Optics Time

What we’re starting to see is adoption of handgun optics on defensive, carry and even duty guns. Just browse the internet and you’ll see all manner of tactical Delta Ninja dudes grimacing at unseen targets while crushing the grips of red dot-equipped pistols. But it’s not just the operator photo models brandishing pistol red dots; I’m seeing average Joe’s like me put them on home defense and carry pistols.

Why? The debate over pistol optics merits will rage on for years, as did the arguments over sticking glass (!) scopes on rifles. Yes, trillions of iron sight shooters insisted putting such fragile devices on working rifles was a sure path to self-immolation and perpetual embarrassment. Who in their right mind would dare spoil a tough and reliable iron sight system just to gain the benefit of actually seeing stuff at long distances? Yet progress happened. No one bats an eye at scope-equipped rifles anymore.

We’re at the inflection point with pistol optics. New red dots are tough as nails, compact and run for tens of thousands of hours on a single battery. Your mileage may vary, but for me, pistol optics yield a net positive. Once I learned to stop looking for the dot and focus on the front sight as usual, I found it leaps into view effortlessly. I’m (so far) a tad slower with a red dot at contact distances, say five yards and in, but much more accurate and measurably faster at any distance past that.