I read your excellent book a year ago and was writing an article for my blog about Rifles and SHTF.
I wanted an opinion of something if you have time. :)
What situations would you see viable for a rifle to come out during a SHTF event over a pistol?
I think your argument that people would be killed for their tactical equipment might be true, but then again you also said you are glad you had access to your own rifles... just in case....
I write at www.thenewrifleman.com
Thanks for your expertise and your *Awesome* book
I'm glad you liked my book. In it I explain why I believe a rifle has a place in a modern survivalist's battery.
The handgun is for defending your life, while the rifle is for defending your country. Other than that 90% of the time you’ll use a handgun for defense, not because its better, more powerful or more accurate, but simply because people that do carry on daily basis carry handguns of course, not long arms. The handgun is worse at everything, other than the ability of being there when needed because it can be carried concealed at all times.
A rifle is a great force multiplier in the hands of a skilled operator and it sure does have a place. If needed and if within reach, a rifle will offer more power and accuracy.
I was talking with a reporter today about the survival and preparedness movement. One of the points talked about was how unrealistic preppers and survivalists can be at times, often influenced by Hollywood. We also talked about the influence due to those with a military background. They try to apply what they learned while in the army, maybe even what they experienced in combat overseas. These guys will usually lean strongly towards the rifle as their main weapon give that that’s how they were trained, and only falling back to handguns as a secondary weapon when running out of ammunition or having a gun failure.
The handgun carried on daily basis should always be considered the main weapon of a modern survivalist. In this case, you don’t generally have a rifle with you, and you would only go for it if at home, when you have one within reach.
Because it wont be carried around concealed on your person, the role of the rifle will be more related to home defense. Especially on more isolated houses, the chance of a longer lasting fight increases. In that case, a rifle would be a force multiplier. If local laws allow, I would also have a rifle in my vehicle as well as a “home away from home” setup.
Another possible scenario could be using the rifle while guarding your home or working along with other neighbors after a disaster strikes your area.
In Argentina, I know of some smaller communities that during some of the worst times after the economic collapse took upon themselves to protect their streets by arming and organizing themselves. This was not common but I know it happened in some smaller communities in the province of Buenos Aires. Its not uncommon for ranchers and farmers to move around armed with carbines or rifles, usually just firing a couple warning shots to scare away trespassers.
While I see the handgun being the modern survivors main weapon, the one he should be the most proficient with because it’s the one he’s most likely to use when facing danger, a semi auto big bore carbine is also a must and can prove to be invaluable in some cases.
About tactical gear, I don’t remember saying that tactical gear makes you more of a target. I do think its unrealistic to think that a rifle and full tactical gear setup, with body armor and mag carriers wont be of practical use on a day to day basis. While I do believe in having body armor, you just don’t walk around all day dressed up like you may have done during a tour in Iraq. For the criminal going after you when you park in a strip mall or make a late night rush to the nearest gas station, that’s when the rifle and load bearing vest does you no good and you better have your CCW and the training so as to be proficient with it.