Skip to comments.How to Buy a Gun
Posted on 01/30/2003 4:49:20 AM PST by condi2008
In order to buy a gun one must first be persuaded that gun ownership is both reasonable and responsible. Let us then first establish that Matthew 5:38,39 does not mean that, if someone breaks into your home intending to harm your family, you must submissively point the way to your children's playroom as you sheath the criminal's knife with your belly. Jesus here explains to us that God allows no room for personal vengeance. Leave that to the Lord and the temporal responsibility for punishing evil doers to the civil magistrate (Romans 13:4).
God immutable says, "If the thief is caught while breaking in and is struck so that he dies, there will be no bloodguiltiness on his account. But if the sun has risen on him, there will be bloodguiltiness on his account. He shall surely make restitution; if he owns nothing, then he shall be sold for his theft" (Exodus 22:2,3). In other words if you, unable to discern his intentions, kill a night-time home invader, you bear no guilt before God for his death.
Even if you are with me thus far, you may still be asking, "But why a gun?" In case you haven't noticed, not only do we have military foes abroad but there are plenty of fiends domestic: thugs across town, thieves down the road, and murderers at the rest area by the interstate (and possibly a terrorist cell downstate). If one is to defend himself and his family against the black hats, it is best to have the most practical and efficient means for doing so at your disposal. For an Army Ranger that might be a grenade launcher. For an individual in Jesus' day it was a sword. Since the "weapons of our warfare are not carnal" (II Corinthians 10:4), why else would Christ have commanded His disciples to barter their cloaks for swords (Luke 22:36) if not for self-defense? For us civilians, the most practical and efficient means is a personal firearm.
By the way, if you insist on statistical evidence for the benefits of gun ownership, I encourage you to find a copy of Dr. John Lott's book More Guns, Less Crime or any number of articles by him available on the internet. The gun-control crowd has certainly tried to discredit his findings, but the best they have been able to offer is "if it really is the case that the results aren't good then he's really peddling a false message."
Let us consider how to go about purchasing a firearm. First decide what you need. Looking for something suited to home defense? A 12-gauge shotgun with a short barrel will do nicely. A shotgun is preferable because if it is aimed in the general direction of the criminal you will hit your target. Actually just racking a pump-action shotgun might be enough to scare him away. Mossberg and Remington offer shotguns designed specifically for home defense (the HS 410 and the 870 Home Defense models respectively) as do other manufacturers.
Handguns are a little more particular (as far as the need to aim carefully goes), but if you intend to keep your firearm with you, let's face it, the greeter at Stuff Mart might be a wee bit intimidated if you walk in toting a 12-gauge. There are many options available to you so I am just going to offer some general guidance. Handguns are available as revolvers and semi-automatics. I prefer a semi-automatic simply because in my humble, unprofessional opinion they are marginally safer. I say marginally only because I do not consider firearms unsafe when handled, maintained, and stored properly. Frankly, the tiller in my shed causes me more concern than my pistol does.
Ladies might consider a .38-caliber revolver (such as the fairly compact Smith & Wesson model 60 or its cousin the Lady Smith) or 9mm semi-automatic. As for the gentlemen, the aforementioned will do, but I encourage you to think about something with more stopping power such as a .40- or .45-caliber semi-automatic. Glocks are nice if you have no qualms about the safety being part of the trigger mechanism. My pistol, however, has a safety that decocks the hammer, disengages the trigger, and blocks the firing pin. Having children around, those are features that I appreciate. Those on a tight budget might consider various Ruger models. If you have more cash to spend, take a look at Beretta, H&K, SIG Arms, and Walther models to name a few. There are also the ever-popular Colt 1911 and Browning Hi-Power.
Once you have decided between a shotgun and a handgun (not that you can't have both), it is time to go shopping. Visit a gun shop and handle as many different guns as you can. Take note of which ones feel most comfortable in your hands and which ones have easily disengaged safeties and engaged slides and magazines. Gun shows are wonderful places to see and handle lots of guns at one time. Whether you are at a shop or a show, however, do not buy anything there (unless you buy from a private individual at the show). Better to buy from a friend or neighbor, than to have to go through the background-check rigmarole and risk losing your weapon should Uncle Sam come asking for it. Also, if you know a gun enthusiast, ask if he or she will take you out shooting so you can get a better feel for a few different guns before you buy.
My final suggestions are 1) familiarize yourself with state and federal laws governing the bearing of arms and their use in self-defense. Constitutional guarantee notwithstanding, laws vary considerably from state to state. The National Rifle Association is a good source for such information. 2) Don't obtain a concealed-carry permit. I am not encouraging you to break the law; I am saying there are legal ways to at least transport firearms (dependent upon your state of residence). Look up the Firearm Owner's Protection Act (18 USC §926A). 3) Practice as often as possible once you obtain the gun. The best gun available will not be of much benefit if you aren't prepared to use it in the tension-filled moments of an assault.
We all have our favorites, but when it comes to concealed carry, there are many factors to be considered to determine what is optimal, and as those conditions change, so do the selection. For example, as much as I like my Sig P229 in .40 S&W, I'm not going to carry that here in Florida in the summer when wearing anything heavier than shorts and a tank-top will quickly reduce one to a puddle of perspiration. During the winter, though, my Sig goes everywhere I do, no problem.
With the developments in ammunition over the last decade, just about anything, even a .22lr (check out CCI's "Velocitor"), will work when you quickly dump the entire magazine into the goblin at five yards. At the very least, it will screw up the BG long enough for you to beat a hasty retreat!
I can vouch for this. I shot my first deer from an enclosed tree stand, without hearing protection. Ruger M-77 in .308. Should have reverberated and echoed like anything.
I never heard a thing. So it probably would be about the same inside a house . . .
What about the S&W angle? Last I knew, no self respecting conservative would buy an S&W.
A revolver is probably the simplest sidearm to operate point and click and the job is done. A semi-automatic has the advantage of usually more shots and quicker to reload. Although some revolvers have eight or nine shots these days, some semi-autos have up to 17 in the magazine.
Just remember a .22LR slug in the brain of an assailant will do a whole lot more to stop said assailant than a .44 magnum bullet in the wall.
Another consideration is the cost of practice ammunition. A .357 magnum allows one to use relatively inexpensive .38 spl ammunition rather than the more expensive .357 ammunition. These considerations very much affect such calibers as .40 S&W, .357 Sig etc. For full bore defensive sidearms the .45acp and the 9mm Parabellum round seem to have the most relatively low cost ammunition available.
What do I carry usually? The answer for me usually is a ten shot magazine .45 acp. I have also at times carried a 9mm, a ,38spl, a .357 magnum, and some other sidearms.
LOL- That would make a good 'Surgeon General's Warning" for ammo boxes!
Your UZI sounds like a potent package -- lighter than a shotgun, with more range. But you can't hunt birds with it! (Can you?)
Do get your permit if your state allows it. If not move to where you can carry a sidearm.
I don't leave home without mine.
I never tried. Legally in GA you're not supposed to use any full auto weapon for hunting, but with the coyotes getting more numerous ... :-)
A great point!
As far as all 'round home defense, I like the 'ol tried and true 12 ga. shotgun
for me its a 12 gauge full size and I have a .410 with a short barrel and a pistol grip. It's handy and it fits in a bug-out bag along with the MREs and first aid kit.
How accurate is it in slow fire -- ballpark figure, and try to be fairly honest here . . .