CCW Weekend: Leaving Your Gun At Home
By Sam Hoober, Alien Gear Holsters
Everyone who carries has made an excuse for not carrying for a day and has done so multiple times. Maybe even multiple times in a week or a month.
It’s one of those things that we know isn’t necessarily right but – since everything plays the odds – isn’t likely going to be a big deal. After all, what are the odds that you’ll need it? Far lower than the odds you’ll need your car insurance. In the grand scheme of things, there’s a better chance of the Raiders making the playoffs.
But the thing about carrying a pistol is that it’s no big deal if you don’t need it, but it can literally be the difference between life and death if you do and don’t have it.
What are the typical excuses?
First is the hassle of putting on the gear. Sometimes the rigmarole of putting on the kind of typical winged IWB holster gets old. Insert inside the waistband, fettle with clip number one, fettle with clip number two, check to see if you’re printing and revise if needed. That’s a lot if you find yourself a bit rushed in the morning.
Discomfort is another one. If you have a handgun on the larger side (1911, Hi Power, Glock 17 etc.) it can be uncomfortable to carry at times. (Toting my Gov’t frame got old in a hurry.) Even sitting down can become a slightly more complicated proposition (long barrel and slide) then there’s the fact that you have a 2- to 3-pound goiter on your hip.
Another common excuse is the “it’s just for a little bit” or “I’m just going to the store,” or something along those lines. You’re only going to be out of the house for a little bit and probably won’t be too far from your home.
We all know it happens. We’ve all done it. We all know we should conceal and carry whenever possible, but there are times we don’t anyway. What, then, are some tricks and tips that can cut down on the excuses?
First is to just suck it up. Putting on your gun barely takes a minute, two at most.
You might also look into getting a different holster, something that you can put on and take off more quickly. There is some gear that can help. Paddle holsters are a thing for a reason, though they carry less securely than traditional OWB holsters and require concealing under a jacket in most instances, which isn’t always practical. There are also a great many minimalist IWB holsters that conceal more easily, but they aren’t always the most comfortable. A decent kydex holster feels okay for a little while, but after a certain number of hours will start to dig at you a little bit.
You might also try finding some different carry gear. If discomfort is the issue, you might try a more comfortable holster and perhaps a stiffer belt. The right gear can make a big difference. The “it’s supposed to be comforting, not comfortable!” trope is basically bunk; you can get both. If you can barely live with your gear, chances are you got the wrong gear for you.
Another and quite common strategy is to just get a smaller gun. The truth is that an M&P Shield is all the carry gun the typical civilian in the typical place will ever need; the number of defensive shootings involving a civilian that had to reload is so small it’s not even worth talking about.
Kind of like the Raiders chances of making the playoffs.
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.