Everyone is entitled to their opinion.
That is true.
Last year, I wrote a thread about a seminar I attended where we had both classroom and range time to evaluate all manner of bullets and barriers. The old school mentality of "speed is best" is outdated. Today, the ammo companies can tune the loads to the applications. Statistically, there's no longer much, if any, benefit to a larger or faster round. The principle to adhere to is putting the rounds on target first and foremost. After that, it'a about tissue disruption. Super fast rounds have a tendency to over-penetrate (typically exit) before full expansion, or foul with barrier debris (clothing, etc). The goal is to get the most energy into the target, without exit. It's not just about bleeding; tissue shock also plays into this.
The reality is that all the mainstream rounds (9mm, .40, .45) all can now be expected to perform the same, if they are properly designed and used in the correct gun. Propellants and bullets can now be matched to a "best fit" situation even taking barrel length into account, to maximize the burn time and pressure front. Etc, etc, etc ...
There's no real tangible benefit to a .357Sig over a 9mm in terms of stopping a human target, if they are each tailored to the right application. Same goes for 10mm over .40, etc.
My opinion is based upon years of LE experience, and attending multiple workshops and seminars with hands-on range time. That, and my penchant for statistical data from the FBI UCR and other reliable sources from actual shootings (LE and civilian).
Don't get me wrong; I like having all kinds of calibers in all manner of guns. I can admit that the fun factor drives me to the "toy" purchases (don't lecture me about the word "toy" and "gun" in the same paragraph; I'm not that stupid). I am just admitting that I don't have a "need" for all my various guns; most are just for the joy of variety. I can admit it is an emotional attraction for me; I like a value full of fun stuff with variety.
No one "needs" a .357Sig or a 10mm, or other side-line round. They are fun, and can be useful, but that are not so unique as to be a "must have". They rarely, if ever, provide a means of task-achievement that some other more popular round cannot achieve. About the only area I can come up with is where one really, truly "needs" a whopping handful of power in a larger, faster round. Say for hog hunting or bear protection (10mm with hot loads, or .454 Cas, or .500 S&W). But when humans are the target, 9mm and .45 do the same job, and no amount of super-duper speedy hot hand-load will change that. There is ZERO data that indicates a hot .357Sig is ACTUALLY more efficient at stopping a human threat; same goes for 10mm.
9mm, .40S&W, and .45 have been the mainstream loads for a long time. And .40 is falling off slowly. Likely because the old school way of thinking is slowly dissolving. .40 became the most popular LEO caliber many years ago, but that trend is starting to reverse itself. That's because of two things:
1) design of ammo and capability in quality control in making ammo are leveling the results across all applications
2) people actually paying attention to real data, and not bench racing their way into a choice
Folks that hand-load like 2015PSD, myself, and others can have fun with unique rounds. But there's no data to show those obscure rounds are any more effective than a decently designed and appropriately selected 9mm or .45, in terms of real-world value against another person.
If you load a 10mm, or .357Sig, to it's full value, few folks can accurately shoot them, and they are honestly punishing to shoot more than a few mags. You can decide to use lower-power choices in those calibers, that does not improve or degrade the tactical factor in macro data lethality and stoppages.
If I had a choice between a well-selected 9mm and a hot, high-spped .357Sig for patrol duty, I'll take the 9mm every single time. The risks associated with the .357Sig include over-penetration on target, as well as issues of blinding muzzle flash and hearing degradation greater than those of the 9mm. I've actually discharged a 9mm firearm in a house; it ain't fun. Hot, speedy rounds only make it worse, and yet provide no real proof of claimed stopping power benefit to justify their use.
So, yes, I have an opinion. Based upon years of experience at ballistic seminars, and reviewing a LOT of data from actual shootings.
Just like oils and filters, there's the theory of bench racing, and then there's the reality of real-world data.
In theory, a syn lube and FU should make for less wear in a 5k mile OCI.
In theory, a faster, bigger round should make for a more effective stop in a human target.
But the reality is that neither is true, because the bounds of normal environments and typical use don't allow the supposed benefits to actually materialize.
This is because the variation of macro data of "normal" use FAR exceeds the theoretical benefits of some unique tool.
Just like my statement about lubes, we can say the same of bullets ...
We cannot claim that a .357Sig is "better" than 9mm, because the data does not support such a conclusion.
But we CAN say that NEITHER is "better", because the data proves that typical application results in no discernible difference in performance.
If anyone has data that shows, beyond a doubt, that a fast bullet is truly better in terms of stopping power in human targets, bring it forth. To date, I've not been able to find any, and most of you know facts and data are my thing!