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July 5, 2022


I actually composed this message yesterday, but lightning struck our internet tower up here in Jemez and then the power was out for a good portion of the day today. Fun stuff. Anyway, I want you to consider that half of 2022 is behind us. We just celebrated our Nation's "independence," a word defined as "a condition of freedom from the control, influence, support, aid, or the like, of others." It is apparent that many of our countrymen place less value on this state of self-reliance, with its limitless potential for both risk and reward, than on the aegis of government; alms and hollow promises of safety & security.

Almost 250 years ago, Sam Adams warned of this sentiment in an address to the State House of Pennsylvania: "Contemplate the mangled bodies of your countrymen, and then say 'what should be the reward of such sacrifices?' Bid us and our posterity bow the knee, supplicate the friendship and plough, and sow, and reap, to glut the avarice of the men who have let loose on us the dogs of war to riot in our blood and hunt us from the face of the earth? If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude than the animated contest of freedom — go home from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains sit lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that you were our countrymen!"

We just celebrated "independence" day, but consider the chains that we are now burdened with: recent national gun control legislation, forced "vaccinations," a return to wearing facial coverings in Los Alamos, high energy costs of foreign oil and minerals... We are carrying the heavy yoke of mismanagement and the disastrous results of politically-motivated decisions of others. Does this make us free from "control, influence, support, aid, or the like...?" Should we be celebrating "independence?"

Be aware of the efforts currently underway to rob you of your independence. Do you think you will be more "free" in electric vehicles? Do you think you will be better able to protect yourself and family with "red flag laws" that rob you of due process? We really need to consider the profound changes that the past 18 months have brought to our states, our nation, and our world and measure them against the tradition we just celebrated. Would our founders, and all those who fought and suffered for the past two-and-a-half centuries for human rights and liberty in this "land of opportunity" be proud of where we are today? Would they consider our current status a just return on their investment of blood, sweat, and tears? You decide.

How do you define independence? How do you celebrate it? Is it just a day off work? Is it a fireworks display? Is it a weekend of relaxation and rest that are the "tranquility of servitude?" ..or do we still value that "animated contest of freedom?"

Most of us are already bearing the heavy burden of society's expectations and have more than earned some rest and indulgence on a holiday weekend. How we spend our time is a personal decision, but I would charge you that amidst the recreations of this holiday, you should make time to take take some action to gain back a measure of your independence. Do at least one thing this week that will help you achieve an improved stance of "independence," whether that is paying off a debt, building your personal supplies, assembling a preparedness kit, investing in some training or learning a new skill. Make it a new family tradition. As we celebrate independence, let us be confident that we can individually be independent.


Late last year, I updated this website and began this newsletter. At the time, I wasn't anticipating the changes that I would be facing this year. As most of you know, I have recently relocated to Eastern Idaho for various and sundry reasons, including a new and exciting job opportunity. After the first week, I can tell you the Idahoans love their Second Amendment!

But, back to the point... ADC's reach now includes subscribers, alumni, and friends in multiple states including: Ohio, Virginia, Michigan, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, Idaho, and probably others as well. In order to keep things relevant to this audience, I'm going to try to stick to issues affecting us nationally, as well as gear, techniques, and occasionally expounding my philosophies on guns and freedom. If there are topics you would like to see more information on, or something you would like to see me cover in this newsletter, please send me an email and let me know!


ADA LLC. and ADC LLC. New Mexico are now officially closed. I called the BATFE field office in Albuquerque this morning to tell them I have closed out my books and would be discontinuing my FFL here. We will see what the future brings and whether or not I pursue an FFL in Idaho. As for instruction, The NMDPS will not certify non-New Mexico residents as CCW instructors, and therefore, as a "former" NM resident, I am no longer a certified CCW instructor in this state.
For the moment, our live classes are on hold. I promised some virtual classes this winter, and I am still planning on holding those. They will be announced in future editions of this newsletter. Look forward to Black Rifle 101, Precision Rifle Optics, and perhaps a class on firearms cleaning and maintenance.


In the previous newsletter, I mentioned that Northern New Mexico, particularly the Los Alamos area, could use more good instructors. I have already had a few folks evince an interest. If it is something you are thinking about, step by step, here's what it would involve:

1. Contact a local NRA Training Counselor and take the instructor certifications from NRA in Pistol and Personal Protection Inside the Home (at minimum).

2. Update your AHA or Red Cross First Aid/CPR certification.

3. Obtain instructor's insurance (~$400/year through Lockton Risk)

4. Find a location to teach (classroom and range). The Sportsmen's Club (for example) will have its own requirements - and will want to see copies of your instructor certifications, first aid/CPR certification, be added as an "additional insured" on your instructor's insurance, and will charge a facility use fee.

5. Create curriculum for your class (I can help with this part)

6. Submit required information to New Mexico Department of Public Safety (Certifications, Insurance, Curriculum, etc... all listed in the New Mexico Concealed Handgun Law Booklet).

7. Once the state approves your certification, assemble the necessary equipment (extra PPE, classroom supplies, targets and stands, guns/ammo, etc...)

8. Advertise classes and start teaching!

Those are the steps broken down as simply as possible. Many of these steps have a number of sub-steps and have their own associated time and expenses.

Keep in mind, meeting the minimum requirements for being an instructor means you can teach classes, but doing this business well means getting additional training to improve your own skills. I have taken (and continue to take) classes from some of the best instructors and schools in the nation to maintain my skills. Training involves more than just shooting, it also involves mindset and tactics. You should read books like Jeff Cooper's Principles of Personal Defense, "On Killing" by Dave Grossman, "No Nonsense Self Defense" by Mark MacYoung, and "The Gift of Fear" by Gavin DeBecker. You should follow some of the other instructors on social media that post good information - Greg Ellifritz, Clint Smith and others.

Be forewarned: This can be strenuous work! If you aren't in good physical condition, this may not be for you. You will be setting up and tearing down classrooms and ranges and hauling around a lot of gear and ammunition. After class, you will have to clean and maintain your equipment to get the best performance out of it. There are some significant initial costs to get started. The state requires you to submit your curriculum and other information annually. You will have to go to an "in service" training every 2 years, and you will still have to do your standard refresher trainings even though you are an instructor. There are a lot of records to maintain and you will be audited periodically - which could include a live classroom audit to ensure you are teaching approved curriculum.

New Mexico charges gross receipts tax, so firearms classes are taxable, meaning you will need State and County/City business licenses. I recommend getting set up with an accountant ASAP for the taxes.

You will be exposed to a lot of noise (gunfire), so wearing your PPE scrupulously is a must. You will also be responsible for your own safety and that of everyone on the range or affected by your shooting activities. If your student lets a round sail over the backstop - you both own it.

If you don't have a military or law enforcement background (as I do not) you have an up-hill battle (as I have had.) There is a general assumption that civilians (or as I prefer: "armed citizens") not in an armed profession can't possibly know anything about teaching people to use lethal force. If you are reading this newsletter, you know this isn't true, but the general uneducated population thinks this way and a lot of instructors with LE/Mil backgrounds promote that mentality. This is difficult to overcome! But, no matter what, do not exaggerate your background or experience! Be truthful about who you are and what you have done and be prepared for people to look elsewhere based on the perception of experience. I've been doing this a long time and I still experience that. You don't need to be a former SEAL or Delta Operator to teach people how to carry a concealed handgun, but you should be a safe and efficient gun handler and have satisfactory marksmanship skills.

Don't do it if you don't plan to do it right! The world (and this industry) already has plenty of mediocrity and incompetence. We can't afford it in the shooting community. If you are going to do it, commit to doing it correctly, do it with excellence. It is a lot of work, but if done well it can be very rewarding.

If you still think this is a path your want to follow, go to the NRA's website and find the nearest training counselor putting on pistol and personal protection inside the home classes. Once you get those certificates, let me know and I can help you with your curriculum.


In my last email I gave some recommendations on accessories for your AR-15. In this email, I'd like to talk a little bit about EDC or "Every Day Carry" items. In honor of today's power outage in my (soon to be former) neighborhood, lets talk about flashlights.
When it comes to handheld flashlights, I am predominantly a fan of the Surefire Tactician and the small Streamlight LED flashlights. These crank out a LOT of illumination, but they also suck down batteries. I recommend using rechargeable CR123 batteries for your EDC lights and keep them changed frequently. The nice thing about rechargables is they can be charged with a solar charger or any USB power supply.

Most good, small, handheld LED flashlights take 2 of these batteries and that will keep them powered for quite a while if you use them correctly - short necessary bursts - rather than prolonged periods of constant illumination (which will tend to get these small lights nice and hot!)

Make sure you carry these lights so they can't be inadvertently turned on in your pocket, which can be a safety issue. Also make sure you aren't carrying these lights in work areas where they might present a problem (such as in hazardous environments).

The benefit of these small lights, vs. the older style large flashlights like "Maglights" is that they facilitate being used in a number of configurations for low-light shooting. The larger flashlights only work well in the crossed-wrist or "Harries" position, or perhaps the FBI/Away from Body technique, also sometimes called "around the clock." Small handheld lights can be used in these ways, but can also be used in the "Cigar" or "Syringe" method, gripping the light between the index and middle finger of the support hand (like a cigar) and activating it by squeezing the tailcap switch back against the palm (like a syringe).

In that position, the support hand can be brought together with the shooting hand to illuminate the target area, or it can be used separately from the firearm for searching when it would not be appropriate to point the muzzle at unknown areas.


The recently passed Federal Gun Control regulations may seem to have a minimal impact - especially on us here in New Mexico because we already have red flag laws, however, this legislation is bad for you and me - and does nothing to dissuade the criminals. The usual suspects are already saying this legislation didn't go far enough and are pushing for magazine capacity restrictions and bans on so-called "assault weapons." Please do your part to push back - call and write your representatives! New Mexico will be pushing restrictive laws again on the state level pretty soon. Make sure you let your representative know your opinion on the matter!

That's it for this newsletter, I want to thank you all again for your support these past 5 years in New Mexico, and since 2012 for those of you in Ohio and nearby states. A special thank you again to those of you who helped me close out my books here in New Mexico over the past month.
"The citizen who cannot accomplish well the smaller purposes of public life, cannot compass the larger. The vast power of endurance, forbearance, patience, and performance, of a free people, is acquired only by continual exercise of all the functions, like the healthful physical human vigor. If the individual citizens have it not, the State must equally be without it. It is of the essence of a free government, that the people should not only be concerned in making the laws, but also in their execution. No man ought to be more ready to obey and administer the law than he who has helped to make it. The business of government is carried on for the benefit of all, and every co-partner should give counsel and co-operation.
Remember also, as another shoal on which States are wrecked, that free States always tend toward the depositing of the citizens in strata, the creation of castes, the perpetuation of the jus divinum to office in families. The more democratic the State, the more sure this result. For, as free States advance in power, there is a strong tendency toward centralization, not from deliberate evil intention, but from the course of events and the indolence of human nature. The executive powers swell and enlarge to inordinate dimensions; and the Executive is always aggressive with respect to the nation. Offices of all kinds are multiplied to reward partisans; the brute force of the sewerage and lower strata of the mob obtains large representation, first in the lower offices, and at last in Senates; and Bureaucracy raises its bald head, bristling with pens, girded with spectacles, and bunched with ribbon. The art of Government becomes like a Craft, and its guilds tend to become exclusive, as those of the Middle Ages."

~Albert Pike
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PO Box 520 Los Alamos, NM 87544
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