Kim Williams no longer with USPSA

In an announcement that would have been easy to miss, USPSA very quietly announced yesterday that Kim Williams was longer employed by their organization. The attached screenshot shows exactly how much public information they released about her no longer serving as the Executive Director of USPSA.

If you recall, Kim was the executive director of USPSA who was at the center of the recent controversy involving improper accounting procedures. Two members of the USPSA Board of Directors at the time called for her immediate resignation, which failed. It would seem that with the change in the make-up of the USPSA BOD, the new USPSA President no longer has need of Kim’s services.

I won’t speculate on the reason behind Kim no longer being employed by USPSA, although the cryptic and terse nature of the message practically begs for it. It is my hope that USPSA as an organization made this decision in the best interests of furthering the growth and expansion of the practical shooting sports.

Virginia will again recognize other state’s carry permits

Last weekend, Gov. Terry McAuliffe of Virginia announced a bipartisan deal that would restore CCW reciprocity to the state of Virginia. The new bill will grant reciprocity to more states than were covered under Virginia’s previous agreements. The bill is still working it’s way through Virginia’s General Assembly, so there is a chance that it could get derailed.

In exchange for expanding VA’s reciprocity, VA House Republicans agreed to provisions that would take guns away from anyone subject to a domestic restraining order, and would also have the VA State Police attend gun shows to provide background checks for private sellers if so requested.

Overall, this looks like a pretty solid deal for gun rights in Virginia. If the crybaby reaction of the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence’s reaction is any indicator, it’s actually an excellent deal for gun rights.

Mr. Governor, you have been a good friend and led the way on this issue for many months. But if you think we are going to let you drive this bill home without a fight, you’ve got another thing coming (sic). It is terrible.

Good luck to Virginia getting this billed passed. I’ll be watching its progress through the VA General Assembly as it would be nice to be able to carry in VA again.

American Marksman doesn’t want any actual marksmen to compete

Have you heard of American Marksman? It’s a new shooting competition where amateur shooters have a chance to win $50,000 in an interesting competition. You can read the official rules here; the idea is local shooters can qualify at their home range, then if they shoot well enough they can move up to the national competition, which will be televised and could win $50,000. Seems pretty cool, right? Except for this one little part about eligibility:

If you have ever placed in the top 10%, in any category, at any of the events listed below, you are not eligible to participate in American Marksman.

Amateur Trapshooting Association – AIM Grand Championships
CMP – CMP National Trophy Rifle and Pistol Matches
GSSF – Any GSSF event
ICORE – ICORE National Championship
IDPA – Indoor National Championship, US National Championship
International Handgun Metallic Silhouette Association – IHMSA World Championship
IPSC National Championship – Any
Military – Any Branch that picks its member based on marksmanship ability (ex – Navy Seal Sniper)
National Bench rest Shooters Association – Long Range Nationals, SR Score Nationals, LR Score Nationals, Group Nationals
National Skeet Shooting Association – World Skeet Championships
National Sporting Clays Association – National Sporting Clays Championship
NRA – National Matches at Camp Perry, National Small-bore Championship, Collegiate Rifle National Championship,
Collegiate Pistol National Championship, Precision Pistol Competition (National Police Shooting Championships), Action
Shooting National Championship
NSSF Rim fire Challenge – World Championship
Outlaw 3 Gun – Any Outlaw 3 Gun match
Precision Rifle Series – PRS Championship Match
SASS – National Championships Winter Range, Mounted Shooting National Championships
Steel Challenge Shooting Association – SCSA World Championship
US Clay Target Association – USA Shooting National Championship
USPSA National Championships – Multi-Gun Nationals, Single Stack Nationals, Revolver Nationals, Production Nationals, Carry
Optic Nationals, Limited Nationals, Open/Limited 10 Nationals

There’s another piece of their eligibility requirements as well that makes me shake my head:

This tour is built on the idea that amateur shooters should have the chance to compete, improve and win. The guidelines below describe how American Marksman classifies an amateur shooter:
Does not have any level of sponsorship (under a shooting contract of any kind, receive product, cash or match entries from a third party)
Has never placed in the top 10% of national level or higher competitive shooting event in any division or category.
Has never been ranked in the top 10% in any national competitive shooting organizations classification system.
Is not a member of a shooting team that is selected based on shooting skill.

So, it’s pretty obvious that they don’t want any professional or sponsored shooters playing their game, which I guess is fine. I mean, if I was going to have a competition to crown someone “the American Marksman” I’d probably want the best shooters in the country to try out for it, but whatever, it’s not my 50 grand.

So you’re probably think “well, I’m not a sponsored shooter, but I’m a USPSA master, so I could probably dust this competition and make some sick cash!” Yeah, not so fast, bucko. My friend Thomas from Precision Response had that exact thought, so he sent American Marksman an email. Here’s the response he received:

Hi Thomas,

Based on the sponsorship criteria provided me, you are correct. You would still be eligible.

As for the second part of your question, you are also correct. Anyone who is a GM or M in USPSA, or an M or EX in IDPA is NOT eligible for this competition. (emphasis added)

Please let me know if you have any other questions!

Best of luck!

You read that right. No IDPA Masters or Experts, and no USPSA GMs or Masters. That…well let’s be honest, that tells me everything I need to know about this competition, and what it says is they’re not interested in getting good shooters. It also tells me that they don’t know anything about the skill disparity between an IDPA Expert and a USPSA Master. I mean take me for example, at my best in USPSA when I was shooting regularly and training regularly I was a high A-class shooter, and I’m an IDPA Master.

Now, here’s the thing. You know what I want to see? I know there are plenty of talented A-class USPSA shooters that aren’t classified in IDPA, and if that’s the case I want all you people to register for this competition and wreck shop. This is actually your chance to make some money, so I want you to get out there and kick ass. Because that’s the only thing that will lend any sort of legitimacy to this farce of a competition. Because by intentionally excluding the most talented shooters in the nation, they’ve created a competition where the winner gets the best participation trophy ever. I know for a fact I won’t watch it when it gets to TV, because I don’t want to see a bunch nobodies compete for a bunch of money, I want to see the best shooters in the world duke it out. Since American Marksman isn’t interested in showing us that, I want all you A-class sonsabitches to get out and there and register for this. Wreck their curve!

Welcome to the new look Gun Nuts!

Oh yes, we have finally updated the look and feel of the site to make it more modern. Everything else should work the same, but let me know what you think about the new format in the comments! Also, we’re re-launching the FB page for the site, so make sure you head over to the new Gun Nuts Media FB page and like it.

Continue reading “Welcome to the new look Gun Nuts!”

SIG SAUER® Releases SIG MPX® Carbine in 9mm

NEWINGTON, N.H. (January 13, 2016) — SIG SAUER, Inc., changed the way the world looked at the subgun with the introduction of the SIG MPX®, and now that same innovative technology is available to the consumer market in the semi-automatic SIG MPX Carbine.

SIG MPX-C

The modular 9mm SIG MPX Carbine maintains all of the ergonomic superiority of the short-barrel rifle and pistol variants, but now with a 16″ hammer-forged barrel. A full-length aluminum KeyMod handguard provides ample room for mounting lights, lasers and grips.

Continue reading “SIG SAUER® Releases SIG MPX® Carbine in 9mm”

Single mother buys gun, makes it on TMZ

Okay, I know I’m like a month behind the times on this, but I’d bet most of my readers didn’t know that TMZ spotted former child star Hilary Duff buying a Glock in Culver City back in November.

Hilary-Duff-Shape-Magazine-Cover-May-2015

When I found this story this morning I didn’t know what to make of it. My first thought was “so what” and that’s reflected in the title of the post. Apparently, Duff just went through a divorce and is now a single mom, and to my world there’s nothing irrational about a recently single mom buying a quality handgun, presumably for personal protection. I mean, look at the circumstances: her ex-husband is a former professional hockey player, she filed for primary physical custody of their son, and she’s still a relatively high profile person as evidenced by the fact that TMZ is still stalking her. So to us, buying a gun makes a ton of sense.

It’s hard sometimes to remember that we live in an unusual sub-culture as firearms enthusiasts. To us, nothing in this story seems unusual, but to the public at large, it’s apparently worth at least 100 words on TMZ. However, to you and me, a recently divorced single mom buying a Glock makes perfect sense.

So the real question is, what kind of Glock did Hilary Duff buy? I hope it’s a Glock 19, because that’s the best Glock ever. Being famous and relatively wealthy, she’ll also have access to training and quite likely the connections to get a CCW permit in California, which is frequently beyond the reach of mere mortals. Hopefully she’ll be a responsible gun owner and do that, get the training necessary to effectively use that (hopefully a) Glock 19 if the dire need should ever arise.

Army’s Modular Handgun System to cost over $1 billion dollars

The Army is currently deep in the weeds in the process of trying to replace the venerable M9, which has served the US for nearly 30 years. The initial estimates placed the cost of the replacement program around $300-500 Million dollars, however a new report shows that the cost to taxpayers will likely be over a billion dollars.

Sen. McCain puts the total value of the MHS at not $350 million, or even $400 million, but a whopping $1.2 billion for the winner.

The big factor here is that the Army’s RFP calls for the gun and ammo to be manufactured by the same company/partner companies. That means if, for example S&W won the gun contract, they’d need to also produce the ammo. Interesting, S&W is set to do this, by partnering with General Dynamics to offer a joint RFP to fill the potential MHS contract.

P320C_Striker_L

Another company that would clearly be in the running would be Sig Sauer, with their (pictured) P320 modular handgun. Sig also produces their own line of branded ammo, meaning that they also have the capacity to meet the RFP’s requirements. Sig is also the apparent front-runner in the FBI’s new handgun acquisition, which if selected might, or might not, help it in the Army’s MHS competition.

Of course, the real issue with the MHS is “why?” Even if the program continues on its current pace and hits its milestones, you won’t see a new pistol in soldier’s holsters until late 2017/early 2018, and I’d sadly expect the cost to balloon even further. What’s deeply frustrating about this process is how the military, of which I’m proud to be a part of, can manage to make the per unit cost of a $500 handgun balloon up to $1,000 per unit before the ammo cost. It’s just silliness.

What do you think? Do you think the MHS is an unnecessary waste of taxpayer dollars? Or do you think that the Army, and eventually the military at large really need a new handgun?

Naval Special Warfare to adopt Glock 19

A verified SME on M4Carbine has posted that Naval Special Warfare (SEALs) will be switching away from the Sig P226 and adopting the Glock 19.

Looks like the Glock 19 will be the new 9mm pistol of Naval Special Warfare.

The SIG’s are still in service but are to be phased out in favor of the Glock Model 19.

I am not sure what generation, but based on those G19 already in service with SOF I’d say the Gen 3 is likely.

I will follow up when I get more issued than holsters et al.

Gen 3 Glock 19

This choice makes a lot of sense for NSW, as the poster on M4C explains. The G19 has been in service with JSOC for quite some time now, so there’s already a precedent for that gun being used by operators. Additionally, the G19 offers the best compromise in terms of shootability and capability without taking up the same amount of space a “full sized” pistol would. It can be carried openly as a secondary weapon, but can also be easily concealed if the mission calls for it. I’ll let Rana on M4C explain:

The 19 can fill a lot more roles without taking up as much real estate on an operators kit. The move away from a traditional sized “duty pistol” and a move to an “operators pistol” has been a reason behind the popularity of the G19.

The G19 is perhaps the most efficiently sized pistol in its class without giving up the capacity of a “duty size” pistol. The G19 can be carried covertly as well as overt supplement to a primary (RE: Long Gun) without being unnecessarily large (duty size).

Keep in mind that the G19 is replacing both the P239 and P226 9mm.

Personally, I think this has been a long time coming. Don’t get me wrong, there are a lot of really good pistols out there these days, and I like the SIG’s. But when you start carrying a lot of gear, a pistol that does everything a 226 does in a lighter more efficient package is a huge step forward.

Like I said, I think this makes a ton of sense for NSW and for JSOC/SOCCOM at large. I think the G19 offers the best of all world in terms of size, shootability, and ease of carry. 15 rounds in a package that can be easily concealed or easily used as a “duty” weapon just makes sense to me. Make no mistake, I love Sigs, and I think the P226 is one of the all time great service pistols ever made. But for the mission of NSW, going to something like a G19 just seems like a really smart call.

At The Door

Let’s talk about home defense for a bit. Yes, I am shifting gears from competition for my next few posts. After delving deeper into my own situation and thinking about potential outcomes from what I experienced the other night, I have some thoughts that I felt were worth sharing. I offer them for what they are worth.

The Personal Defense Narrative

When a person buys a gun, they seldom plan on not using it. No matter the reason you purchased a firearm, you probably planned on shooting it, unless you are a high-end cork sniffing collector – but even some collectors like to shoot their guns! So many times people “know what they will do” when someone breaks in to their house.  They have created their own personal defense narrative and it normally involves shooting the intruder.

Unfortunately I feel this might lead to problems. When planning your own household defense  should you really imagine someone breaking into your house?  Might you better served imagining ALL probable “bump in the night” scenarios with a solid basis in reality.

Let me offer a scenario; a noise At The Door:

You awake to a noise outside your house. Might someone be there? Maybe, but the fact you heard someone or something doesn’t necessarily mean you are facing harm? Nevertheless, in your head you have played out this scenario countless times and at 3am, it can only be a bad guy, there is no other option. You’re sure of it!

You grab your gun and go investigate only to realize that someone (or something) is trying to beat down your door. Fearing for your life, (or that of your family,) you aim at the door with your firearm and yell STOP! You are greeted with a torrent of obscenities. Assured in the fact your personal narrative is correct you aim, you take a deep breath and pull the trigger.  You open the door to horror.

Congratulations! You fired your weapon at an unknown target and have either wounded someone or worse. Your narrative convinced you it was the only choice you had.

But let’s back up. What if it wasn’t a thug, but instead it was your neighbor? Perhaps he was drunk, disoriented and making a racket at your door because “their” key wasn’t working in “their” door. But, but, what about the swearing? Maybe it was directed at the lock, or maybe they thought you were pulling a bad joke on him. After all, he thought it was “his” house.

Before you comment that my scenario couldn’t happen, make sure you first tell that to the family of Carter Albrecht. This excerpt from the article linked in his name explains it all:

“He was shot to death as he tried to kick in a neighbor’s door in an apparent drunken rage after beating his girlfriend, police say. The neighbor reportedly thought Mr. Albrecht was a burglar and fired a pistol up high through the back door as a warning. The shot hit the 6-foot-4-inch Mr. Albrecht in the head instead.”

Was the late Mr. Albrecht a nice guy? I am not sure, I never met him. The article alleges he beat his girlfriend. Maybe he did, maybe he didn’t, I don’t know those facts. Did he deserve to die? I would say the odds are in favor of, NO. The take away is you should NEVER assume.

In both the scenario I offered, and in the actual event I linked, Jeff Cooper’s Rule #2 and #4 were disregarded with disastrous results. The end result was a needless death, and a shooter that will live with a horrible guilt the remainder of his life. Why?  Because the person holding the gun never took the time, on a peaceful day when there was time, to explore the possibilities and their options.

The takeaway is simple, you must know what is there; but you must gather information without exposing yourself. There are many different ways to accomplish that and I hope to review them in a later post; but before I do I have some thoughts on the noise inside of your house that I will review in my next post.

Before I sign off, let’s review Jeff Cooper’s 2nd Rule

NEVER LET THE MUZZLE COVER ANYTHING YOU ARE NOT PREPARED TO DESTROY – You may not wish to destroy it, but you must be clear in your mind that you are quite ready to if you let that muzzle cover the target.

And Jeff Cooper’s 4th Rule

BE SURE OF YOUR TARGET – You never shoot at anything until you have positively identified it. You never fire at a shadow, or a sound, or a suspected presence. You shoot only when you know absolutely what you are shooting at and what is beyond it.

Revised January 4, 2016 for typo – ed.

Viva la France #parisattacks

I was watching CNN Friday evening when the news of the Paris attacks broke. Everything was pandemonium in the news reporting; however over the weekend the details have settled out. What we’re learning now is more about the background of the suspects and the support network that enabled them to carry out this attack. I’m not going to beat the drum of “carry you guns” because anyone reading this blog at this point should already know to carry your damn gun. I’m also not going to tell you to “die on your feet” for the exact same reason.

the patriot

What I do want to talk about is something that has not been mentioned much in the mainstream media, and is actually the part of these terrorists attacks that I find the most concerning. I’ve seen the recent Paris attacks compared to two different events, the Charlie Hebdo attacks and the Mumbai attacks. The Charlie Hebdo comparison is obvious, because both attacks took place in Paris, however it’s not really accurate. The CH attack was a small group of individuals attacking a single soft target. A better comparison in terms of execution are the attacks in Mumbai, where a group of determined attackers hit multiple targets over the course of multiple days. However, even that comparison is somewhat lacking, because of the nature of the nations that were attacked. Which leads me to the point I’m looking to make, and the reason why I find the Paris attacks far more disturbing than any events in recent memory.

When a bomb goes off in Lebanon, or India, or even Turkey, there’s a tendency to shrug because those nations aren’t as sophisticated as “the west.” Although at least in the case of Turkey, that’s probably not true from a military standpoint. So a coordinated attack in India seems to the casual observer to be “easier” than a similar attack in a western nation. But the Paris attacks were a complex, well executed, operation with multiple actors that would require extensive logistics, planning, and other support operations. These attacks were carried out against a first world westernized nation that possesses a sophisticated intelligence apparatus, and in fact was aware of at least one, if not more of the attackers. Yet the attacks were still successful.

As a citizen of a first world, westernized nation with a sophisticated intelligence apparatus I find that extremely concerning. This wasn’t just some asshole with an AK running into a public market yelling ALOHASNACKBAR before getting smoked by the one-time. What this demonstrates is a level of organization competence that you really haven’t seen since the Troubles, when the IRA was engaged honest to god warfare against the British state. To dismiss the Paris attacks as mere terrorism is to underestimate the resolve of a determined enemy. This was, to borrow a phrase from a friend, an act of war by a nascent nation-state and should be responded to in kind.

Thankfully, ISIS has done the west the favor of actually drawing lines on their maps saying “here is the ISIS/ISIL Caliphate.” They even have a “capitol” city in Al-Raqqa in Syria, which I’m pleased to read the French have already begun bombing. Good. But that brings me to the “response” portion of this post. To avoid typing the same thing twice, I’m going to copy/paste something I wrote on FB on Sunday:

I’ve been thinking about the attacks in France now since last night. Mostly, I’ve been thinking about the solution, how to stop this sort of thing from happening. My left wing friends say that answering extremism with violence only creates more extremism, and they’re correct…to a point. Answering extremism with the sort of casual, half-assed violence that seems to be all we have the stomach for these days does create more extremism, because it doesn’t finish the job.

But history has shown us time and again that when dealing with truly extreme ideologies and the people behind them, a nation and its people must be willing to commit to a level of wholesale violence that we’ve not ourselves touched since 1945. There are parallels to the war against Imperial Japan, not just in the extremism of the country but in how we fought the war. We firebombed Tokyo. We completely destroyed two cities with nuclear weapons.

Nowadays our weapons are more precise, so glassing ISIL stronghold cities probably isn’t necessary. But that level of commitment to eradicating the heart of the enemy is what the West has lost. We fought Japan until we had inflicted such horrible losses that we broke their will to fight, and it’s precisely that sort of war that we’d have to wage if we really wanted to “stamp out terrorism.” You kill badguys until every military aged male in the AO says “you know what? Fuck it. This isn’t worth dying over.” You make it a fact that if you support extremism, you die. Simple.

The west lacks the stomach for this sort of thing. Our enemies? Clearly they have it.

The longer I’ve had to think about this response, the more I’ve come to believe it. We broke the back of not one but two major, industrial nations in the 1940s, and we did it by visiting such an amount of violence on them that, at least in the case of Japan, an entire warrior-culture decided to swear off war for the next 60 years. In fact, there is still a huge culture of pacifism in Japan as a direct result of what happen in 1945. But that is the level of violence we have to be willing to engage in if we really want to combat ISIS in a meaningful way. As a nation, as a culture, we have to be willing to go to where they are, and stack up the bodies of military aged males until the next guy that looks at an AK decides “nope, this crap isn’t worth dying for, because these western devils will f***ing smoke me.”

But we don’t posses that will. Which is sad, because as a nation we have no lack of young (and older) men who are willing to sign on the dotted line to do exactly that. Despite the PC attempts to destroy it, there is still a warrior culture in America, and there is still steel in her spine. Whether or not that steel extends to our leadership is a topic for another post, and another time.

I want to wrap this post up on a happy note, but I don’t think I’ll be able to. The west was attacked in what should be considered an act of war by a self-declared nation-state. So I’m going to go back on my word from the beginning of the post. Carry your guns. This kind of thing absolutely could happen here. Yes, the odds are low, and yes you’re more likely to get killed by heart disease or in a car crash. But if it does happen? Fight.