In this issue, we report on two of the latest firearm designs—and highlight one now long forgotten—and we present a heartwarming story involving family-centric defensive firearm training. Altogether, they serve to illustrate that the American firearm industry and its consumers are a diverse community of responsible citizens who strive to serve one another’s interests and, as a result, ensure a safer quality of life for the entire country.
In his story “The Ultimate Crossover: Beretta’s A300 Ultima Patrol,” Field Editor Aaron Carter tests one of the most advanced defensive shotguns on the market today—from one of the world’s oldest companies. Having personally benefitted from professional training with an earlier version of that platform, I can attest that the A300 Ultima’s mechanical and ergonomic features, such as the wildly forgiving gas-operated action and expert-inspired ergonomics, are evidence that the modern scattergun continues to evolve and is more viable for self-defense than ever.
Field Editor B. Gil Horman, in “Trailblazer Pivot: A New Twist On The PCC,” examines an interesting new take on the pistol-caliber carbine that is compatible with magazines from one of the most popular pistol brands on the market. Its unique design allows it to be quickly folded for handy transport and storage, and the story of its development is yet another reminder that innovation in firearms sometimes comes from “out of the blue.” More broadly, though, it is a reminder that innovation from gifted minds, working alone or within established corporations, can only thrive within a free society that values and rewards the entrepreneurial spirit.
In “Arming My Daughter: A Defensive Handgun Trainer’s Personal Tale,” field editor and nationally known firearm trainer Justin Dyal relays how he addressed concerns for the safety of his daughter, Laney, by training her to shoot. One day of that experience was expertly captured by Senior Photographer Forrest MacCormack, whose images have graced this magazine’s covers and interior pages for 10 years. The story is a touching tribute to a father’s love, and yet another powerful example of the positive, life-saving steps that responsible armed citizens can take toward a saner society.
Then, Executive Editor Evan Brune, in “The Dardick Handgun: A Famous Firearm Flop,” re-visits the curious legacy of Ukrainian-born inventor David Dardick, whose open-chamber pistol and rifle concept and triangular-cross-section “tround” cartridges amounted to the proverbial “flash in the pan” of firearm history but little else in terms of sales.
And such is illustrative of how the firearm industry, or any other segment of the economy in America for that matter, ultimately rises and falls on the merits of its ideas. If they are sound and the products that result from them meet with demand in the marketplace, then they succeed. Of course, that formula is difficult enough even within the protections afforded by the broader freedoms unique to America. It’s nigh impossible without them—especially the Second Amendment, which spurs creative minds to envision new and more efficient means by which law-abiding citizens can preserve their own lives and those of their loved ones.
So, while we thoroughly enjoy keeping NRA members abreast of the latest developments in firearms, optics, ammunition and other shooting-related gear, we are most motivated to remind our fellow citizens that the uniquely American right to keep and bear arms is one that our entire community of patriots must band together to preserve.