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Lets knock some sense into Sportsmans guide

29 Jul

So in yesterdays mail I got the new Sportsman’s Guide shooters catalog. Normally I like the shooters catalogs because its the only one with a lot of stuff that I both want and would use on a semi-regular basis. But for some reason this edition really ticked me off because of the huge assortment of “CCW Badges”. These things are not only a terrible idea from a legal standpoint because it pushes the “impersonating a cop” line way to far for my taste.  But they provide no actual use or positive value.

I feel that these items seem attractive to somebody who is new to concealed carry or who only occasionally carries. They seem like some sort of object to add official status to you. When in reality all you need is your state issued CHL and then leave it at that. I am a firm believer in not flaunting your CHL and am an even stronger proponent of the “concealed means concealed” mindset.

For this reason the CCW badge seems like a remarkably bad idea. There are 3 main kinds available in this current catalog.

The neck badge: really at what point did this seem like a good idea? When would you need to whip this one out? And more importantly is this something you wear everyday to be just that much more “mall ninja” And here is the part that REALLY pisses me off, from the product description “Hidden heat? Better pack this Badge and Permit Holder to show you’re in full compliance. Essential gear for private investigators, security personnel and more.”

I have a CHL in 2 states and private security licenses in both of the same state but my CHL does NOT entitle me to carry a firearm while performing security work. In fact if I carry my firearm without the armed endorsement for security license I risk both my CHL (because it would be committing a crime) and my security license. Of course any professional with common sense would get this but I am sure they are misleading somebody.

The next one is the generic stand alone badge: the product descriton reads, “A pair of golden-finished “shields” that show you’re approved to be packin’! Polished, gleaming metal with “Concealed Weapon Permit” message and colorful emblem. You get 2, 1 large and one small badge, with belt / pocket clip.” These badges don’t show anything other than your status as an idiot and certainly don’t show your approved for anything.

Ok last but not least the holster to hold one of the badges pictures above. This one is even dumber than the rest because at the point your cover garment moves enough to reveal the badge the gun is on full display. So whats the point, what are you trying to accomplish by displaying this? Again the description reads “It also holds a concealed carry badge to show you’re “official.””

I am purposely not linking to the individual items but all pictures and descriptions came from the sportsman’s guide website and are available in their most recent sportsman’s guide shooters catalog.

I have decided and am encouraging the rest of you to join me in saying that we will not order from Sportmans guide until these items are gone or at least become marketed as novelty items. Below is my sample letter that I am sending to sportsman’s guide.


Dear Sportmans guide, in your most recent “Shooters” catalog you have a large selection of CCW badges, these items not only endanger people by really pushing the line between legal CHL holder and an idiot attempting to impersonate a cop. Although you do have a small disclaimer on most of these items reminding people that they need to actually carry your permit these items only create confusion and possible legal issues.

Until these items are either removed from your catalog or reclassified as novelty items, I will be taking my business elsewhere. I am sure that or Midway USA would be glad to fill my need of ammunition and shooting accessories.


Sincerely, Mdev


Leave a Reply


  1. Pops

    August 1, 2011 at 3:47 pm

    I can see it now-BHS.

    Badge Heavy Syndrome.

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    August 8, 2011 at 6:12 am

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  5. Tom

    August 8, 2011 at 10:29 am

    I do not like the idea people will use the CCW badge as a cop impersonation device. I do believe however that a badge worn on the belt next to a gun does provide a bit of comfort to the sheeple out there that might see the weapon by accident. I as a cop, when carrying on the belt concealed out of uniform will always have my badge by the gun. I do not have heartburn if a CCW holder does the same thing.

    In many cases it is on par with the concept of prior restraint. People say NO GUNS you might do something bad with it. They try to restrain you from carrying. Same for the badge. Do something stupid with it and get the book thrown at you. If some sheeple see it and then decides NOT to call the cops for a “Man with gun” call, great.

    • Will

      August 8, 2011 at 12:08 pm

      Frankly, Tom’s view is what I have always thought was the real reason that these things existed, to calm the minds of the sheeple. Of course, this only works if one is acting in an upstanding fashion, and it probably helps if you look as if you could conceivably be a cop. (wide latitude there) Might help if it at least somewhat resembles a local badge. Then again, maybe not.
      One problem I envision would be a situation where the viewer would expect you to get involved as a cop would, such as arresting a miscreant. That could get embarrassing


    • Joe Matlock

      March 21, 2017 at 3:44 pm

      I concur.

  6. Mdevietro

    August 8, 2011 at 12:18 pm

    Interesting to see the variety of opinions both here and on the other sites that tracked back here. I really thought there was no point of discussion here and that it was the agreed truth that these were a terrible idea. Apparently I was wrong and like anything else there are people with lots of varying viewpoints. I guess the real question is how many of these guys actually use a badge on a daily basis.

  7. Cormac

    August 8, 2011 at 2:01 pm

    I always figured the point of these things was just in case you’re in a shooting and the cops show up right in the middle…they’re trying to figure out who to plug, when you whip out a shiny gold shield!
    Even the “only ones” might pause for a moment if they think there’s even the slightest chance that you’re one of them…You may get roughed up, but remember that whole “judged by 12 or carried by 6” mantra…?

    Still…I’m not wasting my money on it.

    • Stephen

      August 8, 2011 at 2:38 pm

      I agree w/ this on both points.

      1. They could save your bacon if the police are looking.

      2. I would rather pay to watch an Obama speech….
      No, check that, I’ll take the shield. It is FAR more effective than he is.

  8. John

    August 8, 2011 at 6:11 pm

    I put this in the same category as the holster with the pocket for your CWP – the last thing I want to be doing when asked to show my permit is to reach toward my holstered firearm.

    In places like Canton OH that might get me an acute case of lead poisoning.

  9. Lurkus Maximus

    August 9, 2011 at 7:51 am

    Quick check shows the same items available at Midway USA so you may want to change your correspondence accordingly.

  10. Diamondback

    August 16, 2011 at 10:27 am

    With all the problems facing this country, you have energy and time for this?

    No wonder the country is on the brink of collapse.


  11. And I thought the CCW Badges were a bad idea « TacticalTupperware

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  12. Michael

    February 18, 2012 at 4:37 pm

    Lets look at it from your stand point. The badge has no use as it isn’t what gives you the authority to carry concealed. Then, in that aspects, a police officer should have one. It isn’t his or her badge that gives that person the police status but the little card in their wallet.

    Sounds to me like the other here is butt hurt and jealous or something. So what if a person has a CWP badge. And NO, it is not impersonating a police officer at all. A person with no badge can be charged with impersonation by just saying they are a cop.

    I have no idea why you would even care what others do. Whats the matter, you couldn’t get a CWP? You sound like a whiny little kid. I guess you get butt hurt when you see a ex cop car and a black man is behind the wheel.

    There is absolutely no laws against a CWP badge. I guess you think people in NYC or around the country wearing NYPD or FDNY shirts should be charged with a crime. Did you know in NYC a person can buy a NYPD shirt and hat out of just about every store and it isn’t illigal to wear? I can wear a shirt that says DEA, FBI or police and there isn’t a damn thing anyone can do about it- unless I say i’m a cop.

    • Mdevietro

      February 18, 2012 at 4:58 pm

      Sorry that you entirely missed the point of my post.

  13. Trinh Enriquez

    March 6, 2012 at 6:36 am

    No need for a trip to listen. I listen to my audio books while doing yard work or housework. Makes it all more enjoyable (for me).:)

  14. David Domincki

    June 6, 2012 at 1:30 am

    I havenˇ¦t checked in here for some time because I thought it was getting boring, but the last few posts are good quality so I guess I will add you back to my everyday bloglist. You deserve it my friend :)

  15. rafael jerman

    September 22, 2012 at 4:22 pm

    A gun or badge used improperly will get you in hot water. I tend to believe that the majority of permit holders are upstanding, law abiding and responsible people to start with. If, heaven forbid, you became entangled in a gun fight, it would be to your advantage to let any other concealed carrier, or cop know that you’re not the bad guy. Without some sort of identifying shield visible at a distance, you might be mistaken for the active shooter and wind up dead! That’s how I see it and why I have a gun and a badge. Both are concealed at all times.

  16. Sal

    December 31, 2013 at 10:33 am

    I found this article by accident. I was looking for those badges that a friend of mine told me existed and this article was one that popped up as a result. I thought it was a joke.
    First of all, I agree with the author. However, my reason is different. I’m thinking that a private individual gravitating to one of these conceal carry badges may have some issues they need to work out. That isn’t a joke or a slam, its simply what i believe.
    Your CCH, CHL or CCW (or whatever your state calls it) is all you need to carry. True, its in your pocket or your wallet and NO ONE gets to be impressed by it and you don’t get to flash it but you have peace of mind that you have it.
    As far as police officers and security officers not needing a badge either, i think that’s incorrect. The state I live in REQUIRES that private security register their uniforms and that a badge of some sorts be applied on the outer-most garment. I believe the same is required of police departments.
    But, that’s besides the point. The reality is that the people desiring one of these badges want one for ONE reason. Its something to be seen, plain and simple. Why do you think departments require officers to WEAR A BADGE on the outer-most garment??? SO PEOPLE SEE IT! That’s why.
    Now, regarding an incident like an active shooter. You need to identify yourself to a cop??? Well, think about that. Really, think about it. Because there is not one moment in that scenario where your conceal carry license wouldn’t fit the bill. Further, still, as a private citizen, your TRUE roll in the event of an active shooter SHOULD be to shelter with as many people as you can and have your weapon pointed at the door while someone calls 911 and gives your location and the fact that you have a weapon. Believe me, you won’t need to be flashing a badge in a room full of people you just saved. Show them your license all day long.
    But lets say you still want to hunt down the shooter yourself (and leave a roomful of defenseless people all alone). Go ahead, just bear in mind that once police have been notified (which you did before you left those people) and responding, YOU are stepping in between THEM and their TARGET.
    Now, ask yourself this question; Why??? Once police are notified it automatically kicks in a series of automatic responses between men and women who specifically train for such a situation. Do you REALLY think, once that ball starts to roll, you wanna be a wildcard???
    Ok, lets say while running for shelter, you turn the corner and *POW* there’s the shooter. Well, you can STILL engage the shooter without a shiny new badge. You think HE”S gonna care??? So, you engaged the shooter. Statistically, active shooters will cease when confronted by another armed individual. That means they either give up, are killed by the armed individual OR kill themselves.
    Lets say, none of these happen within the first seven shots or 13 OR 14 shots. If you’re THAT bad of a shot, are you REALLY gonna keep shooting. How many people are now at risk from getting shot BY YOU???
    Hey, but charging into the fray sets-up a great “Badge-Flash” when the cops show up, huh???
    I could go on and on but i actually wanted to say that I agreed with the author about the Conceal Carry Badges. They are a terrible idea. The author stated his reasoning but I believe he did not go far enough into the mindset of the person needing one of these badges.
    And I know SOMEONE will say they don’t “NEED” one. Look, if you wanna wear a badge, join the force. But, they’re gonna do a physiological at some point and the same tendencies that cause you to want to wear this Conceal Carry Badge will also cause you to be rejected from most PD’s
    You only need that badge if you want to flash it around. Plain and simple.

  17. James D

    February 21, 2014 at 5:52 am

    The author of this post is an idiot. The more guns that law abiding people carry the more polite and safe the society becomes. A badge does nothing more than calm the nerves of those who see you with an open carry weapon. You are much safer in this world when you got thousands of the good guys armed and ready than you are with only the bad guys carrying guns. If you are law abiding you know that your weapon is never used unless it is needed. Sticking a badge to calm those who have no clue about gun laws and the constitution hurts no one.

  18. Joe Matlock

    March 21, 2017 at 3:43 pm

    The last badge on the holster is probably the wisest since someone may accidently see a concealed weapon and respond badly.
    This happened three or four years ago at a San Antonio bistro resulting in the assault of the patron bearing the CCG.
    After some fifteen stitches to his face and pending hefty settlement out of court by the restaurant, the police advised the man to purchase something that would defuse the potential of such an incident.
    People are of varied opinion and unpredictable.