirt put on a pair of pants and move onto the next article…

356 Agrippa August 28, 2009 at 12:41 am

The internationals (those from the UK) who have decided to leave this site are, IMHO, only doing what is natural for them – leaving a place men frequent. The purpose of the American 2nd Amendment is to preserve the right of a free people to destroy, by force of arms, their own Government should that Government become despotic. Since the UK is a soft-police state now and that condition has been accepted by the citizens of that sorry nation- those “internationals” are by definition not “men.’ They are serfs.

I will understand that these internationals will be offended by this opinion. Hard cheese. I have no obligation whatsoever to respect either your feelings or your country. I know that crime is London outstrips crime in many large cities in America and is vastly more common than large cities in the US where there are concealed carry laws and the almost unrestricted ownership of arms.

To make one final thing clear – I do not assert this position in some juvenile “my penis is larger than yours” contest. On the contrary, I view this with a very cold, calculating political eye. All through history those that rule have weapons, those that serve do not. The coolie looks up from his rice paddy as the Warlord goes by with his armed retainers. This has not changed regardless of the internet, space suits or instant coffee. Free men have the choice to own arms, slaves do not.

357 Tony August 28, 2009 at 11:27 am

This was an excellent blog post. With unemployment reaching 20% and being in the middle of a worldwide recession; robberies, thefts, and vandalism will only get worse. The vast majority of gun owners DO NOT buy them to shoot other human beings. They use them to hunt, target shoot, and for personal protection. Some of you people need to wake up. It’s not about being “manly”. It’s about exercising our right as an AMERICAN CITIZEN.

“To disarm the people… was the best and most effectual way to enslave them.”
– George Mason, June 14, 1788

358 Scott August 28, 2009 at 11:49 am

I have carried a gun for over 20 years! And have only pulled it once! A guy tried to run me and another car off the road one Saturday morning. He blocked both lanes at the next red light and got out of his truck with a baseball bat and started toward me! Just the sight of me chambering a round in my Ruger P-85 sent him running back to his truck and the last I every saw of the the guy was him burning rubber to get away! So me having that gun saved somebody’s life that day!
I tend to think the founding fathers knew what they were doing all those years ago!

359 James August 28, 2009 at 1:28 pm

The reason we in the U.S.A. have the right to keep and bear arms is because King George attempted to confiscate the firearms of Americans in order to keep them subjucated to the tyranny of his monarchy. We have this right today not only to allow us law abiding citizens to defend ourselves against criminals, but to allow the American people to respond if a tyrannical goverment attempts to impose its will again. True liberty and freedom requires eternal vigilance from all threats and is the responsibility of every citizen. We choose not to be sheep.

360 Tim August 28, 2009 at 2:42 pm

In my first visit to this site, I have stumbled upon this topic.

WOW, there are an awful lot of people here who need to re-evaluate their concept of manlyness. for those of you who feel that a phone is your best weapon for home defense I think theres a good article in REDBOOK you may enjoy!

I for one, enjoyed the article and the information in it.

I suppose I should cut some of you sissy’s some slack. As good of a website as this may be. Some of you guy’s didn’t exactly choose to have fathers who lacked the necessary skill set to pass manlyness on to their young. You really can’t help it if your a second or third generation pansy. If you would like to someday become men, there are several men in the post who may be willing to mentor you. If, their not too busy cleaning their guns, smoking cigars, drinking scotch, or training their own boys what it means to be a man.

361 Hugh August 30, 2009 at 2:04 am

When I was 19 I needed a cop REALLY REALLY BAD, so guess what, I dialed 911 and in a matter of 12 hours yes that was 12 hours they finially arived. And suprizingly the crime was over, yep bad guy gone and so was everything he wanted. Now before you start making excuses for those supermen we call cops, I was in a well populated city, I did call 911 twenty three times in those 12 hours, and I wasn’t in a dangerous part of town. That was the last time I had faith in 911. Would a gun have stopped this from happening? Who knows, but if my life is in danger, or someone else breaks in to my property I will still call 911 and let them know to send an ambulance at their leasure. Thank you Samuel Colt and my basic human rights.

362 Brad August 30, 2009 at 2:56 am

I gotta stick up a little for some of the people in the UK. I recently stayed in Oxfordshire and on the border of Wales and England near Pant. Many of the people there (esp. in the country side) absolutely can’t stand their government’s control and many that I talked to love guns. I actually received trap/skeet lessons from a family friend and I asked him if he had given up his handguns when they were banned. He looked at me said it was terrible and gave me a little look. There are thousands of handguns still in the UK illegally and many of those want exactly what we have here in the US.

Don’t hate on the Brits/Europeans/Asians…. Every country is infected with this weak gun-control type of people. Some more than others. Just look at the man we call President here in the U.S.. Look at some of the gun control bills in IL and Congress he has voted for.

363 Hairy Cox August 30, 2009 at 6:27 pm

The best is a single shot 12 or 16 gage scatter gun loaded with bird shot. More pellets mean more hits and if you can’t hit someone on t he first shot, you shouldn’t have a gun anyway. Most of the time if you shot someone more than twice, you go to jail.

364 David August 30, 2009 at 7:46 pm

Wow. A lot of FAIL in the comments, on what was a decent piece of writing.

I understand that there are a lot of readers “Over the pond” so to speak… so those of you in the UK, I ask you this. Why are glass beer mugs, and knives now being considered for ban? If you are simply incompetent enough to need the government to be the vanguards of your own personal safety… then you have a bigger problem than a blog about firearms.

To all the firearm haters, I propose a simple question; Police response times being what they are – which is slower than “right now” – what measures are in place to safeguard yourself or your family from the danger and harm that can be done in the first few minutes of an armed home invasion?

When an evil bastard is intent on killing and raping your wife, or even one of your children… a gun in the hand available for use NOW, is much better than a phone. All the phone will do is summon the clean up crew so they can file some reports, and possibly prosecute a suspect. Doesn’t stop the act dead in it’s tracks.

So, you stick with your phone. I’ll also use the phone… but I tend to rely on a firearm most of the time since a cop is too heavy to carry around with me.

365 G21 August 31, 2009 at 11:02 am

@ Greg 347: Wow… Teach your kid not to touch the gun. If you can’t do that simple task you absolutely fail as a parent.

366 Larry Kittrell September 2, 2009 at 9:38 am

“I have three baseball bats that I turned myself……………………
Common sense rule #1-Never bring a bat to a gunfight.

367 Allan Carswell September 4, 2009 at 6:09 am

I should preface this message by saying that I love your site. It is my homepage and I also get your emails. Often times I am awake when they arrive (I suffer from insomnia) and read them as soon as my blackberry stops ringing. I was slightly offened that you would include an article that encourages home defence with a firearm. I firmly believe that a real man does not require a gun to defend himself or his loved ones. That being said I do own several, but they are not what I grab when things go bump in the night. My personal choice is a 35 pound axe. I can put that axe anywhere I chose within a 50 radius of my arm. An axe does not present the same threat to my loved ones that a gun does. My younger brother does not ask me where I keep it. When he brings his friends over they do not ask me about it. It will not fire while I am cleaning it. To me it is in everyway superior to my spanish 20 gauge side by side 12 gauge shotgun (though I do love it).
Good, now that is out of the way.
Thank you for website. Sincerely, your site is an oasis on the internet. I tell everyone that I know about it and remind them to “man up”. I am surprised however by a lack of Cary Grant here. To me he is perhaps the greatest gentleman to have ever lived. I look forward to reading many more wonderful articles from the both of you. Again, thank you.
Allan Carswell

368 Allan Carswell September 4, 2009 at 6:16 am

I have just read the comment I posted I posted and would like to apologize the the spelling and grammatical errors. @ David – In my time I have stopped two women from being raped. The first was with my fists. The second was with a spear gun that I use to hunt sharks. They both lived to see what the inside of a jail cell looks like. I have not killed a man, and never will. I use my guns at the club and nowhere else.

369 Riley Denbough September 6, 2009 at 4:10 pm

I just stumbled upon this website by accident. I love how anti-gun people here whine about an article about guns. I expect that from the same people who read about “manliness” from magazines. Bwahahahaha. You’re all such fools.

I agree wholeheartedly with the gentleman who spoke about responsibilities. There are those who are prepared to take action to defend themselves and their family and their neighbours, and there are those who prefer to be ruled by better men. Good luck calling 911 and pray they get there in time. When seconds count police are at best only minutes away.

If only the dead could speak, I’m sure we would hear a lot more calls for self defense options..We’ve tried it the other way. Disarmamant only disarms the citizen while the criminal remains unimpeeded.

370 Jacob September 8, 2009 at 2:15 am

Spot on article, we have a 12 guage shotgun in our home. My dad (i’m 17) keeps it under lock and key and only him and i know the combination and where the storage box even is. I’ve been taught only to take it out in emergencies (aka someone smashing our window in to get inside the house and climbing right in) and never to touch it otherwise.

I regularly venture to the firing range to practice and just to shoot. With the recent break ins (our neighborhood isn’t the best) I admit whole heartedly that knowing a useful tool of protection is in the house, when words and police are useless, is a comforting fact.

Really, if you come into the living room and flick the lights on to see a burly masked man raiding its contents you would be scared. But if you had a cocked shotgun in your hand, I doubt he would try to pick a fight with you or a family member.

A simple “Get the hell out of house” with the tool in hand would scare most individuals off. I will do anything to protect my little sisters and parents, morally rght or wrong.

371 John Richardson September 9, 2009 at 12:44 pm

Well said Blacklist 11, Maybe these European girls need to stop commenting and set back and take notes. Obviously they know nothing about being men. My 12 year old couldn’t stomach reading their posts.

372 Don Mack September 11, 2009 at 2:12 pm

Dont come to America. We are all armed and ready to fight. I personally own a SigSauer 229 .40, a Smith & Wesson .45 rovolver, several shotguns, several rifles, and am looking for more.

373 Dave September 13, 2009 at 9:51 pm

Allan Carswell, your view of an axe, especially a 35 lb one, as an effective home defense weapon is terribly ill-advised. You and it could easily be defeated with little effort. Even if you threw it, the probability of it actually doing any damage to a bad guy is very, very small. If you don’t throw it, then it will be a simple matter for the bad guy to “get inside” it. Then what will you do for a second attempt?

I know what I’m talking about — I participated in axe-throwing contests in college. I own several, and I’m pretty good with them — for what they’re intended.

This tells me that you have no training, and have not studied the issue of personal defense at all. You have just thought about what you would do. You have not practiced.

I highly recommend that you take a home defense course from a competent firearms instructor in your area. Along with the shooting, a good instructor will teach you some “situational awareness.” And THAT is more important than the weapon you choose, if any, to save your life. You may not become comfortable with the idea of using firearms to defend yourself or your loved ones, though miracles do occur. But you will come to realize how foolish it would be to confront an intruder with a 35 lb, axe. It (the class I mean, not the axe) could save your life.

374 Dave September 14, 2009 at 12:30 am

By the way, this 35 lb axe business is more than a little suspect. Few axe heads weigh over five pounds. Fire axes may reach 10 lbs. There are special wood-splitting axes that weigh a little more than that, but swinging around something like that would present more danger to the swinger than to the swingee.

375 SimonJ September 14, 2009 at 4:16 pm

Someone in one of the earlier comments said something to the effect that, “your best home defense is to call the police.” Are you figgin’ kidding me!?! _IF_ you have time to call the cops and sit on the phone with them while the bad guys do their worst, do you know how much damage the dirtbag(s) can do to you, your loved ones, and your property in the time it takes the cops to get there?

I don’t know about you, but I want to be able to defend my family and my home from people who mean harm instead of helplessly sitting by and waiting for the cops to arrive. Sitting by and waiting for the cops to arrive doesn’t seem too “manly” to me. I frankly find it hard to believe that a man anywhere (UK or elsewhere) would find that to be “manly.”

I personally have had two local sheriffs tell me that they do their best, but they can’t be everywhere and they recommended I get a permit to carry a concealed weapon.

I have no idea about local conditions in the UK or elsewhere, but I do know my local area and this post is spot-on. Keep ‘em coming! I love your site!

376 R.C. September 14, 2009 at 6:52 pm

This is entirely fitting in a site about manliness.

It is true that the culture of personal responsibility has been largely eradicated in other countries, but that fact needn’t impede its practice in the U.S. and the other few remaining countries which remain sane in this area of public life.

Gentlemen, one owns (and is trained in the use of) a firearm for the same reason that one knows CPR; the same reason that one has a stash of emergency cash; the same reason that one obtains a Red Cross “water rescue” certification. It’s the same reason you know how to swim, the same reason you know how to operate a fire extinguisher, the same reason why there’s a First Aid kit in your house.

To wit: S*** happens, and, who you gonna call? And if it’s an emergency which needs to be handled immediately and your local 911 response-time is 5-to-8 minutes, what are you going to do in the meantime?

A responsible adult knows he should be standing there with more than his, ahem, gun, in his hand.

In short: If you are a protector — and as a man, probably gifted with upper-body strength superior to the ladies in your life, you should accept that such a gift does come with certain responsibilities — then you are responsible for being able to execute the duties of a protector.

You probably cannot develop the full range of skills of a police officer, any more than learning to use a fire extinguisher means you’re qualified to be a professional firefighter. But that is not the point. The point is: Be as prepared as you practically can manage to be, without being paranoid. Practice safety. Adopt a sober-minded attitude about your responsibility as protector. And if, God forbid, there comes a day you have to make all that practice count for real, you may just be able to prevent harm to yourself and your loved ones.

In the meantime, you’ll have adopted a far healthier attitude about your role in society — about the responsibilities that adulthood brings — than you otherwise would have had, and that’s no bad thing.

Incidentally, I plan on training my daughters in firearms use when they’re old enough. They’re going to be responsible citizens, and they may not have a male protector, professional cop or otherwise, around when they need them most. In my experience women approach this topic with healthier expectations than men: They understand they’re learning to use a fire-extinguisher for a very particular kind of fire; they get past ego concerns quickly and get down to business. This, too, is a sign of responsible adulthood.

377 ScottP September 14, 2009 at 7:08 pm

Call the Police….Wow. People never cease to amaze me, but it definitely shows a difference in culture between the U.S. and Europe. Wait, I’ve heard the same thing said here in the U.S. I live 30 minutes from anywhere and we have three Deputies on duty most of the time in a large rural county. I know that I can’t wait on them, I won’t wait on them and they would be surprised if I wait on them.

Now, as for children harming themselves with a firearm, it’s not an issue if children are educated on the use of a firearm. I am a 4-H shooting coach and I will tell you that with proper education, a child can handle a firearm as well as any adult. At the state shoot this summer, there were over 500 clay target shooters (could be doubled when all shooting sports are counted) aged 8 to 18, male and female. Out of 500 plus shooters, not a single accident occurred. Last year, there were 600 plus shooters…no accidents. I do apologize for not having exact attendance numbers. These children are safer than some adults I have hunted and shot with. How these young men and ladies differ from other youths of this age bracket is that they know the effects of firearms. They know it’s not a video game or a movie and whatever they shoot is destroyed, it ain’t coming back. They have real life experience and they respect their firearms.

I don’t understand why these Euros are freaking out. Holland and Holland is based in London, Blaser is in Germany as well as Heckler and Koch. There are many custom makers throughout Europe. My gosh, they act like there aren’t any civilian firearms in Europe. There must be, I have been invited to bird hunt in England and I have considered a Red Stag hunt in Germany as well as a Partridge hunt in Spain.

Anyways, I will protect my family and I will protect my 2nd amendment.

378 Paco van Tacostein September 14, 2009 at 11:58 pm

If you can’t figure out how to use an automatic pistol, you don’t know enough about firearms to safely or effectively use one.

In fact, if you’re going to this website to figure out what gun to buy: don’t buy one. Go get shooting classes, and really learn the in’s and out’s of shooting. This includes the operation, legalities, and fact that the chances of you getting hurt or dying during an incident go up when you bring your own gun into the situation. Or that you typically get one shot off within a 16 ft. radius of your target before the average person can close the distance and potentially disarm you.

Get the training, and then you should be able to pick out a gun all by yourself like a big boy. By then, hopefully, you won’t be some dumb yahoo with a gun presenting a threat to everyone; you’ll be someone who can make informed firearm decisions and carry them out effectively.

379 ryan September 17, 2009 at 2:07 pm

Good post.

I use a rifle with weapon light and red dot. 5.56 is safer in doors than both shotgun and pistol.

Check box of truth.

380 Bamn September 17, 2009 at 5:41 pm

What you Americans need to understand about us ‘other cultures’ not wanting guns in our homes, and being willing to wait for the cops: people breaking in to homes (in our countries anyway), are not there to harm us, they’re there to STEAL. You rattle on about protecting your loved ones from harm, but can you say you’d NOT shoot the intruder if they were merely removing your television? The chance someone is in your home with the intention to injure, kill, rape, or kidnap someone is next to nil, therefore rendering the gun not necessary by that logic alone. So it sounds like you’re protecting your property – putting it before the life of the intruder, in which case I’d argue life (even that of a criminal) is more precious than property.

Further, intruders are likely not armed. If someone broke into my home, the ABSOLUTE LAST thing I would want to do is potentially kill them by firing a gun at them. I couldn’t live with myself knowing I’d taken a life defending my TV.

Yes – it’s a huge cultural difference. Guns evoke disgust in many of us, and the American way of needing guns since the intruders carry them, pity.

381 Bamn September 17, 2009 at 5:45 pm

Correction to 2nd paragraph- ^^ intruders not likely armed and willing to use their weapon, in my country (no doubt all intruders carry guns in the US)

382 Brian September 18, 2009 at 4:44 pm

I just stumbled across this site and I think it’s awesome! I’m not surprised at the tremendous backlash that this harmless article has unleashed. The era of personal responsibility is gone. Most of the arguments have already been made but I wanted to address a few loose ends.

@Bamn: I would bet that the vast majority of those who own guns for self defense would NOT fire on an intruder to save property and I doubt that anyone is advocating it. The issue is protecting the LIFE and SAFETY of yourself and your LOVED ONES, not your TV. Case in point: My household plan in case of a break in involves hunkering down in my bedroom behind a locked door, my wife on her cell-phone (not land line) dialing 911 and myself with a rifle in .223 trained at the door. Everything on the other side of that door is fair game. If the thief can make it out of the house before the police arrive, it’s his and I won’t stand in his way. Now, if he makes it through the bedroom door, despite my warning that I’m armed, the barking of a pair of hundred pound dogs and the blaring alarm of my security system, and I’ve identified him as an imminent threat, I will open fire. That is MY threshold.

@ those who say there is no way to safely store a firearm and still have it available for protection, thus rendering it useless: There is only one sure way I know of to keep a firearm both secure from those who should not have access and accessible when needed at once – carry it on your person. In my state I’m not allowed to carry a firearm outside of my home or property, so when I get home the holster comes on just like putting my seatbelt on when I get into my car. All my other guns are locked up (I have no children yet, but it’s a good habit to get into). At night, two guns are loaded and kept in my bedroom – a 1911 handgun in .45ACP (if I have to venture outside of my bedroom for any reason) and a Saiga AK rifle in .223. In the morning both guns are returned to the safe when I leave the house. Simple, really.

383 Coyne September 19, 2009 at 2:27 pm

Wow. this is funny. If you don’t like guns then don’t read the post. Duh! And as for me, I’m a well educated 21 year old with a family and more guns than most men twice my age. I have a concealed weapons permit that allows me to carry a gun anywhere other than schools and government buildings. I’m not paranoid or a crazy, i just think it’s an awesome thing I can exercise freely in my country. If the crap ever goes down and some psycho is shooting innocent people at a mall cause daddy didnt hug him enough, you’ll wish and pray there was a responsible armed citizen close by to stop him. I’m not a fanatic or a weirdo, I just love jesus, my family, my country, and my freedoms. If anyone ever comes in my home to threaten that, he’ll leave in a body bag. An armed society is a polite society. Oh yeah, and when a guy breaks into your home and puts a gun to your wife or kids head, use your phone, that’ll stop him. Yeah, that’ll do it. Like I said before, Wow. I like the site! Pretty good post.

384 S Man September 20, 2009 at 12:27 am

I can’t believe some of the responses to this article.

“A phone is your best self-defense option; just call the cops.”

Are you kidding me? Do you really believe that a criminal will wait until the cops show up before they break in? What are you going to do for the 5-10 minutes it takes for the police to arrive?

If you don’t want a firearm, don’t buy one. Criticizing those who choose to protect their families serves no purpose, and just makes you look bad.

385 Aaron September 21, 2009 at 4:27 am

“ryan September 17, 2009 at 2:07 pm
Good post.

I use a rifle with weapon light and red dot. 5.56 is safer in doors than both shotgun and pistol.

Check box of truth.”

I think you are vastly mistaken sir, a 5.56 will go through several cinder blocks. The range of most 5.56 caliber rifles is well over 500 yards, so it is very bad for home defense.

If you had bothered to check out the links provided, you would see that #1 buckshot cuts down a lot on the worry of over penetration, If you really are worried, use birdshot and you can be assured you wont be hitting anything outside your house.

386 Aaron September 22, 2009 at 2:29 pm

I’d like to interject my own opinions on this post. As a police officer and something of a shooting enthusiast, I feel I can share a bit of insight on this subject. From the National Firearms Act to the Assault Weapons Ban, from Australia to Great Brittain, many gun control laws have been enacted to “protect the innocent people from the big bad gun toating criminals” and none of them have been successful. These laws are obeyed by law abiding citizens and ignored by criminals. What people tend to forget is that criminals are criminals because they tend to disobey laws. I’ve been a police officer in what would be considered a farely large metropoliton police department. I’ve worked numerous home invasions, some of which have ended in fatalities, others that have resulted in parents and children being beaten and assaulted in front of their families. I have some pretty strong feelings regarding the 2nd amendment and I do believe that it was enacted at least on some part to allow citizens from defending themselves against the possibilities of a tyranical government. All those “gun nut” cliche’s aside, there are bad people in this world that would love more than anything to kick in your door and find you unarmed and defenseless so that they can rape your wife and/or daughter and drain all your bodily fluids. If you think it doesn’t happen, you’re dead wrong and you could end up dead one of these days because of it. I, and many other police officers, believe that the old saying “An armed society is a polite society” is true. You’re never going to create a law that stops all bad people from doing bad things but if you disarm the law abiding citizens, you’re making it a lot easier for the bad guys.
On the subject of the actuall article that sparked all this debate, I have to say that for the most part, I agree totally. Although I believe that any gun is better than no gun, there are definately some choices that could prove more effective than others.
Beginning with the pump action shotgun, I 100% agree and the two choices given would be my first two choices (especially the Remington 870).
As for the question of which is better a revolver or a semi auto, I both agree and disagree. If you are the type of person who is going to buy it, load it, hide it and never practice or train, a revolver is absolutely the best choice. As for those of you who would be willing to take the time to learn to use your new tool, I believe a semi-auto would be your best choice. There are reasons for why I feel this way.First of all, most of the violent crimes I’ve been witness too or that I have worked on the police department have been commited by groups of two or three and sometimes more bad guys. Revolvers generally have a limited capacity of either 5 or 6 shots depending on the caliber, make and model of the gun. Modern high capacity semi-auto handguns such as my own Glock 22C (fires a .40 S&W) can have capacities as high as 15 to 17 rounds and many others can carry between 7 and 10 rounds. These numbers include the magazine in the gun and a round in the chamber. This doesn’t include extra magazines that can carry additional rounds and can be reloaded much more quickly than a revolver. You may be thinking well my dad’s old S&W .38 held 6 rounds and that’s three a piece for 2 bad guys but……. what if you miss? Many, many gunfights have been documented by the FBI between law enforcement officers and bad guys over the years and among them, there have been a tremendous number of gunfights where nobody was ever even hit. I’m in no way saying that the best shooters in the world are law enforcement officers, however that being said, cops train and practice with their weapons regularly. Most officers will fire more rounds thru their issued duty weapon that the average citizen will fire in their entire life. People don’t necessarily shoot so well in real life or death situations. Most of the time they point the gun and jerk the trigger until they hear the hammer fall on an empty cylinder or their slide locks to the rear. If you are going to miss, even 1/3 of the time, you had better be ready to reload or have enough capacity to make up for your misses.
My next reason for being an advocate of semi-auto handguns is more from a personal perspective than anything. My fiance’, who I am proud to say has a significant amount of trigger time under her belt, recently told me she’d like to have a revolver. I believe her reasoning was “because they’re sexy.” We did some looking and found a hammerless Smith .38 Spec in a nice looking glossy nickle finish with pink grips. She was very excited to take it out and shoot it. She couldn’t hit the broad side of a barn with it. She was let down and we may very well have wasted money on it. This phenomenon is something I’ve seen before, it seems that quite a few people, even people who shoot regularly seem to have difficulty shooting a revolver as accurately as they do a semi- auto. Most semi autos have lighter, shorter trigger pulls and I believe this is probably the cause of the difficulty she experienced. Now, this being said, many people have a completely opposite experience.
My third and final reason is also taken from personal experience. I understand the perspective the article above was written in but I have one major problems with revolvers. Glock doesn’t make a revolver. The reliability of Glock handguns has been mentioned but I’m going to give my own personal example. My issed duty weapon is a Glock 22C. It is a full size, compensated .40 S&W semi auto handgun. It has a capacity of 15 + 1 rounds. It has glow in the dark night sights. I have personally put several thousand rounds thru it of varying quality under conditions varying from hot and sunny to snowy, rainy and cold and have yet to have a failure. It is the most simple to operate, durable and functional weapon I’ve ever owned or had issued to me (I was also a soldier in the US Army). I trust it with my life and the lives of my family members.
I’ll end with this. Please, for the sake of your friends, family members and anyone else within range, if you are going to obtain a firearm for home defense purposes, sport, or other reasons, get training. Any reputable gun store or sporting goods store can direct you to a range or training facility where you can obtain training on how to use your weapon, it’s capabilities and it’s limitations. Learn to use your weapon and be comfortable with it.

387 Mark Steven Czikalla September 23, 2009 at 5:00 pm

Gentlemen, there is no other issue that looms larger in America than our 2nd Amendment Rights. Not even the 1st Amendment. I believe there is not one of you who would disagree. From the comments I’m reading everyone of you has a real passion on this subject. This is not about the type of weapons we use for sport or defense,.It’s about the deception of an oligarchy who will legislate the confiscation ( to seize by authority ) your guns, all your guns! I know some will say ” When they pry em’ from my cold dead fingers”. And I will agree with that as well. But, again it’s the evil deception that we need to look into. While we have a President, and leaders of Executive, Judicial branches of govt. that has sworn to uphold the Constittution againist ALL enemies, Foreign & Domestic, many will not hold to that oath. In Nazi germany, there was a saying, ” All people going to their death, will be deceived until the end”. Read the speech by Alexander Solzhenitsyn, ” A World Split Apart ” given at a 1978 Harvard commencement, It’s genius. He also said, ” To destroy a people, you must first sever their roots”. If the radical marxist have their way they would shred the constittution by hand in your face. I fear that if it got to that point in history, that would be the worse case senario. But i’m an optimist. I believe that the spirit of Freedom that ran through the blood of our revolutionary forefathers, also, is the same fighting spirit that many true Americans have today. But, we have neglected our responsibility to safeguard our liberties. Read the firey speech by a virginia militiamen in 1775 , at the end of his speech he say’s ” Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!” Imagine that kind of talk on the naystream media, he would be run out the back door head first. Gentlemen, stand up! with gun in hand if you must, and tell your elected official’s, Your mad as hell, and your not going to take it anymore. contact the media in your town and let em’ know how you feel. You have that God given right. Do it before they come knocking on your door. God save America.

388 Jack October 1, 2009 at 9:50 am

Simple facts: 1. You will either be attacked one day, or you won’t be. 2. If that day comes, you will either be armed and ready, or you won’t be. 3. If you are attacked and are armed, you will more likely survive the attack; if you are attacked and are unarmed, you will suffer property loss, injury or death. 4. If you are never attacked, your preparation is irrelevant. Now, you carry home owner/fire/flood/auto/health insurance, something you pay for year after year, in case disaster strikes. Buying and carrying a gun costs you ONCE and you are covered forever. Preparation for potential misfortune is the reason for insurance. That’s also what a gun is. How do they differ?

389 Salty Canuck October 8, 2009 at 4:08 pm

I’ve read the majority of the comments on this thread (as well as the article itself). What residents of the USA generally don’t understand is that in Europe and the UK, particularly in the urban areas, police response time is much shorter than in the USA. Conversely, most residents of those areas have no conception of the distances (and hence time) involved in North America.

Calling 911 is not a bad or unmanly thing; it is a useful tool. Think backup. In the case of someone breaking in, calling 911 is the second thing I would do after grabbing my self-defence weapon. I know they can trace the call, and the sounds of a shout/struggle/shots will trigger a pretty immediate response (how long that will take to arrive is the unknown variable, and why one should have a self defence weapon to hand, be it a firearm, a fire extinguisher, knife, or spatha.)

From the reseach I have done, there are basically three types of miscreants you will encounter: those who thought the house was empty, those who think that while it is occupied they can lift what they came for and get away without disturbing you, and those who don’t care if you are home (or perhaps prefer that you are). The first are likely to panic and generally rabbit. The second are less likely to panic, but are more likely to strike out so that they can get away. The third are the desperate and the socipathic, and they are the reason to have a weapon and to have practiced/ rehearsed with it. The first two are usually solos, the third a duo or more (but not always).

So — get a weapon, practice with it, and have a plan for using it. That’s manly!

Recommended reading: any of Massad F. Ayoob’s books on firearms and self defence.

390 Hugo (Surrey, England) October 11, 2009 at 5:51 am

There is a lot of national chauvinism going on in these comments, and I’m only happy to add to it! I’m a supporter of decreasing those restrictions here on firearms that were increased due to some unfortunate shootings, so I’m not anti-gun per se.

However one big difference I can see is fear. I’ve seen commentators call Englishmen cowards, ponies to their police state, irresponsible etcetera. All of this delightful nonsense for not maintaining a small armoury with which to repel boarders. However, I know of none of my compatriots in England who actively worry about psychopathic homicidal “bad guys” staging a “home invasion” (in 22 years I’ve had a bike stolen, last year).

So is it actually differences in environment, in the UK are criminals less likely to stage an assault on property ‘strapped’, or perhaps it is because we are all cowardly and would rather fly the white flag than take the ‘ultimate responsibility’? (I confess to hearing those words as if the speaker was impolitely committing autofellatio)

Now reply that my lack of fear is ultimately hubris in whatever shape, and the only wise choice, as made by the good feller above, is to strap a firearm to your waist the second you get home (and keep vigilant patrol)!

Now I’ll go smoke my pipe and worry about football.

391 Jeremy October 14, 2009 at 6:22 pm

Good day Gentlemen,

I live in Fresno, CA…lot of illegal immigrants, and home invasions are seemingly a semi-regular occurrence here and in some of the smaller outlying towns. Not that all home invasions are caused by minorities, mind you, but statistically speaking…well, we’ll save that for another thread. :-)

My experience of Englishmen (and women) has not been that you are cowardly, but rather more…civilized, perhaps… and as such, you may not have some of the problems we have here in the States.

That being said, I’m not sure I necessarily advocate keeping a small “armoury” in one’s home, but at least one firearm (or some other sort of self-defense weapon if you just don’t like guns) is a necessity for those of us interested in protecting ourselves and our families. Do we have the right as Americans to bear arms? Hell yes, and don’t any of you forget that.

Now, my good sir, tell me more about this “autofellatio” business…

392 Ryan (California) October 16, 2009 at 4:08 pm

@Jack Oct 1st: Thanks, Short Sweet and To the Point.

If anyone is still following or reads this far this late in the game:
Awesome training, realistic attitudes, good semi-auto gun that you’ll be able to shoot (and shoot well).
When you go home after you’ll have a whole new respect for the weapon and your skills with it.

To the article: Great post and thank you!

393 Hugo (England) October 18, 2009 at 8:47 am

You’re a good sport Jeremy. If I lived in the U.S. I’m pretty sure I’d have “invested” in one of those Smith and Wesson model 29s by now!

394 steve October 18, 2009 at 11:13 pm

“The .40 S&W was created by the FBI to allow for additional stopping power over the 9mm.” i would like to point out that this is a false statment the 40 smith&wesson was created by smith&wesson throught a gov. contract to replace the 10mm because it was found to have to much penetration where the 40 s&w is in the same brass as the 10mm but has been cut down in legth

395 steve October 19, 2009 at 11:41 pm

“Further, intruders are likely not armed. If someone broke into my home, the ABSOLUTE LAST thing I would want to do is potentially kill them by firing a gun at them.”

I had a neighbor with simaler logic about ten years ago a man high on crystal meth broke into his house the only person home at the time was my neghbors sister the intruder raped and stabbed to death a 14 year old girl now if that isnt a good enogh reason for you to have a gun in the house with all members of the family trained on how to use it i dont know what is so to the anti gun british fagget that seems to think using a gun on some one who breaks into your house is rong go fuck your self

396 Phil Evans October 24, 2009 at 12:21 am

Stepping up to the plate and being a man is merely a matter of doing all that is necessary to protect your wife and children in and outside your home, besides providing for their daily care.

A firearm is simply a necessary tool to help even the odds at the very least, and hopefully, tip them in your favor in this wicked world when the need arises.

Years ago when I tried to convince a friend to buy a gun, he told me he just didn’t want to bring a gun into his home. Irrational fear of guns on the part of honest citizens will keep them out of their hands, but not criminal hands. If you are afraid of bringing own gun into your home, imagine how fearful you’ll be when a criminal brings his into your home. At that point, wishful thinking will do you no good. Wake up, and wise up!

Those alarm commercials that show a break-in, and the breathless victim running and reaching for a phone to hear the consoling voice of the alarm rep make me sick. Alarms do not always scare the criminal away. They know they have at least 2 or 3 minutes with you before help arrives, and maybe even 15 or 20. A lot of disagreeable things can be done to you and your loved ones in that time.

Fear of guns is based on either a lack of knowledge of them, or a distrust of oneself. The first can be easily rectified. The solution is called education. The second reason may require a pastor or psychiatrist.

Crime does not just occur in high-crime areas, it can happen anywhere at any time. Prudence and wisdom call for all to be prepared.

Phil Evans

397 alex October 26, 2009 at 1:42 pm

OK LOOK, i dont know who founded this sissy “art of manliness” website, but sorry your balls are so small. Anyways a phone isnt a home defense weapon, 10 minutes wasted when the intruder is in your house ready to blow your head off or rip your guts out and your families for 300 dollars! Thats when you grab your 12 gauge, and blow that fu**ers head off, then use your phone to call the police you moron! Jesus Christ! Oh yeah FU** YOU ASSCORE, YOU SACK OF SHIT, REDNECK, GUN TOTING ASSHOLE!!!! GO TO HELL AND GUESS WHAT< SPIT IN MY FACE AND I WILL RIP YOUR FACE OFF!!!!!

398 Harka October 27, 2009 at 10:15 am

The best gun is the one that you are comfortable with in regards to ALL aspects of usage thereof. That includes physical handling abilities and safe storage (got kids?!), ability to actually hit what you want to hit under stress, the psychological ability to actually pull the trigger on a human being and enough knowledge of legal issues surrounding your self-defense laws and legal ramifications of using a weapon.
If you are not completely confident in every single aspect listed above, you should decide against ownership/carrying until you have acquired more training.

399 Hayley November 1, 2009 at 10:04 am

Real interesting to see all these strong opinions on gun ownership – maybe I should start an ‘artofgirliness’ blog to see which kind of gun us girls should be packing. Gotta be a better deterrent than a rape alarm.

400 Brian November 1, 2009 at 8:50 pm

I could only read so many posts and I had to quit. I have a 10 year old boy who can hit golf balls at 25 yards 10 for 10. I have a 6 year old girl who just graduated from bb guns to rifles. Next year the boy will graduate to shooting trap with semi automatic scoped rifles. There is only one place to learn to shoot a gun and that is on the range. Preferably being instructed by someone who really knows what they are doing. It is like any other sport. The more you practice and compete the better you will be. The better you are the more likely you will be able to survive a violent confrontation. There are some additional skills that will be needed if that is your goal, there are many shooting instructors who can help you out. Check out Gunsite, Chuck Taylor’s ASAA, Gabriel Suarez, Fistfire, Massad Ayoob, to name a few. There are many others be sure to check them out and spend your money wisely. The firearms community is a friendly group who will welcome you and help you with training, and guess what, you’ll actually find yourself in the company of some real men.

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