Noir: Episode 7 in Review

This week’s episode of Noir was titled “Our Responsibility”. The seventh entry in the NRA’s new web series, this week’s show set out to clarify what it means to be a responsible gun owner. This episode also happened to be the longest so far. Let’s take a look at the content.

Gear Check kicked off this week’s show with Colion discussing the importance of responsible carry and how carrying a firearm can indeed be a major burden. To support this point, Amy shared that she does not carry and had not considered doing so until relatively recently. Her primary reasoning was that she saw it as a heavy burden when compared to the likelihood that a situation would arise where the handgun would need to be used. In discussing some of the criticism of concealed carry, both touched on the idea that self defense, especially lethal methods, has recently come under attack in some circles. While it seems absurd when addressed directly, there is some merit to the claim. Based on my experience, there are several people that are not comfortable accepting such responsibility. As I see it, that is fine, but these individuals should take care not to insult those who have accepted such responsibility and its associated consequences. For some of us, having a means to end those 1% situations that turn out truly bad is a minor inconvenience compared to the alternative.

At the range this week, LaSorte set up a course of steel targets that resembled the MP5 shoot. Joining the group for the segment was Colion’s friend from undergrad, Antanique. A self-described “flower child”, Antanique unfortunately had a bad experience a few months ago at an indoor range when someone unwisely started her on 9mm and .45 ACP handguns. LaSorte smartly emphasized that new shooters should always be introduced on .22 LR rifles and handguns. This is a philosophy I absolutely subscribe to and I was glad to see it pointed out. In keeping with this theme, group broke into the usual groups of two and worked through the course, against the timer, with a Smith & Wesson M&P15-22.

After shooting with LaSorte, Colion visited Trident Response for Simunitions training. For those who are unfamiliar with Simunitions, think paintball on steroids. The rounds are fired from real firearm frames/receivers that have been adapted with special barrels, slides/bolts, and of course, ammo. The ammunition is similar to lipstick in density and travels fast enough to leave a major welt. As part of the session, Clint Bruce of Trident Response attempted to create a number of home invasion scenarios for Colion to work through. Of those shown, Colion only succeeded in one situation. That said, the final two were very complex and he was at a major disadvantage. This was my first time seeing such well executed training scenarios and the force-on-force aspect of Simunitions brought the whole segment to a level of intensity that cannot be matched at the traditional range. This was one of the most interesting segments of the season thus far.

Once Colion had been sufficiently bruised, Clint joined him and Amy in the studio. In debriefing the experience, Clint pointed out that the whole point of the training is to reduce the “time to ready”.  Since we cannot always be in a ready state, he argued that it is important to be able to rapidly respond to bad situations. While there is a certain value in shooting at the range, he also pointed out that Colion did not use the sights on the Simunitions Glock he was shooting during the scenario and only proper training can prepare someone for this.

The final segment of the show was Colion’s much anticipated “People Who Carry .40”. In keeping with the theme of the 9mm and .45 ACP entries to the series, Colion took the sarcasm and cheese to the next level, perhaps too much so. While the “People Who Carry” series was never my favorite, even during Colion’s YouTube days, I get that these shorts have a following. I should also point out that despite the silliness, I did agree whole heartedly with part of what Colion was saying. The .40 S&W is not a pleasant round to shoot. Having just last week fired a Glock 19 alongside the similarly proportioned Glock 23, I found the 19 was far more pleasant to shoot. The 23 literally did seem as though it was beating me to death in comparison.

As a whole, this might have been the best episode to date for the young series. From the opening discussion all the way through the conversation with Clint Bruce, the episode was made up of some really high quality segments. While I did not love “People Who Carry .40”, many of Colion’s supporters were clamoring for it and it was similar to previous 9mm and .45 ACP versions. Overall, the show has reached a point where I look forward to an engaging show each week.

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