Yes, It is allowed: Find out how
Carrying In Puerto Rico
The Shooting Center Newsletter May 2019
2020 Training for civilians
and for LEOs at www.NACOPLEEP.org
HOME On The RANGE
Choosing EDCC Tools
Paul Pawela Says 'Choose Wisely'
Published by The Shooting Center & National Association of Chiefs of Police MARCH 2020
Starting March 19, the Pro Shop at The American Police Hall of Fame will be offering 30%
off all merchandise in the shop, not including firearms and ammunition. Come on in and get your
Phalanx holster, tactical slacks, KORE leather gun belt and more!
That's when one of
them put his pistol against my
me backwards with it, and shot me in
I Survived My Own Attempted
I SURVIVED MY OWN ATTEMPTED MURDER
By Ken Corley
Editor's note: The author of this article, Ken Corley, is new to the rotation of NACOP-endorsed instructors at the American Police Hall of Fame. His story of fighting for his life, against all odds, should be read by anyone who may ever be called on to defend themselves.
September brings cooler weather, archery season and outdoor activities. But, for me, it also brings anxiety, dark thoughts and unanswered questions. It is something I rarely speak of, discussing it mostly with my parents, brother, wife and a very few trusted friends over the last 40 years.
But I am now ready to share my story.
In 1979, I was a Security Guard at a local apartment complex in Kissimmee Fl. I left my office at 4:30 a.m. and headed home to my apartment. Nothing out of the ordinary, just a normal morning. I was walking along the sidewalk near a major road with no reason to suspect what was about to happen next. As I neared my apartment, a person I thought I knew approached me. That’s when something hit me. I don't know if it was a baseball bat, pipe or 2x4; but whatever it was, it split open the back of my head, so much so that I required dozens of stitches.
The blow stunned me and I was bleeding profusely. I remember two people holding my arms and another person viciously pistol-whipping me in the head. Each hit required a minimum of three stitches. I was completely unable to defend myself.
When they decided that I was no longer a threat, they patted me down and took everything I had on my person. I was vaguely alert and could overhear as they discussed how to dispose of me. Then I once again felt two people holding my arms, attempting to lead/drag me to a near-by dumpster, as they discussed tossing me in. One of them was rifling through my wallet, removing everything.
I knew I was going to die if I didn't do something so I made another feeble attempt to defend myself and paid dearly for it. Once again, I was beaten until I could no longer resist. I received repeated blows to the head until I could only stand with assistance.
When we reached the dumpster I made my last attempt to survive. Several residents reported hearing a sharp, primal scream and what sounded like a gunshot. Nothing worked for me and the beating continued until they tossed me into the dumpster. I did not want to go in there.
I tried desperately to hold myself up with one arm and keep my head above the sides of the dumpster. That's when they slammed the dumpster lid on my head. There were no plastic lids then, they were all metal...and heavy.
This final assault crumpled me to the floor of the dumpster where everything was suddenly still and dark. The force of the metal lid slamming against my head fractured my skull behind both ears and would eventually require 11 stitches on one side of my head and 12 on the other. I thought it knocked me unconscious and that I had been laying in there for hours. In reality, it had only been a few seconds. I struggled to stand up and push open the dumpster lid so I could crawl out, but my attackers hadn't even turned to leave yet. That's when one of them put his pistol against my forehead, pushed me backwards with it and shot me in the head.
Through all of this, somehow, I never lost consciousness. I kept trying to stop the blood flow while peeking through the cracks of the dumpster until morning finally dawned and I was sure my assailants were gone. I remember making it to my manager's apartment and telling him that someone shot me in the head -- I was drifting in and out of consciousness by then -- I remember talking to Fred, my best friend at the time, and I recall his two small children huddled together with their mother, staring at me...and I remember wishing that they didn't have to see me this way. (So sorry for such a horrible childhood memory, Stacey).
I also remember the paramedics starting to work on me and strapping me to a gurney. We were close to Kissimmee Hospital so they shuttled me there by ambulance, only to discover that Kissimmee could not take me because they weren't a trauma center. We rushed on to St. Cloud Hospital where I was turned away yet again: they were a trauma center but not a brain trauma center.
I recall a police officer, a childhood schoolmate of mine, accompanied me during transport. I was life-flighted from St. Cloud to Florida hospital in Orlando. I remember being loaded into the helicopter and I remember landing on the roof and being taken inside, but everything in between is darkness.
As strange as it sounds to say, I was lucky and blessed. When my attacker pushed against my head with the muzzle of his pistol, it tilted my head backward, which changed the angle of the shot, saving my life. The bullet was traveling upward versus inward and only took a little chunk of meat and hair from my forehead just above the hairline. The result was burnt hair and gunpowder stippling, from the spent powder being forced under my skin.
We believe this whole incident was set in motion when my brother and I intervened in a neighbor's beating about a month earlier. Turned out that the incident with the neighbor was a collection attempt by some drug dealers, and they were not at all happy about being prevented from collecting, nor were they pleased about being arrested, thus losing not only thousands of quaaludes but tens of thousands of dollars. Once they were back on the street, they decided to take out their anger on me at the firt available opportunity.
My biggest regret was how it affected my mother and the anguish of seeing her in tears when she finally tracked me down at the correct hospital. I am sure I looked nothing short of horrific, with two wounds to my forehead and injuries so bad to the back of my head it looked as though part of it was missing. The doctors and nurses couldn't figure out how I could still stand or talk!
I never got to thank the first responders, but I am deeply grateful to them for looking after me. And the guys who tried to kill me? They're still out there. No arrests were ever made and I am not 100% sure who it was. This was the source of nightmares for many years. That feeling of dread still follows me sometimes during pre-dawn hours. I was never supposed to leave that dumpster alive. I think about this often. PTSD is real and not one day has gone by since this incident that I don't think about it. It’s always there.
But one purpose of sharing my story is to bring attention to your situational awareness. I was very aware of the person in front of me. All my attention was directed towards him. I never saw who hit me. If I was armed I might have been disarmed and possibly shot with my own firearm. I had no warning or time to react. I was ambushed and abducted, viciously beaten, tossed in a dumpster, shot in the head and left for dead. At the time I was young, a blackbelt in karate, in great shape and more than capable of taking care of myself. I taught Karate in the community center at that same apartment complex where I nearly died. This was the single most humbling experience of my life.
What did I learn from this? You can’t be too diligent. Pay constant attention to your surroundings and never focus only on what’s in front of you. Bad guys are rarely alone. The cops say it best: where there's one, there's two; where there's two, there's three.
Always work in pairs when possible and never assume everything is as it should be. I was distracted into condition white. There is no defense against ambush. We are seeing it more and more each day. Officers are called to a scene and ambushed -- and sometimes are ambushed just sitting in their cars. Working in pairs seems safer but we had a pair of officers ambushed and killed in Kissimmee in 2017. If it can happen to cops, it can happen to you. If something doesn’t seem right, it probably isn’t.
As for me, the incident probably cemented the course of my life...I continued in Martial arts becoming a multi-style blackbelt and instructor. I also became a Corrections Officer and took every instructor course I could get approved for. I became certified as a Field Training Officer, Criminal Justice General Instructor, Law Enforcement Defensive Tactics Instructor and a Gracie Law Enforcement Weapons Retention and Immediate Control Instructor.
I was honored to represent Osceola County Corrections at the 2001 American Society for Law Enforcement Training's Law Enforcement Skills World Championships, taking 1st place World Champion in Threat Recognition and 4th in Tactical Pistol Pursuit.
God is good and I credit Him alone with pulling me through this. Too many things could have happened just a little differently and I wouldn't be here. I was grateful for the outpouring of love and prayer at the time, and I remain so today. Be safe. Be aware.
Looking for qualified, skilled tactical trainers?
Check out www.NACOPSTEP.org for NACOP-endorsed classes & trainers. Or go to www.shootingclasses.com for skilled instructors locally, regionally or nationwide.
For FREE & deeply discounted law enforcement training classes, go to www.NACOPLEEP.org.
2nd Amendment for Dummies
By Royce Bartlett
I have often said that ignorance of our founding documents is the excuse of no politician, just as ignorance of the law is the excuse of no citizen.
In turn, I suggest that citizens bear a greater responsibility to know and understand the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and especially the Bill of Rights, because we are the guardians thereof, even beyond elected officials, legislators, and judges.
It is our knowledge of the Supreme Law of the Land that enables us to "govern our government" (as the founders intended), and to know when it is encroaching on our precious liberties.
Sadly, many Americans do not understand the rights they possess simply because they’ve never taken the time to study the Bill of Rights; or, because they’ve heard a less-than-factual explanation of them from the mouths and pens of other ignorant people.
With that in mind, we are taking a deep dive into the 2ndAmendment (my personal favorite), and we’ll dissect/discuss the right expressed therein to gain a comprehensive understanding.
What the 2nd Amendment isn’t:
It is not the grantor or guarantor of the right to keep and bear arms; that right comes from God alone. Though the right is specifically and prominently mentioned, the expression of the right is not the sole purpose of the Amendment.
It is not a suggestion; it is an imperative. It is not a foundation upon which to attach other laws (contrary to Shannon Watts of the “Moms Demand Action” pro-infringement political action group).
It is not a declaration that is dependent upon circumstances, nor was it intended to be changeable by the government, should our elected officials decide they don’t like it.
It is not violable; no one, specifically the government, has the right to violate the right, directives and/or implications found within it.
It is not subject to provisos, because it isn’t an agreement or contract; it is a LAW.
What the 2nd Amendment is:
It is part of the Supreme Law of the Land, found in the Bill of Rights, specifically within the portion thereof that directly prohibits the government from infringing (violating, breaking,
hindering, delaying) the free exercise of a pre-existing right given by God to all men; namely the right to defend one’s self against unjust or criminal aggression by any and all threats, even against their own government, if necessary. It also directly notes the use of any or all arms of war necessary to this defense.
This amendment was carefully crafted prior to penning it in its final form, and with careful perusal, its meaning and intent are as clear as a blue Georgia sky. So let’s break it down:
“A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed”.
Many wild and fanciful interpretations of the text of this amendment (and others) have been proffered by those who seem intent on ‘proving’ that the founders “never intended” for the average citizen to keep and bear arms, much less arms for war. The founders themselves addressed such faulty thinking, as evidenced in the following quote by Thomas Jefferson:
"On every occasion [of Constitutional interpretation] let us carry ourselves back to the time when the Constitution was adopted, recollect the spirit manifested in the debates, and instead of trying [to force] what meaning may be squeezed out of the text, or invented against it, [instead let us] conform to the probable one in which it was passed."
-- Thomas Jefferson, letter to William Johnson, 12 June 1823
With that in mind, let us proceed, and as we go, we’ll consult the founders' statements (all emphasis mine).
Who are the “well-regulated militia”? The answer is in the text of the Amendment (the people), but let’s reference a few pertinent quotes in order to establish it firmly:
"I ask, who are the militia? They consist now of the whole people, except a few public officers."
-- George Mason, Address to the Virginia Ratifying Convention, 1788
“A militia when properly formed are in fact the people themselves…and include, according to the past and general usage of the states, all men capable of bearing arms.” -- Richard Henry Lee, Federal Farmer No. 18
"The Constitution of most of our states (and of the United States) assert that all power is inherent in the people; that they may exercise it by themselves; that it is their right and duty to be at all times armed."
-- Thomas Jefferson, letter to to John Cartwright
What was their intent when penning this amendment? Again, the answer is found in the text: They wished to keep the nation in a constant state of freedom, and the keeping and bearing of arms by the people was deemed a necessity in maintaining such a state.
"The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed. A well-regulated militia, composed of the body of the people, trained to arms, is the best and most natural defense of a free country."
-- James Madison, I Annals of Congress 434
To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms, and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them."
- Richard Henry Lee ,Federal Farmer No. 18
What type of arms is the text referring to? Let’s answer that question with another, seemingly disconnected, question: Does the phrase “the people” mentioned in the Bill of Rights mean any and all American people? Yes. Does it mean “the people” living in those historical days? Yes. Does it mean “the people” who were yet to be born, and/or “the people” who would be alive at any time throughout the entirety of America’s then-present and future existence? Yes, of course it does, and it would be silly to think otherwise. So, how can anyone reasonably suppose that the word “arms” only applied to the arms of that time period, and not also the arms in use at any time throughout the entirety of America’s existence?
Some of the most laughable assumptions regarding this interpretation come from those who see government as the grantor and dispenser of our rights, and/or those who presume to know what the founders really intended, basing their assertions on wild, fact-less suppositions of what our founders knew or didn’t know, or what they "could not possibly have foreseen" as far as advancements in technology and lethality. The allegation that “arms” referred only to muzzle-loading, single-shot long guns and hand guns, and that anything more deadly that that was somehow frowned upon or inconceivable, is ludicrous.
There were, in fact, several guns on the market at the time the amendment was written that defy such claims. One was the Girandoni Air Rifle, pictured left, which was invented in 1779 (twelve years prior to the adoption of the Bill of Rights/2nd Amendment), and was a repeating arm that held (WARNING TO PRO-INFRINGEMENT PEOPLE: The rest of this sentence may cause apoplexia and migraines!) up to THIRTY ROUNDS in a round vertical hopper (Gasp! A high-capacity drum magazine!!), was powered by compressed air supplied from a reservoir in the butt via intricate valves, fired a .46 or .51 caliber bullet at 500 feet-per-second, and was actually carried by none other than Lewis and Clark on their famous expedition.
The Native Americans who found themselves on the receiving end of the Girandoni were terrified of it, because it gave off no smoke signature and no tell-tale boom usually associated with black powder firearms, and could send multiple rounds in their direction rapidly.
Another multi-shot firearm that appeared long before the Bill of Rights was scripted was the Puckle Gun. Patented in 1718 (seventy-three years prior to the 2nd Amendment), a single-barreled flintlock weapon fitted with a revolving cylinder capable of holding anywhere from six to eleven shots. It fired square bullets (yes, square bullets, because they reckoned such would cause more damage), and was used primarily as a deck gun on ships. An early advertisement for the Puckle (also called the Defence gun) is pictured right.
One last example (though there are others we could discuss) of 17th Century technology is the Kalthoff Repeating Rifle, pictured atop the Puckle ad, capable of holding from 7 to 30 shots (depending on model), which was invented in the early 1600s, and reportedly used in warfare during the Siege of Copenhagen (1659) and the Scanian War (1675-1679) between Denmark and Sweden.That's 132 and 116 years, respectively, before the Second Amendment was ratified in 1791!
Thus, the spurious claim that our founders couldn’t possibly have foreseen high-capacity, multi-shot firearms is implausible, due to the fact that such technology was already in existence!
The simplest answer as to what types of arms the founders envisioned the people keeping and bearing, however, comes directly from the pages of Noah Webster’s 1828 Dictionary of the English Language:
ARMS, noun plural [Latin arma.] 1.Weapons of offense, or armor for defense and protection of the body. 2.War; hostility. To be in arms is to be in a state of hostility, or in a military life.
To arms is a phrase which denotes a taking arms for war or hostility; particularly, a summoning to war. To take arms is to arm for attack or defense. Bred to arms denotes that a person has been educated to the profession of a soldier.
Yes, arms for WAR, was their definitive intention for the lawful, responsible American citizenry. And why would they want the citizenry to be as well-armed as the govern- ment/military/police with arms for war? Again, for the security of a free state, as seen in the following quotes:
"What country can preserve its liberties if their rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance? Let them take arms."
- Thomas Jefferson, letter to James Madison, December 20, 1787
"Besides the advantage of being armed, which the Americans possess over the people of almost every other nation, the existence of subordinate governments, to which the people are attached, and by which the militia officers are appointed, forms a barrier against the enterprises of ambition, more insurmountable than any which a simple government of any form can admit of." -- James Madison, Federalist No. 46, January 29, 1788
The right of the citizens to keep and bear arms has justly been considered, as the palladium (“something that affords effectual defense, protection and safety," Noah Webster) of the liberties of a republic; since it offers a strong moral check against the usurpation and arbitrary power of rulers; and will generally, even if these are successful in the first instance, enable the people to resist and triumph over them."
- Joseph Story,Commentaries on the Constitution of the United States, 1833
"What, Sir, is the use of a militia? It is to prevent the establishment of a standing army, the bane of liberty .... Whenever Governments mean to invade the rights and liberties of the people, they always attempt to destroy the militia, in order to raise an army upon their ruins." -- Rep. Elbridge Gerry of Massachusetts,I Annals of Congress 750
"[I]f circumstances should at any time oblige the government to form an army of any magnitude, that army can never be formidable to the liberties of the people while there is a large body of citizens, little, if at all, inferior to them in discipline and the use of arms, who stand ready to defend their own rights and those of their fellow-citizens. This appears to me the only substitute that can be devised for a standing army, and the best possible security against it, if it should exist." -- Alexander Hamilton, Federalist No. 28
"As civil rulers, not having their duty to the people before them, may attempt to tyrannize, and as the military forces which must be occasionally raised to defend our country, might pervert their power to the injury of their fellow citizens, the people are confirmed by the article in their right to keep and bear their private arms." -- Tench Coxe,Philadelphia Federal Gazette
What is infringement? Again, let’s ask Mr. Webster:
INFRINGE, verb transitive infrinj'. [Latin infringo; in and frango, to break.]
1.To break, as contracts; to violate, either positively by contravention, or negatively by non-fulfillment or neglect of performance. A prince or a private person infringes an agreement or covenant by neglecting to perform its conditions, as well as by doing what is stipulated not to be done. 2.To break; to violate; to transgress; to neglect to fulfill or obey; as, toinfringea law. 3.To destroy or hinder; as, to infringe efficacy.
In light of this definition, are we able to allege the charge of infringement against the federal government today? Does the federal government, and many state governments, break, violate, transgress, neglect, or hinder the free exercise of the right to keep and bear arms? The emphatic answer is a resounding “ABSOLUTELY!!!”
From the Gun Control Act of 1934 to the 20,000+ gun control laws on the books across the nation in various states today, each and every last one of them is an act of infringement, something expressly FORBIDDEN according to the 2nd Amendment in our Supreme Law of the Land!!
When we’re told through force of law and consequences that we’re not allowed to own the same arms the government owns, that’s infringement.
When we’re told through force of law and consequences that we cannot own fully-automatic weapons just as freely as we own revolvers and single-shot rifles, that’s infringement.
When we’re told through force of law and consequences that the barrels of our rifles must exceed 16 inches, and the barrels of our shotguns must exceed 18 inches, that's infringement.
When we’re forced to lease our right to keep and/or bear arms from the government in the form of a permit, fee, or license, that’s infringement.
When we’re told through force of law and consequences that we cannot carry a concealed firearm without first gaining permission from and paying a fee to the state, that’s infringement.
When we’re told through force of law and consequences that we cannot carry firearms openly on our person, that’s infringement.
In short, any law that forbids in any way the keeping and bearing of military arms by the lawful, responsible citizens of the United States is infringement, and a direct violation of the 2ndAmendment.
You may ask“Aw c’mon, Royce, why would we ever need to own machine guns, mortars, RPG’s, AT-4 rockets, tanks and other such weapons?” To which I will answer“In case our government ever becomes despotic and decides they have the right to use such weapons against us”.
'It Couldn't Happen Here?'
Now, before you presume that such a thing could never happen here, it already has. The federal government has used military force against civilians on multiple occasions: Wounded Knee, Waco, Ruby Ridge, not to mention in 1932 when President Hoover used troops and tanks against thousands of WWI veterans who had gathered in Washington DC to demand the bonuses they were promised, but never received (didn’t know about that? Google it!). Or, maybe you missed the videos coming out of Venezuela that showed government troops in armored personnel carriers running over unarmed citizens in the streets, and shooting them down indiscriminately. Think that can’t happen here? I tell you with absolute conviction that our government would do the same thing without hesitation if they thought they could get away with it.
Our well-studied, forward-thinking founders knew exactly what the biggest threat(s) to our liberty would be, and always has been, and it isn’t foreign invaders. It is a tyrannical government that begins to do what so many governments have done throughout history: violate, break, transgress, and hinder the free exercise of the God-given rights of the people, especially the right to keep and bear arms.
In closing, let me remind you, dear reader, that it is not only your right, but your duty to keep and bear arms, and to be well-regulated in their use. You, as an American citizen, are one of the many millions who stand as a bulwark against tyranny, and ensure that this nation remains in a free state. God bless America.
The Pro Shop at The American Police Hall of Fame has been holding a gun raffle in order to make room for changes and growth. Only 50 tickets are sold at a time, and our first winner was the gentleman pictured at left, Antonio Stovall.
He was able to select any gun in the shop, and he picked a Sig Sauer P320 X5 Legion. "Best $20 I ever spent," he beamed as he showed off his new gun.
For the next drawing, Christopher Carter was our winner and selected a Glock 17, Gen 5. A third raffle is now taking place. Stop into the Pro Shop or the Range for your $20 ticket today. Only 50 tickets will be sold. Drawing will take place when the tickets are sold.
Raffle Winners Are
Loving Their Prizes
You CAN Carry Concealed In Puerto Rico
By Kenny Rivera
Puerto Rico has had some of the most restrictive firearms laws in the United States, even more restrictive than California or New York. But a new law has rewritten Puerto Rico’s firearms statute, allowing the public to carry concealed.
Before we get into the legal details, let’s discuss how this change came about.
A class-action lawsuit brought in a Puerto Rican Commonwealth court was started by the Ladies of the Second Admendment (LSA). The class-action lawsuit which involved more than 850 individual plaintiffs challenged various articles in Puerto Rico’s gun law, which the court declared unconstitutional. However, the ruling was eventually overturned after an appeal. Puerto Rico’s Supreme Court refused to hear the case, leaving the appellate court’s ruling in place. But in the time between the court's unconstitutional ruling and the appellate court overturning that ruling, the Puerto Rican people were able to carry constitutionally -- and they liked the taste of freedom.
Puerto Ricans from all over the island applied en masse for firearms ownership permits, which resulted in an estimated 60-70% increase in applications, albeit via a process that was burdensome and costly for the average citizen. So the people decided to remedy the situation once and for all, taking their fight to the legislative branch of the Puerto Rican government to push for reform.
Senator Nelson Cruz Santiago sponsored a bill in 2018 that then- Governor of Puerto Rico, Ricardo Rosselló opposed. But, Justice Secretary, Wanda Vázquez Garced supported the bill and, when Rosselló was forced to resign following a telegram scandal, Garced became became the second female governor in Puerto Rican history and was able to push forward with her reform initiatives including Senate Bill 1050 which was passed by the Puerto Rican Legislative Assembly and signed into law as Act No. 168 of December 11, 2019.
Known as the “Weapons Act of Puerto Rico of 2020”, the law went into effect January 1, 2020. Lawmakers say the law looks for a balance between a person’s constitutional right to own and bear arms and the right of the state to regulate it. It repealed Law 404-2000, known as the “Weapons Act of Puerto Rico.”
What does this mean to people living on the island?
Puerto Rico will be a “shall-issue” territory of the United States. There are documentation requirements and, other than the financial cost of $200 (which is non-refundable), requirements include: fingerprints and a passport-sized photo. Puerto Rican Citizens will be issued a permit if they:
are 21 years or older,
have a negative criminal record and have not been found guilty of, or accused of and pending, for, or in the process of trial for, some of the crimes listed in article 2.09 of the law or its equivalents, both in Puerto Rico or any United States jurisdiction, at the federal level or in any foreign country,
are not addicted to controlled substances or habitually drunk,
have not been declared mentally incapable by a court with jurisdiction,
have not been separated from the United States Armed Forces or from the Bureau of the Puerto Rico Police under dishonorable conditions,
have not incurred, or belonged to organizations that incur, acts of violence or are aimed at the overthrow of the constituted government,
are not under a current court order, or have been at any time during the past twelve months prior to the application date, which prohibits you from harassing, spying, threatening or approaching an intimate partner, a relative of this, or any person,
are a citizen or legal resident of the United States of America,
are not be a person prevented by the "Federal Gun Control Act of 1968" from receiving, transporting or shipping firearms or ammunition."
The Commonwealth of Puerto Rico must issue a permit within 30 days of application.
What does this mean to us?
As Puerto Rico recognizes the Second Amendment, all responsibly armed citizens who have a carry permit issued in the United States or territories of the United States will be recognized by the commonwealth government. Puerto Rico has universal reciprocity with all 50 states.
Gun possession in Puerto Rico without a license may result in prison time, however; and, if you have your Concealed Weapons Permit/License you may carry ONE loaded firearm. Additional firearms must be unloaded.
Under the new law, “assault weapons” are banned, except for those law-abiding gun owners with permits. As a U.S. Territory, with these new laws, Puerto Rico becomes more attractive and will be able to compete as a tropical vacation destination. Law-abiding gun owners seeking beautiful beaches and fun in the sun can head to Puerto Rico, just a few hours south of the CONUS.
Traveling to Puerto Rico by Plane?
According to Federal regulations, anyone carrying a firearm must declare the firearm upon check-in, complete a Declaration of Armed Individual, and ask for further instructions. It is always advisable to contact your airline in advance in order to find out their individual requirements.
Make sure your firearm is unloaded and locked in a hard-sided container: I use a Vaultek Lifepod Series (https://vaulteksafe.com/store/index.php?route=product/category&path=17). It can only be transported as checked baggage. So make sure you leave room (and weight) for it within your luggage. Only the passenger should retain the key or combination to the lock. I recommend not using a TSA lock! Parts such as magazines, bolts and firing pins are prohibited in carry-on baggage but may be transported in checked baggage.
Ammunition is also prohibited in carry-on baggage but may be transported in checked baggage. The ammunition being transported may not exceed 11 pounds (but check with your airlines) and must be in its original packaging or stored securely in a container made for that purpose.
Airports in Puerto Rico will have the following posted in Spanish and English:
Every person not authorized to have firearms under Puerto Rico laws, and who does not hold a valid weapons permit issued in any State, enclave, possession or territory of the United States of America, who brings a firearm with him/her or in his/her luggage, must give immediate notice to the Ports Authority Security Office and an officer of the Police Bureau of Puerto Rico upon arrival. Noncompliance with this notice may carry prison penalties. The Ports Authority Security Office and/or an Authorized Agent will inform you on how to proceed with your weapon.
Of course, not everything is perfect; there will be police scrutiny upon the purchase of more than 20,000 rounds of ammunition or 20 guns within one year. But, I can accept that since I am only traveling there for vacation and do not intend to do either. The Firearms Licensing Division of the Puerto Rican Police Department can be reached at (787) 793-1234 for questions.
Now anyone can be a sponsor and help support freedom!
Getting Tired of COVID-19 Isolation?
'Shooting Straight' Has Patron Page
We are all feeling the effects of this strange new normal that finds us separated from each other and from our favorite activities. The Museum at the American Police Hall of Fame is closed until April 4 and our 2020 Memorial activities have been canceled out of an abundance of caution (many of our attendees are older and we want to be sure we protect our law enforcement families.) A private service will still take place in May.
The range remains open for now and we are utilizing wipes, cleaning agents, and social distancing on the shooting line to keep things as germ-free as possible. Please be patient if you experience a wait. If you plan to rent a gun, we recommend that you bring wipes or hand sanitizer to use once you are finished. And, as always, washing your hands after shooting (with soap and cold water -- so the lead can't leech into your pores) is recommended. Some of our March classes were canceled but we are hopeful that April may allow us to resume a semi-normal schedule. Classes remain on the calendar and we urge you to go ahead and sign up now.
For those new to firearms, please check out everything we offer at www.NACOPSTEP.org. This web site tells you about our instructors, the classes we offer, and it has a calendar of upcoming training and practice sessions. Just click on the class that interests you and a registration box will pop up. Until this crisis is past, it is advisable to call ahead to see if a particular session is still taking place.
You can reach us at 321-264-0911. Be well!
Shooting Straight radio host Royce Bartlett has announced the creation of a sponsorship page at Patreon.com for those who would are interested in sponsoring a real -- and growing -- radio show (but can't afford an arm and a leg to do so!)
Shooting Straight Radio Show is a weekly program dedicated to firearms, the 2nd Amendment, and everything pertaining thereto. It airs live worldwide every Saturday from 2-4 p.m. Eastern Time on WMMB and iHeartRADIO (92.7 FM, or 1240 and 1350 AM in Brevard County, Florida), and can be viewed live on video on the WMMB and Shooting Straight Radio Show Facebook pages. The show has gained an international following and this recent move to Patreon.com is one more way for Bartlett to further grow the show and its content, and to engage with his listeners in the process.
"Sponsorships start at just $5 per month," Bartlett explained, "and I would be honored to have my listeners play a sponsoring role in the program. Benefits of sponsorship vary based on which tier you choose. I would just be happy to have anyone on board at whatever level. It all helps me keep the show on the air and reach new listeners and freedom-loving Americans."
To view the various levels, visit www.patreon.com, and type "Shooting Straight Radio Show" into the search bar that reads "Find a creator"; or just click HERE.
"The fight for the Second Amendment is real and it is important that we all support each other," said Tara Engel, VP of Training for the National Association of Chiefs of Police. "I signed up as soon as Royce made it available. He has always been a great supporter of our training facility, and vice versa, but this is something I can do as an individual to make a difference. It's like striking a blow for freedom and supporting my favorite radio personality all at once!"
Bartlett noted that, "It's great to have so many folks jumping on board! Thank you all for your support of the fastest-growing 2nd Amendment radio program in America. I am also humbled and grateful for your prayers for me, Royce Bartlett, your benevolent host, known to reek of gunshot residue and toxic masculinity, with just a faint whiff of my favorite essential oil, Hoppe's #9. I hope to soon be 50% listener-supported by fine Americans like you!"
God bless, keep your powder dry, and don't forget that incoming rounds have the right-of-way!
Home on the Range is published bi-monthly by The Shooting Center and Pro Shop at The American Police Hall of Fame & Museum, 6350 Horizon Drive, Titusville, FL 32780. On alternating months, we produce a "News Flash" version, featuring condensed stories and teasers for the next edition.
The publication is exclusively digitally delivered to over 20,000 readers each month, and there is no cost for a subscription. To receive a monthly copy, please email Tarae@aphf.org.
Brent Shepherd.....................Executive Editor
Tara Dixon Engel................ Managing Editor
Paul Pawela Royce Bartlett
Eric Roessler Brian Smith
Bob Fowler John Falldorf
Michael Lazarus Gretchen Laiuppa
Kenny Rivera Ken Corley
Note: To have an article considered for publication, please submit to Tarae@aphf.org. Content will be edited for space and editorial considerations. Photos are encouraged.
By Paul Pawela
Cogito, Ergo Armatum Sum – (I think, therefore I am Armed!)
Recently, I was on the Shooting Straight Radio Show with nationally known host Royce Bartlett and famed gun writer, Andre Dall'au discussing new products we had seen at the 2020 SHOT show. Royce asked both of us about our choice for everyday defensive carry. My initial response to the listening audience was really not nice, but was appropriate, as I replied, “It's none of their business”.
At the time I was not trying to be funny because God warns in the Bible of exposing our treasures for others to see because, for a variety of reasons, it is a really bad idea. Reluctantly, I did talk about what I carry but did not take that oppotunity to go into more detail. Since then, I decided it is reasonable to discuss such things and share my preference with those who might be interesed.
In a lot of magazines, EDCC is confined to weapons, ammo, and accessories. But I put on much more than that each day, and I'd like to explain why.
To start my day, the very first thing I put on for my EDCC, is my necklace with my cross,. Why? Ephesians 6:10-18: “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might, put on the wholearmor of God, that you may be able to stand against theschemes of the devil.”
I am not preaching here, but every good man I ever ran into who was soundly battle-tested had a strong faith in Jesus Christ, be he a solider or a law enforcement officer. The best I ever knew was my own father, a seasoned World War II Combat vet who also had four combat parachute jumps. I asked him how he made it out of the war alive? His answer was simple: "Jesus Christ" was all he said. Since my dad was the only man I ever knew who never lied to me, I cling dearly to his advice and in this life-and-death struggle where we face down evil regularly, I wear my cross for strength and reinforcement. I truly believe that spiritual preparedness is just as crticial as arming yourself in the physical realm.
Once you have your spiritual house in order, let's take a look at how you dress for a self defense encounter. As a concealed carrier, you could face a serious physical encounter. I recommend5.11® brand tactical pants, which are up to the challenge of almost any encounter and are what many law enforcement officers depend on. I used to wear their cargo pants religiously and often still do, as they are most comfortable and have lots of pockets for holding flashlights, knives, pistol and rifle magazines, phones and pretty much anything you might carry. Once again, the importance of the pants being comfortable cannot be stated enough. As of late, I have been wearing 5.11® jeans which come in a variety of great colors, and are a discreet tactical pant that does not scream "tactical". I wear them pretty much daily as the 5.11 jeans have a lot of “hidden” pockets for EDCC carry.
Leather Belt A Must
One of the most important items of your EDCC is the belt you wear. I will state emphatically that I hate nylon rigger belts or anything similar to them. Why do I hate nylon belts? First, they scream tactical and, yes, bad guys know what good guys are wearing. Second, they are just plain ugly. For good looks and sturdiness, the best way to go is a good leather belt. The ones I use either come from Andrews Leather or Crossbreed leather. I have been using Sam Andrews's products for over 39 years. Yes, Sam is a dear friend but also one of the greatest custom leather holster makers in the industry. Sam did all the custom leather for MGM's remake of the Magnificent Seven.
I also appreciate the family of Crossbreed® holsters and own a ton of their products. Both Crossbreed and Sam Andrews are hard to beat for inside-the-waist carry. Recently, Crossbreed® came out with an outstanding line of leather belts. My favorite is their "classic gun belt" which runs about $47.60 and is both attractive and sturdy, in addition to serving well as my "Batman belt" and carrying all my defensive goodies around all day long.
The much-used phrase of "Everyday Carry" (EDC) should be retitled EDCC for "Everyday Concealed Carry" because, at the end of the day, if we are civilians and licensed to carry in the state of Florida, we are carrying our firearms CONCEALED! Again, the operative word is concealed! The idea is that no one knows you have weapons on your person.
When I am usually wearing my Assault Counter Tactics t-shirt (yes, I self-promote; so what?) I generally have on an outer garment shirt. For a while, I was using the tactical outer garment shirts from 5.11® or some other variant, but they got too expensive, so now I visit my local sporting goods store (Academy Sports) and get Magellan outer garment shirts for half the price -- and, yes, my fiancee Linda picks the colors so I am stylish and color-coordinated when going out in public.
Don't Take Footwear for Granted
One of the most important items people take for granted in their EDCC attire is footwear. A great piece of advice I learned at a bodyguard school I attended was to spend money on custom shoes because you’re on your feet for 12 to 15 hours a day. So you might as well be comfortable. Good shoes cost $300 or more; one may say that it's outrageous to spend that kind of money on shoes, but, as the bodyguard instructor said, you will spend more money on a gun which you'll probably never use on the job, but the shoes will be used and abused every single day. Makes perfect sense.
Now, I am not saying you MUST spent $300 on your shoes, but ask yourself: do your shoes protect your feet? Are they comfortable to wear? Can you move in them (and move quickly if needed)? In the EDCC world, two names prevailin the tactical footware category amongst tactical “cool guys": Salomon and Merrell. I admit to owning a pair of Merrell’s and they have held up very nicely; unfortunately, I had to put my firstborn up for collateral to buy them. Recently, for EDCC shoes, I use either Asics or Skechers, which are half the cost of Salomon or Merrell shoes and work just as well or better. Both Asics and Skechers come with gelled foam padding inside the shoes for comfort. Once again, that is a key ingredient in the EDCC world. Don’t be like John McClane in Die Hard and get into an all-night running gun battle with terrorists, sans shoes!
On to the most important items of EDCC! The greatest Japanese swordsman, Miyamoto Musashi , author of The Book of Five Rings said this, "From inside fortification, the gun has no equal."
From here on out, the key number for EDCC is two: I generally carry two guns and two knives every day. The rationale is simple: I study those who historically dressed for danger and one of my all-time favorites was none other than James Butler Hickok, aka "Wild Bill". Hickok, pictured left, was in more than a dozen lethal force encounters. In the photo, you can see him carrying his two Colt Navy 1851 model .36 caliber pistols and his favorite bowie knife. Hickok was also known to carry two double-barreled, over-and-under .41 caliber derringers in his waistcoat, as well as a backup knife in his boot. Tales of Hickok’s gunfights are legendary, but, for the purpose of this article, I needs to point out that Hickok twice used his Bowie knife, resulting in lethal kills: once in a bar fight and once against a Grizzly Bear (yes you read that right, a Grizzly Bear!).
In many of Hickok’s gunfights he was pitted against multiple assailants: in one fight against four aggressors, Hickok and one of the four shooters exchanged gunfire simultaneously, killing the bad guy with a headshot but severely wounding Hickok, with one round hitting his shoulder, making his right hand useless and forcing him to draw from his left side. He proceeded to kill the other two assailants and mortally wound the final one, all while using his "weak"/support" left hand.
Learning From 'Wild Bill'
Lessons learned: the two guns I carry on my person are either the Glock 17 (for possible long shots if need be) and the Glock 26, both 9mm. My G17 magazines will fit in my G26 as well.
My carry ammo is either Hornady’s Critical Defense, Federal Premium or Speer Gold Dot in either 115 grain or 124 grain, with the last two rounds in my magazine loaded to +P so that I will know when I am close to being out of ammunition. I have tons of different holsters but, generally, I carry my Glocks in a Phalanx Stealth Operator holster and have had excellent results with this model.
If I am not carrying the G26, I carry a Ruger LCR .38 revolver back-up with Corbon +P ammo which offers near .357 magnum performance. I carry the revolver in my pants pocket so I can shoot right through the pocket, if need be, and, if I find myself in an up-close encounter, the snub nose can make contact shots which result in a devastating wound.
I also carry two knives on my person at all times. The first one is a fixed blade R.E.D. V2 by Bastinelli Creations, a lightweight Bowie type knife, with an overall length 8.6 inches and a 4-inch blade carried in a vertical Kydex holster that I can deploy with either hand. The other knife I carry is Benchmade's® Osborne axis lock knife which is one of the strongest locking knives with a very fast opening. I am currently eyeing Bastinelli’s Dragotac Slim Friction line as a folder, as well.
To finalize my EDCC carry I carry a slim Stream-Light® flashlight and a
handkerchief with a D-Ring for a tourniquet.
At the end of the day the four principals of survival are: Mental preparedness, tactics , skill with both knife and gun, and, lastly, selection of the optimum firearm and ammunition!
Stay safe and always carry!
What's In Your Closet?
ShootingClasses.com was launched over a year ago, the brainchild of a high-powered group of trainers and shooting professionals that included Dave "Boon" Benton, Kris "Tanto" Paronto, Israel Matos, Bill Orndorf, and Bruce Corey.
With a year of operations under their belt, the founders of the innovative web service have re-examined the functionality of the site, taking into account input from their web developers and from those who use the site regularly.
The result, according to Bruce Corey, is a revamped site that enhances the student experience, as well as changes that will make the site more impactful for instructors and now, for the first time, shooting ranges.
"We involved our web developer and came up with a completely new look to what students see and how they navigate the instructor’s Landing Page and Courses Pages," he explained. "The process is now a simple tab-based functionality with only one click to go to information that provides details about available courses, the instructor’s background, certifications and policies."
He added that course information can be selected by course name, type of course, next available date and other desired criteria with one click. Additionally, all courses offered are included even if a class has not been scheduled with the option to message the instructor to find out about a class schedule.
New Landing Page Example:
New Courses Page Example:
Corey noted that clicking on a given course shows all dates available, course description details and requirements as well as location, time, instructor name, class size and available spaces and link to registration form.
"If any instructors haven’t taken a recent look at how students see you in shootingclasses.com, then please go on the site and take a look. I think you’ll be impressed," he said. "Anyone else who is considering finding a class can go to ShootingClasses.com and see just how easy it is."
"We are going to start doing webinars for interested Instructors and Ranges that will outline how ShootingClasses works and answer any lingering questions. Anyone interested can go to ShootingClasses.com, click on 'Contact US' and send us a message that you are interested in either webinar," Corey explained. "We will get back to you to get you scheduled into one of the webinars."
Talk About Students Features
Corey added that the service wants to give students more than just a means of finding and registering for a class.
"Students now have their own Landing Page with what we call a Vanity URL so they can share their experience with friends on social media, where they decide what they want to be visible," he noted. "Students can also select Training Goals to see recommended milestones needed to achieve a goal. If students let us know a specific goal, we will put together recommended milestones to help achieve that goal."
'Shootingclasses.com' Continues to Focus on Quality, Service
Are you really protected if you are NOT protected legally?
You can join the USCCA for as little as $22 per month.
But did you know that you can join USCCA at The Shooting Center or The American Police Hall of Fame and a portion of your fee will be donated back to support the amazing non-profit programs here?
Just ask next time you are on site or text the word 'POLICE' to 87222.
Support a GREAT cause, protect yourself and maybe win $1,000!
NACOP-endorsed instructor Kenny Rivera will be presenting an OC (pepper) spray training class on April 11 from noon until 2:30.
The class will teach proper techniques for using the spray defensively and will give students their own spray canister.
Students will only use inert spray for training exercises. The cost of the class is $75. You can register at NACOPSTEP.org or by searching "Kenny Rivera" at shootingclasses.com.
To find out about classes, email the instructor at email@example.com
If you're taking classes in Brevard County, go to: www.NACOPSTEP.org for the BEST Firearms & Defensive trainers and training in Florida!