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As great as optics are these days it is no replacement for training and learning how to shoot with iron sights. This will sound very “Boomer” I am sure, but there weren’t optics like available today for shooters when I learned to shoot many moons ago. As much as I like what’s out there to help shooters I still spend most of my range time shooting iron sights. If you carry a gun your very life depends on your ability to get on target quickly and accurately.

In reality a situation where you may need to use a gun in a SD situation is going to be very up close fast and very physical. Criminals are not going to give you a chance to give you an advantage. You shoot someone beyond SD distances you are likely to have big legal problems (probably even in a justified shooting) if you survive the attack. I know it is not cheap to shoot, become and maintain proficiency but it is a must if you are using a gun for SD. I know a couple people that do not shoot pistols enough and frankly they suck at shooting especially distance shooting.

Become good at SD distances first then work on longer shots. Get comfortable with handling and shooting a gun. I have been shooting and carrying a gun for so long it is second nature for me. I literally feel naked without a gun on my person outside of my home. I wear one so much I often don’t take it off until getting ready for bed because I don’t even think about it on my body and even then it is right next to me, I wear a Crossbreed now and it is one if not the most comfortable holsters I own. I have a moving box full of holsters. If I had the Crossbreed first I would probably only have a couple other holsters.
Maybe look at revolvers and become good with them. At the rate the idiots in DC are moving away from 2nd A rights revolvers could be all people are “allowed“ to have. If younger people don’t take their liberty and rights more seriously they will loose those rights in their lifetime. It is easier to transition from a revolver to a semi than it is the other way around.

If you are set on s semi you can carry take a look at the smaller 9mm Glocks. If carrying a larger gun is good for you look at the 19 or the 17. The guns can be cut for optics after you get good at conventional sights. There are also mounting plates that don’t require you to cut you slides. Take a look at the Glocks, Sigs, S&W ‘s and others you might like. I prefer Glocks because they are just so reliable. Whatever you buy shoot it a lot and maybe take a class or two. Everyone is going to give you their opinion and favorite but it may not be for you. Just shoot it, shoot it a lot whatever you decide. I don’t know what you have to spend but I love 1911 guns too. Take a look at Wilson Combat, Ed Brown, Les Baer, Nighthawk, if those are too pricey see what looks good in Springfield, Dan Wesson, Colt, Rock River, Rock Island. They all make 9mm 1911 guns and they are all gtg out of the box. You will not be for want of selection in any platform in 9mm. Good luck in your search. Good folks on here to help you too.
 

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Please tell us what is a "SD distance".

If someone is shooting at you at 10 yards away, rather than 7 yards, is that a "SD distance"? What about 20 yards? How about the 40 yards that the mall shooter was murdering people at a few weeks ago?

How far way are you comfortable with me shooting at you from? I can hit your head at 50 yards away with my carry pistol. Is that a "SD distance"?

Would love to hear your logic regarding just how close someone trying to kill you must be before you can legally defend yourself.
Its not what I am comfortable with distance wise it is what your local prosecutor deems as SD distances. It is generally the distance they hold a police officer too involved in shooting. Where I live 21 ft out is about the distance. In other words how long will it take prep to be on you with a knife. Around here Distances farther away will be said you could escape. Some guy in a mall with a rifle would be a different situation. The prosecutor will want you to prove shooter was an immediate threat. Different places different distances. Are you familiar with the 21ft rule? Maybe do a little homework in that,
“The Importance of the 21 Foot Rule for a Legal Defense”
 

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Vart, I will check back later you seem to have disappeared. I am happy to address the “myths“ you refer to but you did not give me specifics to discuss. Maybe you were joking me? Either way just list what you want me to explain and I will post them for you.… Later.
 

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“Law enforcement officers operate under different conditions and rules from the general public.
Not every assailant is going to be packing a Glock. Instead an attacker may opt to use an edged weapon. Recognizing that an attacker has a knife, 21 feet or roughly 7 yards, is the rough distance an officer needs to draw and accurately fire their weapon. Although, this will depend on a number of factors including the ability to discern the threat, environment, light conditions, and individual skill. However, this is a general guideline for defensive shootingwhen an edged weapon is involved.”

We all might recall the Drejka case… see below link.
Perhaps my use of the aforementioned drill was perceived by some as a legal standard based on a couple of above responses. It was not. Nor did I use a gun as an example. I did not state 21ft was a “safe” or legal standard or legal distance either. I simply stated what distance I and friends who were LEO’s consider in the event an attack were to occur. They enforced the law and were given wider leeway than I or other civilians. I used Tueller as an example... not a legal standard. If someone is shooting at me from greater distances mentioned above I am looking for adequate cover if available. I am no hero nor do I fantasize about any given scenario. The laws and standards for police officers differ from armed civilians. I do practice shooting at longer distances but not because it is the norm.

Traditional Distances
“When it comes to traditional training for self-defense, it’s always been about being up close and personal. The FBI statistics show the average distance is around 7-10 yards with around 6 shots being fired. This has been true for a number of years and if you base your training off of the statistics, then you’ll be focusing on quick engagements that happen in very close proximity. Based on the information gathered by FBI statistics, most trainers have built drills as well as courses around close engagements.”
From the same article:
The Indianapolis Case Study
“Now where things get interesting is when we start looking at the recent mall shooting in Indianapolis. The man (Elisjsha Dicken) who ended up taking down the attacker fired his Glock 19 from 40 yards away. Elisjsha ended up connecting with 8 out of the 10 rounds he fired at the shooter ending the situation. A 40-yard handgun shot can be tricky for those who haven’t practiced it before but Elisjsha has proven in a real-world situation it’s more than possible to make shots connect even from extended distances. Now some of you may be saying it was a very specific situation and there aren’t many like it when it comes to self-defense shootings. I hear this a ton and there are a number of real-world situations you may find yourself taking that long of a shot.”

They also talk about the possibility of a grocery store event in the same article. I realize it is a very real possibility these days. Obviously, training is the key.




I do see where Vart may have come away with the ”myth“ perception though.

Thought this was interesting too:
How Far Will Shooting Distance Determination Take Your Case?



My above posts in this thread were my personal opinion, experience and those of friends who worked in LE. I do think there is real merit in Tueller. I have managed to stay out of harms way as well as legal entanglements and most of my adult working life was in the city of Detroit. It works for me but your mileage may vary… especially in todays world.
 
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