The .500 Magnum: A story of strategy and understanding

I don’t talk about it much but one of my very first occupations, for which I spent two years of education gearing up for, was a professional gunsmith. I was newly married and my wife and I wanted to have a little gunsmith shop in the back of our home. I had a Federal Firearms License and had made several investments to build our life in that direction. However, I grew weary of some of the customers that came to my residence and having little children of mine running around decided that it probably wasn’t bestimage to do that kind of work with my family nearby. Some of the people who solicited my work were not the kind of people I considered upright, and I wasn’t willing to put up with them until my client list allowed me to be more selective. So I gave it up in favor of new horizons. But I never stopped enjoying the sport of shooting or following the new developments in the firearms field. To my mind a well machined firearm capable of controlled explosions sending a lead projectile into a small target many yards away is a fascinating achievement in human endeavor. With that said, I have always been a revolver guy as opposed to a semi-automatic gun user. There are less moving parts in a revolver making them more reliable. Of the recent developments in revolvers there has not been anything more spectacular than the Smith & Wesson X Frame models leading up to the .500 Magnum. I fell in love with the gun when it first came out in 2003. For the bachelor party of one of my daughters we skipped the strippers and instead rented out Target World firing off the .500 magnum they had until the small hours of the evening. But I never found justification to buy one—until now.

It’s an expensive gun to own and shoot. It costs over $3.00 per shot just to fire off the ammunition but what you get is a weapon that will penetrate about anything you aim it at. It’s really quite an achievement in raw power that you can hold in your hand. It is one of the most intimidating weapons on the market from both sides of the trigger. It’s not the most practical thing to use and takes some getting used to. I kept putting off buying one, until one day this past Saturday when I got off the live radio show with Matt Clark’s WAAM broadcast and decided that it was time to make the plunge. CLICK HERE TO REVIEW.

The topic of our show was why there was a left-leaning media bias and we flew through a lot of topics in the hour-long broadcast. But we did it in such a way that it put in perspective to me that our nation is in a lot of trouble. Not in trouble in the way where the government is going to show up and take all our guns, or involve themselves in vast conspiracies against the American people. We are in trouble due to the sheer mismanagement of our nation by really terrible people, like the Clintons, the Obamas, and the offshoots of the Clinton Foundation. There are real thugs in these groups associated with these people who have mismanaged our nation with an agenda based assumption that the American presidency is to be eclipsed in favor of a United Nations coalition not organized politically so much as it is through charitable organizations. The writing is clearly on the wall, the Clintons are selling influence, Obama is planning on being a multimillionaire community activist that will take the Clinton Foundation to the next level making whoever sits in the White House more of a token figure than they are now. Deals will be made outside of our political system by donors organized through charitable organizations, and nobody will say anything about it because the evil is being hidden behind altruistic purposes. Meanwhile the failures of progressivism is becoming rapidly evident. The Ferguson and Baltimore riots are just the tip of a powder keg intentionally set to explode in our current time. The poor have been deliberately fed socialism as a means to equality and they will riot to steal what they think they deserve from those who have things as the Obama and Clinton types stoke the fires from behind the scenes.   Additionally over the weekend Obama showed that he intends to prohibit the federal government from providing military-style equipment to local departments putting stricter controls on other weapons and gear distributed to law enforcement. Clearly that is a decision meant to embolden city protestors into continuing their riots and destruction—but in the long run is to fulfill the Obama desire to have a more Justice Department controlled police force at a national level. It is quite clear that these are errors in management of government resources that will become very problematic in the future. So it is up to each of us to decide how we want to deal with the ramifications of that mismanagement.

After I left the air with Matt my wife and I talked about it seriously—what to do at the family level with all these national faux pas. It can be debated as to whether those faux pas are motivated by progressive strategies, or whether they are driven by sheer stupidity—but the fact remains, that it will be up to the sane of us to put things right. We certainly won’t look for the fight, but the fight is certainly coming to our doors whether or not we like it—and this isn’t even considering the problems from foreign radicals flowing across an unguarded U.S. border. Idiots or insurgents are in charge of our nation and the ramifications of their behavior will have an impact on our lives. So, what are we supposed to do about it except use the tools available to us such as this blog, or radio shows like Matt’s to stop the encroachment of progressive politics and the results of its many failures? Well, I thought about my old days as a gunsmith and my three decades as a Wild West preservationist and realized that I needed to get more behind the Second Amendment not only as a plot device, but as a strategic counterpunch to the villainy that is sprouting up around us like dandelions on a spring day.

It was really my wife’s idea to buy the .500 Magnum. I was ready for it, I have been for years, but she needed to be ready for that. So we talked about it, and she clearly was. I have other guns, but nothing on the scale of that S&W .500 X Frame. It is the most powerful production handgun in the world and will remain so for many years in the future. The sheer power of that gun in anything bigger would likely shatter the wrist of a shooter. It is right at the top end of what a human body can legitimately handle. We decided we wanted the gun before the Memorial Day holiday so we pretty much got in the car and headed to the store. Our first stop was Right 2 Arms which is basically at the end of my street in Liberty Township. I like supporting area businesses so I wanted to give him the kind of business that would allow him to close early on a weekend. When I told the owner what I was looking for he laughed as if such a large gun on his shelves was something that just wasn’t feasible. But he offered to find me one within a few days. His price was less than the one I had been eyeing for several years at Bass Pro Shop also near my home, but I didn’t want to wait. We thanked him and went to Bass Pro to find the gun.

The .500 Magnum was where I expected it to be. It was an older model X Frame that had the standard compensator at the end of the barrel. It was the same exact style of gun that I had shot at Target World many years earlier, so we bought it on the spot. After thinking about the progressive intrusions on our lives so evident in the nightly news, I was happy that I had bought the gun nicknamed by all the workers as the “hand cannon” from the popular outdoor store because it was so refreshingly American—the way it was always intended. After completing a quick form for the background check, they gave me the gun, sold me the ammunition as my wife and I then went shopping for other items carrying the gun around with us as we grabbed some food. Nobody looked sideways at the big gun as I carried it around the store like a normal purchase. In the world of Bass Pro guns were not demonized, they were flying off the shelves at a rapid rate and the people selling them were helpful, and excited. It was a very positive experience.

Back in the old days when I first registered for my Federal Firearms License there was always a kind of regulation heavy taboo associated with guns that was wonderfully not present at Bass Pro. I understand Cabelas has the same general approach. I would expect openness at typical gun shops, but those types of stores have a higher profile and are geared more toward retail shopping. Walmart and Dicks offers ammunition, but more and more buying them feels socially like it’s some kind of pornography, which is completely wrong. That was not the experience at Bass Pro. I bought my .500 Magnum and all the staff was excessively helpful. It was exactly what I needed to feel when buying the long-awaited S&W X Frame—it restored my hope just a bit in America and the kind of people who are more and more living in the cracks running from the mismanagement of the cities and their left-leaning governments within whatever unfortunate county those cities reside in. The suburbs, where I live are filled with people shopping at Bass Pro Shops buying guns, ammunition, and fishing gear the way Americans always have. If they watch the news it’s usually Fox—if they listen to the radio, its likely talk radio like Rush Limbaugh—and they are under assault by the mismanaged resources of the federal government.

It occurred to me as I thought about buying that gun and the experience of purchasing it that if every American did something similar that the act alone would go a long way to defeating many of the progressive failures that are coming. It’s nice to have a military and a police department to sweep away bad guys without our direct involvement, but more often than not, they are getting their orders from knuckle-dragging slugs that have the intellect of a hard-boiled egg. They really are not qualified to protect our homes and our property. With that in mind it is fully my intention to dust off my old gunsmithing days and get involved in more promotional activity that will make other people want to go to Bass Pro Shops or Cabelas and buy themselves a new gun just for the pleasure of having it. Because if they do, that action goes a long way to eroding away the hopes and dreams of progressive insurgents who want to disarm America into a European type of colony firmly under the guidance of the United Nations. And the United Nations will largely be shaped by people like those involved in the Clinton Foundation crimes. That’s not acceptable to me, and my family isn’t going to suffer because of people like them. It’s not that shooting people is the solution either, but sometimes just having guns is enough to keep the bad guys in the bad areas when all hell breaks loose, which looks like an inevitable destination for our current culture. When hell does get loose it helps to unleash some hell of your own and for me that answer is the .500 Magnum—a wonderful treasure from Smith & Wesson. The best way to fight back against progressives is to buy a gun—and Bass Pro Shops makes it wonderfully easy. Better than it used to be in the early days of gunsmithing. Some things do get better with time.

Rich Hoffman


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