As most of you who read this stuff know, I am an anachronistic old coot. My alma mater is an old school with the motto, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” So I find it a bit amusing to see so many new tactical “experts” extolling things like the isosceles stance and appendix carry, as well as a plethora of other things, as new, innovative and “the only way to do things with a modern pistol.” You may recall that recently I have been introducing a lady to shooting a pistol with an eye toward self-defense. I explained to her the isosceles and Weaver stances, explained the advantages of both and let her try them, telling her to use the one she felt most comfortable with.
We haven’t got to carry options yet, but when we do, I will explain the appendix carry but warn her against it. By the way, for those of you who think the appendix carry is something new and innovative, Jeff Cooper explained it very well in several books, including The Complete Book of Shooting that was published in the late 1960s. I do seem to recall that he never mentioned the appendix carry as an inside the waistband (IWB) option. The good colonel was not a common man, did not write for the so-called common man because he held such folks with some disdain. Carrying a weapon—any weapon—requires something more than minimal intelligence. In other words, carrying a firearm inside your pants and pointed at your groin should obviously be stupid to anyone with an IQ greater that Arctic seawater temperature. Besides, it violates Rule 2 (Never allow your muzzle to cover anything you are not willing to see destroyed). There are some things located in the groin area that very few of us—regardless of gender—are willing to see molested in any way, much less destroyed.
There seems to be more incidents occurring with increasing regularity where individuals have had a pistol go off “accidentally”—read negligently—while inserting said pistol into their waistband approximately where their appendix is located. Another one surfaced today in the various newsfeeds I see on the Internet.
Usually one sees this stupid carrying technique on people with nice, flat bellies. Perhaps they use this technique to accentuate that physical characteristic and make them more appealing to others. For those of us with a little food storage in that area, it makes even less sense. Not only is it uncomfortable, but the belly acts as a weapon-retention device and spoils the biggest reason touted for this type of carry—speed.
An IWB holster does nothing to increase security or safety for an appendix carry. If anything, it adds to the danger by providing extra foreign stuff that could get blown into the wound in the event of a discharge. About all that does is provide the nurses in the ER some additional levity as they try to remove the junk from your junk and prevent infection.
If I may, I’d like to steal a phrase from my buddy Rob Leahy of Simply Rugged Holsters: Since I am somewhat attached to my family jewels, I’d like them to accompany me to my grave. I prefer the rather traditional—big surprise—hip carry. In the past, I did use an IWB holster, but since my hip replacement the scar left there distracts me when wearing an IWB holster. So I now wear my leather on the outside.
As they say, “Your mileage may vary,” and maybe you have been carrying your pistol pointed at your junk for years with no problem. That is entirely your prerogative. But let’s just hope that your luck holds out indefinitely.