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Old May 17, 2013, 12:46 PM   #37
44 AMP
Join Date: March 11, 2006
Location: Upper US
Posts: 17,166
This reminds me of a snippet that Jeff Cooper wrote about one. He described an incident, and then the two questions that seemed to be all important (to some people). I'll paraphrase...

Basically, a female officer meets bad guy at a range of mere feet. Fires entire hicap mag (at least once - or there may have been two female officers, I no longer remember), anyway the jist was that a large number of rounds were fired, and the suspect was hit, once, in the kneecap, which turned out to be enough to keep him from escaping...

Now, the interesting thing, to me, anyway, was the two questions that arose and got the most public attention...and they were...

Is the 9mm suitable for police use?
Are women suitable for police duty?

This was where the focus went. NOT to the (to me) obvious question about how well trained to shoot the officers were. Are we not seeing something similar with the claim that the .40 "isn't good enough?"

Now, I know that shooting under extreme stress is more difficult than any other shooting. And it seems that, on average, well trained shooters (including some, but by no means all police) get around 30% hits, at the best, and of those hits, only a smaller percentage are in the vital zones.

And any individual shooting may be far below (rarely above) that average. Back when the cops carried revolvers, a pair of officers could blaze off a dozen rounds before having to reload. With today's use of hi cap semi autos, that firepower has virtually tripled, apparently without a corresponding rise in overall accuracy.

It is certainly true that guns are not magic swords, and bullets are not the light of decency that causes all evil to isntantly shrivel up and die...

But if your expectations are formed by our entertainment industry, you likely won't know that. What you will "know" is that guns only have to be pointed in the general direction of the bad guy, dispatching them with a single shot or single burst, often at truely implausible distances, and while on the move.

You will know that gunshots fling people across large distances, and can be fired indoors, without any hearing protection, with no consequences.

You will know that while badguys can kill minor characters, they can only (at best) wound the hero. And that same wounded hero can run, climb ladders, and all other manner of physical things without being impaired, even up to the final hand to hand combat that, finally, bests the villian.

And we are all the heroes of our own stories, now aren't we?

No police agency is going to come out and say, "our officers were under trained, paniced, or poor shots". It (no matter what "it" is) cannot be the fault of our brave, heroic officers, who put their lives on the line for you daily...

So, the blame something else. The FBI's final blame of the 9mm being at fault for not stopping the Miami Shootout led eventually to the .40 S&W.

Now, the .40 S&W is being blamed for a failure. Personally, I don't think the round is the thing most at fault.
All else being equal (and it almost never is) bigger bullets tend to work better.
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