At the recent Shot Show in Las Vegas, a show specifically for dealers of firearms, Glock reported they have more than 600,000 guns and 1,200,000 magazines on current backorder.  The panic created by the Administration’s ambition to limit choices in firearm and magazine capabilities has created a mad dash to buy all things related to weapons.  Many of the fear-driven buyers are also hoarding our available supply of ammunition to the degree that law enforcement is unable to do training because their low stockpile of ammo prevents wasting it on preparation and practice.  What a shame.  If I could make a suggestion please……CALM DOWN!!!   

I completely understand that in the mind of the few resides a notion that Zombies are going to come from the grave and join the evil empire from Washington and rob us of all our ammunition, gun, magazine, 5.11 pants and cool hats.  I also am well aware that the more common fear is that the economy will collapse creating world-wide famine, murder and riots in the street and door-to-door homicides in search of peanut butter, chicken breasts and wheat bread.  I get that.  Still…..CALM DOWN!!!

I love our Second Amendment as much as anyone but let’s just take a deep breath and review our history.  It was in TEXAS in 1871 that an amendment was passed to regulate the ownership of arms.  We overcame.  Fast forward to 2008 when our current President was elected and before that with the Clinton assault rifle ban.  Prices skyrocketed, supplies became short and there was great concern over our freedoms being ripped from our hands by gun-hating lawmakers.  Somehow we overcame and normalcy was restored.  Ammunition prices slowly returned to affordable levels, guns were back on shelves and smiles returned to the faces of those cammo wearing brothers and sisters of mine.  Yes, peace was in the valley. 

So, when you’re standing in line thinking of adding to your already HUGE pile of $30/box 9mm ammo maybe you could just take a deep breath and put that wallet back in your pocket.  Give this a little time and I’ll bet you will once again be happy to spend $12 for the same box.  And, rather than taking a second mortgage on your family home to buy two AR’s at $3K each, turn around and grab a shotgun for $300 and take your kid hunting.  We’ll all win if you do that.

No question that things are pretty goofy right now and the NRA is doing its best to protect our rights and not look like a bunch of felon-enabling anarchists.  We can all play a part in the solution by just calming down a bit, taking that long deep breath that provides oxygen to a brain so desperately needed to reason through this and find solutions that aren’t based on panic.  In the meantime, take a defensive pistol class and learn how to really use your handgun for defense rather than just another implement in your collective arsenal. 

Safe Shooting Texans…..

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I continue every week to be surprised at the ongoing change to the “average” student in my sessions.  What not all that long ago was predominately driven by men wanting to improve their shooting skills is now by majority women learning to handle a firearm to protect themselves.  GOOD FOR YOU LADIES!  You don’t need, nor should you expect, a man to be your protection.  Take gun in hand, get the training you need, and be prepared. 

I was speaking with a group of school teachers a few days ago as we sat in class and the overwhelming concern is not end of times, the apocalypse or zombies.  They are genuinely concerned about the students who for a decade now have grown up with violent media and loose parenting.  They are concerned about the lack of judgment many seem to have, the availability of alcohol and drugs and the total disregard for respect of life or adults.  THAT my friend is not the neighborhood Mr. Rogers lives in.  These teachers are nervous for their own safety and are getting prepared for what they each feel is an inevitable conflict with a student one day.  How very sad. 

We have several classes that are perfect for our female customers and are thrilled at the response.  Groups of friends are learning the right way to shoot and are having a ball.  Ladies, you ROCK!

All too often when I’m at the range I see people shooting at static targets with long intervals between shots and leaving with a sense of safety because they were able to place rounds within a few inches of the “X.”  While I agree completely that coming to the range and practicing is never really a bad thing it certainly can develop in us habits and expectations that could get us killed.  If our total self defense preparation is limited to this type shooting then I fear there is a terrible surprise coming if ever we are forced into truly pulling a gun and defending ourselves.  Where is the tactical accuracy when exposed to pressure, even panic? 

We are preparing now to offer true defensive shooting classes.  We will drill in the midst of pressure how to draw, pull, point and shoot so that we walk away to live another day.  This will NOT be a basic course but not limited to high level experts either.  Keep an eye on this space for more details or check with The Gun Zone.

For those of us who love shooting, the shortage of reasonable cost ammunition is a growing problem.  These costs are the best example of supply and demand in an economy fueled by the fine balance of consumer behavior and supply chain capabilities.  The combination of the election of a President perceived to be anti-gun and the growing choir of those set to eliminate the freedom to purchase guns as we have in the past has fueled a hoarding of all things gun related.  I have never seen anything like it.  But others have.

In 2008, upon the first election of this President, a similar shift in supply happened when then new President Barack Obama took office.  A box of 9mm ammunition quickly rose from $11 per box of 50 to almost a dollar per round.  Then, over time, as the fear and concern began to meet reality and hoarding subsided, the prices gradually subtracted to what again only a few weeks ago was a reasonable price.  So, what’s the right move here?  Should we buy all we see to make certain we have enough for ourselves or should we leave a box for the next sportsmen to come along?

First, just relax a bit.  There will be plenty of ammunition to go around and the faster we stop this madness of buying dozens of boxes the faster it will return to normal.  The supply chain of ammo manufacturers has only a limited amount of capacity to make high quality ammunition.  Hoarding strips the available ammunition reserves and leaves the makers of ammo with a very real dilemma as to whether expanding manufacturing capabilities is the right thing to do or not.  Investing in more equipment and people would be fine now while prices are high but what happens when the panic subsides and people stop buying ammo in such huge quantities?  The maker of ammo has a surplus of capacity and finished goods and that will begin to drive prices down in order to rid themselves of unnecessary inventory.  As the price drops so does profit and soon the manufacturers are left with higher overhead from the expanded facilities, lower cost inventory to sell and employees that are unneeded.  So, for most, the best idea is to simply stay constant with their current capacity to manufacture and be patient.  They will earn record revenue during the shortage and use that to hold them over during what will absolutely be lean months soon to come.  After all, when all the people who have been rushing for guns have made their purchases,  and they have hoarded the cache of ammunition they either believe they need or can afford, the supply will begin to grow and prices will again begin to drop.

For now, buy only what you need plus a very small safety margin.  Let’s not be guilty of making things worse by using panic driven decision making.  Be calm and this too will pass.

Safe shooting

JJ

Very excited that in February we’ll start offering our compressed Advanced Defensive Pistol courses.  This will have 4 hours classroom and 4 hours in the range.  Very concentrated skill development for pulling from concealment and placing 2/1 shots.  Stay tuned for dates!