Before I begin, let me say this: Firearms are dangerous. Their single purpose is to kill. But, they are the single most important aspect of life if their is no one to depend on but yourself. Without law, and no '911' to call and come to your rescue, many people will become vagrants, and would kill you over a can of soup. To be able to protect ones self and loved ones, you need to have firearms to hunt with, and defend your way of life.
Along with having my Bug Out Bag, I also have my Bug Out Vest, and my Bug Out Tote. My Bug Out Vest holds all of my magazines for my firearms, radio, flashlight, and knife. I would only carry my vest if it is truly a dire circumstance and I would be required to defend myself, my belongings, and the people I love. I have UTG Tactical Vest, which has a pouch in the back for my Camelbak 100oz Water Hydration System (A plastic water bladder with drinking tube). It holds 8 magazines for my rifle, 4 magazines for my sidearm, and has a holster for my sidearm.
In the case that you'd be 'Bugging Out' in a vehicle, you want to have a Bug Out Tote. I use an old Army duffel bag, filled with equipment to let me live semi-comfortably anywhere. Along with food, ammo, clothes, etc. It is quite heavy, so if I have to go on foot, and must carry a firearm, I would not take my tote (See my Tier system in my last post).
In my last post I went over how to make a good Bug Out Bag. But, while I very much hope they do not, if things get very bad, such as economic inflation cripples the value of the dollar and the average person can not even afford to buy food to put on the table, things could get very ugly, very fast. The neighbors that you thought were your friends, that know you have all of this delicious food stored for rough times, may very well come knocking on your door.. or hold you up at gun-point for it. If it came to providing food for your family so they would not starve to death, wouldn't you do anything you had to? But what would worry me most in that situation are the people that have been living off of the government for money, the prison inmates (what would they do with all of the inmates that they can no longer feed? they would release them.), they would form roaming looting gangs that go from house to house or town to town taking what supplies .. and anything .. that they would want. So you need to be prepared for that circumstance. You do not need to go Rambo here.. but having something to defend yourself, and your family is very important. What use is having all of this equipment and food if someone can easily take it from you? There will be millions of starving desperate people. As proven in history, the strong always take from the weak. If such a thing did happen, since you are prepared, give out as much charity as possible. Help those in need. If you help sustain your neighbors, they will also hopefully help to protect you, should someone come to steal your food and gear. Strength in numbers!
I believe that you need at least one good firearm from each of the three groups. A good rifle, a good sidearm, and a good shotgun. What brands, models, and calibers you choose depends on you. I will detail what I have chosen for my armaments and why, so you can make an educated decision on your own.
Rifle: There are thousands of choices of good rifles to choose from, but for my primary rifle I went with a Smith & Wesson Military & Police 15. It is a 5.56 caliber AR-15 Assault Rifle clone. It is amazingly accurate and reliable, along with having very minor recoil. It also can hold a 30 round magazine. While good for self defense, this caliber with a mounted optic can be used to hunt large game as well. Make sure the caliber firearm you choose has a common size caliber so you can find ammo for it should you run out, and in my opinion it should not be bolt action. A bolt action rifle fires too slow, and statistics say that 80% of the time in a combat situation a person will miss their first shot, regardless of the distance. Human nature causes us to not want to kill another human being, regardless of the circumstance, so we subconsciously make ourselves miss that first shot hoping the attacker will retreat; and not make you use deadly force.
While speaking on rifles, I must also mention the Ruger 10/22. The .22 caliber is the smallest rifle caliber in production, it has virtually no recoil, it is very quiet, and the Ruger is amazing. Even without general maintence a Ruger 10/22 can fire for years and years without any issues, without ever being cleaned or serviced. The benefits of having a .22 caliber rifle are numerous, it is a very quiet rifle, so you can hunt small game without letting people for miles around know there is someone there. You can also buy 1,000 rounds for it for less than $50. The Ruger 10/22 itself can be purchased for a meager $300. I believe this firearm should be in every person's kit.
Sidearm: A sidearm is a very important item. In the case of shit hitting the fan, you should carry one in a holster on your person at all times.In the possibility that your rifle runs empty, jams, or you cannot get to it in time, having a pistol with you is a must. Getting a CCW (Concealed Carry Weapon Permit) in your state is highly recommended, since it costs very little more than just getting a pistol permit, and it comes with it. That way you can never get in trouble for transporting or having your sidearm. You need only take a one day class and send in some money and paperwork to get this done (check with your state and local laws on a CCW). For a sidearm I personally carry a Smith & Wesson Military & Police .40 caliber. But when it comes to choosing a sidearm, it yet again all depends on how it fits you. Go to the range and fire some of their rental pistols, you'll know the right one when you find it. Some common misconceptions with pistols: The smaller the pistol, the less the recoil. WRONG! The less the pistol weighs, the larger the recoil. So if you are worried about recoil, get a bigger pistol! And please, do NOT get a 'snub nose' (very short barrel) revolver. They are horribly inaccurate, you cannot hit anything with one unless they are under 10 feet away! Other than that, get a common caliber (9mm is the most common handgun caliber) in whatever feels best to you.
A pistol is only good enough to get you to your rifle.
Shotgun: A shotgun is the most simple firearm out there. And the sound of a pump action shotgun being loaded is the second most recognizable sound in the world (second only to the sound of a telephone). Chambering a shell in a shotgun will put the fear of god in almost anyone. They are also one of the most versitile firearms out there. They can be loaded with shotgun shells that range from slugs (like large bullets), to shot (a ton of small lead beads), to bean bags (a 'non lethal' bag of sand), and many others. They are also very easy to operate, and given that you are pointing it at your target at relatively close range, it is hard to miss. I personally went with a Mossberg 500 12 gauge. It is a short barreled (18.5 inches, the smallest legal barrel) and holds 7 rounds in the tube (when hunting, you can only have a maximum of 2 shells in the tube in my state), and one in the chamber. It is not the best shotgun on the market, but it is affordable, and dependable. Having a shotgun is required in my opinion, because of not only the psychological effect on your enemy, but your ability to modify it to your needs. A shotgun is pretty much the only firearm you can hunt bird with. And since every human being is going to be hunting at that point, you're going to need all the possibilities you can get.
After you get your kit of firearms and ammo together, get as many spare parts for them as you can, they will be hard to find in dire times. Also invest in a good firearm cleaning kit, and learn to disassemble, clean, and reassemble your firearms. Learning good firearm safety is a MUST. There are many ranges and places that teach proper firearm instruction, and some who teach combat training to civilians. If you wish to go that route, do your research, or ask me. I can point you in the right direction.
Do not fear that something like this may happen, just be prepared for it. Even if it never happens, at least you can sleep better at night knowing you're ready for anything.
keep your powder dry,
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