Tuesday, May 27, 2008

The Honest "Vice"

Slate TV's Vice Capades segment went to the only shooting range in Manhattan. How going shooting is a vice, I'll never know...

Eugene Volokh had this advice to go with it:
Oh, and a piece of advice for one of the women in a video: When you go target-shooting, and at least some of the weapons are semi-automatics, don't wear a low-cut shirt. The ejected casings from the fired rounds are hot, they often get ejected backwards and to the side, and there are places you don't want them to get stuck, even for the second or two it takes to remove them. No threat to life, but unpleasant. I know from personal observation.
I've given the same advice myself. For men, collared shirts are also bad because you can have brass bounce in between the collar and your neck. I generally wear a t-shirt or a close-fitting turtleneck to the range for these reasons.

Sandals and shorts are also a bad idea. Gravity is a harsh mistress. You will have hot cartridge casings bouncing around your feet and legs while shooting any semi-automatic. You might have some even if you aren't because brass from other lanes may bounce into yours. If you're wearing pants and shoes, this isn't a big deal. Go without and you'll be doing the hot brass two-step.

Oh and that story about a woman coming to the range to commit suicide? Not uncommon. It doesn't happen every week or even once a year, but it happens. I've heard of people renting a handgun, turning sideways (so that the bullet goes safely down range afterwards), then shooting themselves.

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