Friday, July 21, 2006

Another Globe Reader Responds

Just a little more nitpicking to start the day - bear with me.

Cavalier attitude toward aiming and firing

REGARDING "ANNIE, get your Glock" (Living/Arts, July 18), I was struck by the writer's cavalier attitude toward firing bullets at the figure of a man: "Several dime-size holes pepper the target's man-shaped silhouette. If this were a back-alley thug, he would be wounded but probably still on his feet."

What? Maybe if he were Robo-thug.

But no one should think that a human body can absorb three or more shots from a 9 mm Glock (standard issue for the Boston police) and likely remain upright.

Actually, if I'm not mistaken, the "standard issue" pistol ammunition for Boston Police is .40 S&W round. At least that's what this cop was packing the morning he *allegedly* shot his fellow officer in the leg after a long night of drinking.

As for being able to "absorb three or more shots" from a 9mm handgun, I'm no expert in the field, but I could easily imagine three hits to non-vital regions not having the stopping power one would hope to see in a "back alley" self-defense scenario. Shooting the guy in the left arm when the knife is in his right hand might not do the trick.

Perhaps, someone with more knowledge on this could chime in here.

Also, the shots in question, from the Globe article, were said to "pepper" the target. Had they made a quarter-sized group at "center of mass", I'd wager the choice of verb and the hypothetical outcome of the shooting, as provided by the writer, would have been quite different.

I don't begrudge anybody's right to go to a shooting range and become competent and skillful with a weapon. It is the responsible way to own and use one. But let's not pretend that firing that gun at a "back-alley thug" is anything but a potentially deadly proposition.


Likewise, let us also not pretend that Hollywood's depiction of a bad guy getting blown 10 feet backwards through a plate glass window, after getting shot with a .38 revolver, has any basis, whatsoever, in reality.