Gun Gear : Chic, Cool, Trendy = Deadly

By John Farnam

32 Battalion - The Terrible Ones
Just do what you were trained to do, Son: Run your gun with measured precision. Shoot accurately, with deliberate purpose. Discipline will always defeat panic. : 32 Battalion – The Terrible Ones
Defense Training International, Inc
Defense Training International, Inc

Ft Collins, CO –-( Modern and Trendy!

“There’s a critical difference between humility and gullibility. Who can’ t distinguish between the two live a short and anguished life of arrogant ignorance, and/or blind devotion.” ~ Ritu Ghatourey

Just reviewed an email from an online guns-and-ammo vender.

They are advertising an aftermarket, replacement slide for the G17, that is “electro-optical-sight-ready.”

But I notice that, in keeping with the gee-whiz, I-hope-this-impresses-my-friends ethos of young, hip, aspiring (but misguided) Operators, it is machined with all sorts of maladroit “gripping surfaces” and multiple, “ slotted openings.”

These ostensibly allow one to view the thus-exposed barrel (not sure why that is important).

I wonder whether purveyors, and purchasers, of such a thing ever think this through.

What will happen when they desperately attempt to fire their shiny, edgy wunderwaffe, as they dodge incoming bullets, while submerged in a cold, muddy ditch, at night, in the rain, upon recovering their glittering monstrosity from a bottomless pool of sloppy, sandy mud?

A “happy ending” is unlikely!

I’m not sure what all this means, beyond guns mistakenly viewed (by the naive and vain) as little more that icons of power and chic.

But, it all overlooks the fact that guns are not wizardly talismans of “ automatic victory.” “Looking chic,” and being legitimately prepared to win the fight, are not the same things!

You have to ask yourself:

“Am I trying to impress my friends, or my enemies?”

“Despite all the velcro, high-tech gear, and confusing politics, just do what you were trained to do, Son: Run your gun with measured precision. Shoot accurately, with deliberate purpose. Discipline will always defeat panic ”

Advice from a senior member of famed “Bat32,” South African Defense Forces (long-since disbanded by the ANC, owing to of their legendary “malicious competence” ) ( 32 Battalion – The Terrible Ones )


About John Farnam & Defense Training International, Inc
As a defensive weapons and tactics instructor John Farnam will urge you, based on your own beliefs, to make up your mind in advance as to what you would do when faced with an imminent and unlawful lethal threat. You should, of course, also decide what preparations you should make in advance, if any. Defense Training International wants to make sure that their students fully understand the physical, legal, psychological, and societal consequences of their actions or inactions.

It is our duty to make you aware of certain unpleasant physical realities intrinsic to the Planet Earth. Mr Farnam is happy to be your counselor and advisor. Visit:

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First of all all of you are assuming people who spend crazy insane $ on a firearm with fancy ports and lightened slide topped off with a red dot and finished in some crazy color are using this as a defensive tool. 98% of time they buy / build this type of firearm for competitive shooting. And what does a flashy firearm do? Its attracts attention it sometimes starts a conversation and brings attention to sponsors products. Now there are those individuals who have way more $ than brains and talent and just throw everything they can on a weapon… Read more »


Ya know….points taken on just about everything! (Except forward serrations)


I’ve never understood ported barrels on carry guns (ruins your night vision on the first shot) or forward serrations on a slide, you train exactly as you would (and will) react in real life situations and grasping the forward part of the slide to clear malfunctions, rack a slide for any purpose, while in an adrenaline infused, life and death situation is a recipe for disaster. Keep things as simple as possible and repeat all functions until you don’t even have to think about the procedure when the time comes.

joe martin

We are moving away from basic skills and towards “gadgets” to get the job done. I remember when it was all about training (Basic Training). I have hired college “educated” kids for years to work for me and I have seen over time less and less basic skills being taught on campus. One of the things that was primary in my business was the use of topographic maps and the use of a simple compass to locate places and features on the ground and being able to map sites by hand. The last few years, the majority of college kids… Read more »

Clark Kent

High capacity magazines have been around since the Browning Hi Power. And your point is?

joe martin

I don’t respond to trolls, you jerk.


Joe: High capacity magazines is a fair question. I carry two on the street and a third in the gun. I’ve never heard a single person say, after a gun fight, “damn, I brought way too much ammo, should have left some home”! I have heard a few swear to always have a LOT more ammo readily handy where ever they go from now on.

joe martin

Vann, I have nothing against hi-capacity magazines, but many law enforcement agencies replaced training and regular qualifications with the adoption of high capacity magazines. When, and I’m talking way back as I’m an old guy, the shift was from revolvers to semi-autos, at that time, hi-capacity magazines were not as common. Most available pistols at the time (1911s, S&W 1st, 2nd & 3rd Gen. 9mms, etc.) were not high cap as they are today with the exception of the Browning Hi-Power and a few others. Once the high capacity mags became more prevalent and agencies adopted them as standard issue,… Read more »


Fair point on training being cut back but I don’t necessarily believe there was a cause and effect between adoption of high capacity magazines/lowered training. I see it solely as budgetary by folks who had no field training overruling those who would have said otherwise. That’s one reason departments stopped teaching “spear and shoot” decades ago (if you remember that drill). They determined it was too dangerous for the “average” police officer to master. It wasn’t. What made it dangerous was departments cutting back on the training necessary to make it one of the most effective close quarter life saving… Read more »

joe martin

We seem to be pretty much in agreement. Gracias for the response and added information.

Wild Bill

@Clark, Clark, Clark, His point is that we are moving away from basic skills (e.g. being a good shot through practice) to gadgets (e.g. having lots of rounds to shoot) to get the job done. If you disagree, state your objection clearly, please, rather than throwing out some vague statement and expect us to figure out what you mean.


I learned the hard way a long time ago about tech on a gun. I was using my TC in .357 Maximum to deer hunt. I got caught in an awkward position when a nice 9 pt. buck approached. I moved slowly to light up my red dot when it decided it wasn’t going to provide a red dot. Luckily, I was carry my trusty Ruger Blkhwk. .44 in a holster for backup. Shot him at less the 25 ft. then took the maximum home and sold it a few weeks later, Red Dot and all….

VE Veteran - Old Man's Club

Or as Wyatt Earp used to say “Fast is fine but accuracy is final.”

Charlie Smith

I always thought it was Col. Cooper that said that. Was it Earp?

Wild Bill

@C. Smith, Earp.

marc disabled vet

Vets and those still serving, from cooks to clerks all have been trained to respect the weapons of war . From a pen, to a Panzer, rifle or pistol they all can kill, or miss their intended target and someone lives. The military issued basic weapons, they do the job. The one behind that weapon may take advantage of technology to increase his odds but still relies on a basic weapon.

Gregory Romeu

And THIS is how we win battles and ultimately wars!

marc disabled vet

This is my Rifle, This is my gun. This ones for killing! That ones to, show the neighbors you are a gun nut!
Doodads don’t make a sharpshooter!
Practice and learning do. Rely on a Doodad and you’re DEAD!
Low battery, Wrong setting, Don’t know how it works. No IRON SIGHTS you’re dead!