Discussing aspects and responsibilities of a citizen's right to carry a concealed handgun for self defense. Legal and ethical responsibilities and consequences. Safety and security. Review and analysis of various handguns, holsters, practices, techniques and training necessary to become proficient, safe and responsible.
About SD Carry
As a young boy in Texas, I grew up with guns. They were basic tools, much like my grandfather's mitre box or pipe wrench, there to perform specific tasks when called upon. I was taught gun safety by virtually every male adult in my family. I spent eight years in the US Navy operating and maintaing various guns from .30 caliber to 5" rifles.
After a few years as a moderator on a popular gun forum, I learned that there is much disinformation, prejudice and plain ignorance about guns posted constantly on the internet.
This blog is dedicated to sharing worthwhile information about the increasing acceptance and practice of legal concealed carry in our country. There is much mis-information and wild opinion about this topic among its practitioners and the public in general. The moral, social and legal responsibilities of concealed carry are immense and must be understood and practiced by all who legally carry a gun.
There is also a vast amount of practical and useful information about carrying and the weapons themselves and I hope to be able to share some of that here. Your comments are welcome, but will be moderated by me before appearing on this blog.
Rather than trying a re-direct (which doesn't always work well) to take you immediately to the new Self Defense Carry website please click the link below. It's the same content, and more, expanding all of the time.
If I see another stone-stupid, amateur YouTube blab fest passing itself off as an intelligent product review, I may just throw up. Honestly, the open availability of the internet and video cameras (really good ones are now standard equipment in any smart phone) and the urge to be a media personality have produced a slew of extremely bad, boring and pointless video reviews.
They actually aren’t reviews. They are a painful rehashing of data available from the maker’s site. There it is in a condensed and accessible format. On Johnny Blade’s video channel, it is just part of the mash up. Here is a recent example. I’m researching various knives, folding and fixed blades, for opinions and demonstrations on ergonomics, use and function. There are many, many YouTube knife “review” videos out there, such as this one (my fictional compilation resulting from exposure to too many of these so called reviews).
First, a crudely done title card appears, accompanied by bad heavy metal bar band music. Then, a sudden slightly out of focus cut to a kitchen table where upon lies a knife. The reviewer’s voice, “What’s up, guys? Rusty Ninja here. Today, I thought I’d, like, take a look at my new blade… Cool. Got it last week and I really like it. Its a Blatherslice Mall Warrior.
A hand and wrist wrapped in a thick “survival bracelet” appears in the frame, grabs the knife, and the hand flips the blade out as the guy says something like “Ka-swish! Awesome blade, dudes…!”
He brings the knife closer to the camera so it is even more out of focus and turns it, spins it around, points it in different directions while commenting, “Awesome… Check that blade. Cool G10 scales, pocket clip (he points helpfully to the pocket clip as if the viewer has never seen one before), tight lockup, no blade play (as he grabs the blade in one hand and tries to wiggle it back and forth).”
“Yeah, another cool blade from Blatherslice. OK, let’s go over the specs on this one. The blade is, uh…, let me check, ah… yeah, four point two inches long, the overall length is…”
This goes on for perhaps four or five minutes which is about half the entire video, if we are lucky. After the recitation of specifications, we are treated once again to the disembodied hands and forearms moving, twisting, opening, closing, turning the knife in various ways while the voice reads off the various features: scales, clip, opening device, blade shape (as if we can’t see that already). Everything one could get from a quick look at the maker’s page and specifications table.
One helpful reviewer explained, twice, what the “cutting edge” means. Just in case you weren’t sure.
If we are lucky, the disembodied voice will keep his personal life, past adventures and preferences for particular knives to himself, but usually we are not that fortunate. One video “reviewer” spent about 20% of the time talking about the braided lanyard he had made for his knife. Another, by a very well known, opinionated reviewer, spent almost a half an hour on one knife review, much of which wandered far off topic, including a peruse through the maker’s catalog for a number of those minutes.
Some reviewers spend far too long droning on about themselves and criteria that don’t really have much use in describing a knife’s design requirements and functionality. Some reviewers have constructed lists of items that must be laboriously checked off. This could be easily distilled into a few salient points that are relevant to the particular design, but that would require some actual analysis and possible field experience.
Good knife designers create and build knives for distinct purposes which, if the designer knows his or her stuff, will be expressed in the characteristics of the knife. Hopefully, these features will be there because they derive from the designed purpose, not to make them attractive to mass market customers who will buy something mostly because it looks cool.
What criteria and function did the designer have in mind when he chose the blade shape, grind, steel and length? Why is the swedge where it is and shaped as it is? Why did the designer choose a thick (or thin) blade? Why is the handle shaped as it is? For what intended purpose? Is the handle material suitable for the intended use and if so why, or why not if the reviewer disagrees? Does it cut well? Show me. What kind of cutting work is it best suited for? Show me.
Reviewing stuff is not easy if it is done well. You can’t get a new gizmo, play with it for a day or two and create anything meaningful for a review unless it is a review of how happy you are to have bought or been given something you like in the first place. I have reviewed, among other things, guns, holsters and firearms accessories. These things are serious pieces of equipment, and are made to be used. One has to spend time putting them to the uses the designers intended in order to understand how they perform and will last in their jobs. At times, what seemed to be good initially, turned out to be not so good, but without using it and paying close attention to those parameters over time, it is not possible to produce a decent, useful review.
My opinion is that the best knife reviews, both video and text reviews, are smart, focus on the design and use of particular knives, demonstrate excellent video and graphics and well written, in depth text. Not poorly made or written summaries that point out the obvious and rehash information readily available from the maker.
Ever since I was a youngster growing up in Texas I have carried some kind of knife, most usually a pocket knife. There was a time many years ago when I lived on our little mountain farm in Colorado when I was not without my old Buck Ranger. Now, being an old person, I still carry a knife every day. The modern buzz-term is EDC (every day carry) which I think is sort of pretentious. It's a pocket knife, which is an essential tool for many tasks, and the tool that is capable of making other tools if needs be.
These days I opt for quality, a small size and light weight and a knife I can always depend on. My favorite knife in this role is the Spyderco Dragonfly 2. There are many video and text reviews of this little knife available on the internet. Most are merely re-hashing of the specifications data available on the Spyderco site, along with ten to thirty minutes of bodiless hands fondling the knife before the camera while the "reviewer" goes on (and on) telling you little of substantive interest. I've written about this before.
So, I herewith put to you a very brief look, not a review, of the Dragonfly 2, and a small comparison look at it with a Delica 4 for your enjoyment and information. If you should like more information, I suggest starting with Spyderco.com, and, if that is of interest, join the Spyderco Forum for further discussions, questions and answers.
My wife and I went on our regular walk around town today. It was pleasant for 7000' in southern Colorado. Small town, little traffic and it seems you know most everyone you meet. Still, there are strange cars and strange people in town. Now that summer is coming, so will the tourists and travelers. The last thing you expect here is trouble. But like Monty Python so accurately noted: No one expects the Spanish Inquisition.
I remember in another small town in Oklahoma, many years ago, awakening in the middle of the night to see a large man standing in our bedroom doorway in the moonlight. He didn't linger after I snatched my S&W .41 from the bedside table. I chased him though the house, out the back door into the night. He disappeared into a car that started up on the street and sped away with the lights out. He was caught a few days later. Had a record. Peeper. Looked to me like he was trying to climb the perp ladder.
So, even here, you never know.
The interesting thing was that I took an inventory of the weapons I was carrying today on our walk. Well, two were actually weapons and two were tools that can readily serve as weapons if the need arises and one was just a tool.
One S&W M&P Shield in 9mm One Ruger LCP One Spyderco Delica 4 One Spyderco Tenacious
One Fenix AAA flashlight
Why two of each? I've come around to Massad Ayoob's philosophy that if you are going to carry a gun, you might as well carry two. If one becomes inoperative, dropped, taken, then you have another. If you have a friend in a bad situation that could work with you and he or she doesn't have a gun, you have an extra to give to them.
Two knives? Well, I like knives. They are the most basic of tools. With a knife you can make other tools. I don't really need a backup knife, I just like the ones I have and sometimes take two along just because I feel like it.
The flashlight? Well, sometimes you need a light to see in dim or dark places.
Now there are some people who would consider a senior citizen who walks about his own little village packing what they might consider to be four deadly weapons to be odd, if not a little crazy. I understand that but I can't do much with people like that so I just don't raise the subject. I can also see the remote possibility that some might be thankful for it, should the worst ever be realized.