Reflecting on my experiences carrying a gun daily for near a couple of decades, I figured out that I’ve learned a couple of things. Here’s a short list.

1. How clueless the average person is.

I don’t mean this in an offensive way at all, I mean it quite literally. When you first start carrying, you manage to convince yourself that every person you see in public will spot your gun. After a couple of weeks, you begin to realize that people are far more immersed in their phones than your appearance. The folks that do make eye contact with you almost never look for telltale bulges around your waist.

2. How quickly anti-gun folks can change their views—at least temporarily.

My wife was out for dinner one night with some friends, some of whom are decidedly anti-gun and can’t understand why someone would carry. Walking to the car after dinner, the group noticed a couple of suspicious characters hanging around a dark corner of the parking lot. Looking to my wife, the group asked the same question, “You do have your gun with you, right?”

Moral of the story: everyone loves a sheepdog.

3. The value of a good belt.

Physical fitness starts with a strong core. A skyscraper requires a deep foundation. Carrying a gun safely and securely requires a proper belt. A quality gun belt, like the Galco SB-2, will hold the weight of your gun, keep it close to your body, and prevent the holster from flopping around due to belt flex. If you’re having trouble with a holster, make sure you’ve got a proper belt underneath.

4. The value of a good holster.

Once you have a solid foundation with a proper belt, you need to continue building on that with equal quality. A good holster does three things:

  • A holster helps you access your gun quickly, easily, and safely. It will hold your gun in a fixed position. If you ever need to reach for your gun, it will be exactly where you expect. It won’t move around and you won’t have to constantly check the position of your gun.
  • It protects the trigger. By necessity, you may have to find and grip your gun quickly while under stress. A safe holster keeps the trigger completely protected until you have a proper, and safe, grip. Many things in your daily routine (chairs, seat belts, keys, etc.) have the potential to push through clothing hard enough to move the trigger.
  • It ensures that your gun remains under your control. Retention features in a holster aren’t just for law enforcement professionals. Make sure you invest in a holster that will keep your gun secure through your range of daily activity whether that includes getting in and out of cars, working outside or any other sort of physical activity.
It doesn't look like much, but the extra weight of a couple of loaded magazines really adds up during a long day carrying.
It doesn’t look like much, but the extra weight of a couple of loaded magazines really adds up during a long day carrying.

5. Bending over can get you in trouble—in more ways than one.

A number of carry methods can cause printing dysfunction if you’re not careful. Most belt holsters, inside or outside the waistband, can cause the gun grip to press against the back of your shorts or cover garment if you lean forward too much. If you carry a gun daily, you quickly learn how to reach low things by bending your knees and keeping your back straight.

6. How many other people carry concealed.

Once you start carrying, you tend to look for other people who are also carrying. Trying to spot other concealed carriers is a great way to pass time. Better yet, make this activity a self-improvement drill. If you can spot others carrying, consider what tipped you off to their armed status, and don’t make the same mistake yourself. For example, my daughter spotted a motorcyclist on the highway the other day using an inside the waistband holster covered by a long shirt. Cruising along with the wind in his face caused his shirt to ride up to his chest, leaving his gun exposed for all to see.

7. Guns are heavy.

Actually, even light guns get heavy. Because marketing materials of pocket guns always show unloaded weight, you get surprised when you load that sucker up with 10 or more cartridges. For example, a 9x19mm cartridge weighs about .416 ounces and a single .45 ACP weighs just over .75 ounces. To put this in perspective, a roll of nickels weighs about 7.05 ounces, so each magazine full of ammo weighs something in the vicinity of a roll of nickels, depending on the caliber. When you carry a loaded gun and a couple of spare magazines, you’re talking about serious pocket change!

8. Heroism is overrated.

On TV and in the movies, the good guy does their thing and then a happy ending ensues. The credits roll, and Ben Cartright rides home for a fine steak dinner. In reality, doing the noble thing can easily become your worst nightmare. Even after justifiable self-defense shootings, ambitious prosecutors or family members of the perpetrator can take your life savings—and freedom—in the post-event courtroom.

9. It’s hard to beat a traditional belt holster.

Regardless of whether you prefer IWB or OWB holsters, on-the-belt carry is had to beat for gun security and quick accessibility. Is it a pain to conceal? Yes. Is it comfortable? Not necessarily. Do you have to adjust your dress code? Most likely. But when it comes to attributes designed to save your life in an emergency, it’s tough to beat.

10. You don’t know anything.

The longer you carry, the more you learn. The more you learn, the more you realize how much you don’t know. Owning a gun won’t necessarily protect you from crime. Going to the range to practice doesn’t necessarily mean you will prevail in a fight. Carrying a gun is literally a matter of life or death, so make it a point to learn something new each and every day.

Tom McHale is the author of the Insanely Practical Guides book series that guides new and experienced shooters alike in a fun, approachable, and practical way. His books are available in print and eBook format on Amazon.

Images by Tom McHale

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125 thoughts on “10 Things You Learn by Carrying a Gun Every Day

      1. He might be a dolt, but he’s a correct dolt. You on the other hand, are an idiot not to already understand his point.

    1. When I was a firefighter, we trained continually. If the chief thought we knew it all, we then, were a liability and would ask us to leave…If you think you know everything…you are a FOOL…Molon Labe

      1. One of the golden rules of firefighting… train like you fight, fight like you train. Works with firearms, too.

    2. Sir, Just like doctors we are always learning and improving our skill sets. Two examples are recent changes in gripping a pistol with the “thumbs forward grip” and and switching from the weaver to isosceles stance. If your not aware of these look them up they will greatly improve your shooting or remain ignorant?

      1. its better, in my opinion, to know and practice shooting in both stances, and actually as many different stances as possible. Where one stance is appropriate, many will be inappropriate.

      2. The Isosceles is the only stance you need to know. We call it evolution and the weaver as like prehistoric?

      3. Pretty hard to shoot around a hard corner without exposing a bunch of your pumpkin if you only know how to shoot Isosceles. What about under a car around the tire. Easily done, but you can use a lot more cover if you get away from Isosceles. What about shooting on the move to a hard 90 degree angle. Show me how that’s done well with an Isosceles stance. The world is not static, and it is not a paper target directly down range.

      4. You misunderstand isosceles. Yes, it can do all that you require more effectively, but the most important thing is that you must be able to shoot accurately, whatever you do. It would just be unwise to teach anyone weaver as it limits your shooting angles and expose your body that is not covered with bulletproof.

    3. You’re the kind of person who ends up in the news after shooting an unarmed person for looking at you sideways.

    4. You might be trying to make the (good) point that one SHOULD learn about carrying BEFORE doing so.

      However, you obviously (A) didn’t read the article at all, (B) read it but have terrible reading comprehension skills, or (C) are just trying to pick a fight… and therefore are NOT the type who should be carrying at all.

      The points in the article had nothing to do with the due diligence and common safety measures one typically learns before beginning to carry a firearm. They were mostly the little things someone learns over time… the kind of tips that aren’t in the literature someone typically might read before getting licensed. These were well presented and are valuable tips for someone new to carrying.

      When you start your comment with “All nonsense”, you paint yourself as an argumentative moron.

    5. There’s book learning and learning about yourself.
      Sure, you learned everything in the book. You might have talked to people. But until you put that holster on your belt, that gun in the holster, and practice, practice, practice that concealed draw, you really didn’t know what you where getting into.
      How many NDs do we read about because someone’s clothing or finger got caught in the trigger?
      If you were a bowling shirt or t-shirt or BDU every day, you probably have that figgered out, but I doubt it.

      1. I made it grad school, but I learned to shoot my Dad’s .22 rifle by the age of nine. And the safety rules involved therein. And how to clean it as well. Unlike “Rifleman1776” to whom I was replying in sarcasm, I continue to learn daily.

    6. for those who don’t know about carrying and just do it I think there is some good info.hell I’m 56 and still learn a thing from time to time.

  1. Excellent statements: “Owning a gun won’t necessarily protect you from crime. Going to the range to practice doesn’t necessarily mean you will prevail in a fight.” Most important quality to learn: humility; and then knowing one’s limitations. Good article

  2. If I might add one more to the list. Learn “weapon retention”, if I can spot it I can grab it! If you learn proper “retention” techniques you can make it much harder, if not impossible for a goblin to relieve you of your weapon.
    Before the neophytes start their rants, I carried “open” for 14 years as a LEO. Many of the techniques used by LE can be used by you to keep your CCW weapon from being observed and removed from your person. If you don’t think the “bad guys” are watching, you are sadly mistaken.

    1. No you may not add. The article is already written there turdcakes. Go write your own article instead of piggybacking off of this one you thief.

      1. Just go back to your parent’s basement and see if you can find that part of you that ran down your mama’s leg.

      2. You didn’t write the article junior, now, as torr10 so aptly said, go back to your parent’s basement and “piggyback” your teddy bear.

      3. Wow… unnecessarily unpleasant, are we HairyNuggets? How is he a thief by ADDING a point to consider? Chill out.

      4. You, Sir, are a Schmuck! For all you know, he might have written the original!
        Better put up your Jim Beam for the night!

    2. Excellant point. I didn’t give retention much consideration because I feel I am pretty good at carrying concealed. I will definately add it to my training today. Thanks again.

    3. that is the main reason, even when unarmed, i dont swing my trigger hand while walking. My dad gives me shit for it and says i walk to “stiifly” but it has become such a force of habit of not swinging my trigger hand while walking, o ensure my hand is near my fire arm at all times so that i can respond better if my fire arm gets tugged.

      1. its learning a new set of equations…knowing where you are in any situation…and practice those movements….it is imperative as a ccw operator that you know how you and your carry operate in the world…like putting chains on a bus in the winter….its easy to put chains on in the summer with no cold or wet….but when your fingers freeze and you cant move anymore because it has taken too long…those extra learning times in the summer teaches you the muscle memory… i do this then that…takes putting chains on from 45 minutes down to 5…in the snow and wet…same as operating a firearm…loading and cleaning at home is easy….carry and secure is weird…secure and pull is weird…it is a martial art….to assess situation…to decide to pull all add on to the psyche…

  3. Excellent points! Thankfully, since I open carry most of the time, #5 is seldom an issue for me. But I live in a state where open carry is legal and relatively frequent,and #1 often applies. I’ve stood talking for 15-20 minutes to someone who *then* realized I was carrying a gun – and we talked for another 15 about that. I’ve open carried regularly into businesses for years before anyone noticed I was carrying. You can almost understand people not looking for concealed, but …

    1. The best small gun is one you can shoot confidently. What I mean by that is “smaller” guns are harder to shoot well and recoil more (well, feel like they recoil more) than “larger” guns. The best thing to do is to visit a local range and rent a few different guns to see what feels right for you. Many ranges will “rent” guns for use on their shooting range for reasonable prices and the $50 or so for a range visit to test a few different ones before buying is money well spent. If you really want to do it right, have an instructor at the range spend an hour with you evaluating different models. Odds are you’ll find one that feels right for you.

    2. There are many good choices. I have a Kahr CM9 I tote in a Galco Pocket Protector daily and I love it. I suspect I’d be just as happy with Sig P938, Beretta Nano, Boberg XR9, Kimber Solo or about a dozen other choices. If you’re new to shooting you may want to start with a pocket .380 and work up to a pocket 9 after you hone skills with such a small platform. A flinch, once developed, is hard to correct. New shooters would be well served to begin with larger guns or smaller calibers and move down in size or up in caliber with their level of proficiency.

      1. I have both the Kahr CM9 and a Kahr CW380 and love them both. I find that I am more accurate on the range with the CW380. And it is small. Tuck into the right rear pocket of a pair of blue jeans inside a Concealment Specialties pocket holder small. I tried rotating both for pocket carry but quickly realized that I always went back to the 380. One of the first rules of concealed carry is that if it isn’t easy to carry you won’t carry it. The CM9 has been moved to inside the automobile duty.

    3. My personal carry is the Sig Sauer p938, a 9mm weighing 16 oz MT. Sig is internationally known as one of the top
      gun mfgrs of the world today. I’m retired, so most of my clothing is either shorts, sweats, etc. Never a belt. This had become a problem until I found the “Nate2 Tactical”. Of course it’s better with a belt, but it suits my purpose greatly
      and I’ve become very very comfortable with it. I keep it loaded with the Hornady Critical Duty rounds which have a
      poly plug in the hollow point which keeps clothing etc. from filling the cavity and losing the quality of a hollow point round. …….jim/louisiana

      1. All I can say it that the Hornady is the round of use in almost every LEO system. Take a look at the you tube demos.
        Take care, Pilgrim!
        jim/louisiana

    4. I like Glocks. Reliable, no manual safety, and a very short trigger pull. They come in compact and sub-compact. Try out as many brands as you can. There is a lot of personal preference involved. The safety and trigger pull are what some people dislike about Glocks.

      1. I had glocks, but consigned them for s&w m&p and shield products. I shoot my brother in law’s G23 when I miss them though.

    5. My personal carry is the Glock 26. It’s a 9mm, so even with the shorter barrel, the recoil is manageable. I also use Pierce +2 mag extensions on the 10 round mags or a 17 round mag with a grip extension, not necessarily for the two extra rounds (though that’s a definite bonus), but more because it increases the length of the grip and fits my hand better. But ultimately, it comes down to exactly what others have said: the best gun for you to carry is the gun you’re comfortable shooting. If you’re not confident with it, you’re either going to hesitate with it or not use it at all. Both of which are bad in the event you need to use it.

      1. Regardless of the size and/or weigh of a gun you would pick, do not go below a 9MM caliber!! Avoid the .22s, the .25 and the .380s

      2. Any of those are fine. It’s more about shot placement than bullet size. FBI statistics have repeatedly shown that anything from .22 to .45 takes 2-3 shots on average to effectively put a target down.

      3. I personally use 9 and 40…but if someone uses 380 or whatever, I hope they at least use good, quality ammo.

  4. Good points. The best advice I can offer to anyone is train like your life depends on it. For one, it does, and b, no matter how much of a high speed death machine secret squirrel assassin you think you may be, there will always be a draw, or a split, or a movement, or a sense that can be honed.

  5. And constantly reassess yourself to see if you are becoming complacent in any way. Don’t be the guy that “left his gun on top of the toilet paper roller in the restaurant bathroom”.

  6. Getting your permit by taking the “NRA BASIC Pistol Course is just the start of your training. Seek additional training from a reputable sources like Sig Sauer Academy, GunSite, Tactical Response, and watch training videos Paul Markel’s Student of the gun videos or National Shooting Sports Foundation,but remember training videos don’t replace actual trigger time. I would definitely recommend becoming a member od USACarry and getting their Concealed Carry magazine.
    Signed,

    NRA Instructor
    Chief Range Safety Officer
    US Army Retired

    1. Plus the fact Sir, is that they also offer an insurance policy which could save ones skin if he was ever caught up in a case, such as “unlawful death” filed by a demised’s family. It could save your livlihood etc….Something like $250/year.

  7. I found that most of the concealed carriers I know, including myself, became much more respectful of others and careful to avoid unnecessary conflicts with other people once we started carrying. As Heinlein said, “An armed society is a polite society.” Before carrying, I was not above “flipping off” another driver who did something that really annoyed me on the road. Haven’t done it once in the decade or so that I’ve been carrying on a daily basis. I am now VERY aware of the fact that I have the potential to get into a lethal confrontation and maybe end up charged with murder, if I’m arguing with someone and they get overly heated about our discussion. It was certainly true before I carried, since it was always possible that the other guy might start a fight, or be armed without my knowledge, but I wasn’t as aware of it before. Now it is the first thing that goes through my mind when potential conflicts arise. I still argue politics with others in the local coffeehouse for example, but I would now bow out earlier if things started getting too heated. I’ve begun behaving much more calmly and respectfully overall, since starting to carry daily. This is definitely something I really only learned after I started carrying. Before, I might have understood it in an intellectual sort of way, but now I’ve internalized it.

    1. Couldn’t agree more with this! ^^^

      “I found that most of the concealed carriers I know, including myself,
      became much more respectful of others and careful to avoid unnecessary
      conflicts with other people once we started carrying.”

    2. Absolutely, and it came as a surprise, in Bush Alaska, it was like Dodge City in 1850, people who were not polite were in trouble as it’s hard to back down!!

    3. I am reposting this “its learning a new set of equations…knowing where you are in any situation…and practice those movements….it is imperative as a ccw operator that you know how you and your carry operate in the world…like putting chains on a bus in the winter….its easy to put chains on in the summer with no cold or wet….but when your fingers freeze and you cant move anymore because it has taken too long…those extra learning times in the summer teaches you the muscle memory… i do this then that…takes putting chains on from 45 minutes down to 5…in the snow and wet…same as operating a firearm…loading and cleaning at home is easy….carry and secure is weird…secure and pull is weird…it is a martial art….to assess situation…to decide to pull all add on to the psyche”…it is learning a new way to be…purposeful, aware, wise and succinct. You know so you dont. You know so you can’t. You know because you are able and could.

  8. Rifleman1776 you are an idiot plain and simple nobody learns everything they need to know about carrying before carrying since you need to learn plenty of things once you’ve started carrying JEEZ makes me think you don’t actually carry or you shouldn’t with that kind of attitude, everyday I learn something new from just carrying to carrying when I’m on my Harley, its a constantly evolving thing……..

  9. I’ll drop this thought along the authors’s own…

    Practice how you play.

    Not enough focus is placed on training, and even then, how you train. Practice things like not picking up your brass, don’t pick up your magazines, fire control, and shooting from your gear and in normal clothing. If you normally wear a polo and jeans with loafers, then don’t practice with athletic shorts and and a t-shirt.

    Get training. Good training is cheap enough and will get you what you need in terms of skills. Practice with them.

    Lastly, read and understand the laws in your state and the states you visit. Know the laws well enough to prevent you from making stupid mistakes.

  10. got my first CCL in Atlanta, 1973. Security at a Hilton hotel bar. Had to need it then. Have carried ever since. Still real warry about how//where I carry. Have to. In 41 years, I’ve pulled it three times. twice on the job, and once when some guys were giving me trouble as I passed through Nashville on a Motorcycle. Never had to pull the trigger.

  11. I wish there was a way to learn how to take a life… So many people carry now, which is great, but my fear is that they are going to be unwilling to actually pull the trigger and take a life, or they will be ill equipped to deal with the aftermath of taking a life… it is not a movie, it is real life, unsure how to train for that, in the civilian world…

    1. I have been watching a show called “I Survived”. It will bring home to you how hesitating at the wrong moment, being too trusting or ignoring gut feelings can get you killed/almost killed.

      Believe me that I have mentally prepared myself for pulling the trigger if I ever have to unholster. That won’t prepare me for the regrets AFTER the fact but will result in me no hesitating when it counts the most. That is all we can do in preparation.

  12. A concealed gun is one of those things you hope will be useless, but if you need it, you will be glad you have it. Because it is hopefully useless, why carry a big, heavy one? North American Arms makes pocket revolvers in a 5 shot 22 or 22mag, that you can carry every day without even noticing you have it. My wife and I each have one, I love them.

  13. I love gun belts! Unfortunately this is what they used to call a Dept. store bought belt 20+ years ago. Now they use other leather sources which are thinner and wear quicker.
    A Gun belt will start looking good after 10+ years. My 6 year old one is just getting broken in.

    Printing is a big No No. There was a case in Las Vegas where a cop shot and killed a man when he turned around and was holding his blackberry in his hand. The cop putts several rounds into him and kills him.
    An overzealous undercover security dude in Costco saw the man bend over and saw his pistol. He runs to the store manager and they call the cops. They evacuate the store not telling the customers whats occurring and as the man with the concealed weapon walks past the Cop the over zealous undercover rent a cop tells the cop “There he is!”

    Dead man, because he bent over and some low life scum sucking turd of a human waste of oxygen got excited.

  14. During my working career as a police officer for over 28 years I learned that even though we went to the range to “qualify” every 6 months, many officers were making bad mistakes. Have you seen the film clip where the officer tries to talk the person he just pulled over to drop his weapon? He tried to hard hoping the assailant would listen to him so he would not have to shoot him. He gave too many commands and the person was not listening. Long story short, the officer died emptying his 18 rounds while standing behind the door to his patrol unit and the perp kept advancing toward him shooting. The officer died. The bad guy got away. Training is good on the range for proficiency however it is not the most helpful way to learn to know your weapon. The best practice is with an unloaded weapon practicing dry firing. When you do this you and your weapon are getting to know one another well without the noise of the loud bang which causes everybody to slightly jump, barrel rise, etc.. When you practice dry firing at home you and your pistol get to know each other well enough to where you can point and shoot straight without the barrel rising. Then when you actually do have to fire it in a life or death situation, you drew the weapon knowing just where to aim and took a shot. But this time the weapon reacted much different. Never waste too much ammo at ranges until you and your pistol are as familiar with each other. You also might have seen a semi-auto jam on the officer making him have to reach for his ankle holster for his trusty revolver that never jams. Most jam’s are preventable. Simply if you have only two clips buy two more. Each week on the same day trade your ammo to allow he spring in the clip relax so it retains it’s tinsel strength. A simple example is if you load a pick-up truck full of rock to where the rear bumper is barely off the ground and leave it that way for a week or two then unload it. Notice how it now sags in the rear? You sprung your springs. Or your springs lost their tinsel strength. Same thing with a semi-auto clip. Spend the extra money and do this regularly and you greatly discount your chance of a jam when you are firing your semi-auto. Revolver people, this does not apply to you. If you heard the old story it is bad to dry fire your weapon, that is correct “ONLY” if your weapon was made prior to WWII.

  15. I have carried for over 40 years, first with a model 39 S & W in 9mm, I now carry a Sig Sauer in .357 Sig caliber as I would not thrust a 9mm to put anyone down, I also carry two extra clips and all that ammo is for just one purpose, to get away, I have no ambitions to save the world, just to get my sorry self out of danger!!
    I also find that a shoulder rig is more concealed than a belt, providing it’s covered with light weight, non-see through material, the article about matching the holster to the belt is very accurate, the bigger, better grade belt will always work in your favor.
    One work of advise, if you cover a shoulder holster with a vest be sure the sleeves have elastic in them as without thatWilklie, your rig can be seen by everyone.

  16. I have carried daily for over 45 years, both professionally and off duty, and was a 20+ year NRA trained police firearms instructor. With advancing age, I am reminded often that my memory and coordination are on the downhill curve. When the day comes when I ignore good training, practice, and advice, I promise to hang them up for good.

  17. True, we never stop learning and firearms are no different. As for the “day in court placebo, don’t fall for it. Even CCW ins. may fall short. Given the fact most of the situations where (God forbid) you’d have to kill a predator to defend your life, occur in isolated or out of traffic places. the best thing you can do is kppr your

  18. My take on concealed carry class & practice of is that , even tho I know so much about firearms ( guns are smooth bore,if you are a Marine ), I have a lot to learn.

    The most important point made is # 8 ; should be # 1. Definition and identification of heroism is subjective. That’s why it’s settled in the courtroom. Statistical studies , quashed by The NRA , often show the untrained gun owner (- and even the police – who train weekly – are untrained for many situations. Ask the officer who just killed a pre-teen holding a black cell phone ). ends up injured or dead more often than victims who are not armed.

    In fact this entire discussion provides the basis for NRA to change gears- or switch the whole vehicle – and develope and administer a National Firearms course ( or two) that would then become the basis for a licensing raquirement for firearms.
    Now that would be Heroic.

    Come on ; Those of us who have some familiarity with firearms cannot deny we cringe now and then… At a gun store where the lady is choosing her new .380 on the basis of its pink color ; or at the gun show where a husband is buying matching Colt .223’s for he and his wife and asks “What do they look like ? I’ve never seen one ; and do I need 30 round clips or will 20 round do?
    Keep in mind,he has licenses in his wallet for driving his car,his boat, his motorcycle…

    Just Thinkin’

  19. It’s important to remember that we live in America under the US injustice system. These words of wisdom should be carved in stone somewhere: “Even after justifiable self-defense shootings, ambitious prosecutors or family members of the perpetrator can take your life savings—and freedom—in the post-event courtroom”. In other words: there is no good deed that will go unpunished, especially if you’re a gun owner.

  20. I’VE BEEN CARRYING FOR 20 YRS. I’VE DONE THE BELY, INSIDE THE PANTS, I LIKE A SOULDER BAG I HAVE GOOD EXCESS AND NO ONE SEE IT., I’VE CARRIED A 9X18 LIKE A PPK, COLT 45 COMPACT, NOW A 9MM COMPACT BRETTA

  21. Appendix carry, 2:00 position, really helps resolve the “bed over issue”. I just use a regular belt with a good holster, no issues…jeans, shorts, khakis…no problem. I will admit, I don’t tuck in shirts like I used to though.

  22. Definitely most folks are clueless. I open carry and I will wager that at least 99 out of 100 people never notice that I am carrying. The one that does either smiles and gives me a thumbs up or, in the case of some of our local thugs, turns and runs the other way. Btw, if concealed carry is so wonderful, why doesn’t all law enforcement do it? 🙂

  23. I’ve always been of the opinion that if I’m “spotted” then it’s “open carry”, which is also legal. 😉

    I don’t care who knows. I make every attempt to stay legal, but I won’t sneak around like I’m doing something wrong.

  24. What does the author think about shoulder rigs? I used to carry a SIG P220 .45 in one of those upside-down Scorpio shoulder rigs by Bianchi. At first, I was extremely skeptical that the rig would hold securely, but a friend of mine on the SWAT team talked me into it. I had to wear a loose lightweight short jacket to cover it, which was sometimes difficult in California’s desert heat. The only time I had to pull it off duty, was after a brisk chase pursuing a purse snatcher. The holster retained the weapon just fine during the chase, and when it came time, the draw it was smooth and effortless. Depending on the clothing worn, I feel that shoulder rigs should not be overlooked.

  25. I pocket carry. It’s very convenient and no more uncomfortable than carrying a wallet or a large phone. Access isn’t the quickest, but I figure the likelihood of a “quick draw” shootout is low.

  26. Regarding the point 8 of Tom Mc Hale,since many years ,I paid a annually insurance to cover any incident of self defense,to cover a lawyer and any claim of busters family!

  27. #1 is correct. Most new concealed weapon carriers fear being spotted. Most people would not spot a handgun unless it were duct taped to one’s forehead. And then, the carrier would have to remove his or her hat.

    #3 is important as well. A cheap or sloppy belt will indeed allow the holster to flop about.

    The rest are pretty true as well.

  28. I have been canceled caring for over 40 years. No one can tell I have my Taurus M450Titanium snobby 45COLT revolver in a outside the belt holster 24/7 recently. I have no discomfort. Never have had yet to pull it out to kill anyone yet. I just know if I do. I will have to hire expensive lawyers even though it is self defense.

  29. Even before you decide to carrying a gun openly or concealed you have to go to that place deep inside of your self and decide if you are truly prepared to end a human life,don’t wait till the time arrives. Even when I hunt that thought even while I take my breath and squeeze is “here is where it ends.” Even in active combat when its all or nothing you still go back to that decision you made with your self.

  30. “1. How clueless the average person is.”

    You find how even more true this is when you Open Carry (OC). OC and see just how clueless people can be.

  31. I think you have left what for me is the most important part of carrying. You make yourself much less confrontative . For myself, knowing that I have absolutely no interest in using my weapon, I do my damnedest to diffuse and walk away from any potential confrontation.

  32. As a CC myself I can spot them most often. Usually it’s the way they carry themselves are swing one arm only. But I am glad and feel a little safer knowing that we’re out there. And number 8 is my worst nightmare, not just because it’s a horrible, sick idea to actually have to shoot someone, but the inevitable fear of going to jail, getting sued, being prosecuted by an over-zealous (anti-gun liberal) prosecutor.

  33. Thanks for sharing, great article. I have been carrying for more than 30 years, and had an eye opener recently. Almost caught with my pants on my knees. Fortunately all ended well.

  34. The day you stop learning, your dead. no matter how educated you are before carrying, there is no way you will be prepared for every thing that will come up as you go along. like the cops that shot them selves when the string on their jackets got caught in the trigger guard. arrogant people are dangerous.

  35. The legal aftermath of any defensive shooting is no joke… You should AT LEAST know what to say to responding officers and have an attorney on speed-dial. Carrying concealed is much more than just strapping on a pistol — the weight of the responsibility you now carry is a hundred times the weight of your firearm.

  36. some of this I agree with some I don’t, but it’s all relevant to the carrier. I believe everyone should carry or the very least be instructed in the use and safe handling of a firearm. What surprises me most is how most people have no idea how to use a firearm or handle one safely…

  37. This story is correct. It proves, we need open carry. This crap is bull skank. Why should anyone (who have jumped through the hoops) be subjected to this kind of worry ?

  38. Its all very scary to think about. But its there if you know its go time. One reason i carry is because im not going to be a hostage. Youll not take me alive. If there is a threat of life by villains then they will go down. Because people with enough money for ammo and range time definetely dont go around robbing people with their guns. And vice versa, if your dumb enough and hurtin enough to do stunts like that, im gonna guess you dont train with your weapon. Im not very fast with my action, but head on a swivel, and always looking for signs. Still practicing, thinking, and training.
    Great info. Thx all, and i hope im not off topic. Just my thoughts after reading all these comments. Safety 1st.

  39. Mine is on my ankle and I simply pray that I don’t ever have to worry about getting it to my hand because I realize that will take far too long

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