How many of you have heard someone say his? Said it yourself? I hear it a lot, having been instructing Arkansas concealed carry classes for over 9 years. I’m also not surprised when someone says, during or after the live fire section of the class, “I don’t really like this gun! My friend has one and said this is what they carry all the time but I think I need something bigger to control it better”, or “This gun kicks worse that I thought it would! It’s only a .380 and I didn’t think they kicked like this”
In reality, the small ‘Mouse Gun’ (MG) is definitely better than a sharp stick! IF you can get it out, quickly and safely, it can stop most situations without being fired. Many a woman and man have told me they only like shooting/carrying a .22 caliber pistol. (Most .22 pistols do not fall into MG status) I would rather see someone carry a .22 pistol than NOT carry something more powerful. On the same hand I would rather see you carry your MG than NOT carry your more powerful, bigger, easier to control pistol. But IF you have to fire it, can you hit what needs to be hit? I believe this is the question you need to ask yourself.
If you have time to get your pistol out, have time to line up the sights, have time to take time…you’ll probably be ok and do well, as long as the adrenaline, fear or conscience don’t overtake you.
When at first you notice your bad-guy (BG) from the corner of your eye and he is charging you from 20 feet when you start reacting, you may be able to stop BG by simply producing your mouse gun with a flick-of-the-wrist-spring assisted holster injecting the small pistol instantly into your hand and just pointing the pistol toward his face!! Just might do it. If your BG is a blood-shot-eyed, slobbering, snarling, whacked-out-for-your-a$$ PIT BULL terrier, either charging or stalking you… just pointing your double barrel 12 gauge shotgun into his face is NOT going to help you! You are now going to have to be able to hit what needs to be hit when you shoot. Stopping this BG may take more than 1 shot! (12 gauge shotgun here would be much better than a mouse gun, just not a practical CCW piece)
So let’s examine more reasons for and against carrying only a ‘mouse gun’, and what defines a ‘mouse gun’?
A mouse gun is not necessarily a .22 caliber pistol. Generally speaking though, size, caliber and weight are all considerations to be listed in the ‘mouse gun’ category.
- Size: A pistol of small size that can be carried inside a pants, shirt or vest pocket or concealed with only the hand. These sized guns are easy to conceal but generally don’t fit the hand very well and to get 2 hands on the pistol is a challenge which can result in less accuracy/controllability.
- Weight: The lighter the pistol the more felt recoil is perceived. You will feel more ‘kick’. A pistol that is heavier absorbs more of the recoil. The weight makes it more difficult for the fired cartridge to push the pistol backwards into your hand.
- Caliber: We all know a .22 caliber pistol ‘kicks’ a lot less than any larger caliber. A .25 caliber kicks a little more, even though the energy in foot pounds is about 67 from a .25 caliber, average .22 long rifle foot pounds of energy is around 90, because it is lighter yet faster than the heavier, slower .25. A .380 fired from a Ruger LCP produces more felt recoil than a a little larger and heavier .380 like a Bersa Thunder, or a 9mm fired from a Glock 26.
- Bullet weight: The heavier the bullet weight the more kick. A 9mm in 115 grain bullet weigh will have less felt recoil than a 9mm in 147 grain bullet weight. The heavier bullet will generally penetrate more but not an absolute. A +P cartridge will kick more in the same gun, with the same weight projectile and penetrate more because it is faster.
Friends, the reality is this… you can carry and conceal a Glock 19/23 or 17/21 size pistol if you WANT to. A pistol that holds 13 to 20 rounds of fire POWER (FN FiveseveN holds 20, which is almost same size as Glock 21) generally have less felt recoil, can be controlled easier and more accurately by simply pointing, has the power when you need it to not just start, but finish the job more reliably than your mouse gun.
I don’t carry a gun to be comfortable. I carry a gun for comfort.