Older shooters like myself think semi-automatic pistols should have real honest-to-God safeties, not mere trigger safeties, and believe that in an emergency it’s the fellow who takes his time and aims, not the fellow who sprays and prays, who wins.
I’d say that the claim that “I don’t have time to click off a safety” is absolute nonsense. Ruffed grouse take off quickly, and generally startle you when they do, but I never heard any brush-torn grouse hunter propose carrying his shotgun with the safety off, because he just didn’t have time to use a safety.
If a finger, or something else, winds up accidentally contacting and depressing the trigger, it is overwhelmingly likely able to be contacting and depressing the little trigger safety lever, too, and then, bang!
An Oregon man who was in line at a supermarket Sunday accidentally shot himself in the groin while showing off a handgun and just missed hitting his femoral artery, a report said, citing police.
The Oregonian newspaper reported that police said Nicholas J. Ellingford, 29, accidentally pulled the trigger of the Glock 9mm while putting the firearm back into his pants. The shot reportedly entered through his groin and exited his thigh.
Police said the incident occurred inside a McKayâ€™s Market in Lincoln City, Fox 12 reported. Ellingford was showing the gun to a friend, police said.
He was taken to an area hospital and then flown to a Portland hospital for further treatment, the Fox 12 report said.
â€œEllingford did not have a concealed handgun license and his act was found to be reckless since it placed several people in danger,” police said, according to Fox 12.
I was reading the latest American Rifleman and came upon, forsooth! an entire article on the advanced and technical subject of putting your pistol back in its holster safely.
Representative of the earlier America that I am, my chin dropped, my eyes blinked, my mind boggled. I thought back to the Field & Stream magazines of my youth, and exercise my imagination as I might, I simply could not imagine H.G. Tapply, Ted Trueblood, or gun editor Warren Page feeling it useful or appropriate to undertake to instruct readers on just how to insert a gun into a holster.
But, as I sat there, reflecting mournfully on der Untergang des Abendlandes, it occurred to me that there actually is a justification for such an article, and that justification is The Glock.
Glock Leg is an actual well-known term that has made dictionaries of slang and popular phrase.
My own opinion is that there are a lot of idiots these days publishing opinions on guns and self defense who have accepted the highly dubious proposition that a semiautomatic pistol with a long trigger pull is really the same thing as a revolver and does not need a safety. These dingbats also commonly assert there is this profound hazard that, in the heat of the moment, in a situation where the shooter is under pressure, he is liable to forget to flick off the safety with his thumb when the need arises to fire.
I’d say they are nuts. Are any of these guys hunters? I’ve hunted grouse and other small game since I was in the last years of elementary school, and I have never in my life had any problem moving the shotgun safety with my thumb before pulling the trigger. And I will contend happily that when Old Ruff explodes unexpectedly from under your feet or from directly behind you, you are often startled, surprised, and trying to cope with the situation with all possible haste. An encounter with human adversaries is far more likely to take place over an interval of time providing plenty of opportunity to plan ahead, make ready, and even to contemplate one’s options.
It’s not easy to explain exactly why, but I do think revolvers and semiautomatic pistols are fundamentally different. I have no yearning for a safety on my revolver, like some of the strange continental European handguns sometimes had. But the very idea of carrying around an automatic pistol with no safety and round in the chamber just gives me the heebie jeebies. It strikes me as equivalent to climbing over a fence while hunting, carrying a loaded shotgun with the safety off.
If it were up to me, gun makers trying to sell Glocks and all the other safety-less polymer guns (and, yes, in my book, a trigger safety is the same as no safety) would be going out of business due to a lack of sales.
I once fired a Glock, when I had to take a Gun Safety Course (despite being a gun owner and hunter for decades and decades) in order to get a CT gun permit. I found the Glock easy to shoot accurately. They are good at soaking up recoil. But… Glocks are ugly. And a key reason they are so popular is that they are cheap. Gaston Glock was obviously clever in a number of ways, but he was also clearly coming from somewhere very far from the traditions, ergonomics, and habits of use of American gunners.
If there were no Glocks, nobody would need articles advising them on how not to shoot themselves on the leg putting their gun back in the holster.
As I get older, I find the list of fashionable things connected with guns that I detest gets longer and longer. One of these days, I intend to share my detestation of the Picatinny Rail.
I’m not a fan of plastic pistols, especially the fashionable contemporary versions that come without a real safety. My own opinion is that trigger safeties are basically meaningless, and carrying an automatic pistol with no safety with a round chambered just makes me nervous.
I have consequently never bought a Glock, but now here is a version I would not mind owning.
Full Conceal is now shipping their Glock 19 folding pistol conversion called M3. The folding mechanism allows having a more compact carry package which in a matter of seconds unfolds and becomes a Glock 19 with a 21-round magazine. The reason why they advertise it with the 22-round capacity (21 round mag plus one in the chamber) is that the 21-round magazine most efficiently fits the slide length neither sticking out nor coming short of the overall length of the folded gun. The M3 pistol is available for purchase on Full Concealâ€™s website for $1,399 (the price includes one Magpul 21-round magazine).
Another important feature of the M3 pistol is the additional safety built into the folding mechanism. When folded, that mechanism blocks the trigger bar preventing any possibility of an accidental discharge when manipulating the folding mechanism. This system allows carrying the pistol with a chambered round being sure that it is safe.
The company also points out that even if the folded gun prints, it will rather look like a cell phone than a firearm. The folded M3 pistol silhouette basically matches the iPhone 7 Plus dimensions.
Bob Owens argues, perfectly correctly, that policemen should not be carrying Glocks.
In terms of mechanical design, there are few flaws with Glock pistols. If a law enforcement officer, soldier or citizen does exactly what they are supposed to do all of the time with cyborg certainty, there will be no problems with the Glock or other popular pistols mimicking its basic design. Unfortunately, â€œRoboCopâ€ is only a movie, and humans are liable to make similar mistakes over and over again.
The underlying problem with these pistols is a short trigger pull and the lack of an external safety. In real-world encounters, a short trigger pull can be lethal, in part because a significant percentage of law enforcement officers â€” some experts say as high as 20% â€” put their finger on the trigger of their weapons when under stress. According to firearms trainers, most officers are completely unaware of their tendency to do this and have a hard time believing it, even when they’re shown video evidence from training exercises.
For more than 35 years, officer-involved accidental discharges with Glocks and Glock-like weapons have been blamed on a lack of training or negligence on the part of the individual cops. What critics should be addressing instead is the brutal reality that short trigger pulls and natural human reflexes are a deadly combination.
Though short trigger-pull guns dominate the law enforcement market, they aren’t the only game in town. A number of major and minor agencies use guns with much longer double-action triggers that are just as easy to fire deliberately but that are much harder to fire accidentally. The half-inch difference of trigger travel may not sound like much, but it can be the difference between life and death.
Among the many very bad ideas that proliferated in Western society since the 1960s is the pernicious notion that one should have a trigger-safety and go around treating a semi-automatic pistol as if it was a revolver.
This has even led to people going around asserting that you don’t want a pistol with a real safety, because it’s so hard to move a safety lever to the off position.
Glocks are cheap, reliable, and easy to shoot accurately… but they are a very bad choice for careless people and non-experts. Really, the Glock design is best carried, the way the Israelis do, with an empty chamber.
Gaston Glock should have put a regulation safety on his design.
No, itâ€™s not from the latte I just inhaled or because this is the first time in two years Iâ€™ve been in a Starbucks since declaring a boycott on its open-carry gun policy.
Whatâ€™s got me jittery this morning is the 9mm Glock thatâ€™s holstered on my hip. Me, lead gun policy protester at the 2010 Starbuckâ€™s shareholder meeting. Me, a board member of the Brady Campaign. Me, the author of a book about the impact of gun violence, Beyond the Bullet.
Yes, I bought a handgun and will carry it everywhere I go over the next 30 days. I have four rules: Carry it with me at all times, follow the laws of my state, only do what is minimally required for permits, licensing, purchasing and carrying, and finally be prepared to use it for protecting myself at home or in public.
Why? Following the Newtown massacre in December, the NRAâ€™s Wayne LaPierre, told the country, â€œThe only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.â€ I wondered what would it be like to be that good guy with a gun? What would it be like to get that gun, live with that gun, be out and about with that gun. Finally, what happens when you donâ€™t want that gun any more?
I decided to find out.
It would be fitting, plot-wise, if Heidi happened to find herself armed and present at a crime scene and drew that Glock, made a citizen’s arrest, then converted completely and was found thereafter shooting caribou weekends with Sarah Palin and serving as the local NRA firearms safety instructor. But I suspect it won’t happen.
For one thing, it is not apparent that, despite all the tumescence and pumping adrenaline, she has ever actually loaded that Glock.
Gun-dealer Tony deserves a good swift kick in the slats for selling a really-safety-less Glock, the handgun of choice for people who need to shoot themselves in the leg, to a person totally unfamiliar with automatic pistols, firearms generally, and gun safety, who is a chick to boot.
Glocks have their virtues. They are cheap, reliable, low maintenance, and easy to shoot, but they are a terrible choice for someone like Heidi as a first gun. She would have been a lot better off with a J-Frame Smith & Wesson .38 Special Revolver. Autos are too complicated, too difficult for novices like Heidi to understand, and too easy to make mistakes handling. Especially Glocks, which are autos pretending to be revolvers with a pretend safety on the trigger. Besides, Glocks are black, made of industrial synthetic material, and are ugly. Heidi’s first gun ought to have had some actual beauty of line and design, so that it might have at least some small chance of insinuating its way into her affections.
Of course, it is not only the clueless Tony, but Heidi herself is to blame if something goes wrong. Americans have a right to keep and bear arms, but anyone who is going to do so also has a personal responsibility to seek advice and instruction so as to choose the right weapon and to know how to handle it safely. Simply going out, buying the first gun some yoyo offers you, and then driving down the street needing to ask a cop to show you how to take out the magazine and investigate whether your gun is loaded doesn’t cut it. I will grant that the scene of the pistol-packing and trembling-with-adrenaline hoplophobe approaching an on-duty cop and trying to explain that she is armed and clueless is damned funny though. Heidi probably never even realized that with the wrong cop or if that Glock had really been loaded the result could have been her own arrest.
If you’ve been reading the standard firearms magazines in recent months, you’re read all about how terrific all the improvements made in the new Generation 4 Glock pistol are.
The great thing about the Internet is that the opinions expressed are typically considerably less influenced by advertising revenue. This little video has a very different perspective on the new Glock Gen4.
Things are certainly different in Switzerland. Can you imagine trying to get these federally-licensed in the USA?
The photo shows a pair of Glock pistols attached at their receivers, and set up to be fired full-auto… sideways.
Not one, but two, full-auto Glocks! (No safety, remember? Just that trigger lever.) And sideways, to boot. This has got to be the greatest firearms idea since the duck foot pistol.
Just the thing if the crew of your ship happens to take a sudden notion to mutiny, but otherwise completely useless and more than a little dangerous.
The Doppel-Glock-Pistole was produced by the Swiss arms manufacturer H.P. Sigg and featured in an article in Schweizer Waffen Magazin, in the issue of December 1997..
Someone recently sold a previous prototype using two CZ-52 chambered in 7.62 Tokarev on Egun . The bidding ended at 136,00 EUR ($18984.24)
The Glock set is comprised of more contemporary pieces, so it would probably bring more at auction, but the CZ-52s actually have safeties. They are kind of neat guns, but were crudely finished during the the Communist era.
My experience is that the Glock pistol is surprisingly easy to shoot, but it also hasâ€”in my opinionâ€”some very objectionable features and can be dangerous to an unskilled user. A lot of police are accidentally shooting themselves in the leg with Glocks these days.
Crack DEA agent Lee Paige tried suing the government over that video. The Smoking Gun:
A Drug Enforcement Administration agent who stars in a popular online video that shows him shooting himself in the foot during a weapons demonstration for Florida children is suing over the tape’s release, claiming that his career has been crippled and he’s become a laughingstock due to the embarrassing clip’s distribution. …
According to the lawsuit, Paige was making a “drug education presentation” in April 2004 to a Florida youth group when his firearm (a Glock .40) accidentally discharged. The shooting occurred moments after Paige told the children that he was the only person in the room professional enough to carry the weapon.
The accident was filmed by an audience member, and the tape, Paige claims, was turned over to the DEA. The drug agency, he charges, subsequently “improperly, illegally, willfully and/or intentionally” allowed the tape to be disseminated.
As a result, Paige–pictured at left in a still from the video–has been the “target of jokes, derision, ridicule, and disparaging comments” directed at him in restaurants, grocery stores, and airports. Paige, who writes that he was “once regarded as one of the best undercover agents, if not the best, in the DEA,” points to the clip’s recent airing on popular television shows and via the Internet as the reason he can no longer work undercover. He also notes that he is no longer “permitted or able to give educational motivational speeches and presentations.”
Alas! Mr. Paige shot himself in the foot again, Lowering the Bar reports the case was dismissed. Getting back into the news means, of course, that more people will see the video.
[T]he judge granted summary judgment on the grounds that (even after many depositions) Paige could not prove how the video clip had gotten out, and even if he could have, the leaked information was not “private” because the incident took place in front of 50 parents and children (who at least did learn an excellent lesson in gun safety). Case dismissed.
There is no “Glock 40,” by the way. Mr. Paige shot himself with a Glock Model 22 or 23 chambered in the .40 Smith & Wesson cartridge.
The article illustrates a Glock 17, while the Wall Street Journal reported, January 12th, that Loughner used a Glock 19 with a 33-round magazine. This shooter is emptying the magazine as rapidly as possible without much care in aiming.
Ex-Serviceman thinks Glocks are more reliable and better made. “My guess is that, per Occamâ€™s razor, the cops, gangbangers, and psychos of the world just figured they might as well use a high quality handgun.”
Texas Gun Enthusiast is less sure, but thinks it must be the brand-name.
I don’t especially agree with either of them. I was discussing the same subject a few days ago on my class email list. A liberal classmate immediately assumed that Glocks (and semi-automaic pistols in general) are innovative and intrinsically deadlier types of ordinance, which ought to be strictly regulated. I replied assuring him that Glocks are not super-weapons.
I wrote, and have slightly re-edited:
Glocks are ordinary pistols. Semi-automatic pistols are flat and somewhat easier to carry concealed, they have magazines typically containing more rounds, and they are slightly faster to reload, but lots of shooters still think revolvers are preferable and superior.
Semi-automatics are certainly not intrinsically more accurate than revolvers. Loughner’s performance suggests that he was a competent shot. A revolver can be reloaded very quickly using a speedloader, and compared to a normal magazine a competent shot could fire not all that many fewer rounds with equivalent accuracy in the same space of time. Loughner did use an unconventional 33-round magazine which definitely gave him a firepower advantage over a revolver, but which also diminished his weapon’s concealability and significantly increased the possibility of a malfunction.
If this incident proves anything, it proves that, in a country of 300 million people, there exists a real percentage of crazy and malevolent individuals bent on mayhem. Ordinary people need Glocks and other handguns as portable tools for self defense and the defense of the helpless and unarmed.
Guns have lots of purposes. Hundreds of millions of them exist in private hands in this country. Only an infinitesimal number of guns are ever used in crime and only a still more microscopic percentage are ever actually fired with intent at anybody. God only knows how many Glocks are out there. I expect there are probably hundreds of thousands of them. (The WSJ noted that 70,000 were sold in the USA in 2008.) I would not be surprised if the real figure was more than half a million. If a Glock’s only purpose was to kill or maim human beings, there would be one hell of a lot larger body count nationwide, wouldn’t there?
A Glock pistol is not an assault weapon. It is an ordinary semi-automatic pistol. Semi-automatic pistols have been in common use since the 1890s. The German Army adopted the Luger in 1908. The US military adopted the .45 Colt Automatic in 1911.
American police used to be skilled shooters and overwhelmingly preferred to carry revolvers chambered in .38 Special or .357 Magnum until a few decades ago, when a new fashion emphasizing semi-auto pistols and big magazines came along as part of a general nationwide militarization of American police, in my view representing one more evidence of a sissified nation’s increasing timidity and paranoia.
My experience is that the Glock pistol is surprisingly easy to shoot, but it also has –in my opinion– some very objectionable features and can be dangerous to an unskilled user. A lot of police are accidentally shooting themselves in the leg with Glocks these days.
Glocks are made in part of synthetic material and are in no way aesthetically appealing.
Glocks have long, rather heavy trigger pulls, and they have no real safety. There is a little lever on the front of the trigger, which must be depressed for the trigger to move. That is it for a safety on a Glock. If you are pulling the trigger, I would say, you are inevitably depressing that little lever, too. Essentially, the Glock is designed to operate like a double-action revolver that can only be fired double-action.
Nobody expects a revolver to have a safety, Glock argues, so why do you want one on your semi-automatic pistol? Just treat it like a revolver.
I do not own a Glock, but if I did, I would carry it with an empty chamber, in lieu of a safety, and be content to rack the slide if I intended to use it. The Glock’s long, heavy trigger pull, I will grant, is smooth, and with practice you can tell when it is about to fire, so you can aim accurately. The mechanism is quite good at absorbing recoil, so it is easy to stay on target with a second shot. I would rate the Glock’s ability to stay on target with multiple shots its most attractive feature.
Beyond that, my impression is that Glocks are so popular because they are comparatively inexpensive. A Glock is a Toyota of handguns, not a Mercedes. When people all over the country take mandatory gun safety courses these days, the center-fire pistol they are going to get to shoot will, overwhelmingly most commonly, be a Glock.
So, I’d say, Loughner used a Glock because the 9mm Glock has become today what the .38 Smith & Wesson Model 10 Military & Police revolver used to be, what the Colt Model 1873 Peacemaker was a long time ago, the conventional choice of personal sidearm, most police department’s choice of issue weapon.