Break ins are becoming a common thing, and with the financial stress the ongoing pandemic has placed on us as a society it’s no wonder. Businesses are closed, people have lost their jobs and their livelihoods, and yet wealth is flaunted all over social media. To the people who have nothing, it’s not a huge leap to move from envy into action, and taking what they want from you. Keeping your family safe is a must, and in my mind, one of the best ways to protect your home and your loved ones is with a firearm of your own. Fighting fire with fire, as the saying goes.
Of course, before we get into the article I do need to make a small disclaimer here. If you’ve never owned a gun before it can feel a little apprehensive getting your first firearm. And then you’ve got to consider the real fact that a firearm is indeed a deadly weapon, and in the wrong hands (or even your own) can do a significant amount of damage. You need an appropriate place to keep your firearms in a home, and ensure that you’re only ever pointing them at a target you want to destroy. And with that in mind, let’s explore what to consider when choosing a firearm for home protection.
I’m going to cover the three different types of firearms people choose, from handguns to rifles and shotguns, and provide my choice for the best type of firearm for home defense.
It needs to be in reach
An attack can happen in an instant, and trying to get yourself to your office and the gun safe just isn’t practical. Handguns however, can fit in the drawer in your nightstand, and you can even carry it holstered, so you know you’ve protection in just the split second you need to draw. A rifle or a shotgun don’t have this luxury, and you’re going to be limited in the places you can store these safely. If you want a weapon that’s always around, a handgun stored in a lockbox is your best bet.
It needs to shoot back
Well, all working firearms do shoot back, but what I’m talking about here is magazine capacity. If you’ve got a group of intruders, a shotgun that may only carry 6 cartridges isn’t going to help you fight back when you’re having to reload it every few seconds. Alternatively, a semi-automatic rifle will generally hold about 30 rounds, and you can quickly reload with a simple magazine change. To me, in a real SHTF event at your house, the more ammunition you have ready to go, the better.
It needs to be compact
If you’ve ever cleared a house from a security threat, you’ll know why a compact weapon is a smart choice. You’ll be ducking in and out of doorways, peering around corners, and you have no idea where the attackers are coming from. You need something small, that you can maneuver with that won’t get in the way. The barrels on longer guns make them cumbersome to do this with, and you also risk your attacker simply grabbing hold of the barrel and wrestling the gun from your grip. That’s unlikely to happen with a handgun.
It needs to be deadly
To someone sneaking into your home, the sound of a shotgun being cocked will definitely catch their attention and give them a moment’s pause before they continue coming in. Shotguns have the widest blast area, and require less accuracy at a close distance. Whereas a rifle gives you much better range, and the ability to shoot at targets you would simply miss with a handgun or a shotgun. To me, I see a semi-automatic rifle as the deadliest, as it allows the most shots to be made in quick succession.
It needs to have stopping power
While a small and compact handgun can fit into a purse, where they lack is the raw stopping power that a larger caliber rifle brings to a situation. Especially if you’re facing multiple attackers, you want every shot you land to do the maximum damage. Taking down the same opponent with a handgun may require several shots, but land one from your rifle and they are likely to be down for the count. That’s why most militaries opt for rifles as a weapon of choice, with a handgun only used for backups in tight situations.
It needs to be affordable
Ultimately, the best firearm is also one that you can afford. Both the initial cost, and to cover all of the ammunition and training that you’ll need to become a comfortable and confident shooter. Of the three, handguns will be the cheapest option, with the ammunition the most affordable. Now, I’m not saying you should skimp on quality here, rather, buy the best gun that you can afford. You can always upgrade it again at a later date, when you’ve got more money to spare.
For me, I’d recommend a handgun as a first choice for home defense. It’s lightweight, affordable, and heaven forbid that something happens to you, your wife will be able to grab it and shoot back far easier than trying to handle a large rifle or shotgun. But I wouldn’t recommend stopping at a handgun alone. Once you’ve got this sorted, I’d keep an eye out for any good deals on a rifle, as they simply can’t be beat in terms of pure stopping power. When the SHTF and your home and safety is on the line, a rifle would be my gun of choice.