Self-defense fact vs fiction article

Discussion in 'Defensive Carry & Self Defense' started by PNWguy, Apr 14, 2019.

  1. PNWguy

    PNWguy
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    Been in a few debates on various gun forums over the years with well-meaning fellow gun-owners regarding things such as adequate CCW capacity, caliber choice, defensive distances, etc.

    Came across an old article by Masaad Ayoob that addresses just about all of those subjects. It was a breath of fresh air.

    I think it is beneficial for all of us to do our own research and discover what the experts have to say about such things rather than rely on our own misconceptions based on gun shop hearsay and internet ramblings...

    Massad Ayoob: Gunfighting Fact vs. Fiction



    Myth #1: A Good Shoot Is A Good Shoot

    Massad-Ayoob-Gunfighting-Fact-vs.-Fiction-12.jpg

    In the old days, there was some truth to this. When it was reasonably clear that a good guy had shot a bad guy, the criminal justice system ruled it to be a justifiable action, and things were pretty much done with. Oh, there might have been a lawsuit here or there, but it was not common to see a huge wrongful death lawsuit levied on the shooter after a fatal use of force in legitimate defense of oneself or others.

    RELATED STORY: Massad Ayoob – Understanding Stand Your Ground & Castle Doctrine


    Myth #2: Aim For Center-Mass

    Massad-Ayoob-Gunfighting-Fact-vs.-Fiction-2.jpg


    Myth #3: He Who Shoots First Wins

    Massad-Ayoob-Gunfighting-Fact-vs.-Fiction-4.jpg


    RELATED STORY: 10 Cases Where An Armed Citizen Took Down An Active Shooter


    In the more famous gunfight at OK Corral, Wyatt Earp’s brother, Morgan, was shot down by a bullet that went across his shoulders and chipped one of his vertebrae, and Doc Holliday received a glancing wound to the hip from Frank McLaury’s Colt .44. A moment later, McLaury fell dead, killed instantly when Holliday shot him in the chest and the wounded Morgan Earp almost simultaneously shot him in the head.

    Massad-Ayoob-Gunfighting-Fact-vs.-Fiction-3.jpg


    Myth #4: If You Can’t Do It With…


    Massad-Ayoob-Gunfighting-Fact-vs.-Fiction-8.jpg

    “If you can’t do it with six (or five), you can’t do it at all.”

    RELATED STORY: Clear & Present – 3 Must-Know Malfunction-Clearance Drills


    Myth #5: Your Choice of Gun & Ammo Doesn’t Matter

    Massad-Ayoob-Gunfighting-Fact-vs.-Fiction-7.jpg
    Should you carry jacketed hollow point (JHP) or full metal jacket (FMJ) ammo for defensive use?

    RELATED STORY: Revolver Vs. Auto – Which Model Fits Your Concealed Carry Needs?

    Hollow points are also safer for innocent bystanders, whether cops, security professionals or armed citizens fire them. The hollow-nosed bullet’s expansion slows it down and usually leaves it lodged in the opposite side of the opponent’s body and clothing, or lying on the ground a few feet behind him, spent.

    RELATED STORY: 12 Autopistols From the COMPLETE BOOK OF HANDGUNS 2016 Buyer’s Guide

    If you have to fight for your life with a firearm, I absolutely agree with Mark Moritz that “the first rule of gunfighting is, have a gun.”

    Common Sense

    Massad-Ayoob-Gunfighting-Fact-vs.-Fiction-6.jpg
    Crime prevention programs like Neighborhood Watch are part and parcel of a complete home-defense plan to protect your family.

    Edited as you can't place copy writed material on NWFS, just ad a link as the author deserves the credit.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 3, 2019
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  2. Boboclown

    Boboclown
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    You mean I shouldn't carry around a .50 BMG with armor piercing ammo?
     
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  3. AndyinEverson

    AndyinEverson
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    Myth #3..He who shoots first wins...
    Hickok actually used a Colt Dragoon in that fight...which is .44 caliber ( .454 )...and did not use a Colt "Navy"
    .36 caliber ( .375 ) or have another revolver in his belt , in that fight...
    He did indeed use the Colt Navy often , just not in that fight.

    Well so what...
    The "so what" is , that if one part of the article is not true , then what about the other parts...?
    It may cause someone to doubt what the rest of the article states.

    With that said..
    The main and really important part of the "myth" , it don't matter if you shoot first or not , but you gotta hit what you shoot at , holds true.
    Andy
    Please note that I am not doubting or knocking what Massad Ayoob has himself written or experienced...just am taking issue with the use of an historic example that has details that have been proven to be wrong
     
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2019
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  4. dcfranzen

    dcfranzen
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    Thanks, PNWguy, for taking the time to put together a nice reading thread.
     
  5. CountryGent

    CountryGent
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    Well said. Or as Wyatt Earp put it, "Fast is fine, but accuracy is everything." :)
     
  6. bbbass

    bbbass
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    After reviewing literally thousands of gunfights, "The first to put hits on the other's body usually wins". - John Correia

    Ayoob is a myth, wrapped in a puzzle, inside an enigma. o_O;)
     
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  7. No_Regerts

    No_Regerts
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    Sounds like you just watched Inception.
     
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  8. thorborg

    thorborg
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    I've read his stuff. Heck, I'm a voracious reader so read a lot of stuff. I have a six foot high pile of salt in my back yard just for that occasion. After a while you tend to see similarities from those who have experienced topics first hand, and become suspect about others who just write about them. While not criticizing any particular person or author I offer this:
    One would be hard put to belittle, deny or otherwise denigrate gunfight descriptions which are still applicable in my mind and are found in the writings of Bill Jordan in his book "no second place winners" While not the most politically correct for this day and age, he really does sum up in detail a gunfight. I recommend this book to help separate truth from fiction.
     
  9. Joe13

    Joe13
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    I don't really see an argument worth fighting....

    What works in one situation might not work for another, you can what if all day.

    Some is better then none but I'm not going to forgo my in pocket summer P22 for my G17 because if I get into a gun fight I'd rather have 18 rounds of 9mm over 10 rounds of .22lr (extra mag omitted for simplicity).


    Ultimately I don't put myself in situations needing an AR out on the street - but I'll have one in the car if I decide too;).
     
  10. bbbass

    bbbass
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    Nah, I tried to watch that movie years ago and couldn't do it... didn't need to be inside someones bad LSD trip! I struggle with perception of reality just fine all by myself w/o the outside help. :)

    I'm more along the lines of Predator... easy to understand action and villains. About the farthest I go is the Prometheus prequels (to the movie "Alien") and I still had to have those explained after watching several times. :confused:

    Ah, it was Churchill: A form of Winston Churchill's quotation, made in a radio broadcast in October 1939: "I cannot forecast to you the action of Russia. It is a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma; but perhaps there is a key. That key is Russian national interest." Churchill knew a thing or two about Russian collusion.
     
  11. bbbass

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    The truth about gunfights... IMO there is no truth about gunfights. I value the man's experience and he seems to have honestly held opinions. But, it's all so variable and one must do what works for one's self.

    Myth: What I carry for EDC is the best there is!

    Reality, I carry a compromise. I carry a handgun because I don't have a tax stamp for an M16, and yes Bobo .50 Barrett is hard to conceal! ;) I carry a 9mm because my hands will no longer tolerate what I consider to be an adequate amount of practice/training with my double stack .45ACP. I carry a 10rd mag in a slim profile Ruger SR9c for good concealment aspects (it's a slim double stack, so I installed a Hogue wrap because my hands like big grips). I carry 2 17rd mags on the offside because it's better to have them and not need them than vice versa.

    The Average Joe gunfight is said to be 0 to 8 rds. Personally, I think this number is increasing, and not just due to poor or amateurish/panicked shooting. Leaving LEO actions out, the trend does seem to be towards multiple attackers, hardened bangers, and crazed or drugged individuals.

    Am I geared up for a statistical outlier? Of course! IMO "Most" robbers would be dissuaded by getting hit or even shot at. I think "many" simple attacks would be put off by shots on target. And many angry jerks are put off by the mere sight of a firearm. But I'm not willing to bet my life on it (what if my wife's lover seriously intends to murder me?), and carry extra ammo for the same reason that I carry concealed in the first place... just in case. I don't want my gravestone to read "Here lies bbbass, killed by an outlier".
     
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2019
  12. bbbass

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    Yes. The rules of stupid (adapted) say, "Don't go stupid places, at stupid times, with stupid people, doing stupid things". A bit of prudence can help us stay safe.

    Another person says it in another way:

    Self-Defense Tip: Avoid Stupid People in Stupid Places Doing Stupid Things [Video NSFW]
    by Robert Farago |Feb 14, 2016 |

    This liveleak.com video shows an irate customer at the last neighborhood store Michael Brown ever visited. The thing to notice: all the people standing around, either waiting for something to happen or doing their shopping. They’re violating the first rule of self-defense, armed or otherwise: avoid stupid people in stupid places doing stupid things. The best way to avoid this unholy trinity: don’t go to stupid places in the first place. By the same token . . .


    a perfectly reasonable place can turn into a stupid place to be if a stupid person suddenly starts doing something stupid.


    In that case, your are advised to GTFO. Leave. Immediately. If you’re in a store, put down your shopping and exit ASAP. If you’re in a restaurant or bar, get up and go. Don’t pay. Just go. (You will, of course, return to settle your bill.)


    Another handy hint: have a “GTFO” word you can use with your family. A codeword that tells your friends, family or other folks that it’s time to scarper (as the Brits would say) without discussion, deviation or hesitation.


    Yes, you want to up you situational awareness when things start getting seriously awkward, and start thinking about armed defense (e.g., cover, concealment, egress). But it can’t be said enough: the only gunfight you’re guaranteed to win is one you don’t have.


    There are “sheepdogs” amongst us that will stay in a dangerous situation to protect innocent life. I applaud them. But remember that the people being threatened also have a natural, civil and Constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms. They shouldn’t rely on you any more than you should rely on them. Just sayin’ . . .


    Addendum: Several TTAG commentators has posited that this kind of “showboating” is SOP in many urban areas, often used to provide cover for shoplifters. I stand by my assertion. If there’s someone verbally violent in a location, it’s best to leave. Better safe than sorry. If that makes me a wimp, so be it. I have other priorities.
     
  13. Howard1955

    Howard1955
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    I hope I never have to shoot anyone - but if I do, then I want the hardest-hitting thumper I can shoot accurately.


    Hollow points for town, so I don’t accidentally shoot someone behind (through) the bad guy, and ball ammo for home defense. It’s just my wife and me here, so if I start shooting at a home invader and the rounds happen to go through him and into the jerk behind him, so much the better.


    Generally speaking, 12 gauge shotgun or .308 rifle for long guns, .357 magnum or 45acp for handguns. Whatever part of the bad guy is visible is a target, but brains and balls have bullseyes on them. If I can only see the bad guy’s foot, I plan to shoot him in the center of his foot. Etc.


    I’m not a soldier, or a cop. Never have been, and don’t intend to start training to be one now.
     
  14. PNWguy

    PNWguy
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    Why ball ammo?

    From the article in the OP...

     
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  15. Howard1955

    Howard1955
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    Hollow points are more likely to dump all their energy into a bad guy without going all the way through, and possibly hitting an innocent bystander. So I carry hp’s.

    For home defense, I don’t care if it over-penetrates. If I ever have to, I plan to make the bad guys bleed from as many holes as possible. 45 ball ammo, if it doesn’t stop/kill them outright, will probably put a hole clean through them, and they can leak from the front and the back.

    But a head, heart, or groin shot is likely to end the fight. Especially with a .45acp.
     
  16. PNWguy

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    Respectfully speaking, your plan should be to stop the threat as quickly as possible, which science, the experts, the evidence, and common sense clearly shows is done with hollowpoints.

    I really don't understand your reasons for using less effective bullets for attackers in your home.
     
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  17. Howard1955

    Howard1955
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    Copy that.
     
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  18. AndyinEverson

    AndyinEverson
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    Just to something consider :

    Sgt. Alvin York killed six charging German soldiers with his 1911 and FMJ Ball ammo...

    Not saying that this example makes it plain , that we should all use FMJ ammo , all the time , just saying that it does work.
    Andy
     
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  19. Alexx1401

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    I use ball in my mouse guns, .32 &.380, because I am leery of the HP's doing the job. It's all a trade off and everyone has to decide what they will do. After years of watching some of these dopers take multiple hits from an LEO's service weapon the .32 and .380 seem quite small now. So if I have to depend on one I want to at least make sure the round makes it well into the dobad. Of course biggest hope is I never have to use any of my carry guns but, if I do hopefully I have the larger caliber one with me.
    As for the book I read Mass decades back and Jordan. Great info and of course always good to prepare. Thing to remember is it almost never goes the way of training. We have to re certify for hands on training every couple years using a couple different training programs. It's interesting and fun. I always tell the new people in the class this is great but, when it comes time to actually go hands on with people it never goes this way. The training is to help make sure when it's over no one is hurt if possible but the fights are always all different. Gun fights are a WHOLE different game all together. Training is great but it will almost never happen the way the class tells you. Does NOT mean its not a great idea to train though.
     
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  20. bbbass

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    Sorry in advance... I have a lot of opinions!!!

    Yes, studies show that the more holes the quicker the bleed out. I think that probably works for LEOs or maybe even for a prolonged self defense engagement on the street or in a store. But at home I want my shot(s) to be immediately disabling. The problem is that handguns are notoriously ineffective at immediately disabling. Better have a plan to dump enough rounds into the target to put it down.

    At home, in near dark, can we see well enough to do a head shot? And even with a light, is there enough time to do a head shot? (Having done just a wee bit of training, I know it takes longer to concentrate the sights for a head shot, and that's on stationary targets... I imagine the home invader is not gonna just stand there!)

    I know for myself, that when an intruder appears in my darkened bedroom doorway or in the weapon light inside my house, I have very little time to make the shot(s). Do we have time to do a heart shot, or is aiming for the center of the sternum the way to go? (IDPA targets have a circle that represents the center of the sternum, thus avoiding training people to shoot at the center of the trunk area.) IMO, most self defenders need to be trained to shoot for the greatest chance of success while engaged in a highly stressful activity. YMMV

    What's the deal with groin shots? Yes the femoral arteries are there... yes, a penetrating shot to the hip ball with a heavy slug can break the hip joint, putting the BG down on the ground... maybe a good thing in a knife attack, but in a gunfight you've now left the hands free to keep shooting at you. And a miss to the center of that area will cause relatively little damage. IMO this is an old gunfighter tactic, or LEO tactic. I don't get it. I have enough things to worry about w/o thinking about where to aim.

    Lastly, we need to make sure that defenders are not thinking about "one shot stops". The odds of that happening are statistically rare. Too many people are taking one or two shots and then lowering the gun to check for effectiveness... good training indicates shooting until the BG is down and not aiming a gun at you.

    Just my $0.02 FWIW...
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2019
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