Prohibitionists want to ban it.  We want to keep it.  I argue for the AR15 as an armed citizen’s home defense weapon.


  1. Excellent video Mas. Makes me wish I had an AR. I find the older I get the more cumbersome the 12 gauge is.
    Happy Easter to you and the Gang !!

    • Linda,

      The Armalite Rifle Fifteen (sorry, I just have to be different) is a great choice as we get older, but so is a 20-gauge shotgun. I learned that from Mas. The 12-gauge shotgun, converted to caliber, is 72 or 73 caliber, depending on whether you want to round the bore diameter in inches up or down. The 20-gauge shotgun is 61 or 62 caliber, for the same reason. Don’t tell the anti-gunners, because converting gauge to caliber makes shotguns sound scary. I mean, they are over .50 caliber Browning Machine Gun, right? That’s big.

  2. Happy Easter to you and Gail! Nice video–was worth re-watching. Many excellent points on practical advantages of the AR and on why they are legitimately chosen for home defense.
    Some years ago my daughter’s (now former) boyfriend was a recent graduate of the Dallas Police Academy and while visiting in our home questioned why non-officers need an AR. I brought up the multiple assailant scenario and pointed out that police officers take on armed criminals with “high capacity” pistols, multiple spare mags, body armor, partner at their elbow and still found it advantageous to pull an AR from their cruiser. And, the response time to a radio call for “shots fired–officer needs assistance” was demonstrably faster and more overwhelming than to a 911 call. By comparison, the homeowner was flying solo, usually without body armor, would need to thumb-dial a phone rather than push one button to summon help. Certainly, if the officer needed the AR, the homeowner needed at least that much.

    He conceded that he had not thought of the issue in that light and graciously allowed that I might be correct. He was also a very intelligent young man and might have been simply being diplomatic towards his girlfriend’s father.

    Your point about the adaptability of the AR to many family members is an additional, powerful argument.

    Best Regards,

    • Jeff,

      You, and many others, probably know this, but some readers may not. Before the North Hollywood Shootout (February 28th, 1997), I don’t think LEOs used AR-15s. After that shootout, they switched from shotguns to ARs.

      • Yup. I grew up in California several decades back, and the one sure way we could always identify the CHP cruisers was the “boompole” mounted vertically directly midships.. the twelve bore riot gun that was standard issue for CHP. They could curl up that red aimable side lamp, have the low mounted red (blue had not yet come into use) flashing lights in front of the grille or some other place where they were impossible to see when the cruiser was “stalking” you. But that riot gun was the sure giveaway. Recognising that one “feature” of those big Fury cruisers saved me quite a bit of cash back in those days.

        Must be harder these days, the AR is short enough to hunker down below the high dashes common today. Sigh.. but I don’t speed any more in California. I just avoid the place altogether. Problem solved.

  3. Sometimes greater penetration without a lot of blast is desirable. One of the options for .300 Blackout is a 200 grain bullet at about 1040 fps, depending on individual firearm and barrel length. Several other calibers are available for ARs, too, of course. With Mas and Clint Smith recommending .223 (or 5,56?), though, it might be the best all-around choice. I am not fully certain about a significant difference, if any, between.223 and 5.56 being a factor. One or the other seem to be in the abundant supply.
    If you have, or could have, kids in the house, make sure that they are not going to do stupid things like try to pull bullets out of cartridge cases as I did at age 5 or 6, after watching the Lone Ranger blast his way out of jail with pistol powder. Teach the kids, and follow up.

    • YES< TEACH those kids, early and often. Make it gun, and challenging for them, and they'll learn quickly and well. I've worked with kids as young as six on the line at Appleseed shoots. They (and their Dad) loved to learn, and so they did.
      Funnest one was an eleven year old boy, who jumped at the opportunity to fire a Garand after the event was "over". Sitting, five rounds, he safed and cleared the rifle when he was done rose to his feet with a mile wide grin on his face, turned to his Dad and said DAD!! I want one!!".
      He got it, as did big sister, and mboth Mom and Dad. CMP were busy for a while with this lot. He, at fifteen, became a star memeber of their local club's rifle competition team, outshooting many of the long standing men on the team. Eleven, and his own Garand. No I was not jealous in the least, I was not I was not I was not…….. I promise I was NOT.

  4. The AR, in typical 5.56/.223 caliber, has some weaknesses when used as a home defense firearm. The .223 Rem rifle round is fairly high pressure with a SAAMI Maximum Average Pressure limit of 55,000 psi. When fired from a carbine length (16 inch) barrel, the muzzle pressure will still (typically) be in the 10,000 to 12,000 psi range. The result is high muzzle blast and muzzle flash. A flash suppressor can mitigate the flash (somewhat) but does nothing for the blast.

    Firing such a carbine, indoors without ear protection, is an prescription for permanent hearing damage. Ripping off multiple shots, in a home defense situation, could leave multiple family members with hearing damage.

    If one does not have time (as Mas noted) to load up a shotgun with single shells or put on a bandoleer of spare magazines, would one have time to put hearing protection on every family member?

    This is a true negative, for a home defense AR, in my opinion.

    There are several ways to mitigate this negative effect. One could install a suppressor on the home defense AR. This would, at a stroke, tame both muzzle blast and muzzle flash. This solution also has its downsides such as:

    1) Suppressors are not legal in every State or jurisdiction.
    2) Even if legal in the local jurisdiction, suppressors are Class III items. This makes them expensive and time-consuming to purchase. I just had a suppressor approved. It took the BATFE 362 days to process and approve my Form 4 application (measured from the time they cashed the check for the tax stamp payment).
    3) Finally, there is the legal ramifications of using such a weapon. Simply using the dreaded “AR Black Gun” may make you look like a good target for your local prosecutor. If that “Black Gun” is also fitted with a suppressor, turning it into an “assassin’s weapon”, do you fancy justifying your home defense actions with that additional burden?

    Another option would be to get your AR in a pistol caliber (i.e. 9mm luger). Typically, 9mm luger, from a carbine length barrel, will pick up 200 to 300 fps more velocity while the muzzle pressure drops to less than 1,000 psi. Result, relatively low muzzle blast/flash which can be tolerated even without hearing protection (for limited firing, anyway).

    Personally, if one fancies a carbine, then something like a .30 caliber M1 Carbine might be even better. It has most of the advantages of an AR plus, if equipped with a traditional wood stock, it does not play into the “Black Rifle” meme.

    In summary, while an AR is an ideal home defense weapon, in many respects, it is not perfect. It’s very loud muzzle blast and “Black Rifle” appearance can be serious negatives when used for home defense.

    • I agree with the many good points TN_MAN made about using an AR-15 type rifle inside a structure. If one is used, a short sound suppressor would certainly help as would a pistol length barrel with an arm brace or having it registered as a SBR to make it more handy inside a residence. Also the can will almost eliminate muzzle flash. At across the room distances, the lower velocities of using a short barrel in .223/5.56mm should not matter too much and expanding bullets should be used to increase stopping power and reduce penetration.

      My choice for a home defense gun is a Kec-Tec Sub-2000 in .40 S&W. From it’s 16″ barrel, Speer 180 grain Gold Dot ammunition chronographs at slightly over 1200 fps, about the same as a 10mm from a pistol so stopping power is adequate. Muzzle blast and flash is nowhere near as bad as the .223/5.56mm, but still enough to cause serious hearing damage, so electronic muffs would be a good idea and I have several pairs in various places around my house.

      I do have an AR-15 type pistol with 10 1/2″ barrel, low powered scope, and arm brace which is carried disassembled with 6 loaded 30 round magazines and a pair of electronic muffs in a small (18″) gym bag which I throw into whatever car I’m driving.

      The AR-15 type in .223/5.56mm, especially in a rifle does have the ability to penetrate soft body armor that will defeat conventional handgun rounds, which is a factor as more criminals wear Kelvar vests while committing crimes nowadays.

    • @ Tom606 – Unfortunately, the gun grabbers are busy condemning any firearm that has design elements that enhance its use for defense. So, AR actions, forearm braces, telescoping stocks, muzzle devices (flash suppressors, muzzle breaks, sound suppressors, etc.), pistol grips, etc. are all condemned as turning a firearm into a “military weapon only fit for killing people”.

      You see the paradox that these Leftists are creating for us. The more effective we make a firearm for use for self-defense or home defense, the more we are painted as being criminals and killers. They are trying to taint the public mind so that, along with cops who are afraid to enforce the law because (if they use their gun) they will be railroaded into prison, ordinary citizens will be afraid to act in self-defense because of legal persecution.

      Indeed, as people are noticing, “the process is the punishment”. Even if one survives the legal trial and is ultimately upheld by the law, the punishment has already been inflicted. Just go back and watch the Kyle Rittenhouse trial. Notice how Rittenhouse’s hands were shaking when the verdict was read. Don’t deceive yourself. The Left did punish Rittenhouse for interfering with their power and their staged riot. They wanted even more. They wanted Rittenhouse’s life totally destroyed and him rotting for decades in prison. They were foiled on that but, nevertheless, they got their “pound of flesh” out of Rittenhouse same as they did with Zimmerman.

      So, however good a suppressor equipped AR might be for home defense, it invites Leftist retaliation to use such a firearm. Especially, if one lives in a “Blue” State.

      So, for my money, a non-tactical pistol-caliber carbine is a better choice for home defense when one factors in our poisoned political climate. I think one of the best options is this:

      It has many of the advantage of an AR type weapon but does not look “tactical”. It can even be had with 10-round magazines for “Blue” State use. Functionally, it does not differ all that much from an AR but the “optics” are so much better.

      With the American Left, the “optics” and the “narrative” are everything. Their entire worldview is driven by emotion not logic. Therefore, everything possible must be done to prevent them from painting you as a “Killer”. They are victim oriented so paint yourself as the “Victim” instead. Victims do not use AR’s or AK’s or other “tactical” firearms in the Leftist Universe!

      • TN_MAN:

        One good gun I’ve always wanted but didn’t get when they were available is the Ruger .44 Magnum Deer Stalker carbine which looks like their 10/22 rifle. It only holds 4 cartridges in it’s tubular magazine, but it’s a .44 magnum so has enough power to take care of most defensive situations and it looks like America’s favorite semi-auto .22 rifle. A modernized version with 16″ barrel using a 10-15 round box magazine chambered in 10mm or .44 Auto Mag with a flat rubber buttplate and mounting a red dot sight would be perfect for home defense.

        A friend of mine used to own a Ruger Deer Stalker and I shot it using a moderate load of a 240 JHP bullet pushed to about 1200 fps which operated the rifle very reliably. I haven’t been able to find one for sale at a reasonable price, but will keep searching.

      • TN_MAN,

        If I wanted to really eschew the “tactical” look, I might get one of these.

        I’d get mine in .357 Magnum/.38 Special, because I have three revolvers in those calibers.

        Let’s see. If I was the prosecutor, and wanted to paint the owner of a lever-action rifle in a bad light, I guess the most damning thing I could say about the owner would be that he was acting like a cowboy. He’s a wannabe John Wayne or Clint Eastwood. Still sounds pretty tame in today’s world of MS-13, terrorism and Vlad the Invader RasPutin.

      • TN_MAN:

        Thanks for the information on the Ruger rifle in .450 Bushmaster. For my defensive purposes, a bolt action is a bit slow and magazine capacity is low. Also, the .450 Bushmaster has more than enough stopping power, but is too powerful to use on most home invaders.

        I do have a Winchester 94 carbine with 16″ barrel in .44 Magnum that has the tang mounted safety. I was very lucky to find this used rifle locally in excellent condition and paid just under $1000 total for it. The wood of the stock is perfect and the rifle is in 95+% condition. This rifle is very nice and I would hate to use it and risk losing the gun in case I have to shoot a bad guy/gal with it, so will continue to depend on my Kel-Tec Sub-2000 in .40 S&W to stop evildoers from trying to commit crimes at my residence.

      • @ Roger Willco – I don’t have a Henry but I do have a Marlin 1894C in .357 Mag. which is pretty similar. Certainly, a .357 Mag. round fired from a carbine-length barrel has ample power for home defense.

        My only qualm is it’s tubular magazine. If one does not have time to load up the tubular magazine of a pump shotgun (as Mas mentioned in his video above), then one certainly does not have time to load up the tubular magazine of one of these lever-action carbines while the home alarm is blaring.

        Of course, one could pre-load the magazine with ammo and keep it ready that way. However, I have qualms about doing this too. I would worry that:

        1) Over time, the spring pressure would push the bullets into the cases leading to an unsafe rise in pressure when fired or leading to mis-feeding and jams.

        2) Even if the constant spring pressure did not harm the ammo, it might (over months and years) lead to the magazine spring weakening and taking a “set”.

        If one did adopt a lever carbine for home defense and did opt to pre-load it, one should have a policy of shooting up the old ammo, relaxing the spring, and then loading fresh ammo on a regular schedule.

        What we really need is a pump-action or lever-action carbine (in traditional wood stock form) chambered in .45 ACP and that is adapted to use Glock 21 magazines! Then we would have a non-tactical carbine that would be fast to load and very efficient for home defense!

        Unfortunately, no one makes such a thing to my knowledge. 🙁

      • @ Tom606 – “…a bolt action is a bit slow and magazine capacity is low. Also, the .450 Bushmaster has more than enough stopping power, but is too powerful to use on most home invaders.”

        Well, a bolt gun is slower than a semi-auto true enough. With practice, however, it can be reasonably fast. Note that this rifle has a short bolt throw and only requires a 70 degree lift (as opposed to 90 degrees for many bolt actions) to operate. These factors make it fast albeit for a bolt gun.

        As for the capacity / power factor, Ruger offers this same style rifle in .300 BLK and .350 Legend calibers with increased capacity. The .350 Legend magazines hold five (5) rounds and the .300 BLK magazines hold ten (10)!

        These are improved capacity figures as opposed to only a three (3) round magazine for the .450.

        The .300 BLK version with 10 rounds of subsonic ammo onboard and a red got sight would not be a bad choice for home defense IMHO. Even without a suppressor, it would not make much noise for indoor use. With a 16 inch barrel, muzzle pressures should be below about 1,500 PSI with mild blast and flash. No supersonic “crack” either since the ammo is subsonic.

        Good legal “optics” too since you are using a “hunting” style bolt gun rather than that dreaded, evil, black “assault rifle that is designed only for killing human-beings”!

        I guess that shooting innocent “Bambi” with a .30 caliber bolt-action rifle is “fine and dandy” whereas shooting a crazed killer (who breaks into your home with murder in his eye) with a .22 caliber “assault rifle” is the height of evil and wickedness in the Left’s playbook.

        As I noted before, with the Left is is all “feeling” and “emotion”. Please check your brains at the door all ye who enter into the Left-Wing Worldview! 🙂

      • TN_MAN:

        Good points about the Ruger bolt gun in .300 Blackout with subsonic ammo. I have a Remington 700 with heavy 16″ barrel and an AR-15 type upper in that caliber. The 700 is extremely accurate, but not suited for fast action as it’s quite heavy and it’s internal magazine only holds 5 rounds and is very slow to reload. I have recently bought a box of Hornady .308 caliber SUB-X 190 grain bullets which are designed to expand at velocities down to 900 fps. This may be the way to go using a light charge of W296/H110 powder, but for defense purposes, SIG makes a heavy bullet subsonic expanding factory load for the .300 Blackout.

  5. Having lived in a suburban cul-de-sac for years, my defensive long gun was a Mossberg 500 12 gauge. After moving to a more rural location with no close neighbors, I find a 16” AR in 300 AAC to be a better & more versatile choice. Supersonic copper hollow point ammo serves for defense, varmints, large predators and deer. With an always on red dot & weapon light it is always ready. The light weight, adjustable stock & light recoil makes it better suited for my better half than even a 20 gauge shotgun. All 300 AAC ammo is kept loaded in red Lancer mags to prevent any mix ups with 5.56 rifles. Only question now is deciding if I want to swap out the red dot for a new Primary Arms micro 3x prism sight.

  6. Intimidating appearance is what I want if I ever have to confront home invaders. If they run at the appearance of my black rifle, that’s the best possible outcome! If they don’t, they know full well what is coming. I will protect my loved ones and my property with whatever force is required without ever once worrying about whether anyone is wearing hearing protection or body armor! Save that silliness for the range, not instantaneous life or death situations!

  7. The pump action shotgun was ruined for home defense by the Gun Control Act of 1968. This satanic law mandates an external disconnect button for all pump action weaponry. External disconnect buttons confuse people in home defense situations and they jam their shotgun unintentionally THis actually happened to Aunt Sharon Gray when facing a mob of violent drunks in June, 1969. Only timely return of revover-armed husband from work prevented a tragedy. Why else can’t you find a Circuit Judge Rossi shotgun to save your life, too? Even the ‘Poverty Pony’ hyper-basic AR-15 carbine variants are therefore more reliable than any pump action shotgun currently made, too. Save the lives of both you and your family, choose AR-15!

  8. Excellent video, Mas. The AR-15 has many advantages, and the soft point and hollow point ammo remove my fears of over-penetration.

    I am sure there are people reading this blog who live in countries where they can’t even own guns, much less AR-15s. Some Americans may live in homes where one spouse just doesn’t want a firearm in the house. Guess what? They now make repeating crossbows. Five bolts fit in a magazine, and the crossbow is cocked between shots with the left hand, I think. No noise problem with a crossbow.

    I’ve always loved bows, but being single-shot weapons, they never made sense to me for self-defense. I would go with a Katana sword or a baseball bat before I would try using a bow or crossbow. Even a hammer would be pretty maneuverable inside a house. Sure is nice to have choices.

    • Roger, a long bow or crossbow using a broadhead arrow would be fine for the first shot – if one has the time to get it into action. After that, go for the sword, ax, mace, spear, etc. The long bowmen of the past had the right idea using their bow as a primary weapon but always carrying a sword and knife as backup weapons. Inside a house, the Viking type small ax, Zulu short spear, or a Roman short sword (Gladius) would work well for those not having access to firearms. Even though they look totally awesome in the movies, I would not recommend using the Ninja throwing stars (Shuriken) as they lack penetration, unless one can reliably strike their attacker(s) in the eyes or throat.

  9. Got an AR15 precisely because my wife does not like shooting shotguns, big caliber lever actions, etc. In a life or death situation, I don’t want my wife to think about anything other than stopping the threat. Any peripheral worry is going to interfere. There is no perfect gun solution, only tradeoffs. The pros of an AR15 outweigh the cons for this household.

    • Colonel Travis,

      Well said. “There is no perfect gun solution, only tradeoffs. The pros of an AR15 outweigh the cons for this household.” I agree. It sounds like the biggest con to using an AR-15 with hollow points for self-defense in a home is the noise. Even that con could be lessened with a suppressor.

      Just for fun, I want to try to predict the future. Somewhere, someone is working on a robot, like the military already has, for home defense. It has wheels or maybe tracks, video cameras and a gun on it. It would have to be guided by a human, otherwise it could become an unguided killing machine. Most inventions start out expensive, then become affordable. I’m afraid a human-guided self-defense robot could never become affordable for most people.

  10. Some folks in my family can’t shoot an AR either. Lightweight 9mm carbine less than 6 lbs. works for the smaller folks.

    I would subscribe to a Mas Ayoob channel but NOT a Wilson. Just not interested in anything but self-defense vids NOT marketing Wilson products.

    • There are lots of discussions on the WC channel that don’t revolve around the sponsor’s products, though they are often illustrated with them.

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