Wild Wild West

I’ve not directly owned a firearm for a really long time, in fact the last time was my Navy days back in the late 80’s. I carried a 1911 while on watch and had to routinely qualify on various military rifles.

I have a pretty solid belief on what guns are used for and when they are required… And living in an urban metropolis doesn’t really necessitate owning a firearm — I don’t need to hunt for dinner and a call to 911 tends to solve most problems, so I’ve not really thought about owning a gun for decades.

But the times, they are a changin’.

Zombie virus lockdowns are making people a bit crazy, violent riots where the police stand down and just let the crazies tear things apart have been going on for a week now, and now there’s talk of disbanding police forces entirely… And it’s only going to get worse as the election approaches… And this is prompting me to get more self-reliant.

I also own acreage down in southern Colorado that, someday, I plan to be living on — and down there the opportunity to fill a freezer full of deer is a lot higher, bear, coyote, and mountain cats can be a problem, and the police are a half an hour away at best.

So after some soul-searching and a rather lengthy bout of weapons research, Friday I ordered a new gun which will arrive at the gun-shop some time this week.

It’s a Henry lever-action rifle chambered for the 45-70 government round. It’s case hardened (the old-school oil-on-water looking hardening), blued 22″ octagonal barrel, semi-buckhorn sights, and dark walnut furniture — it’s a beautiful bit of machinery and something definitely worthy of hanging over the mantle, if I had one.

It also fits in well with the Wild West aesthetic down in southern Colorado.

The 45-70 is a rather hefty round, but it was designed back in the late 1800’s to be very utilitarian; one round for most purposes. It’ll stop any predator in North America from eating you, is good for hunting as it’s big and slow so there’s a lot of power but not a lot of meat loss, it’ll drop bad guys like no one’s business, and it’s fairly cheap.

With the riots and all, every local gun store is sold out of pretty much everything, which is fine as I wanted a custom rifle anyway and those need to be ordered. But it’s still weird to walk into Cabela’s and not see anything but skeet shotguns and .50cal hand canons in the display cases. As well as the background check for purchases taking days instead of minutes right now because of the volume…

And with the incredible uptick in gun ownership, the local ranges now have waiting lists to join up. This is because they just can’t hold all of the people wanting to get familiar with whatever they just bought.

Definitely interesting times.