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The Gun Digest Book of Concealed Carry Paperback – September 22, 2008
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About the Author
Massad Ayoob is one of the pre-eminent fighting handgun trainers in the world. He operates the Lethal Force Institute, which trains both U.S. and international clients. His methods of reflexive, high speed yet accurate shooting has been adopted by the U.S. army as part of its standard pistol-training course. Massad has written many books for Krause Publications, including Combat Handgunnery, The Gun Digest Book of Sig-Sauer, and The Gun Digest Book of Beretta Pistols.
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It also goes to great lengths to explain for women the in and out of carry and the best equipment to use is suggested.
Ayoob also focuses rightly on the legal aspects of self-defense. Readers would be well-advised to take his advice and study the laws of their jurisdiction before carrying.
I also appreciated Ayoob's writing on NOT going out of your way to upset people should you choose to open carry. It seems the thing now for some to get in others' faces over their gun rights. Ayoob brings common-sense (real) to this discussion, and it's worth a read for those who view themselves as 2d Amendment crusaders.
A good basis for further work on carry and use of a defensive handgun!
I was active in the gun hobby about 45 years ago but then did nothing for many years. Concern about the growing problem of home invasions gave me an incentive to get back into the hobby directed toward home defense. But here in Alabama the law is such that I had to get a Pistol Permit in order to carry both a gun and ammunition between home and shooting ranges. Now that I have that permit I find that it allows me also to carry a gun concealed on my person. That was never my intent. But I decided to look into the matter in case a need arose.
One thing that should become clear to the uninitiated is that we are not trying to conceal guns so that we can sneak around and then shoot people as a big surprise. We just want, without anyone making a big fuss, a gun handy in case we meet a mugger, a car jacker, or some nut who wants to kill some people. Ayoob and other authors on this topic, feel all of us who are somewhat handy with guns have an obligation to carry a gun all the time, except where the law forbids it (such as court rooms, etc). The basic idea is that we should carry part of the burden for maintaining safety in our communities. If you choose the wrong gun and holster and carry it the wrong way, you will show the gun inadvertently when you bend down to pick something up from a low shelf in a store and someone will report " a man with a gun" to the cops who will questions you, see your permit and advise you to be more careful. (But watch out because if a little old lady sees you she'll club you first and ask questions later!)
I don't buy that need to help protect the community because I am old and unable to function as a cop though I can draw and shoot somebody. I also would need a whole lot more training on when to intervene with a gun than I can get in one of these books. If I wanted to be a cop, I would have been one. (I did check into joining the Air Police in the Air National Guard when I was kid. I was told they didn't need any help from someone only 5 ft 9 inches tall. You had to have impressive size.) One thing Ayoob mentions is that, to carry a gun, you have to be ready to fight somebody for your gun or he will take it away from you and shoot you with it. I can't do that very well but I would not hesitate to shoot the BG before he got his hand near my gun. There are various things mentioned about being aware at all times of those around you. You must never allow people to trap you. So, are you ready to charge out and take control of the street? Well, this is a very good book for giving you the info needed.
Without this knowledge you could be sued for thousands of dollars or spend significant time in jail. Today, most States offer Concealed Carry Permits (or the equivalent) to anyone who wants one and who has never been arrested nor had problems with liquor or mental instability. Much of the legal aspect of what you can do with your gun depends on the laws of the state where you live. You may or may not be able to use your CC Permit when traveling. You have to check that before any trip to distant States. A route I travel to visit family has several holes where I can't carry.
What I learned from this book was that: 1) Defending my home and the people in it, I feel confident I can use the gun to disable anyone who enters carrying a gun or other lethal weapon. 2) Outside the home, I can only use the gun to directly prevent a loss of life (mine or a friend or family member. "Disable" means to make the culprit stop any threatening motions. Of course this might result in their death. The goal is to stop the criminal act. I had to wonder a bit about preventing theft or damage to property. My answer is "No, the Gun cannot be used, even in a threatening manner to stop a theft. The exception is theft of the gun. If a culprit tries to take my gun, he would be shot to prevent his irresponsible use of the gun.
Ayoob discusses various guns, holsters and how to dress for Concealed Carry. He uses photos effectively to show how various guns conceal in various holsters and positions on the body, both on men and women. I chose a very good full-size gun for Home Defense but thought I needed a smaller gun for Concealed Carry. But it turns out that with the proper holster (which I happened to buy just before reading the book), I can carry this full-size pistol concealed most of the time - probably not when swimming! I have also found that the small guns I thought necessary for Concealed Carry are very difficult to shoot. The smaller the gun, the worse the recoil but the more you need a high caliber for power (which is diminished by a short barrel). After reading Ayoob's book you can find a good gun and holster combo. It helps to have a shooting range where you can rent and shoot several boxes of ammo through various guns.
There is enough info provided about guns to tell you what to look for in a gun store. There are many places on line where you can learn about guns. I recommend the site [not allowed in a Review] for unbiased info on guns. It is non-commercial and just provides information including some technical data like recoil that you can get nowhere else. It covers every gun sold today and the last year or so. It has an animated diagram showing how a semi-automatic pistol works. Just a couple of notes to the novice. First gun people always assume a gun is loaded and ready to kill somebody. Then they check the gun and unloaded it, if needed, for examination. Then they still assume it is loaded and ready to kill someone so they do not point even an "empty gun" at any person in the store. If you see a bunch of guys hitting the deck, you did it wrong. Keep your finger off the trigger. Don't cock the gun and pull the trigger unless the salesperson says it is all right. That can damage some guns. Find a gun store connected with a shooting range where you can try out various guns you might like. Never buy your first gun without trying the same type of gun on the range. There is a range fee and you buy 50 bullets - total $25-$30 many places.
While this book did not convert me to become a daily gun carrier, it alerted me to most of the potential problems. But as many people say who do carry, if you don't carry, you can do nothing when confronted by a "Bad Guy". If you do carry, you can always leave it in the holster.