Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Range Report 2-24-2013


Ammo has been scarce and what little is out there is anywhere from 50% to 100% more than it was 3 months ago.  I decided that it was high time to start shooting more .22LR for the cost savings and also to help me improve my fundamentals without worrying about the normal recoil I would feel with more powerful cartridges.


I started out shooting the Ruger SR22.  My goal was to try to sink all ten of my shots in the x or 10 ring on the left bull.  My other groups tightened up, but obviously, I have some work to do.  I knew I was anticipating the shot and kept trying to just let the shot break.  Still, I had a few get away from me.


My second round was maybe a little better.  At this point I decided to switch over to 9 mm.


My first group with the M&P 9c was terrible.  Again, I realized I just needed to let the shot break and not anticipate.  My second group (in between the two bulls) tightened up considerably.  The range I shoot at does not allow for rapid fire so I took plenty of time on my shots.


My first and second groups on this final round (left bull) were not my best.  However, my third group (top mini bull) was done with a little more speed.  Obviously, that opened up my group considerably.

So, I learned a few things after analyzing my performance.  First, all of my groups (when I grouped well) were slightly lower than my point of aim at 7 yards.  Next trip, I will aim slightly high to see if I can get my groups up a bit.  Also, I need to do a better job of using my support hand to manage recoil.  I grip the pistol with a thumbs forward technique, but I think my wrist needs to be canted down more towards the ground.  It also occurred to me that I was using the dot part of the sight and "covering" my target with that and taking my shot.  If I use the top of the sight and bisect my target (essentially change my sight picture slightly), then I may get more precise hits.  I have been told that both ways of sight picture are valid, but that the "floating the dot" on target method is a not as precise.  Hopefully, if I make these adjustments, then I can improve on my groups a bit more.

Thanks for reading.  If you have any suggestions for me, then I would appreciate any comments.  As always, please share, follow me on Twitter @P_Patriot1 and like the Facebook Prairie Patriot page.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

An Open Letter in Opposition to Universal Background Checks

The following is a letter I sent to my representatives and the POTUS.  Please feel free to use it and send it to your representatives as well:

I am writing to ask that you oppose any legislation concerning so called “Universal Background Checks”.  The legislation that is currently being discussed concerns me greatly and I encourage you to speak with those legislators who are currently working on this proposal.  The reasons that you should oppose and encourage your colleagues to also oppose Universal Background Check legislation are many.

Currently, we already have the NICS system in place.  We as law abiding citizens already submit ourselves to a background check for the vast majority of our firearms purchases.  Furthermore, the claim that 1.9 – 2.1 million people were denied firearms is a fallacy.  Those were initial denials due to a follow up of additional information.  Many of those then rightly go through a few hours or days later.  The percentage of true criminals being stopped by NICS is very, very small and the Justice Department does not prosecute a vast majority of these cases.

Unintended abuses for Universal Background Checks will also be introduced.  A major concern is a person’s medical history being used as grounds for denial.  I see a likely scenario of someone who had a temporary issue in the distant past with depression and was perhaps prescribed a medication to help them with it (for example, post partum depression).  It is not a stretch to see this used as an excuse to deny them their Second Amendment rights due to their past cured medical condition.

The reality is that this is not about improving back ground checks.  This is about ending private sales of firearms.  Criminals will not participate in back ground checks.  The vast majority of criminals do not go to gun stores and buy their tools of the trade for this very reason.  They are mostly stolen.  So the only true outcome of this legislation is an end to private sales.

Finally, registration of firearms would have to be in place for this legislation to affect the desired outcome.  The government cannot enforce an end to private sales if they do not know which individual has.  Therefore, the next logical step would be registration.  History has shown that this is the first step to eventual confiscation.  This opens up the United States to the very tyranny our Founding Fathers warned us about.

Again, I ask that you oppose all legislation concerning Universal Background Checks and encourage your colleagues to do so as well.

Thanks for reading.  Comment below and share this post with others to help spread the message that Universal Background Checks are a part of the playbook to eventually register your firearms.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Ex Secret Service Agent Dan Bongino Speaks on Gun Control



This guy just nails it on gun control.  The clip is about 6 minutes long.  It would be great if we could have him as the NRA spokesman instead of Wayne LaPierre.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Day Hike System: Day Hike in Red Rock Canyon (Las Vegas, NV area)

My wife and I visited my uncle in Las Vegas this past weekend.  We were excited to not only see my uncle, but to do a bit of hiking in the Red Rock Canyon area.  We were only able to hike for about 3 hours total.  This gave me a chance to test out certain aspects of my Day Hiking System.

This was taken at the Red Rock Canyon Conservation Center.

Now, you may be asking yourself what I mean by "Day Hiking System".  The term of different "systems" actually comes from YouTube reviewer and patriot Nutnfancy.  I have always had different sets of gear for designated use, but Nutnfancy has really explained it in a more accurate way.  He also has reviewed literally thousands of pieces of gear independently.  I highly recommend watching his videos. But I digress.

The concept of a "system", as I use the term, is any selection of gear that furthers your goal (day hiking, bugging out, etc.) in an efficient manner and is complementary to your skills.  For this blog post, I will be giving my thoughts on the items I took with me in my Day Hiking System.  What goes into your system is going to be based on your skill level and preferences in many different areas.

My systems are always in a constant state of refinement.  Part of this refinement is dictated by funds and changing point of view (or philosophy of use, to use Nutnfancy's term).  For this Day Hike System concept, I wanted to cover the following categories:

  • Pack selection
  • Water
  • Food
  • Clothing

For these categories, I will comment on each and give a final verdict on why or why not I would change up the item in my Day Hike System.  Also, note that I actually had other items packed not covered by these categories.  However, I did not use them on this hike!  So, until I do a full day hike and use the other items, I will refrain from commenting on them.  There are also items that are for emergency use only (i.e. get lost, gets dark and have to camp overnight).  I will talk about those in a future post.

Pack selection



The first item I noticed that I could have changed was the pack I was using.  I was using an Eagle Industries A-III Pack.  For this particular day hike of only 3 hours, the Eagle pack, in my opinion, was overkill.  I only needed to transport a few items and a pack of that size was not needed.  The pack had room plenty of room to spare.  While that sounds like a good thing, it actually adds unnecessary weight.  Verdict:  I will be looking for a smaller, less bulky, lighter pack in the future for my Day Hike System.

Water



I only had one source of water which was my half full Camelback.  This was the first time I had used it since picking it up over Christmas.  Again, probably overkill in the sense that I would not be drinking three liters of water in 3 hours.  If I had not been specifically using it to see how I liked it, then I probably would have stuck with my canteen (with possibly a spare bottle of water).  Verdict:  For a true day hike, I would probably rock the Camelback having an empty nalgene bottle or canteen with some water purification tablets as back up just in case.

Food
For this hike, I knew we would only be out for a morning.  So I only packed some beef jerky and some Cliff Bars.  And did not eat any of it.  Verdict:  For a true evaluation of this category, I think I will need a full day hike.  I would like to try cooking my own food on a back packer stove such as the MSR Pocket Rocket and evaluate if that should be part of my Day Hike System.

Clothing
I only traveled with the clothes on my back.  I did have a Russell moisture wicking short sleeve base layer  and a "mid-layer" quarter zip Patagonia fleece I got from Campmor.  The morning was a bit chilly (40 degrees F), but I quickly got warm while hiking and took that fleece off about an hour into the hike.  I also had North Face hiking pants and a good pair of Merrell Moab Ventilators with Smartwool socks.  Verdict: I got the clothing right for this particular hike.  I will mention that my back got fairly sweaty, but I chalk that up due to my pack not having much room for venting.  However, the shirt dried out quickly when we stopped for taking in the scenery and I would take off my pack.

So, in summary, the hike was a limited day hike.  Therefore, the only refining that I know I would like to do is to pick a pack better suited to day hiking.  The Eagle A-III pack is a good pack.  However, it will probably get shifted over to a different system (possibly my Get Home System that would stay in my vehicle).  The Get Home System is a system that I will most likely cover in future blog posts, so stay tuned.

Do you do something similar to the concept of a system?  If so, what kind of systems do you have?  In particular, what do you include if you go on a day hike?  Please comment below and share with other readers.  As always, thank you for reading and be sure to follow me on Twitter @P_Patriot1 and like the Prairie Patriot Facebook page.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

L.A.P.D. Ex-Cop Rampage: Reality Check for State and Personal Security

For the past week, Los Angeles and the surrounding area has been under virtual siege due to one man's personal vendetta against the LAPD.  I will not use his name due to the fact that he wants attention and I refuse to name him.  However, I am writing about this situation to draw attention to a larger issue.  But first some background.

Here are the basic events in the time line leading up to the current rampage.  This scumbag was fired from the LAPD a few years ago.  Apparently, he did not agree with the reason and brought the matter up before a commission.  His representation for the commission hearing was a LAPD senior officer assigned to him by the department.  The decision went against him.  He then decided that not only was the LAPD his mortal enemy, but that the representative assigned to him also had it in for him and screwed him on purpose.  He then murdered the man's daughter and her fiance.  He also released a manifesto that basically declared war on the LAPD.

From there on out the miscreant made good on his threats.  Not only that, the LAPD, federal and state officials scrambled to protect the "targets" listed in the manifesto.  A manhunt was mobilized.  In the chaos, innocent officers were shot and/or killed by this nut job.  Equally as troubling were the officers' response.  They reportedly opened fire on three civilians in two separate incidents injuring two of them!

As I write this, the man is making his last stand in a cabin in a wooded area in California.  The cabin is in flames and there are some conflicting reports on whether or not there is a charred body (presumably his) in the cabin.  Hopefully, this is the end.

So, assuming the suspect is no more, here is the final casualty count:

By the suspect:


  • 2 murdered (daughter and finace)
  • In one incident, 1 LEO shot
  • In one incident, 1 LEO shot, 1 LEO murdered
  • At the last stand, 1 LEO shot, 1 LEO dead


By LEOs:


  • 2 female paper delivery civilians shot at and injured (apparently, their vehicle matched the description???)
  • 1 civilian shot at in Torrance; truck was rammed (again, vehicle supposedly matched the description.  The man's description most certainly did not).
  • The suspect (assuming he is dead in the burnt up cabin)

There are many more details that make this case a tragic and wild story.  I will forgo those details to try and keep this short.

So, why am I writing about this?  Let me state that in no way, shape or form do I condone what this man did.  It does serve as an example for us to do a little analysis and discussion.  This should serve as a wake up call.  Yes, a wake up call on two levels.

On the national level, look at the casualties incurred by one trained man (there are some reports he may have had help from another as yet unknown).  I also partially attribute the incidents to the one man where the officers mistakenly shot at and/or injured innocents.  They would not have occurred if not for the chaos he stirred up in the first place.  Keep in mind also that he called out his targets.  So, not only was he essentially just one man, but the authorities knew who he was and what his intentions were.

Keeping the above paragraph in mind, what kind of outcome would we have seen if this had been a coordinated, unannounced attack by terror cells operating all over the country?    On a national level, is our security really up to the task?  Think about that for a moment.  Let it sink in.  What kind of scenario do you see playing out?  Keep in mind that authorities just went "toe to toe" with one known suspect with his malicious, known intentions.  As harsh as this sounds (and as much as it sickens me), the man accomplished his mission.  He killed cops and caused chaos.  One guy.  Ultimately, can the government guarantee our safety?  The answer is "no".

This brings us to the second part of what I consider a wake up call.  We are in the midst of a gun control effort that is being pushed in this country like never before.  Personal defense weapons (PDWs), 30 round clips, etc are the very same tools that law enforcement used to try and protect themselves from this lunatic.  And, at the risk of sounding harsh, they still lost people and others were injured.  Yet, you are being told that you as an individual would never have a need for that.  There is no way to guarantee that.  If law enforcement officers who have these tools (and more i.e. SWAT units, drone tech, etc) cannot guarantee their own securing of their lives, then what chance do we as individuals have against rapists, murderers and violent psychopaths?  We are being told we do not even merit the same basic PDWs that law enforcement gets.  The idea that you as an individual should not have those options is absurd on its face.  Essentially, the message is sent that your life is not worth as much as a law enforcement officer.  On a personal level, are we as individuals more or less safe if we do not have access to basic tools of self defense?

I leave you with these last few thoughts:  
  • What would happen if 50 trained people started their own personal war?  What if even 10 of those people coordinated together?
  • Would you expect that law enforcement have basic modern PDWs to combat bad guys?
  • If faced with a bad guy yourself, then would you wish you had a basic modern PDW?
  • In light of the PDW ban (I refuse to call it the AWB), is your life worth less than these brave officers?
  • Are you okay with not having access to PDWs that would increase your odds and the odds of your loved ones survival knowing that law enforcement usually show up after you or your loved ones have been raped and/or murdered?
As always, comment below and let me know what you think.  Please be sure to share this blog, like the Prairie Patriot FB page and follow on Twitter @P_Patriot1

Thanks for reading.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Illegal Immigration: No Free Rides Please

Let me state that I am the son of a legal immigrant.  My father came to the United States from Lebanon in the late 70's and went through all of the steps to become a citizen.  He taught himself English, went through college, and went on to become a pharmacist and owner of his pharmacy.  He truly pursued the American Dream and attained it.

So, knowing where my Dad emigrated from and the steps he took to achieve his goals, I think I have a little more perspective than people who have had generations of ancestors living here in the United States.  I will lay out the three main points that I think are necessary to address the current illegal immigration situation.  The Senators on Capitol Hill have come up with these items as well, but I want to address them from my point of view.

First and foremost, the border must be secured.  Without this becoming a reality anything else we do to address illegal immigration is pointless.  We will only end up back in the same situation 10 to 20 years from now if we do not.  Back during the Reagan administration, amnesty was granted to millions of illegal aliens in return for the spoken promise that the border would be secured.  It is 2013, and we now have 11 million illegals in the United States.  So much for politicians keeping promises (didn't see that one coming, right?).  As if that was not reason enough, there are terrorists crossing in from Mexico. If you do not believe that, then you need to wake up.  Hezbollah has training camps in Central and South America as I type this.  It is not far fetched to say that it is only a matter of time before cells make their way in.  I personally believe this is already happening.  If I was the enemy, then I know I would take advantage of this huge security breach.

Let's assume we do indeed secure the border.  What do we do with the 11 million that are still here illegally?  Since we are dealing with people who, by and large, are productive and want a better life for themselves I suggest granting them amnesty, but not citizenship.  The reasons for this are many.  Here are two main ones:

  • Allowing those who came illegally to be granted citizenship spits in the face of everyone who did it the right way.  How do you tell the immigrants who came legally, paid the fees and went through the process, that people who violated the law will now be granted the same citizenship that they struggled so hard to achieve? 
  • Admittedly, another reason is a political reality.  If you grant citizenship to illegals you have effectively imported, on the whole, Democratic votes.  I recognize that as a citizen you have a right to vote for who you want.  The modus operandi of Barack Obama and the socialist leaning left is to essentially "buy" votes by giving away "freebies".  And what better way to buy illegal aliens' votes than by giving them instant citizenship?  This is an abuse of government and should not be tolerated.
Being granted amnesty allows the illegal immigrant to retain their dignity and remain in our country to be productive.  This sets them on the road to citizenship.  However, this road should not be paved with gold.  In fact, it should be fairly punitive.

First and foremost, there should be deportation of any that have committed serious crimes with no exceptions.  We have enough homegrown losers in this country without taking in foreign losers.  Once it has been determined that a particular individual is not a criminal, then that person should be assessed for paying back taxes and monetary penalties.  Lastly, they must be put in the queue behind any legal immigrants already in the system.  Let me mention that the current system is terrible.  It most certainly needs to be revised and streamlined.

So to sum it up:

  • Secure the borders; no exceptions and no steps past this until it becomes a reality.
  • Grant amnesty to the current illegal immigrants.  Treat them with dignity and respect, but with justice.
  • Deport the losers, collect the taxes and monetary punitive damages due and then they are allowed to enter the newly revamped system behind the folks who are doing it the right way.
What are your thoughts on how to handle this?  Please share and follow The Prairie Patriot FB page and on Twitter (@P_Patriot1).

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Ammo Shortage Woes

With all the talk of gun control I have been buying ammo in various calibers whenever I see it.  It appears that everyone else is as well.  So much so, that some of my favorite websites that I normally buy from are on back order for 6 months (in some cases longer)!  And that is more the rule, then the exception.  I was wanting to take a defensive pistol class this May, but at this rate, I may not be able to scrounge up enough ammo to do it on top of my normal trips to the range.  All the common calibers are either completely gone, or the price is sky high.  I happened to get lucky finding some 9 mm at Wal-Mart on Sunday morning after Mass, but that was dumb luck.

My advice: Buy when you can and what you can as often as you can.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Gear Review: Crye Precision Rifle MagClips

First disclaimer: I am kind of a gear whore.  Second disclaimer: I am not a LEO or military.  I just happen to enjoy shooting and the benefits that I gain from learning the skill i.e. self defense.  So, this is my humble review.  In the comment section below, I would be glad to hear from those of you who use this type of equipment in your profession.  The bigger the sample size, then the better idea we have of the capabilities of a piece of equipment, tactics, etc.

I had been looking for options to mount magazine pouches to my plate carrier (PC).  I do not wear PCs on a daily basis and I do not need a lot of the extras like those in harms way do.  I tend to try and look for something that will be fairly "low profile" and minimal.  I stumbled across Crye Precision's Rifle MagClips a while back.  I decided to give them a try and placed an order at OpTactical.com.  They are sold in packs of 3.  They come in black and khaki (although there may be other colors that I am not aware of).



The MagClip is easily installed.  There is a long screw that is loosened to allow the MagClip to open up a little and fit around the magazine.  Crye Precision advertises that it is compatible with standard GI, HK, PMAG and EMAG.  I put one on a PMAG in less than 3 minutes.  There was a slight gap where the MagClip opens to wrap around the magazine.  However, the packaging did indicate that this was normal.  I set the clip up so that if I clipped it to my belt on the left side that the rounds would face front.




I clipped it to my belt and ran a few emergency reload drills to get a feel for it.  The first thing I noticed was that the bottom of the magazine sat flush with the top of my belt.  This made it a little more difficult for me to get the grip I normally achieve with my kydex pouch on my belt.  However, I am fairly confident that it would just take time to adjust to.  Also, I believe I could clamp the MagClip further towards the middle of the magazine in an attempt to give it more real estate above my belt line.  Another item worth noting was that using the MagClip on my belt made for a very low profile solution.  It hugged my body closely.

Next I attached the magazine to the MOLLE front of my Mayflower APC.  It definitely fit my requirement of being low profile.  However, I did have some minor concerns.  Mounting it through the MOLLE was kind of difficult.  If I had to do it in a tense situation, then I am not sure I could do it very quickly.  My other concern is that the tops of the magazines are completely exposed.  If I had to go prone in mud or dirt, then this may present a problem when I need to put that muddy magazine in to my carbine.  I did not run in this either.  I would not be surprised if the magazines "flapped" a little bit, but again, that is a minor concern.



So, while the MagClips did fulfill my requirement of being low profile, I am not entirely sold on the quickness of putting the magazines back on a carrier or a belt if I needed to.  If I had to do an administrative reload i.e. top off my gun, then I would not want to have to waste time trying to get my half full magazine mounted back on my carrier.  And, I as I noted earlier, the fact that the magazines are completely exposed does bother me.  I should have foreseen the exposed magazines being an issue, but I did not even think about it until I actually received them.

I think they are probably okay for a situation where you need to grab a quick spare and you cannot throw on  your rig/carrier/belt.  I do not think I will be using them as a replacement for pouches.

Have you had experience with Crye Precision MagClips?  If so, then what are your thoughts?  What other low profile options are you aware of that you like?  Thanks for reading and please share on other media if you enjoyed this page.