Originally Posted by vandros
I'm just trying to articulate my position clearly and forcefully, and push back a little against conventional wisdom on this forum. Don't mean to be offensive/disrespectful to anybody's preferred method of CCing. And, I'm ready to be persuaded by well reasoned arguments (not the ones like: "Having pistol without a round in the chamber is the same as carrying a hammer").
As far as well reasoned, reasons, I think it boils down to this (to summarize some of my long winded posts.
1. Time can be a factor, and even the fraction of a second (under ideal conditions) it can take to chamber a round, might be the difference between successfully defending yourself and those under your care and being killed or grievously wounded.
2. Racking the slide is something that can go wrong (as someone pointed out this morning in this thread). While any gun could have a failure to pickup the round and go into battery when trying to speed-rack the slide, certain guns like Kahr's have a great likelihood of failing in this regard (where a Glock is typically pretty forgiving).
3. The number one flaw in the logic that "it only takes me .2 seconds to rack my slide while bringing the gun on to target" is that it assumes you will have both hands available to perform said function. In training or in front of the mirror, of course you will have both hands. In real world self defense situations, you are VERY likely to be using your off hand (left hand if you are right handed) to hold off an attacker/maintain separation, while you draw and point fire from the hip/side of stomach/chest location.
This is the reason that it is common, if not almost always done, in self defense training courses to practice drawing and firing at close range, with your off hand held out, palm forward simulating what you will be doing when a guy 3' feet from you about to pass you, pulls a knife or in some other way launches an attack.
This last point, point three, is where all of the "it only takes a fraction of a second to rack my slide" logic completely falls apart. The ONLY way this logic holds up is to assume that the odds are you will never have to pull a gun in self defense, and therefore, having the gun useless in x (40, 50, 70) percent of the situations where I would need to use a gun in self defense is ok, because the odds are I will never have to use my gun to defend myself.
As has been discussed in this thread, and as I have said, everyone has their comfort level, and that is a VERY important consideration. If a person feels unsafe with a chamber in the round, they shouldn't carry one, because that nervousness will likely make them more likely to have an accident. That said, nobody that carries with the chamber empty should be under the incorrect belief that it doesn't greatly impact their ability to defend themselves or those under their care, because the simple, and indisputable fact is that it does greatly reduce your ability to defend yourself. Not an opinion, that's a fact.