Tuesday, April 12, 2011

For the eleventy jillionth time, STOP TOUCHING IT!

One of the things that annoys me about the larger gun culture is the obsession with touching guns in the name of safety.

Our local gun show, the Indy 1500, is one of the larger ones in the nation. The line to get in often stretches around the building and right there at the front of the line, by the doors, is a big orange diamond-shaped sign like you'd find in a construction zone, reading "Unload Guns Here". No backstop. No clearing barrel. Just go 'head and clear your piece 'fore you go into the building, Cletus, so we can zip-tie it. For safety.

There is, of course, a corresponding pile of cut zip-ties by the exit door, where the Cletii have clipped them off in the foyer on the way out. Not much in the way of a backstop in there, either.

Now, given the generally appalling level of gun-handling prowess displayed inside, I can kind of see the logic behind the zip-ties; I mean, if you can't spot each and every one of the Four Rules being violated within ten feet of the front door, then it's time to trade the glasses in on a seeing eye dog, Stevie Wonder. (You have to wonder how much of that is a chicken-and-egg problem, though. Maybe all the Cletii inside feel comfortable wavin' their heaters around because, hey, they ain't loaded, buddy.)

But at the same time, I can't see how safety is enhanced by all the gun fondling around the entrance. I mean, every now and again, the law of averages is going to catch up with you.

(I haven't talked to anybody who was at the Evansville show yet, but from the wording of the article, it sounds like his negligent discharge occurred as he was loading up to leave.)

32 comments:

Bram said...

Doesn't sound like the incident in the link had anything to do with the fondling at the door. Just sheer stupidity.

Nathan said...

"Police say Wilkinson had a 0.05 percent blood alcohol level. Indiana sets the level for drunkenness at 0.08 percent."

Stupid is as stupid does. Too bad he wasn't pointing the gun at himself.

Tam said...

What's with the fussing about the BAC? He was legal to operate an F350 @ 80mph, which has 1,159,025 ft/lbs of energy. His .45 had 400, tops.

McVee said...

This ^^^^^ F350 ^^^^^ Heh.

I like to say "The law of averages doesn't need any help from you. Don't be stupid."

Best

Joseph said...

Gun handling in general is piss poor. Be it at the gun show, gun shop, gun range, you name it, I've had muzzles stuck in my back (loaded rifle BTW) and peered down the bore of countless other arms to the point that at this point, I think gun owners in general are idiots, or hate me, take your pick.

As for this moron, this is a prime example of someone who should be stripped of the gun show privileges as well as his IN LTCH if indeed he has one. If you put a round into someone negligently while carrying and doing stupid shit, you sir are voted off my island!

aczarnowski said...

It was the "clip." According to the news those things are always lurking around in the shadows tempting folks.

staghounds said...

"He was legal..."

Having watched ordinary people perform simple tasks over and over as they drink under controlled conditions, I am stunned at how much even two drinks degrades judgment and performance.

You can beat the case, but you can't beat the physics.

Anonymous said...

We've discussed before all the mandated "touches" as one leaves and enters his vehicle to do his banking, grab a bite to eat, or get a new sticker at the DMV, etc. etc. etc...a practice that endangers every innocent all around him and creates a lovely prize for firepower-deprived car burglars. All in the name of safety, ya know.

Oh, and Cletuses. As I was compelled to point out at Marko's a while back related to Prii/Priuses, proper nouns/names are not subject to rules of language...else those unfortunate enough to share Caesar's name would be a bunch of Julii. Yeah, I know, not as fun or snarky.

AT

Tam said...

AT,

"We've discussed before all the mandated "touches" as one leaves and enters his vehicle to do his banking, grab a bite to eat, or get a new sticker at the DMV, etc. etc. etc..."

The last time I was legally required to disarm in IN was when I went to vote at the city-county building.

I use the drive-thru teller at one bank, and just carry my heater in the other. No law against it.

If your daily rounds require handling your pistol that much, invest in a holster that allows you to take it off with the gun.

If your state has dumb laws that make you finger-fuck your pistol in the name of safety, get the laws overturned.

Tango Juliet said...

I hate working security at the front door of our gun shows. It seems some are are absolutely determined to cover me with muzzles of any and all calibers.

docjim505 said...

To be a little contrarian:

Do proscriptions against gun handling encourage poor safety practices by FORCING people to be unfamiliar / uncomfortable with handling their arms safely?

To extend the F350 comparison above, what would people's driving be like if they were so constantly told that "ZOMG! Driving your truck - EVEN HANDLING THE KEY! - can KILL you!" that they only drove in the most extreme circumstances?

At any rate, while an ND is obviously undesirable, I suggest that the small number that (apparently) occur at gun shows indicates that this is not a significant problem.

Anonymous said...

Every time this comes up on a gun forum, someone - typically po-po or military - comes on to say that their gun handling is 100% reliable and that therefore the law of averages does not apply to them. They then go on to say that if you aren't 100% reliable, you shouldn't be carrying.

I say, if you think you're 100% reliable in anything, it just means you haven't tried it enough to determine your error rate.

Anthony/Alath

Tam said...

My gun-handling is certainly not 100% reliable, which is why leaving my pistol in the holster unless there's a safe backstop handy to catch any screwups is the best option.

Jake (formerly Riposte3) said...

"If your state has dumb laws that make you finger-fuck your pistol in the name of safety, get the laws overturned."

Well Tam, you just made my Quote of the Day.

Re: the constant Rule 2 violations at gun shows - it certainly doesn't help people to avoid that when they only have about a 1-2 foot range of motion from the table due to the security/alarm cables running through the trigger guard of whatever gun they're handling. While I can certainly understand the reason for having it, it is annoying to wrestle with when you're trying to get a feel for whether you want to bother the guy to unlock it so you can take a better look.

While I do find the practice irritating, I can understand at least one reason for wanting everybody to unload while entering. It does (theoretically) keep any Cletii who are looking for a new holster from constantly unholstering and reholstering a loaded pistol - often in holsters that turn out to not fit right - or fit testing other accessories on a loaded gun.

Anonymous said...

I spent a brief stint working at gun shows for a local dealer who used to travel all over the state. I got over wasting my weekends in that manner before too long, but not before being present for at least 3 NDs in the auditoriums. None at the door, but usually by "dealers" who for whatever reason thought that loading the gun was a selling point.

RobertM said...

The zip tie thing is a stupid waste of time. The idiots are going to be idiots no matter what. And the rest of us kindly don't mention that small pistol stuck down in our pocket when we go through the door after having our large framed pistol zipped up and shoved, all safe like, back in our holsters.

Jake (formerly Riposte3) said...

"The zip tie thing is a stupid waste of time. The idiots are going to be idiots no matter what."

Meh. It prevents casual stupidity by forcing the idiots to make at least a minimal effort to be stupid.

It's about like the lock on the door to my front porch - the casual burglar who walks down the street testing for unlocked doors won't bother after finding it locked, but a determined burglar is just going to break the glass and unlock it from the inside.

Geodkyt said...

Last fun show I went to had the "Unload and submit to Hoplo-bondage" table, manned by the PD.

They also had a clearing barrel, and had no problem with me using it as my backstop when I reloaded on my way out.

I am actually quite fine with a private property owner (who has qualified, armed personnel securing the entrances, AND a clearing barrel) asking me to unload at the gunshow. That is, given the generally accepted fear of Cletii who apparantly suffers from Tourettes of the index finger and cannot keep his booger hook off the loud button while waving his Deagle around to show it off, after drawing it from his $10 Bagmaster holster. or who does teh same after just BUYING his Deagle at one table, and ammo at the next.

Hell, if a restaurant had the same security and clearing barrel, AND a gun-check locker I could deposit my gun in, I wouldn't get too bent out of shape accomodating the holplophobia of the rest of the patrons.

It's the numbnuts who want me to leave or unload and reload my gun in the car out in the concrete or asphault parking lot that REALLY piss me off.

Mike S said...

I just want to know what model of clip-fed .45 the guy had.

Will said...

Don't know the details, but an ammo dealer had an ND with his customized 1911 at a CA show many years ago. The PD doorkeepers seized it and mangled it (torch). Became a display at the zip-tie table. He was banned from personally attending that show for some time. His wife ran it alone, then.

Tam said...

Mike S,

"I just want to know what model of clip-fed .45 the guy had."

Obviously a S&W 625. Duh. ;)

Anonymous said...

That is what I have...

og said...

I'm right with you on the clearing barrels etc.. I'm pleased and proud to see that Cabelas, of all places, has a clearing post just inside the door, for people bringing guns in for trade. it's just gel filled, but it's better than nothing.

Bram said...

Since this event was at a Nation Guard Armory, it is likely that clearing barrels were available. Most of the armories I drilled at had them - although that doesn't mean somebody actually moved one to the front door for show use.

Chris said...

I also have a 625, but it's not exactly a good choice for concealed carry, even if I didn't live in Maryland. It's a joy to shoot, though; very smooth trigger pull. Found some plastic full moon clips for it, which don't need a tool to load/unload like the metal ones do.

Matthew said...

Wait...

Which are eviler?

The metal "military style" moon clips or the plastic clips that can evade metal detectors?

Anonymous said...

"If your state has dumb laws...get the laws overturned."

Always good advice...rather a process though, innit? Fla was an early adopter of CCW and yet:

"FL SS 790.06(12) - No license issued pursuant to this section shall authorize any person to carry a concealed weapon or firearm into any place of nuisance as defined in s. 823.05; any police, sheriff, or highway patrol station; any detention facility, prison, or jail; any courthouse; any courtroom, except that nothing in this section would preclude a judge from carrying a concealed weapon or determining who will carry a concealed weapon in his or her courtroom; any polling place; any meeting of the governing body of a county, public school district, municipality, or special district; any meeting of the Legislature or a committee thereof; any school, college, or professional athletic event not related to firearms; any school administration building; any portion of an establishment licensed to dispense alcoholic beverages for consumption on the premises, which portion of the establishment is primarily devoted to such purpose; any elementary or secondary school facility; any area vocational-technical center; any college or university facility unless the licensee is a registered student, employee, or faculty member of such college or university and the weapon is a stun gun or nonlethal electric weapon or device designed solely for defensive purposes and the weapon does not fire a dart or projectile; inside the passenger terminal and sterile area of any airport, provided that no person shall be prohibited from carrying any legal firearm into the terminal, which firearm is encased for shipment for purposes of checking such firearm as baggage to be lawfully transported on any aircraft; or any place where the carrying of firearms is prohibited by federal law. Any person who willfully violates any provision of this subsection commits a misdemeanor of the second degree."

Still:

"While Florida's law allows licensees to carry stun guns, knives, and billy clubs in a concealed fashion, the laws in these (twenty six!) states allow for concealed carry of handguns or pistols ONLY, NOT WEAPONS IN GENERAL. Florida license holders are prohibited from carrying other types of weapons while in these states."

Including Ind and Ga apparently.

Dumb laws that need overturnin' wherever you go, I guess.

My point of course is that the idiotic exceptions - I mean "reasonable restrictions" - that carry the weight of law, added to the private places and premises where carry is banned, amount to a lot more potential for a dangerous mistake as you pack and unpack in the less than controlled environment of your car. And secondarily there is the aforementioned risk and liability of leaving those weapons unattended.

So yeah, work on the laws. Public education too. But like I said, it's a process.

AT

Sebastian said...

I have a policy of not telling anyone when I'm armed. Concealed is concealed. What they don't know won't hurt them. Stupid and dangerous rules should not be followed.

Anonymous said...

LEO for 20+ and been shooting for twice that. Never seen a gun go off when nobody was touching it. Near as I can tell (I'm not a scientist or a statistician) most ADs on the range are loading or clearing. I always thought that if they HAD to zip tie something at gun shows they should zip the loaded pistols or revolvers into the holsters.

-embycil

rickn8or said...

Hey Joshua, thanks for reinforcing that positive image of gun toters the general public seems to have.

Me, I always unload in my car before walking across the parking log. That way, if I have an ND, only me and the body shop know about it. But I feel so NAKED walking from the car to the front door unloaded like that...

staghounds said...

Rick, if you wear clothes during that walk you won't feel so naked.

And might be asked back more often.

rickn8or said...

stag--Well, that explains all the pointing and laughing.