On my forum a question was recently asked:

What role does the shotgun have during civil unrest?

My main battle weapon for years was a shotgun. And I admit, I had my love affairs with the AK and the M4. And at home, the weapon by my bed is a Glock PDW with a 30 round stick and a can. The reason for the last is that I still have kids living with us and I want discretion, silence, and surgical accuracy. But I am rethinking the best weapon for a riot type event. It very well may be the shotgun.

Here are some points to consider -

1). Riot events involve either getting the fuck out, or hunkering down. If the former is your option, then range is not an issue is it? Only if defending a stronghold will that be an issue. What are the odds of one versus the other? If defending a stronghold, then the rifle has a great deal of advantage until things get inside. Then the battle goes to the shotgun. So if we set aside the "Alamo Scenario", the advantages of the SGN become evident. And its from that premise that I continue.

2). Lack or range is an advantage in these case...not a disadvantage.  If I am "bugging out", I would rather not have errant .223 rounds skipping downrange for a mile and hitting someone else. I recall investigating a homicide that resulted from a gang drive by with an SKS some three miles away!

3). At close distances what I want is raw and unmitigated power. The 12 ga gives me that. Even if face shots (more like decapitation shots) are excluded, even a lightly armored adversary will likely be rendered out of the fight after taking a charge of 12 in the vest.

4). At close distance I want the ability to hit "two birds with one stone". Stand a group of rioter/invaders together coming through a door and fire at their mass. I will bet it will be one shot - two kills.  This is the time for brutality and not concern over internal affairs/civil liability down the road.

5). For vehicle defense, the shotgun beats the rifle. Consider this - you are exiting your vehicle with a Stakeout or an M4 pistol. Twenty feet away the rush of indignant urban thuggery approaches angrily. With an M4 pistol, you must deal with each one individually. With a Stakeout, as the vehicle door opens, you touch off a round of #4 Buck into the pavement in their general direction.

6). Buckshot has no ballistic signature when it leaves the weapon.  I will leave that one for you to ponder.

No single weapon will do everything well. But I for one am glad we are coming back to our violent, brutal and long forgotten first love.