Guns and shooting: why have a .22lr rifle and handgun?

In such a position, some scheme must be devised which will suit the circumstances, and if we can succeed in deluding the enemy, the peril may be escaped.” Tu Yu (Excerpted from Sun Tsu – On hemmed-in ground, resort to strategy.)

A .22lr rifle and handgun allow for quiet, accurate acquisition of game during times when the use of louder means of acquisition may in fact cause you to lose the element of surprise. Additional uses are in defense or stealthy use of defensive illusion. Where a large caliber or medium caliber will cause added noise, a small rimfire caliber specifically the .22lr is not only practical, it is necessary.

There are many arguments against the use of this caliber, they range from the ridiculous (its too small) to the semi-legitimate (its unreliable.) I will answer each of those arguments in order as well as give additional benefits for the use and continued application of the .22lr in both combative situations and survival and prepping.

  1. Size – as with all caliber arguments, size is not the most important unless you are looking to stop something immediately, in which case, I highly recommend either a .50 caliber BMG or a 20mm in your preferred handgun type as these are the only calibers I know of that can immediately stop a human sized threat every time with one shot. Of course, holding these handguns may be a bit of a chore, but, such are what we deal with as bad ass hunters and defenders of freedom. (The simple reality is that perforation of blood bearing vessels and or fracturing of weight bearing bones are the only sure ways with any currently available popular caliber to stop a threat. Its called, rapid exsanguination and this is the desired effect by any who uses firearms or bows and arrows.)
  2. Reliability – I absolutely agree this is an issue, IF you use Ruger .22 lr handguns and big box murikan Walmart special deals! Of course if you use reliable handguns and solid ammunition like say, CCI, Aguila (Ely primed), Ely and other similar ammunition you wont have failures due to ammunition. As for firearms, well, honestly- this will be argued by people who shoot 50 – 500 rounds every few months all day, but the simple fact is, there are many far more reliable firearms then Ruger 10/22s and Mark II/III handguns. My personal favorites for both accuracy and reliability are Mossberg 702 rifles, Marlin Model 60’s, Browning Buckmarks and Walther P22s the new Ruger SR22 (a virtual clone of the Walther P22) is also quite a sweet handgun.
  3. Other arguments exist, however, none of them have any merit except in stories and through the desk bound modern military or police officers whose sole experience with any of these is through Reddit and various forums.

The real question that must be asked is not, why have a .22lr handgun and rifle but rather, WHY DO YOU NOT? Honestly, having them is far more beneficial in the long term than not having them. Remember, I can carry 5000 rounds of .22lr for approximately the same weight as 1000 rounds of 5.56 55grn ball or 700 rounds of 62 grn green tip. Given the fact that I can accurately use a .22lr through 300 yards and reliably take small and medium game through 200 yards with one, the only real argument against them becomes one of simple personal taste and need. Though for the sake of the family and those around you who may need help learning to shoot a .22lr will help get them past the flinch, learn to aim and be a sure fire way of turning the anti gunner into the pro gunner with style!

Remember, be smart, always think straight and aim small, miss small!

Free the mind and the body will follow


About Jesse Mathewson

Jesse Mathewson is the author of the popular blog, and provides commentary to many varied places based on a background that includes education in criminal justice, history, religion and even insurgency tactics and tactical training. His current role in his community is as an organizer of sorts and a preacher of community solidarity and agorism. He also runs Liberty Practical Training, a self defense school specializing in the practical applications of defensive approaches versus the theoretical. As an agorist, voluntaryist and atheist his life is seen as crazy and wild by many, though once they get to know him most realize he is a bluntly honest individual who will give you the shirt off his back if he believes it is necessary to help you. Very simple, "That which is voluntary between all individuals involved is always right, if it is not voluntary, it is always wrong."
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4 Responses to Guns and shooting: why have a .22lr rifle and handgun?

  1. Dora says:

    I want to purchase a .22 handgun. What are your top 3 recommendations?


    • It would depend on where you live, which you prefer and what would be most reliable for you.

      I have found the following to be most effective, accurate, ammunition friendly (will shoot almost anything).

      Ruger SR22
      Walther P22
      Browning Buckmark

      However, everyone has different mileage. As I personally prefer to have several spare magazines, a spare barrel, springs and be able to easily suppress this is also a consideration to keep in mind.

      Currently I have walther p22 and ruger sr22 (supressor ready model)

      Again however, this is something best decided after shooting them yourself.

      I have friends who shoot quite a bit and they have had wonderful results with the following handguns…

      Beretta Neo
      Ruger 45/22 (may be wrong on designation)
      Ruger mk I and II
      Bersa .22lr


  2. Chip Oclassen says:

    Hey Jessie, I love the .22, kinda hate recoil. A .22 can kill almost anything, laws against it’s use for large game animals, I think, has more to do with discouraging poachers than any practical consideration. People who can’t shoot have the biggest guns it seems. Keep writing my friend.


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