I bought a shotgun yesterday. I was looking at my all-too-sparse battery of firearms and realized that I didn't own a personal riot shotgun. For my entire career I have fired shotguns during annual qualification and my personal armory has a couple of utilitarian hunting shotguns.
Mine looks like this:
As pump shotguns go, the Remington 870 is about as generic as it comes. Police agencies use them, sportsmen use them, target shooters use them. The standard Remington pump shotgun comes in a dazzling array of stocks, barrels, gauges, and styles to fit any game, or any budget. If it were to be introduced today, the 870 would be hailed as a breakthrough in shotgun design. It is strong, durable, sleek, with a silky smooth action. The fact that is has been around over half a century is testiment to its versatility and utility as a modern firearm.
There is no sound anywhere in the world that sounds like a pump shotgun being brought into action. That "shack-shack" sound shatters through the bullshit and puts everyone in earshot on notice that the conversation just got serious. Police shotguns are normally carried with the barrel empty and the magazine full. The officer only has to pump the forearm to put a shell in the chamber and be ready to fire 9 .30 cal balls. The shotgun is a devastating short-range weapon and people of all stripes universally accept that fact.
I have been present at large disturbances (read: bar-fight) where the combatant citizens were immediately brought under control by the simple act of an officer walking through the door of the building and jacking a shell into the chamber. No matter how drunk a person might be, no matter how combative he might be, no matter what else is going on immediately, that sound will clear the fog from his brain and the blood from his eyes.
The best part of the whole exercise is that I got mine cheap. I happened to wander into a pawn shop yesterday and saw it sitting in the rack. I engaged the shopkeeper in conversation. I dickered and bargained, and when it was said and done, I walked out with it under my arm for $225.00 cash money. My copy has some weird camo treatment on the stock, but a little sandpaper and linseed oil will take care of that. I might even spring for a synthetic stock for it.
I think I done good.