Tactical or Tacti-cool

This a guest post by Scott SylvesterUS Special Forces M4A1 custom build assault rifle.

The word tactical gets thrown around a lot these days. From firearms accessories, clothing, vehicles, and training courses, this word gets used, misused and if you add it as a prefix to something you are selling, you can automatically charge $10 more… because it’s tactical!

Most of the “tactical” stuff out there is really nothing more than “tacti-cool.” It really serves no purpose other than to make your rifle, pistol, boots, SUV, or hat cost more and project an image that you are some kind of mall ninja, wannabe operator or instructor touting as gospel some tactic he saw on YouTube. Things that are truly tactical are not meant to help you define or project an image. They are meant to help you win fights

We’ll start with the basic American dictionary definition as a starting point. Tactical: Of or pertaining to a maneuver or plan of action designed as an expedient towards gaining a desired end, or temporary advantage. Re-read the definition.

I’m going to distill the definition a bit further, which is what I believe tactical really is and means. Tactical: Simple and reliable. Economy of motion.

Think about all of the cool accessories and features you can now purchase for your AR-15 rifle platform. I’m going to use the AR as an example for most of the article since it is one of the most popular platforms in America and almost every gun owner has one. The AR has seen a huge evolution in design, features, accessories, etc. over the last 20 years. We went form the plastic hand guards to quad rails so we could meet mission specific requirements, but how many of those features and upgrades are simple to use? How many are, “to hell and back,” reliable? How many of those features enable you to get your gun into the fight faster than the bad guy? How many of those upgrades and “tactical” features are simple to operate, and can help you starting putting rounds on target faster than your enemy?

When it comes to guns and gun fighting, complex gadgets and features that must be deployed or adjusted before you can pull the trigger will slow you down and cost you the initiative in a fight. If it is easy to operate and works every time… it is tactical!

Features and gadgets should also assist you in making simple motions that maximize your speed to target. Economy of motion can also be translated as smooth! Smooth is fast and motion that detracts from your ability to move your rifle quickly onto a target is not tactical.

I’m not trying to say that all features and gadgets are bad. There are some very good pieces of kit out there. I just want you to evaluate the need for a cool new doohickey. Is it going to interfere with your ability to fight? OR Will it give you an advantage if you train with it a little bit?

Lastly… does it work, is it simple to use/operate and can it take a beating?

What is your definition of tactical now? What items hanging from your quad rail are just tacti-cool? How can you simplify and make it truly tactical? Go forth my friends and evaluate!

Be safe and Godspeed!

Scott S – One Weapon, Any Tool
www.oneweaponanytool.com or find us on Facebook!

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