Jack’s Rules to Live By

The 2017 Rangemaster Instructor Conference was held at the BDC Gun Room in Shawnee, OK.  On the counter at the store, they had a stack of handouts listing “Jack’s Rules To Live By”, written by BDC owner Jack Barrett.

It’s a great list, particularly his #1 rule:

Be Kind and Generous to All — Our world, our nation, our state, our community, our families and our own lives will be better if we show more kindness and more generosity to everyone.

Concealed Carry

ALWAYS carry your pistol – It does you no good at home or in your car.  Never leave a gun in your vehicle. Thieves look there first.

Carry a good pistol – Why trust your life to a piece of junk? Quality does not have to be expensive.

Get a good holster – Anything is better than nothing, but kydex or reinforced leather carried IWB or AIWB is best. Do NOT open carry.  Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should.

Get more training and practice – Shooting skills do not come naturally and are perishable.  Formal instruction and frequent practice are necessary to maintain proficiency.

Carry/Learn other means of defense – You can’t shoot everyone.  You can pepper spray just about anyone! Carry it always.  It isn’t magic, but it will get you three steps towards the door.  Learn some empty hand skills: punching, kicking and separation techniques (how to get hands off you and get away). Having something sharp and stabby is useful, too.

Mind your own damn business – You are not a cop.  You are not a super hero, nor an arbiter of right and wrong.  You are an armed citizen. Nothing good can come from you butting into someone else’s problem, even if you save the day.

(KR note:  When the situation is conflict between a few people, none of which are known to you, his advice is good.  In an active shooter/mass killing incident, the decision to act should be based on the totality of the circumstances of that specific event, as doing anything other than what is necessary to protect yourself and those near you will likely place you at much greater risk.)


(KR note: Jack uses a variation of the classic 4 Cooper rules, which aren’t my favorite version of the gun safety rules. But his explanations and commentary on them is worth sharing.)

All Guns Are Always Loaded – Before you can clean it, tinker with it, or show it to a buddy, you must clear it first.  If you want to shoot it, shoot it. If you want do anything else with it, clear it first.

Never Point a Gun At Anything You Are Not Willing To Destroy – Keep up with where you gun is pointed at all times.  The gun will either be in the holster, at the ready, or on target, period.

Keep Your Finger Off the Trigger And Out of the Trigger Guard Unless Your Sights Are On the Target  – Pressure on the trigger is what causes the gun to fire.  Keep your finger indexed well away from the trigger unless you want the gun to fire.  Gun on target = finger on trigger.  Gun OFF target = finger OFF trigger.

Always Be Certain of Your Target and What is Beyond and Around It – Know what you are shooting and why.