A brief reminder that concealed carry is a lifestyle, not a fad - Page 3

A brief reminder that concealed carry is a lifestyle, not a fad

This is a discussion on A brief reminder that concealed carry is a lifestyle, not a fad within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Are the only two choices "fad" or "lifestyle"? Im going to go out on a limb here and disagree with Lima. Im not suggesting that ...

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Thread: A brief reminder that concealed carry is a lifestyle, not a fad

  1. #31
    Ex Member Array HOLYROLLER's Avatar
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    Are the only two choices "fad" or "lifestyle"? Im going to go out on a limb here and disagree with Lima.

    Im not suggesting that CC should not be taken seriously, but a complete change of lifestyle? Maybe to a point, but when you categorize those who carry into two polarized groups, you automatically label half as ill-prepared wanna-be tactical mall-ninjas who arent as ready as those who have a new CC "lifestyle".

    What about those who dont have the time or money to be as prepared as the rest? What if someone does not have a job at a gunshop, hasnt been in the military, didnt grow up around guns, doesnt have a SHTF kit or a sufficient ammo stash...should they not carry because we deem them ill-prepared?

    Ill use myself as an example because its the only one I have.

    I have just two guns, a shotgun and pistol for CC. Hadnt shot a handgun in 15 years...bought a pistol and had my CC permit within a month. Shoot 100 rounds every two weeks since and I have 80 rounds "stocked up" for my next trip to the gravel pit.

    I believe that I represent the majority (the public, not members of this forum) as far as preparedness. Woefully unready by the standards set forth in these posts, but I believe better off than many.

    Not a fad, not a lifestyle...somewhere in between.


  2. #32
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    Fire her

    Quote Originally Posted by limatunes View Post
    She proceeded to cuss me out for thinking I was some hot-shot who carried a gun for absolutely no good reason and that if a real threat were ever to present itself I'd be on the floor cowering like everyone else and my gun would do me no good and I was a fool for thinking that having a gun would make any difference.
    Fire her for verbal abuse. Why put up with it?

  3. #33
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    In my circle of friends, I am the only one with a CHL. The rest of them talk about getting one, and maybe have a 12 gauge in a corner at home stoked with 00 buckshot (since I told them that their cheap loads of birdshot aren't what they want) they ponied up and got a box or two of 00.

    I do think several of them will get their CHL's, although probably not carry religously, they all get to read a couple books I provide and I quiz them before they take the class, but for most of them it is the take the class, apply, and forget about it until a rainy day kind of thing.

    Being an effective CHL holder does take a change in mindset and actions, although not all people seem able to make that change, at least they are trying to be proactive and starting to take the right steps.
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  4. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sig P239 View Post
    Great post Lima.
    And let me be the first to say, with every well written and thought out post or thread you put up it becomes more and more apparent to me that you need to be writing a 2A column in some magazine. You could be the female 2A writer for NRA to be honest. You write very well and your articles are very well reasoned and logical. I look forward to each reading many more of your observations about the gun shop.

    Well done.
    +1

    Im not suggesting that CC should not be taken seriously, but a complete change of lifestyle? Maybe to a point, but when you categorize those who carry into two polarized groups, you automatically label half as ill-prepared wanna-be tactical mall-ninjas who arent as ready as those who have a new CC "lifestyle".
    I believe that I represent the majority (the public, not members of this forum) as far as preparedness. Woefully unready by the standards set forth in these posts, but I believe better off than many.

    Not a fad, not a lifestyle...somewhere in between.
    And you are aware of this and understand the concept which puts you ahead of unprepaired undertrained/ untrained people that carry in ingnorance of their shortcomings.

    I myself have fallen short of my goals for training.
    Try as I might I don't get to spend enough time at the range.
    I have more than rudimentary training in several "martial arts" including Krav Maga and Judo, but I am by no means an expert at any of them.
    I should get more and better training in carrying for self defense.
    I believe that I have enough training and experience to not be a danger, but no one can ever be "Fully(fooly) Trained"
    I do however agree with the "Lifestyle" viewpoint. You shouldn't carry a weapon if you don't beleive that you could use it to kill in defense of yourself or family.
    This is a responsibility not a fad, as has been stated here. The responsibility is to ensure that You take every precaution available to you so that you (hopefully) never need to use deadly force. This means avoid situations and places that are potentialy dangerous. And avoid precipitating or escalating any confrontations that have any chance whatsoever of "going south".
    Any one who doesn't think that a weapon is a last and worst resort needs to spend some more time on this forum just soaking up the wisdom that seems to predominate here.
    Just my $.02
    Once again hats off to an excellent post Lima!
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  5. #35
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    I think you will find that people who have a casual approach to self defense and firearms probably have a casual approach to many things in their lives. For instance the way they operate a vehicle or operate a boat. Both things are easy to do badly and you might get away with it but then one day that approach may harm you or others around you or even get someone killed. We seem to live in a world of appalling mediocrity and our society allows for this, even encourages it.

    I can give you tons of examples of "sea stories" from my years on the water but the short edited version was being just as appalled by many peoples approach to offshore sailing and cruising. It's not a game out there or an excuse to get drunk and party. One type of person figured they'd just call the Coasties when they ran out of ice (don't laugh, it has happened) and at the other end were the people like me who figured if you had to call 'em it was because you just wanted someone to know you were probably dead after doing everything possible to get yourself out of trouble.

    Some people take life seriously and prepare themselves for the reality of the world they operate in and few take the time to truly evaluate their daily surroundings. Many, sadly, today think life is a fantasy or some sort of party and that someone will always bail them out when things go wrong. Worse yet they think they have a right to be bailed out and scream when it doesn't show up immedietly.

    Actually, I don't envy working with the general public in a gun store. I don't think I could keep a straight face.
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  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Juggernaut View Post
    I was going to give my brother one of my pistols for his upcoming birthday. This being his first firearm, I told him my giving him one was contingent upon his taking a safety class and at least one hour of live-fire private instruction. He doesn't think either one of those stipulations is reasonable
    Your brother is pretty predictable, actually.

    Most American men think they are born knowing all there is to know about guns, are expert shots, and will never crack under stress.

    Some of us (present company included) eventually grow up and admit we don't know much so we train to learn and practice to hone what was learned.

    I see it much in my competitive rifle shooting. Hunters who boast of 500 yard kills but can't be made to lie down prone and prove it.

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    My only knock on your observations, and it's a small one, is that at one time or another we were all novices asking dumb questions at the gun counter. Better there than say at a pawn shop or sporting goods chain, no? I take issue with the gun shop representative who has the attitude of "Well, you tell me what you want" instead of offering advice. Let me explain....the owner of the local shop I visit was less than helpful when I asked," Hi....I'm new to the handgun world and would like some advice on a weapon suitable for carry/home defense. I would also like to know the pro-cons of different calibers." He looked like I slapped him, then responded with, "Well how should I know what is good for you....we have lots of choices here." He obviously saw my build, could have asked a couple questions and steered me along the path. On later visits I dealt with another guy there who was great. Go figure. All this to say that I did a lot of research here and elsewhere before I purchased...sometimes the gun shop can be frustrating/intimidating to the newb.

    Have a great day!

  8. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by whamonkey View Post
    I take issue with the gun shop representative who has the attitude of "Well, you tell me what you want" instead of offering advice.
    Yeah, there are incompetent functionaries in all walks of life. But then, you can't simply read a book and be able to "read" someone's perfect match in a firearm. That comes from long experience, a discerning eye, a willingness to work with people and dig into what works for them. That takes time and skill, and frankly most aren't inclined to even try, knowledgeable though they be. Limatunes seems an exception, and she speaks from experience (relatively brief though that is, for a young pup!). Wouldn't it be nice if they were all as decent at the task ...

    Partly, finding a match between a given person and a firearm is a tough thing because it's so personal. It depends on a number of factors, and the ones that really matter aren't easy to put the finger on. Such as: overall feel, balance, ability to "point", impact of all factors on comfort level when shooting (particularly follow-up shots), and so on. It's simple to explore choice of caliber, or overall size, or whether I can manipulate the controls. But, those other things aren't something a clerk can know. It's not in any book.

    Point taken, though. A noob's road is a rough one, with a steep path to climb. And gun shop folks could do much better, overall, in helping people to understand the elements required to make a reasonable decision.

    Here's what I do, roughly:
    • Size/weight -- what am I prepared to carry?
    • Controls -- can I manipulate them with ease, under stress?
    • Grip/aim -- does it fit my hand and point naturally? If not, then no amount of wishing will make it so.
    • Reliability -- is this specific model of gun known for reliability and function under fire?
    • Suitability to task -- will this specific model of gun work for me, day in and day out, given how I'll use it (daily carry; dusty/dirty/saline environment; 3-5K rds/yr training)?
    • Availability of after-market items -- are there good options for holsters, parts, gunsmithing services?
    • Likes/dislikes -- do I really like this gun? Can it work for me? Can I live with it? Can I shoot well with it? I only get this via saddle time with the gun on the range and in the field. Which is why I buy/sell a number of guns prior to finding the "sweet spot" entry that matches what I'm looking for.


    A couple of shops I've worked with have been exceptional, in that they've had one or two folks with the depth and breadth of knowledge to be able to hear what I'm saying, then then run with it. I always identify why I'm looking, what I need it to do, that I'm not 100% certain of the task requirements but that I've got some good ideas on that. And, most importantly, that I won't purchase until I understand enough about a given gun to make a determination myself. I'm looking for help, but I won't ever close my eyes and abdicate the responsibility of selection to someone else. Successful choices simply don't work that way, at least not for me.

    I'm willing to find that perfect shop with perfect staff, though. I have no loyalties except to quality and knowledge. If they've got it, then I want to talk with them, work with them. I'll go to where the greatest selection is, so I can handle a large number of choices. But it I then get attitude, get brushed off when asking questions, despite them having the best selection in the world, I'm leaving. There are plenty of good shops around that can help fill in the blanks beyond mere handling of a given gun. Life's to short to take it in the shorts by someone who chooses not to be good at what they do.
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  9. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by whamonkey View Post
    My only knock on your observations, and it's a small one, is that at one time or another we were all novices asking dumb questions at the gun counter. Better there than say at a pawn shop or sporting goods chain, no? I take issue with the gun shop representative who has the attitude of "Well, you tell me what you want" instead of offering advice. Let me explain....the owner of the local shop I visit was less than helpful when I asked," Hi....I'm new to the handgun world and would like some advice on a weapon suitable for carry/home defense. I would also like to know the pro-cons of different calibers." He looked like I slapped him, then responded with, "Well how should I know what is good for you....we have lots of choices here." He obviously saw my build, could have asked a couple questions and steered me along the path. On later visits I dealt with another guy there who was great. Go figure. All this to say that I did a lot of research here and elsewhere before I purchased...sometimes the gun shop can be frustrating/intimidating to the newb.
    I had a similar experience. I asked 'dumb' questions and was summarily dismissed by the staff. In the parking lot after I left the building, another customer, who overheard my conversation, suggested a different gun store/range. I went there and the staff was incredibly helpful.

    As with virtually every aspect of life, knowledge of a subject is secondary to being able effectively utilize that knowledge. In a retail store it is essential for the staff to make the customer feel welcome and not be intimidated by someone that simply wants to make a novice feel like an idiot.

    This is especially true in an industry that thrives on its ability to educate the general public.

  10. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sig P239 View Post
    Great post Lima. And I would suggest that you speak to the owner about the office manager. If she was cussing and using obscenities toward you, that is something he or she (owner) needs to know.
    LOL.. The owner does know about it. Everyone knows about. I don't think there's one person in the store she HASN'T cussed out. She gets very passionate at times.

    They all warned me that no matter how nice and sweet I am she would find something to pin me to the wall with one of these days.

    Not an hour after this incident she came up to me and was laughing about a sale I had made yesterday. She's a strange cookie for sure.

    And I certainly don't have the authority to fire her.

    Quote Originally Posted by HOLYROLLER View Post
    Are the only two choices "fad" or "lifestyle"? Im going to go out on a limb here and disagree with Lima.

    Im not suggesting that CC should not be taken seriously, but a complete change of lifestyle? Maybe to a point, but when you categorize those who carry into two polarized groups, you automatically label half as ill-prepared wanna-be tactical mall-ninjas who arent as ready as those who have a new CC "lifestyle".

    What about those who dont have the time or money to be as prepared as the rest? What if someone does not have a job at a gunshop, hasnt been in the military, didnt grow up around guns, doesnt have a SHTF kit or a sufficient ammo stash...should they not carry because we deem them ill-prepared?

    Ill use myself as an example because its the only one I have.

    I have just two guns, a shotgun and pistol for CC. Hadnt shot a handgun in 15 years...bought a pistol and had my CC permit within a month. Shoot 100 rounds every two weeks since and I have 80 rounds "stocked up" for my next trip to the gravel pit.

    I believe that I represent the majority (the public, not members of this forum) as far as preparedness. Woefully unready by the standards set forth in these posts, but I believe better off than many.

    Not a fad, not a lifestyle...somewhere in between.
    Holyroller,
    When I agreed to consider getting my permit to carry, I was as naive as anyone out there, but I had a few things I logically deduced.

    First, I knew that I would have to be willing to take a life to save my own. In a stressful situation there is no such thing as shooting to wound, and even those who shoot to wound forget that you are still firing a bullet at someone and once that bullet leaves the muzzle you have no control over where it's going to hit and the person you tried to wound just ended up dead. So I went through the motions to mentally prepare myself for that hurtle, as I'm sure you've done

    Secondly, I knew my current skill level with the pistol. I told my husband that I would not carry a gun unless I practiced with it regularly and got some kind of training with it. I'd been around guns long enough to know that you only get more proficient and prepared with it when you train and practice with it.

    At that point, did I make a huge lifestyle change? No.

    For all intensive purposes, nothing changed. I made two decisions, that was it. I had one gun (a Bersa Thunder in .380).

    I just assumed, because my husband bought it for me, that it was a perfect gun.

    But then, one day, as it got closer to the time when I would be getting my permit, my husband said, "If you are going to be carrying, I want you to have a larger caliber."

    I said, "Why?" Yes, I was a complete noob.

    He started explaining a few things about stopping power and telling me his likes and dislikes of my current weapon choice. He then challenged me to really start thinking about what I would like to carry everyday for my own personal defense. What would I trust my life with?

    With his help I started doing some research and slowly my list of criteria started to build. I wanted a light trigger pull and for the gun to be single action only. My Bersa's Double Action/Single Action bothered me. I didn't like that the double action pull was so much greater than the follow up single action pulls. I wanted a thumb safety. I wanted something in .40 caliber or above and on and on it went.

    Would you say that my lifestyle was changed then? Not really. Now I'd only gone from making two decisions, to reconsidering my carry piece and it wasn't even my idea. My husband put me up to it.

    We found my Kimber .40, bought it, and I got my permit. I'll admit that I followed my husband's lead as I didn't have many opinions about this myself, but I noticed something, I started thinking differently, about the rooms I was in, the people I allowed to get closer to me, how I let things irritate me. I started wondering about different situations and what I would do.

    When I thought more about different situations I thought about if I could get to my gun in time. Suddenly I was reconsidering my holster choice. I went to the range and wasn't shooting very well and started thinking about having to use my gun in defense and missing. What were my options, if I missed, who could I potentially hit? I started practicing more.

    I realized I still needed more training and correction on some things. My husband and I collaborated and signed up for a class this fall.

    The more I practiced the more I noticed that my .40 was having feeding problems. I wouldn't have noticed unless I practiced as much as I did and I thought about what would happen should my gun jam when I needed it. I sent my gun to the gunsmith the next day.

    I started carrying and shooting my backup gun. The more I practiced with that the more I saw it's accuracy past seven yards was sub-par. Not that I was hoping to shoot someone at 15 yards, but you never know when you may just have to make that longer shot.

    I wanted another, large caliber gun, that could make longer shots if I needed. I found one and purchased it. This time I was looking for those feeding problems and for accuracy and the things I had missed looking for in my last gun.

    I started practicing with that and realized that a few things needed to be changed. When I drew my gun I couldn't find my front sights as fast as I would like. Time for a new front sight. The checkering was cutting up my palms.. new grips. The base of my thumb safety bruises my thumb and I can't disengage it as fast as I NEED to.. defiantly new thumb safety. No one wants to be fumbling with a safety when it's time to shoot.

    Has my lifestyle changed now? OH YES!

    While this is all a very "nutshell" version of my life as a CCWer, I went from a girl with a gun to a girl actively participating in trying to be the best I can be with that gun. My life morphed into a lifestyle that I had never anticipated. It took about a year for it to happen, however, and while it was slow, I'm very glad it happened. Now, I look back at other people who are beginning that same journey I have taken and while some find the same road and come to the same revelations, some don't even try.

    And to be honest, my job at the gun shop had little to do with my transition. I've not learned anything new about concealed carry by selling guns other than the fact that no one thinks I carry .

    It's not the people who are just starting out who worry me. Chances are great they may take the same progression that I took and I've arrived absolutely NO WHERE. My goal is to continue to learn, continue to morph and continue to grow. After this class this fall I'm mentioned that I want to look for more combative pistol courses to get myself out of the 180 world I've been forced to remain in and get into some training that utilizes the three dimensional world we live in. I'm not rich, I'll have to save up for the class, I'll have to do some research, I may even have to save up for a plan ticket to fly to the training. I cringe at how much I'll have to spend on ammo and other things, but I know the training will be invaluable.

    After that I want to go further and only God knows where I'll end up.

    The man who came into the shop yesterday, asking for a gun that he could throw into his pocket so he didn't have to change anything, well, he had the same mindset I had when I started out. I didn't really think anything was going to change.

    Thank goodness I had a husband who kept pushing me to reconsider things. To really THINK about my choices and whether I was content with what I had or if I wanted to push further. He pushed me to push myself and my equipment to the limit so that I could see if anything needed to change, and BELIEVE ME, LOTS needed to change and it was mostly MYSELF who needed to do most of that changing. That's when my lifestyle started to change.

    Your example argument was for the people who, "don't have the time or money to be as prepared as the rest? What if someone does not have a job at a gun shop, hasn't been in the military, didn't grow up around guns, doesn't have a SHTF kit or a sufficient ammo stash...should they not carry because we deem them ill-prepared?"

    If that were true I wouldn't carry either

    I don't have a lot of money, and I really have to push to make the time. My job at a gun shop has only exposed me to guns in glass cases, that doesn't make anyone a better shot, a more experiences concealed carrier or even that they have the right mindset. I've never been in the military, I grew up with rifles mostly. I've only been shooting pistol for the last two-three years, maybe less, I don't have a SHTF kit and my ammo supply is always getting depleted by its frequent trips downrange.

    Do I think MYSELF ill-prepared, sometimes, but not because of my background or my current ammo stash but because of how much experience and training I still don't have.

    Your surrounding, your background and your ammo box don't dictate your lifestyle, your attitude does. If you are humble enough to admit that just because you're carrying a gun it doesn't make you Billy the Kid or John Wayne and that you realize you need to keep practicing, keep perfecting, keep working at it, no matter what kind of pace you need to do it at (as some will find the resources and time to do it more efficiently and quicker than other) then I think you've found your way into the lifestyle, even if you only have one gun.

    Wow, that was long.

    And FINALLY...
    Quote Originally Posted by whamonkey View Post
    My only knock on your observations, and it's a small one, is that at one time or another we were all novices asking dumb questions at the gun counter. Better there than say at a pawn shop or sporting goods chain, no? I take issue with the gun shop representative who has the attitude of "Well, you tell me what you want" instead of offering advice. Let me explain....the owner of the local shop I visit was less than helpful when I asked," Hi....I'm new to the handgun world and would like some advice on a weapon suitable for carry/home defense. I would also like to know the pro-cons of different calibers." He looked like I slapped him, then responded with, "Well how should I know what is good for you....we have lots of choices here." He obviously saw my build, could have asked a couple questions and steered me along the path. On later visits I dealt with another guy there who was great. Go figure. All this to say that I did a lot of research here and elsewhere before I purchased...sometimes the gun shop can be frustrating/intimidating to the newb.

    Have a great day!
    Whamonkey, I COMPLETELY agree with you. I have spent up to three hours with ONE costumer trying to advise and help them the best that I know how. I don't expect anyone to come in just knowing everything and a lot of the time people come in knowing more than me.

    But those who come in and are new I try not to just point them to one gun and say, "Here, buy this. It's good for starters." I want them to make an educated guess and help direct them to the gun best suited for them.

    I ask as many questions as I can think and try to do my best to get them fitted with something they will love, use, and be comfortable with.

    ccw9mm called me a young pup.. I am, but I'll NEVER laugh as someone or belittle them for asking a "dumb" question. There is no such thing. I'll never try to pressure someone or belittle them for knowing "too little."

    We do have a few macho people who I work with who some of our customers have flat out refused to ever work with again because of their attitude.

    I pray I'm never one of those.

    I've not arrived anywhere, and I try to learn something new every day and I have no problem admitting that there is a LOT that I don't know, and I don't want to be treated like an idiot when I go to learn it either, that's why I won't treat anyone like an idiot for trying to learn anything. That's just rude (not to mention, hypocritical).

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    VIP Member Array ron8903's Avatar
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    Good post.
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    The term "Lifestyle" still makes me believe that more change is required by this term than a changed attitude and fained humility.

    If its a lifelong process of adjustments in mindset and resources then how can one stand in judgement of another who is not at the same place, as so many posts in this thread have done? You see it is only those who consider themselves well prepared that look down their barrels at those who arent and judge them as so.

    Is it required to progress along this path? Is not progressing down it "living in a fantasy world" as stated in a previous post? I think this type of elitism is divisive at best.

  13. #43
    Ex Member Array Pete's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HOLYROLLER View Post
    The term "Lifestyle" still makes me believe that more change is required by this term than a changed attitude and fained humility.
    Or is it just a matter of semantics?

    I agree there is a gulf of possibilities between fad and lifestyle, but if I had wrote Lima's post I would've chosen different terminology.

    You don't consider yourself 'lifestyle', that is very understandable, I am interested in a few things that I don't live and breathe. But I must say that you do strike me as a person of convictions regarding guns, you have taken the time and effort to sign up here and learn more and contribute.
    So to change the terminology how about gun owners that care and those that don't care?
    There is plenty right with caring about getting training, learning skills and being pro 2A.

  14. #44
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    We all need to chose how much, how often , how intently we practice, train and shoot. This is based on our own perceptions of how "good " we need to be. some (like my dad) feel having a gun and shooting once a year is sufficient. It may be, or he may never need a gun for defense.
    I think we look down on those who buy a gun , never shoot it, yet feel they are ready for anything. No one can be prepared for every situation or conflict. But the more you become one with your firearm, the more you think out and train on different scenarios, the more natural will be your reaction (if it ever happens).
    Good, bad or indifferent , if you do not train, shoot and think defensive situations you will be less prepared to handle a conflict. Having several guns and 1,000's of rounds of ammo does not an expert make. Commitment to getting better (and solid training)does.
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    Quote Originally Posted by HOLYROLLER View Post
    The term "Lifestyle" still makes me believe that more change is required by this term than a changed attitude and fained humility. .
    It is a lifestyle and it does require more changes over time, you have to change the way you dress, you sometimes have to change the places you can go to while carrying. The learning process never ends, there is no final cut off level for what you can learn, if anyone doesn't think of themselves as a perpatual student, theres something wrong.

    If you want a text book example of someone who grew up around guns and has Military training, it's me. But there are things that I still need to learn and practice with to get better.

    The "life style" has nothing to do about what guns and ammo you have on hand. Everyone has to start somewhere. Some people will only need two guns, and that's fine. Very few people start off with an armory at thier disposal. I started off with one rifle and one pistol.

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