Shooting Illustrated | Fightin’ Iron: Remington 870 Shotgun

The timeless Remington 870 is 60 years old and has seen 10 million units produced. Wiley Clapp takes a look back at this legendary — and still relevant — defensive shotgun.

Source: Shooting Illustrated | Fightin’ Iron: Remington 870 Shotgun

To anyone who asks the standard gun-writer question, “What’s the best gun and ammo to use in a fight,” my answer is, “a shotgun and #000 buck.” No handgun can ever equal the on-target performance of a fighting shotgun. The question then becomes, “what shotgun do you prefer?” My answer would be equally emphatic, “a Remington 870.”

A Remington Model 870 “Wingmaster” – in (legal) short-barrel “riot gun” configuration (it had formerly been used by the Newark City Police Department), with wood stocks – was the first “serious” firearm I ever purchased. It is still, bar-none, my favorite.

Not mine, but one that looks very much like it!

The friend from whom I purchased it included a longer, ribbed barrel with interchangeable chokes as part of the package, but I generally leave “Ol’ #103” in its rifle-sighted, cylinder-choked “defensive” configuration. With the magazine plug out, it can hold five 2 3/4″ rounds of #1 buckshot (16 .30-caliber pellets per shell, vs only 9 .33-caliber ones for 00 buck): more than enough to ruin the day of any would-be malefactor.

I know some would prefer the slightly greater penetration and range of 00 or 000 buckshot, but I’ll stick with the better spread pattern and larger number of wound channels of the (slightly) smaller but more numerous #1 pellets. If I were expecting to fight armored targets, or at ranges greater than home-defense range, I most likely wouldn’t choose a shotgun as my weapon, anyway!

I hope I never do, but if I ever need to conduct an armed defense of myself or my loved ones, it’s my 870 I’d reach for first.

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In the midst of grief, still confusion | MelaniePhillips.com

Source: In the midst of grief, still confusion | MelaniePhillips.com

“’Islamist’ is a reasonable neologism – I use it myself – to describe political or jihadi Islam and thus necessarily differentiate it from the un-extreme, pacific interpretation of the religion to which millions of Muslims subscribe. But to assert… that Islamism is therefore not Islamic is demonstrably ridiculous.”

In the aftermath of the Westminster (London) attack, commentator Melanie Phillips takes UK Prime Minister Theresa May, and by extension, the Western political establishment, to task for – as it too-often the case – refusing to recognize and name the problem for what it is:

“Does she think the concept of jihad is not Islamic? For sure, jihadi Islam is an interpretation of the religion to which many Muslims do not subscribe. But it is a genuine interpretation, solidly based on religious sources and is the historic inspiration for centuries of bloody Islamic conquest. It is as absurd to say it has nothing to do with Islam as it would be to say the Inquisition had nothing to do with Christianity or ultra-orthodox Haredi Jews have nothing to do with Judaism.

“The claim that identifying religion as the problem would demonise all Muslims is a non-sequitur. Yes, many Muslims are not extreme; but a terrifyingly large number are.

“In an opinion poll of a sample of British Muslims last year, only 34 per cent said they would report to the police anyone they thought was involved with jihadi extremism; 38 per cent blamed either the US or the Jews for 9/11; four per cent – which would amount to around 100,000 British Muslims – sympathised with Muslim suicide bombers; and 23 per cent wanted Islamic sharia law to replace domestic English law in areas with large Muslim populations.”

It has been said in a number of places that violent jihadists are snakes; the Muslim population at large is the grass they hide in. These figures quoted by Ms Phillips give some specific background and support to this claim, for Britain at least; but similar figures hold true elsewhere in the West. Even in the US, radicalism is increasing. The fact that most Muslims do not commit violent jihad does not mean they are not sympathetic to those who do.

[According to some recent studies, as much as 51% of US Muslims would prefer having the choice of being governed under Sharia law, while 60% of Muslim-Americans told Pew Research they were more loyal to Islam than to America. Islam’s insistence of being politically, legally, and socially dominant, as well as religiously / spiritually so, is a dramatic contrast to Christianity – which, as this article points out, “instructs followers to respect secular leaders — rendering ‘unto Caesar what is Caesar’s’ — while living godly lives within secular societies.”]

I have stated before in this forum – multiple times, and I will doubtless state multiple times again – that the majority of Muslims are not bent on the violent overthrow of Western civilization; however, the majority – nearly all, in fact – of those currently bent on the violent overthrow of Western civilization are Muslims. That means that the ideology / worldview of Islam, which is grounded in but not limited to (an important distinction) religion, is not benign.

Facing up to a problem – clearly identifying its scope, nature, and all the implications thereof – is the first step toward solving it. As long as we continue to refuse to understand and accept that violent Islamic jihadism is rooted in the religion of Islam itself, our efforts to combat it will be conducted with one hand (at least) tied behind our backs.

American “Founding Father” James Madison, on property

“In the former sense, a man’s land, or merchandize [sic], or money is called his property. In the latter sense, a man has a property in his opinions and the free communication of them. He has a property of peculiar value in his religious opinions, and in the profession and practice dictated by them. He has a property very dear to him in the safety and liberty of his person. He has an equal property in the free use of his faculties and free choice of the objects on which to employ them. In a word, as a man is said to have a right to his property, he may be equally said to have a property in his rights.” ~ James Madison, 1792

Many thanks to the inimitable Tara Ross for this and many other wondrous posts!

The 2nd Amendment, firearms safety, and equality

Source: Stately McDaniel Manor | Culture, Politics, Firearms, Education, Literature, Philosophy, Music, And Other Musings

The Declaration got it mostly right (“all men are created equal…”): to slightly paraphrase a classic aphorism, “God made human beings, Col. Sam Colt made them equal!” One of the few areas in which I do not admire England / Britain is their draconian gun-control policies. Leaving people defenseless against those who wish them harm is morally vicious, and poor public policy.

In related news, Mike McDaniel of the Stately McDaniel Manor blog reports that accidental deaths due to firearms have declined dramatically, despite more firearms than ever being sold:

Despite gun sales reaching record numbers in the last two years, accidental gun shootings are at an all-time low, a surprising finding by the National Safety Council. In its annual “Injury Facts” report, the group put accidental gun deaths in 2015 at 489.

That is the lowest since 1903, when record-keeping began, and a 17 percent one-year drop, and is “about three-tenths of 1 percent of the 146,571 total accidental deaths from all other listed causes,” according to the National Shooting Sports Foundation, which represents the firearms industry. It is a remarkably low number, and underscores the fact that law-abiding gun owners are among the most careful and responsible folks out there.

It is especially notable in light of the very large number of legally–owned firearms in America. In 2015, an additional 23 million firearms were sold – a then-all-time-high – and last year, 2016, the number surged to 27 million: spurred, as McDaniel notes, by fears of what a possibly Hillary Clinton presidency would mean to firearm ownership. Yet despite the tens, even hundred, of millions of firearms in legal hands, the number of accidental deaths in 2015 was… 489. That speaks highly of gun owners!

It also flies in the face of claims made by anti-gun advocates that “safety” is one of the reasons they are attempting to enact additional measures limiting our Constitutional rights and freedoms where firearms are concerned. Estimates range – sometimes widely – but it is probably fair to say that somewhere between 30% and 40% of American households have at least one firearms, with an estimated total ownership of 256 million firearms.

And the total number of accidental deaths due to firearms use is under 500? I’d say we’re doing pretty good!

Oh, and that equality issue I mentioned? The sexual dimorphism inherent to our species means that women tend, on average, to be about 15% smaller than men, and only around 60% as strong – again, on average. This means that women are at a significant disadvantage when attempting to physically fight off would-be male attackers.

Firearms significantly redress this disadvantage: the original aphorism I with which started this piece stated (variations on) “God created men, Samuel Colt (inventor of the first practical repeating handgun) made them equal.”

This is even more true where women are concerned!

Article 50: May signs letter that will trigger Brexit – BBC News

[British Prime Minister] Theresa May has signed the letter that will formally begin the UK’s departure from the European Union. The letter will be delivered to the EU on Wednesday, marking formal notice of the UK’s exit.

Source: Article 50: May signs letter that will trigger Brexit – BBC News

“In a statement in the Commons, the prime minister will then tell MPs this marks ‘the moment for the country to come together.’ It follows June’s referendum which resulted in a vote to leave the EU. Mrs May’s letter will be delivered at 12:30 BST on Wednesday by the British ambassador to the EU, Sir Tim Barrow. The prime minister, who will chair a cabinet meeting in the morning, will then make a statement to MPs confirming the countdown to the UK’s departure from the EU is under way.”

Rule, Britannia! Britannia, rule the waves!
Britons never, never, never shall be slaves.

John Keble, Presbyter and Renewer of the Church, 1866 | For All the Saints

New every morning is the love
Our wakening and uprising prove:
Through sleep and darkness safely brought,
Restored to life and power and thought.

These familiar words of John Keble are from his cycle of poems entitled The Christian Year (1827), which he wrote to restore within the Church of England a deep feeling for the church year, “to bring the thoughts and feelings of the reader into unison with those exemplified in the Prayer Book.”

The work went through ninety-five editions, but this was not the fame Keble sought. His consuming desire was to be a faithful pastor who finds his fulfillment in daily services, confirmation classes, visits to village schools, and a voluminous correspondence with those seeking spiritual counsel.

Source: John Keble, Presbyter and Renewer of the Church, 1866 | For All the Saints

Rightly acclaimed for The Christian Year, John Keble‘s greater and more lasting influence on the Anglican expression of Christianity was doubtless his Assizes Sermon of 1834, commonly titled “National Apostasy.” It was, as this account notes, the spark that ignited the Oxford Movement, also known as the Tractarians: reformers who, again to quote this essay, “sought to recall the Church to its ancient sacramental heritage.”

While some of the reforms proposed (especially among the later Tractarians) went too far for many Anglicans – then and now – there is much to be commended in the Oxford reformers’ attempts to recall the Ecclesia Anglicana to a “high” ecclesiology and sacramental theology, and to reawaken the “appeal to antiquity” (that is, the “ancient and undivided Church”) which has been a salient feature of Anglicanism since the days of Matthew Parker (Archbishop of Canterbury, 1559–1575).

In these attempts they met with considerable, although not uncontested, success – and I, for one, am grateful!