LJ Bonham is a semi-subsistence hunter, hunting magazine editor, and firearms enthusiast who lives in the Rocky Mountains.
The Everyday Carry (EDC) concept began as a worthwhile idea: have basic survival gear on one’s person at all times. At first, this just meant a few things such as a pocket knife, cell phone, and especially one’s legal sidearm. Then things changed in regards to the gun, and a trap emerged for unsuspecting or novice licensed firearm carriers.
For Your Convenience
Handguns are uncomfortable and inconvenient to carry: steel just doesn’t conform to the human body, and it’s heavy. Authorized CCW people make a commitment when they decide to carry a sidearm; it’s serious business. The problem is, human nature intervened, and people looked for ways to make the EDC concept easier and less cumbersome.
Basic CCW doctrine changed during the last decade as more and more permittees adopted standard law enforcement practice. They now carry a backup weapon in case their primary handgun becomes inoperative. Almost overnight, the market demanded very small, light-weight backup handguns.
It's Only Natural
This trend to smaller and smaller guns intersected with the natural desire for convenience, and far too many people now rely on an ultra-compact backup type gun as their primary sidearm. Advances in modern bullet design also fueled this trend as ammunition companies found ways to make what had been considered sub-standard calibers such the .380 and .32 ACP much more effective, which made the new small guns even more attractive.
The Simple, Direct, and Wrong Solution
These trends found fertile ground in the EDC arena and a dangerous schism developed in some people’s minds. It became fashionable to divide concealed carry into two realms: casual, or everyday, carry, and for lack of a better word, “formal” carry. Web forums and magazine print alike endorsed this notion. The gun industry didn’t see a problem with this either since their customers were now in the market for more than just one or two guns.
Would You Prefer the Casual or Formal Shootout, Ma'am?
Yet, there is a problem here—shootouts are not “casual” events. Firearms are not fashion accessories, and anyone who carries just to make a statement misses the entire point. The primary, and only, reason to carry a concealed handgun is to protect oneself and their loved ones should they encounter violent criminals intent on life-threatening harm. Such a situation is battle, pure and simple, and battle demands equipment suited to the task. There are no “do overs” in battle; people can die. A person is either ready or not ready; there is no middle ground.
Denial is Not a River in Egypt
The future is an uncertain business, and one doesn’t get to choose what mayhem may come their way on any given day. Deadly-force situations come in all shapes and sizes, from a single person armed with a tire iron to a dozen-heavily armed terrorists, or even a city-wide riot.
Anyone who legally carries a firearm must make an unflinching, no-nonsense assessment about every potential threat the world might throw at them and arm themselves to meet those threats. If confronted with several assailants intent on killing everyone in their path, it is far better to have a proper, mid to full-size, battle capable handgun chambered in a more than marginal caliber; copious extra ammunition; and a backup weapon, rather than just one diminutive .380 which is difficult to shoot accurately beyond five paces. At the least, consider a high-capacity sub-compact gun such as the Glock 26/27, Sig P365, or Springfield Hellcat.
Make the Right Call
Avoid the EDC trap and always carry the best gun possible under the circumstances. Remember, your life depends on it.
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This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2017 LJ Bonham
LJ Bonham (author) on March 01, 2017:
I'm glad things worked out for you, Mr. Burton. Often, the mere presence of a firearm in the hands of the potential victim is sufficient to stop an assailant.
Jack Burton from The Midwest on March 01, 2017:
"Anyone who legally carries a firearm must make an unflinching, no nonsense assessment about every potential threat the world might throw at them and arm themselves to meet those threats. "
If that was the case we would all be carrying around ARs with multiple 30 round magazines.
The vast majority of the people who carry do so on the basis of what is "reasonable" that they will someday face. For many, a smaller caliber/smaller firearm fits what they understand as their needs.
My Keltec P-32 managed to keep me safe when approached by two thugs. It did everything that I needed it to do at that time.