VI – Self-Defense

Protect Yourself from a Carjacking

Your wallet isn’t the only item criminals want to steal. Your car appeals to them too. Be prepared.

  • Read news articles about carjackings and mentally imagine what you would do in each situation
  • More than one person or a group generally commit these violent carjacking thefts.
  • Know your route. Avoid driving in unfamiliar neighborhoods.
  • Keep alert while your vehicle is moving and while it is idling
  • Carjacking most often occurs in transitional spaces such as parking lots and gas stations.

[ Read the SemperVerus article, Self-Defense Tactical Driving Tips ]

  • Fuel your vehicle only during the day at gas stations in well traveled areas. Scan the gas station for suspicious behavior or loitering before you select a pump. While fueling, keep your car locked and keep scanning your surroundings to be prepared to take action (e.g., use the gas nozzle as a jet stream) should a vehicle or person approach you in a threatening manner.

Learn the Basics of Ammunition with Winchester® Educational Infographics

By using retail surveys, the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF®) estimates records were surpassed when nearly 14 million Americans purchased a firearm for the first time in the two years of 2020 and 2021, when a total of about 40 million firearms were sold. Gallup research suggests 44% of US adults—114 million people—report living in a gun household.

[ Read the SemperVerus article, The 4 Basic Rules of Gun Safety ]

With so many first-time gun owners needing to learn the basics of responsible firearm ownership, Winchester®—the largest small caliber ammunition enterprise in the world—has created “Introduction to Ammunition-Ammo 101” easy-to-understand infographics illustrating the ammunition categories of

  • rimfire,
  • pistol,
  • centerfire, and
  • shotshell,

and showcasing

  • ammunition construction,
  • components,
  • calibers, and
  • common usage

for each.

Click each image below to enlarge it on your screen. Also, click here to download the pdf document of the following images.

Image of the inner working of pistol ammunition
Handgun calibers are determined by the inside diameter of the barrel they’re shot from. These sizes range from as small as .22 to as large as .50 caliber. Popular cartridges are .22 LR, .380 Auto, 9 MM, .38 Special, 40 S&W, and 45 Auto.

[ Read the SemperVerus article, Checklist: Matters to Consider When Deciding on a Handgun which includes links to web articles that are glossaries of gun terms ]

The Associated Press Advises Against Using “Assault Rifle” and “Assault Weapon” in News Reports

Image of the AP Stylebook entry defining assault weaponAfter years of incorporating the terms “assault rifle” and “assault weapons” into news reports involving firearms—especially when used in crimes—journalists are now advised by The Associated Press to avoid these “highly politicized terms,” and the Second Amendment Foundation (SAF) says it’s a “smart gun change.”

“It’s about time the media realized the terms ‘assault rifle’ and ‘assault weapon’ are inflammatory and meaningless,” says SAF founder and executive vice president Alan M. Gottlieb. “Those terms have become part of the gun prohibition lobby’s lexicon, and unfortunately, journalists across the country have been all-too-willing to adopt their vocabulary and repeatedly use it in their reports.

According to an AP Style Tip, “The preferred term for a rifle that fires one bullet each time the trigger is pulled, and automatically reloads for a subsequent shot, is a semi-automatic rifle. An automatic rifle continuously fires rounds if the trigger is depressed and until its ammunition is exhausted.

“Avoid assault rifle and assault weapon,” the AP adds, “which are highly politicized terms that generally refer to AR- or AK-style rifles designed for the civilian market, but convey little meaning about the actual functions of the weapon.”

“I’m glad to see the AP Stylebook now recognizes that these firearms only fire one round each time a trigger is pulled,” he continued, “and really function no differently than any other semi-auto rifle, pistol, or shotgun, all of which have been in common use in this country for more than a century.”

US Supreme Court Affirms Right to Carry Arms in Public for Self-Defense

Basing its decision on detailed textual and historical analysis of the US Bill of Rights’ Second Amendment, the Supreme Court of the United States has ruled that the US Constitution explicitly protects “an individual’s right to carry a handgun for self-defense outside the home.”

The court says the “normal and ordinary” meaning of the Second Amendment’s operative clause—“the right of the people to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed”—guarantees the individual right to possess and carry weapons in case of confrontation whether inside or outside the home.

The justices’ June 23, 2022 decision strikes down a New York state law that required gun owners to demonstrate a particular personal need before they could possibly qualify for a license allowing them to carry firearms in public.

It is now the third ruling, after the cases of Heller and McDonald, in which the high court is directly instructing lower courts that “individual self-defense is ‘the central component’ of the Second Amendment right.”

In his concurring statement, Justice Samuel Alito says, “Today, unfortunately, many Americans have good reason to fear that they will be victimized if they are unable to protect themselves. And today, no less than in 1791, the Second Amendment guarantees their right to do so.”

The Court’s ruling means that, while states may require carry permits, they must issue them to ordinary law-abiding, mentally-sound people. Ordinary people must be able to carry a personal firearm in ordinary places where people congregate. And licensing cannot be excessively delayed or expensive.

For a detailed explanation of the ruling’s legal language, see the video by attorney Andrew Branca on Law of Self Defense. Also read The Scramble on American Handgunner and Supreme Court Upholds Gun Rights Outside of the Home, Let’s Break It Down on Ammoland.