Dear Black Bag Confidential Reader,
Hold onto your hats — this week’s mailbag is overflowing! To get to as many of your inquiries as possible, this week’s mailbag will be more like a lightning round. Quick questions, quick answers.
Let’s get started.
Stay the HELL OUT of macroeconomics and politics. This is not your area of expertise… BTW, Trump may very well cause severe damage to our economy in record time if he is not kept in check.
— Ned P.
I appreciate your feedback, Ned, but frankly, what our president does affects how we live. The trillions of dollars added to the national debt under the Obama administration will hurt us greatly when the day of reckoning comes. And while I hope Trump can dig us out of the hole a bit, there’s still a big chance we will have some type of economic meltdown sooner rather than later.
In other words, politics affects our safety. And we need to be prepared to survive whatever crisis occurs — whether it’s a natural disaster or one caused by the U.S. government.
Lately, I’ve seen many advertisements for tactical (high-lumen) flashlights, often promoted as an alternative to guns. Are they worth considering in certain situations, even if I already have a supply of guns?
— Ken R.
When it comes to protecting yourself, I think having a gun is hands down the best option. That being said, a tactical flashlight is another tool I highly recommend. A quality tactical flashlight can be used to strike an attacker as well as disorient a criminal with its bright light.
Having a flashlight is also critical for any home defense plan in case someone breaks into your home at night. I always keep a tactical flashlight on my nightstand. If I ever hear a noise in the middle of the night, I can quickly grab my flashlight along with my gun, so I can see.
I went to dry graphite years ago for all my firearms. It actually works into the metal and does not attract dirt, dust and debris. It also makes cleaning after shooting a bit easier (an old toothbrush is the best tool I’ve found). I also use Hoppe’s cleaner for the barrel swab. Any thoughts?
The question of wet versus dry lubricant really comes down to personal preference. Some people argue that using a wet lubricant attracts dirt, while a dry lubricant will let the dirt fall off. But actually, wet lubricants will hold the dirt and prevent most of it from getting into the weapon.
In my opinion, dry lubricant simply doesn’t do as good of a job lubricating the moving parts of your firearm. It is still a viable option with its own advantages, but I personally prefer to use a liquid lubricant.
Re: a recently posted question about traveling with a gun… There is an excellent app out there — at least for Android phones — that is very up-to-date and updated at least weekly that helps a traveler sort through the hodgepodge of different state concealed carry laws. Workman Consulting LLC calls it CCW Concealed Carry.
— Allen D.
Thanks, Allen. I checked it out, and this app is available both for Android and iPhone owners. It looks like a great tool to use when trying to untangle the web of concealed carry laws.
This app allows you to input which CCW permits you have and then uses their mapping system to help you plan a trip, so you can see which states honor your permit. According to the company, they update the information on a monthly basis.
Thanks for the travel reminders, Jason. I don’t fly as much as I used to, but it’s good to be reminded of the safety tips. I’m happy to say I passed your checklist with flying colors!
— Allison W.
You’re very welcome, Allison. I’m glad to hear you’re doing everything you can to stay safe when traveling. It’s unfortunate that travel is becoming more dangerous, and it’s important to take all the necessary precautions.
I recently subscribed, and I have a question. Do you recommend having a home security system? Thank you.
— Marv H.
Implementing a home security system is one of the first things I recommend to make your home more secure. Home security systems are not only a great deterrent to criminals, they can alert you if someone does break in.
These days there are many different options when it comes to security systems. You could choose one of the major home security companies to install the equipment for you, and then you’d pay them a monthly monitoring fee.
Or you could install a DIY system, which would cost more money upfront, since you’re buying the equipment, but you will pay less in monthly fees. If you don’t have a security system, I encourage you to get one right away.
At the very least, buy home security stickers for your windows and signs to put in your yard. That way criminals will think you have a security system, even if you don’t.
What are your thoughts on a DIY home security system? Do you have a specific one you recommend?
— Gary T.
As I mentioned, DIY security systems are a great option if you’re looking for a less expensive way to guard your home. Check out SimpliSafe. They have many different hardware choices in addition to their low-cost monitoring fees.
What are your thoughts on creating a neighborhood watch program?
— Jill R.
A neighborhood watch program can be very effective in reducing crime. I definitely recommend reaching out to your neighbors and local law enforcement about creating a program if your neighborhood doesn’t already have one. There’s no doubt neighbors can prevent crime by looking out for one another.
What should you do if you suspect a criminal is posing as a police officer knocking on your door?
— Helen N.
If you’re unsure of who is knocking at your door, call 911 and ask them to verify there is an officer at your home. Kindly tell the person who is knocking (through the door) that you are calling the police department. Most police officers will allow you the short amount of time it takes to do this.
I’ve heard you mention you can disappear without a trace. Is there any way to do this without leaving a single clue behind?
— John T.
Well, John, it is possible to disappear without leaving a trace. But it’s not easy, and I would only recommend doing so if your life were in danger. You would have to give up a lot to make sure no one ever found you.
This is actually such an in-depth topic that I’m currently in the process of writing a book about it. Stay tuned for more information on the expected release date.
How would you escape if you were handcuffed behind your back and then duct-taped to a chair?
— Walter M.
The first thing you’ll need to do is pick the lock on the handcuffs with a hair barrette or bobby pin. This takes longer when you are handcuffed behind your back, but it can still be done. After you are free from the handcuffs, quickly lean forward in the chair — as if you were trying to put your head between your knees — and the duct tape will break.
Do you ever bring your seminars to the East Coast?
— Merri A.
Currently, I only have events scheduled in Las Vegas. However, I also do private training if you have a group of people who are interested. Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.