Picking a gun to match your invite to a wedding or funeral

By Editor, Nov 15, 2015 | |
  1. Editor
    Every grown man needs to own a suit for three reasons: court (which you will hopefully never need), funerals (which are hopefully rare), and weddings. It's these more formal occasions that you also need to evaluate your firearm choice.

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    (Image via wiki)

    Are you being serious?

    Yes of course we are. While you can strike 'court' from the list, as you should only be carrying there if you are a court officer, weddings and funerals are almost tailor-made for concealed carry musts. They can be very emotional occasions for their own respective reasons. Furthermore, any gathering of people is a target for criminal elements and others. When I worked for the sheriffs department, one of the main reasons for working funeral details was not traffic control for the procession, but in providing a deterrent in the parking lot of the funeral home so mourners did not have their cars broken into.

    Then there is always the possibility that there would be those who would violently want to disrupt the event. In a funeral, there can be estranged family or former business partners who come for one last jab. In a wedding, there is the possibility of jilted exes, spurned former mates, and others who could show up with ill will on their mind.

    Sadly, shootings have occurred at both weddings (see this fatal shooting last Thursday) and funerals (this incident where 7 were injured last month) in the United States in recent months. With that aspect to think of, would you rather have it and not need it, than need it and not have it?

    Concealed carry options

    Respectful, quiet, carry of a firearm at a large private event such as these needs to be just that. In Iraq, you often disregard gunplay on Thursdays as it's the traditional wedding day and nothing says 'Just Married' like the bursts from a few AK-47s. Well, this isn't Fallujah and open carry, as well as long arms, are generally frowned upon. Yes, we know you think Chris Costa would want you to do otherwise, but unless it's a wedding at Magpul's office that you are invited to, odds are discretion is the better part of valor on this one.

    A small, compact firearm that is still effective and with a decent magazine capacity to engage an active shooter is your rule of thumb. This means Baby Glocks, Ruger's SR line, Kimber Solo, Walther's PPS, the SIG P290, Hi point's C9 and C380 and others come to mind. You can go revolver such as a nice S&W J-frame or similar, just be in touch with your reload and how to do it effectively.

    When you say concealed carry while wearing a suit jacket, many think, "Finally! I get to wear that awesome Galco Miami shoulder holster rig with by Bren Ten." Well, remember that whole respectful, discreet, and quiet thing. Many shoulder holsters are only marginally concealable and what if you have to take your jacket off, then what?

    IWB carry on your strong side at about the 2-3-4 o'clock area is your best bet-- but not your only one and, regardless of what you chose, be sure to practice drawing safely from this position beforehand.

    Wear a good belt and a comfortable holster. Preferably one that still allows a tuck. It needs to be secure and unseen. What happens if you are suddenly asked to be a pallbearer or help perform a physical task? Do you really want your firearm to skitter out across the floor at that moment? Stay away from small of the back carry or offhand carry as you can run into issues if you have to draw while seated.

    As an example of the guy you don't want to be, in October a permit holder attending a posh wedding at the Waldorf in New York City, Vladimir Gotlibovsky of Brighton Beach, accidentally cranked out a round from his Ruger 9mm. Although he was able to slip the gun to family who spirited it away from the scene before the NYPD showed up, the Manhattan DA is still looking to charge him with reckless endangerment.

    Final thoughts

    While the safety of yourself and those with you is always at the forefront of your mind, remember the event isn't necessarily about you, so don't make it so. If you know that the venue you are going to is off limits to firearms of any means, don't push it. The last thing you want to do is offend the person you are coming there to support.

    Further, check and make sure the venue you are attending is not a declared gun free zone and, if it is, know your legal rights to carry there.

    If it's a wedding or an "Irish wake" where liquid refreshments of the alcoholic sort are served, refrain from getting blitzed if you are carrying. Nobody likes a drunk with a gun at a reception. Even if you are a fun drunk.

    Above all, be safe, and show respect.

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