Task Force 16 wrote:
You'd have a far better chance defending yourself with a 9 oz ballpin hammer than you would that unloaded 1911.
Load it and carry!
Thatis why I have a Hi-Point. It is better than a 9 oz ballpin hammer even unloaded.
Seriously, though, as with any issue regarding the responsibility of gun ownership - practice, practice, practice (or learn and review, learn and review). Learn safe methods, review them, then practice them.
Like Enoch Root, my main firearm experience has been related to hunting. I have never experienced an unexpected discharge, but I have been comfortable knowing that no one is around while hunting. Carrying in public carries more responsibility in both safely carrying your weapon, and in guarding your carry rights by avoiding unexpected discharges.
My thoughts are that one unloaded carry episodeis enough to learn it. Learn how to carry, draw, and reholster in private. Practice daily to gain proficiency, then load and go. If circumstances dictate immediate carry, come back to these step when you are able (skipping the unloaded carry portion).