A True Best Friend

By Kellene Bishop

true-best-friend-jessie-abbate

A true best friend is always by my side. Photo c/o Accurate Shooter

Will Rogers once said that strangers were friends he hadn’t met yet. With this in mind, I can’t help but wonder why it is so foreign for women to handle a firearm. Mine is definitely one of my best friends. Why?

I can trust this best friend to be reliable—to never flake out on me.

I can trust this best friend to protect my children, myself, and my loved ones.

This best friend will dependably fight for freedom and liberty for me.

I can rely on this best friend to stand for right over might.

This best friend is always available and by my side. 

This best friend strengthens my physical weaknesses against enemies, foreign or domestic.

This best friend enables me to preserve life when others may desire to take it.

Other than my husband, I have a hard time finding any other friend that I can say these things about. So ladies, my I suggest that you introduce yourself to Mr. Glock, Mr. Smith and Wesson, or any other Mr. soon and make a new friend?

Copyright 2009 Women of Caliber and Kellene Bishop. All rights reserved.  You are welcome to repost this information so long as it is credited to Women of Caliber and Kellene Bishop.

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Getting it Right the First Time

By Kellene Bishop

Start out with your ideal weapon of choice. Photo c/o pdgtraining.com

Start out with your ideal weapon of choice. Photo c/o pdgtraining.com

I’ve had many comments come to me that a new woman shooter should “start out” with a revolver.  I have nothing against a revolver, however, I vehemently object to a woman purchasing and practicing with something other than their ideal tool of self-defense. 

A revolver may be an ideal firearm for a woman, but until they have tried other firearms, they will not know this.  For many women, just taking the step to finally own a firearm is a big one and a financial sacrifice as well.  So why advise a woman to do it “half way” or “incompletely?”  Why can’t she start out with her ideal weapon of choice? 

Ladies, make use of the firing ranges in your area to try out various kinds of guns.  Don’t settle.  Make your first purchase count.  Yes, your tolerance of the firepower may change later on down the road, but one of the reasons why I counsel you to practice with different firearms is to help in this process.  Get THE gun that feels good in your hand and in whatever manner in which you’re going to store it (preferably on your person).  This way you will be sure to make your practice and your shots count.  A gun is one thing that you shouldn’t compromise on.  It’s there to save your life.  You want to learn to “dance” with it expertly, not constantly switch it up based on the latest hype.  Get it right the first time, at least as much as possible.

Copyright 2009 Kellene Bishop. All rights reserved.  You are welcome to repost this information so long as it is credited to Kellene Bishop.

My Wish – 100,000 Women Strong

By Kellene Bishop

Owning a handgun does not offer women any benefit for self-defense.  KNOWLEDGE, on the other hand, of how to use a firearm for self-defense is the ultimate equalizer.  And to me it’s the ultimate sign of freedom and liberty. 

There are a great many female gun owners in the U.S. at present.  Unfortunately the fact that these same women don’t actually use their firearm for self-defense merely gives fodder for the anti-gun crowd who claim, “See?  Firearms don’t help women prevent rape.”  Now that’s a shame. 

My Wish - 100,000 Women Strong! Photo c/o nytimes.com/

My Wish - 100,000 Women Strong! Photo c/o nytimes.com/

If I had my wish come true, it would be that an additional 100,000 women not only possess firearms in the U.S. this year, but also get expertly trained in handling them and carrying them on their person.  While my wish may sound a little far fetched, I firmly believe it’s a worthwhile one.  Imagine the hesitation in a violent criminal’s mind: “Geesh.  (Censored, of course)  Is THIS one of those 100,000 armed women who know how to use it against me?” or “Am I really ready to go up against a skillfully armed woman?”  I believe that the number 100,000 is sufficient to thwart millions of crimes all over the U.S. and make criminals think twice before assuming a woman is a vulnerable target.  I believe that that impact of 100,000 confidently armed women will alter the wrongfully perpetuated societal stigmas that many have about armed citizens.  And I believe that 100,000 armed women will make children more safe, not only against firearm accidents, but against perpetrators who target them.  Oh, what I wouldn’t give to have my wish granted and see 100,000 women competently quick-draw their weapon, shoot accurately, and reholster it.  It nearly gives me goose bumps just thinking about it!

Photo care of

Photo c/o northshorejournal.org

Can’t you just hear the beautiful symphony made by the sound of the action after the slide is released all over the nation?  Ch-chang!  (I LOVE that sound!)  The patriotic sight and sound of “the rockets red glare; the bombs bursting in air” would be akin to the sound of double-taps all over the practice ranges in the U.S.  Can’t you just imagine the new level of confidence as women walk and talk strong and powerful knowing that they no longer will play the role of a helpless victim?  While my wish of 100,000 women is barely a dent in the number of the population of adult women in our nation, I believe that it’s sufficient to suitably rally against the crimes against women and their children and to accomplish what our law enforcement and government officials simply can’t or won’t do.

Independence isn’t just a benign word to be associated with our nation.  It should be a state of being that we women embrace every day.  We can be independent in our own effective protection and security and in doing so, literally impact the protection of women all over the nation.  This is my wish. 

Will you be one of the 100,000?

Will you be one of the 100,000?  

Copyright 2009 Kellene Bishop. All rights reserved.  You are welcome to repost this information so long as it is credited to Kellene Bishop.

Firearm Defense for Women

By Kellene Bishop

Fencing Photos c/o daylife.com

Fencing Photos c/o daylife.com

Is there any question that self-defense training is necessary for women today? Unfortunately the problem is that there are so many to choose from. A lot of women who aren’t mentally prepared to take on the responsibilities of a firearm have dived into a multitude of physical self-defense techniques—boxing, martial arts, etc. I even had one woman tell me that she has taken up fencing for her self-defense training. (Yes, I did indeed roll my eyes on that one. “’Scuse me Mr. Bad Guy while I go to my trunk or my closet and pull out my dull tipped sword.”)

I bring this instance up because the majority of the self-defense training out there is complicated. It requires too many steps to be remembered and executed at a time when you’re least likely to have all of your wits and fine motor skills about you. Only extensive amounts of practice will accomplish the successful execution of such. Some self-defense methods require an amount of strength that does not readily accompany a woman’s makeup. Some require too much proficiency. And worse yet, some are incomplete. It’s at least a little inconvenient if a woman is attacked between her white and her green belt, don’t you think?

Photo c/o Brooks Kraft/Corbis

Photo c/o Brooks Kraft/Corbis

This is exactly why I’m such a big proponent of the use of firearms defense for women. With a single day-long class and some practice on your own, you can have all of the necessary safety skills as well as self-defense skills you need to properly protect yourself. It doesn’t matter if you get winded climbing the stairs in your own home. You can still effectively use a firearm to defend yourself with. It doesn’t matter if you’re disabled, deaf, or short like me. Everyone has the right to defend themselves and it doesn’t have to cost you money for years and years from now while you prepare yourself for that fateful moment.

Fortunately for you, firearm defense is effective for women regardless of who your opponent is. You can sufficiently stop a scrawny little coward or a sub-human towering lunatic. A couple of well placed shots is all you need—no sweating required.

Give firearm defense some thought, ladies. Firearm defense is clearly the most economic, effective, and timely manner for self-defense available.

Copyright 2009 Kellene Bishop. All rights reserved. You are welcome to repost this information so long as it is credited to Kellene Bishop.

Fashion Sense at the Shooting Range

By Kellene Bishop

Ladies, let’s face it.  Given that there are very few female firearm instructors, no one has come right out and provided sound “fashion” advice to women for their trips to the range.  Although my husband is a great instructor and incredibly knowledgeable, there are certain things that even he would not think to share with me.  So I had to learn on my own… not fun.  That said, I thought I’d share with you a few fashion tips for the shooting range that will make your trip a bit more safe and comfortable.

Photo c/o deerflydiaries.typepad.com

Photo c/o deerflydiaries.typepad.com

Shirt—Be sure that you wear a shirt that sufficiently covers your chest.  I particularly avoid any v-necks, or button-up shirts.  I usually am wearing a t-shirt or a sweatshirt when I go shooting.  The reason being is when you’re shooting, those hot little casings don’t always go where they are “supposed to” and some of them make it down a loose shirt and linger in your bra.  Ouch!  Those buggers are hot.  If a hot casing isn’t enough to make you lose your shooting concentration, then you are one tough mama!  If you’re going to be with all of those guys, do you really want them to see you doing the “get this hot casing out of my bra” dance?  So if you’ve got cleavage, cover it up.  (Don’t worry. You’ll still look sexy with a gun in your hand.)  Also, be sure that you don’t wear any “dry clean only” items.   The gases and debris aren’t completely removed in the dry cleaning process, and in some instances are even found to be set permanently in the fibers of your clothes through that process.  So be sure you wear something that can easily be thrown into the wash.

I don’t mind wearing a short sleeve shirt because the casings just bounce off of my arms. But I’m sure to change clothes shortly after shooting.

Make up—Personally I avoid wearing makeup when I go to the shooting range.  I realize that for some of you women that’s nearly against your religion.  So here’s some food for thought.  If you can wear mineral makeup instead of a cream foundation, it’s a lot better for your skin. The gases and debris from shooting linger much easier on a cream foundation that a mineral one.  Mascara, lipstick, and blush are fine, but I wouldn’t wear a base when attracts the gases and such… until some scientist discovers that they’re actually good for your skin.  🙂  I also always have on hand some facial cloths to use immediately after shooting.  (Oil of Olay, Ponds, and the like make a great portable version.)  Just thinking about the gas and debris sitting on the outside of my facial pores gives me the creeps.  (I know.  I know.  Whoda thunk I’d be so girly, right?)  

Shoes—Again, those hot casings are not very obedient when I tell them where to fall.  So I never wear shoes that expose my feet.  I always ensure that they are well covered.  Please don’t wear flip flops or sandals when you go to the range.  You’ll make all of the rest of us women look like mindless sissy-girls when you do the “hot casing” dance.  You’ve never seen a man doing that dance, have you?  

Photo c/o news.xinhuanet.com

Photo c/o news.xinhuanet.com

Hat—I prefer wearing a hat when I go shooting.  This prevents the gases from going into my hair.  It also keeps any glare from the sun or the lights out of my vision, so it makes for more accurate shooting.  If you’re using electronic ear muffs, or simply those that go over your head instead of inserted in your ears, be sure to wear a hat that your ear muffs can easily go on top of.  That’s right.  Leave the Easter Bonnet at home.

Long Fingernails—For those of you who fashionably indulge in those great looking nails, that’s fine.  But you should carry a toothbrush or a nail brush with you for washing your hands afterwards. Use the brush to scrub thoroughly under your nails and around your cuticles.  The gas and debris is toxic and you don’t want it getting into your food or drink.  Not to mention it dries out your hands like a brittle old stick.  So wash them well, and then apply a nice hand cream to restore a softness that any fashionable woman would require.  Otherwise, reasonably long fingernails don’t affect your shooting skills whatsoever.  

Hopefully these fashion tips for the shooting range help you to have a safer, more comfortable time at the range! 

Copyright 2009 Kellene Bishop. All rights reserved. 
You are welcome to repost this information so long as it is credited to Kellene Bishop

Firearm Security for Women

By Kellene Bishop

Many women ask me “is it really necessary for me to carry a gun?”  My answer is always an emphatic “YES!” backed by some important statistics.

Photo c/o Hans Neleman/Stone/Getty Images

Photo c/o Hans Neleman/Stone/Getty Images

1)     Surely the prevention of over 2.5 million crimes a year (which equals 6,849 crimes everyday) is compelling enough to believe that you would benefit as well.  (Targeting Guns, Dr. Gary Kleck, Criminologist, Florida State University, 1997)  There is not a city in this nation that is impervious to crime with the exception of Kennesaw, GA which passed a required gun ownership law.  As a result, residential burglaries dropped 89% the following year!  Even then, petty theft and other minor crimes are still prevalent.  So please do not make the mistake of believing that you live “in a safe neighborhood.”  While your neighbors may be perfectly wonderful, you must admit that we live in a technologically advanced world where most people, even criminals, possess transportation and thus the means to infiltrate your world of serenity.  🙂  My point being is that no community is so safe that one can believe that they will never have the need to defend themselves against a violent crime.  

2)     Even criminals take the presence of a firearm seriously.  More specifically, everyday 550 rapes, 1,100 murders, and 5,200 other violent crimes are prevented simply by the presence of a firearm.  In less that 0.9% of these instances is the gun ever fired. (National Crime Victimization Survey, 2000, Bureau of Justice Statistics, BATF estimates on handgun supply)

3)     You have the right not only to protect your life and the lives of your loved ones, but also your PROPERTY.  The increasing number of individuals having legal access to a firearm, either in their home or on their person has been slowing down the property crime rate.  It has decreased in direct proportion to the increase in the number of legal handgun ownership.  (Ibid) 

Photo c/o dailymail.co.uk

Photo c/o dailymail.co.uk

4)     Keep in mind that overall, criminals are parasites, not predators.  Parasites look for lazy, free rides.  They are not inclined to go out of their way to get what they want.  There are too many risk-free ways for them to pillage without risking getting shot.  So if you look confident, secure, and serious that you’re going to take care of yourself, you will usually be able to deflect an assault or otherwise criminal incident.  I have yet to encounter a woman who carries a firearm and knows how to use it who appears timid, shy, and as an easy target.  Firearm self-defense is simply “magical” that way.  *wink*  Just a couple of other tips, lock your doors (in your cars and in your homes) and stop leaving your garage doors open, even for a moment.  Such mindless exposure marks you as an easy target to a criminal.  I recently observed a woman who went into a hair salon to chat for just a moment.  The problem was she did so while letting her Jaguar run with several shopping bags sitting in plain site in the back seat.  (This is a perfect example of what I call “Dumb Squared.”)   Ridiculous!  (To be harsh, I know, I caught myself thinking women like that need a good scare to bring themselves back out of their fantasy land.  Yes, I admit that I was SO tempted to get in and move her car to another location in the parking lot.  I refrained even though I rationalized to myself that my moving the car would be a lot safer for her than some criminal hiding in the back of it waiting for his prey.)

5)     Women wield a substantially more significant result of safety when carrying a firearm than men do.  Here’s why.  The majority of rape, robbery, mugging, and other types of assault crimes are committed upon women.  Women are perceived as being an easy target.  The number one reason is simply because a man is typically stronger than a woman and she can easily be overpowered by his strength combined with the element of surprise and fear.  BUT… a woman who is armed with a firearm and possesses the knowledge of how to use it in a moment of self-defense is 3-4 times more likely to prevent a murder or a woman, as opposed to a man possessing a handgun.  (More Guns, Less Crime, John Lott, Sr. Research Analyst) Logic dictates that since women are the more likely targets of crime, then if women were to prevent crimes against themselves, a drop in the crime rate would inevitably follow.  When a woman was armed with a gun or a knife during an attempted rape, only 3% of the rapes actually were completed.  (U.S. Department of Justice, Law Enforcement Assistance Administration, Rape Victimization in 26 American Cities, 1979)

6)     Possessing a firearm statistically provides you with an immediate upper-hand in face of a criminal confrontation.  It’s actually a myth that the majority of violent crimes are committed with a gun.  In fact, 90% of all crimes do not involve a firearm of any kind.  (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms, 1998)  Even when the person committing a crime did have possession of a firearm, 83% of them did not use the gun in commission of the crime.  (FBI Uniform Crime Statistics, 1994)  These two facts show you that you indeed have the high ground when possessed with the knowledge and the tools to defend yourself.

7)     Firearms used in self-defense most certainly save lives.  Of the 2,500,000 crimes that are prevented annually, 15.6% of the people who used them defensively stated that they “certainly saved lives” by doing so.  (National Crime Victimization Survey, 1979-1985)

Photo c/o habby0123

Photo c/o habby0123

8)     You need not believe that owning or having access to a firearm makes you a lesser person.  While it’s not readily discussed by women, the facts are that 41.7% of women either own or have rapid access to a gun.  28.5% of women have a gun in the house.  (Smith. T; 2001 National Gun Policy Survey of the Nation Opinion Research Center; Research Findings. University of Chicago, Dec. 2001) Now all we need is for women to become more proficient with these valuable tools and increase that number to at least 90%. 

So, to answer your question, “Is a gun really necessary?”  I say the facts support such a necessity to carry a firearm.  Just be sure you do so also armed with the knowledge and mental preparation of how to use it as well.  For training availability specifically for women, taught by women, go to www.womenofcaliber.com.

Copyright 2009 Kellene Bishop. All rights reserved.
You are welcome to repost this information so long as it is credited to Kellene Bishop.

You’ll Never Guess Who’s Buying the Guns Now

nra-newsBy Kellene Bishop

Last night I was a guest on the NRA News program “Cam and Company.”  The host, Cameron Edwards, asked me a question that I thought a lot of our readers would be interested in knowing the answer to. 

“Have you noticed any particular trend in women purchasing guns?”

The answer is a definite YES, but the description of these women may surprise you.

Photo c/o adminsecret.com

Photo c/o adminsecret.com

The majority of them are first time purchasers.  But even more surprising, especially to the main stream media, is that the majority of these women are mothers.  Some would say “You’re a mother!  You’ve got kids in the house.  Why are you buying a gun?!”  A mother purchasing a gun may be counterintuitive to the majority of the world.  But the feedback I’m hearing from my students who are mothers, especially of young children, is actually quite logical.  These mothers are slowly becoming aware that they are usually the only point of defense in their child’s life.  Even in a two-parent home, the mother is around the children the most, thus most responsible for their protection and safety.  Although when one thinks of a mother they usually think of a kind, nurturing, loving, and caring woman.  But these mothers nowadays are definitely showing their “lioness” side to them as well.  And they are strengthening that instinct with their money and their time to acquire the skills and tools necessary.  These mothers are realizing that can’t rely on someone else to protect their children and to relinquish such a responsibility would be foolish.  They also are seeing that protecting THEMSELVES is also a critical component to being ABLE to protect and provide for their children.  They aren’t able to rely solely upon their physical strength to do so, and thus in the face of an increasing presence of crime, they are opting for the ultimate equalizer in any fight, a firearm, coupled with the knowledge, skill, and willingness to use it in defense of their loved ones.

If you ask me, I feel that this is a refreshing and perfectly sensible outlook for mothers to adopt.  So ladies, how can I help you implement this strategy?

Copyright 2009 Kellene Bishop. All rights reserved.
You are welcome to repost this information so long as it is credited to Kellene Bishop