The Tactical Purse

It is difficult to accuse a citizen of macho, Rambo, killer fantasies when his equipment is carried in a purse, pink if at all possible.

Author demonstrates problem of men carrying tactical purses.


Awakened by a 2 a.m. crash downstairs, a homeowner snatched up his pistol and cell phone to investigate.


Concealment: The modern version of the Mountain Man’s “possibles bag.”

The modern version of the Mountain Man’s “possibles bag.”

Stationing himself at the top of the stairs, he took as good a tactical position as his sleep-fogged mind could devise. He tucked the handgun into his waistband so that he could reach the switch on his right and flood the downstairs with light. But he was wearing pajamas. The pistol pulled the pajamas around his ankles, which sent him tumbling down the stairs to lie next to the flowerpot the dog had knocked over. A secure carrier for his equipment would have prevented some bruised embarrassment on this occasion, and worse in the case of real intrusions.

When an intruder kicks in the door at 2 a.m., strangles the Doberman, and stomps up the bedroom stairs humming a medley of Charlie Manson songs, the homeowner is at a tactical disadvantage. The homeowner will be surprised, and usually roused from sleep. He will often face a superiority in numbers, strength or skill.

The Western world’s response to superior fighting ability has always been technology. The citizen will need equipment to allow him to detect the bad guy, fight the bad guy, and control the bad guy. How one sleeps is how one will fight. If one sleeps in the nude, one fights in the nude. When alerted to an intruder the citizen will have time to grab once, and in that one grab must sweep up all the technology required to even the odds. This is done the same way women have always swept up their day’s supplies with one grab: with a tactical purse.

Concealment: A variety of options.

A variety of options.

Purses can be bought for spare change at garage sales and are ideal for carrying tactical supplies. They have compartments for keys, wallets, and makeup; which convert nicely to arranging a handgun, ammunition, flashlight and supporting equipment.

A camouflage Rambo bag or black ninja bag has doubtless been made for the same purpose. So, why a purse? The answer is, because it is a purse. It is difficult to accuse a citizen of macho, Rambo, killer fantasies when his equipment is carried in a purse, pink if at all possible.

There are purses for all occasions, but not all circumstances. Outside the home, a man with a purse draws attention, some suspicious, some predatory. On the street a man with a purse will cause the predatory species to think homosexual, weak, won’t call the police and will attract problems rather than repel them. There are alternatives.

When investigating a disturbance in the neighborhood or a stranger at the door one should be able to grab up defensive equipment in a carrier which does not scream “He’s got a gun!” Discretion cuts down on the hysterical calls to 911, and explanations to responding police officers who may be disposed to handcuff first and question later.

Some individuals have been successful with bags designed for cameras or similar equipment. However the predatory species may view these bags as opportunities and the struggle begins with a fight over control of one’s gun. The white-collar crowd has embraced day planners with integral holsters. However, these are inevitably laid down and the loss of control will only get worse.


A prepared tactical purse will go far to even the odds.


Every state that has passed License To Carry has seen an explosion in the popularity of fanny packs. They have multiple pockets and many designs include a holster. In an emergency they are easily snatched up and occasion notice only in the most formal of venues. They are commonly offered in black, although a less ominous color that matches one’s clothing is less likely to draw attention.

In every state where License To Carry has passed vests have become very popular. Some vests are specifically designed for concealed carry and come with attachments for holsters. A few of these designs have become so popular as to be more uniform than concealment. A common fishing vest succeeds in covering the belt area and provides sufficient pouches for a pessimist’s equipment list.

The 2 a.m. invader will have the advantage. With one grab the homeowner must sweep up all the equipment needed to detect, fight, and control the invader. A prepared tactical purse will go far to even the odds. Those who sleep in the nude may prefer a tactical robe or tactical pair of pants … or at least they should.

This article is featured in the following categories: