By Sam Hoober, Alien Gear Holsters
You’d think the “caliber wars” would wind down, the firearms community would just accept that people like different things and be okay with it. It’s the adult thing to do and frankly makes more sense than pointlessly arguing over things that don’t matter.
For some reason, the .45 ACP and the .30-06 just can’t be left well enough alone. Every few weeks, there’s a new article in a gun magazine, on a website or something decrying one or the other. The 9mm is better, one might say, or the .308 or 6.5 Creedmoor doesn’t recoil as badly and is more accurate at 1,000 yards says another.
Folks, neither the .45 ACP nor the .30-06 are going anywhere and it is just time we all dropped it.
If there’s anything approaching truth regarding the efficacy of a bullet on a living target, be it a human assailant or a critter that you’re looking to eat/put on the wall, it’s that there are established “will always work” rounds. However, which one you use doesn’t matter all that much; accuracy and bullet design matter more than the rest of the ballistic data sheet.
Sure, 9x19mm produces less recoil. Follow-up is faster and it’s easier for more people to shoot. It’s also cheaper and subcompact pistols chambered in that round tend to work a bit better than those in .45. If it’s a 9mm, .40, or .45 ACP pistol you put in an appendix carry holster or other concealed carry holster, it really doesn’t matter; what matters is if you carry good rounds and can hit your mark.
Much the same is true of the trusty old .30-06. It’s a long-action round, ruling out compact, short-form rifles which some people can’t live without. While recoil is subjective, the .30-06 is a bit stouter than the trendy cartridges of today like .300 Blackout, 6.5 Creedmoor and .308/7.62 NATO.
And you know what?
It doesn’t matter at all.
The fact is that .45 ACP is a very effective self-defense round. With good hollowpoints and good placement, it will put down a bad guy just as well as a well-placed 9mm round will. Some people find they aren’t as accurate with a 9mm or a .40, so who cares? It works for them.
As to the ’06, I hate to break this to the “tacticool” crowd bravely defending their suburban mall from ISIS, but most people who shoot .30-06 aren’t military or police snipers or competitive target shooters. But – the long range – said the person wearing the tactical vest in an office building. Look, target shooting at long range for sport or pleasure is great, but taking a 500-yard shot at a game animal is not really sporting. A lot of people would argue it isn’t ethical either.
As a sporting cartridge (it’s most common use) the .30-06 is incredibly capable. No North American specie has not been felled by one, though the larger bruins require careful bullet selection and above-average accuracy. The sheer selection of loadings and widespread availability make it a slam-dunk. If you wanted to get one rifle and use it for anything, the ’06 is definitely suitable.
Then again, if you find you’re better with a .270, a .308 or something else entirely, use that! If you’re more accurate with a 9mm or a .40, carry that. Just don’t go pretending that what you like is “better” than anything else.
Sam Hoober is Contributing Editor for AlienGearHolsters.com, a subsidiary of Hayden, ID, based Tedder Industries, where he writes about gun accessories, gun safety, open and concealed carry tips. Click here to visit aliengearholsters.com.