Politics-free response: .38 revolver. Nobody needs a shotgun on the water and a semi-auto is like an over-engineered boat; too many moving parts too far away from a qualified mechanic.
The vast majority of semi-auto handguns are modeled after the old 1911 .45 which are easy to disassemble, reassemble, perform a functions check and reload. Personally, as a professional soldier, I can do all of that in under a minute, blindfolded or in pitch black conditions. I am not bragging, just making the point.. If they are too complicated, then obviously the user has not had enough training and experience to handle one. I would rather 15 rounds ready to fly and not need them than have 6 rounds and wish i didn't have to pause for a reload.
"Of course hollow points will travel through a body. Not all the time obviously. You always need to know where the round may go before it stops. I agree with the rest of it though."
Very true Jerry, hollow points aren't assured to stop in your target, but more likely to than any other round, ball ammo for example. The shooter always needs to be aware of their surroundings.
A firearm is a tool. There are many variants of this tool, all designed for a variety of applications and user experience. Finding the right firearm for yourself is only a small part of the self defense/ hunting subject questioned in this thread. If you decide to carry a firearm, you should be responsible enough to master the tool, especially if used for self defense. So, what are you going to do this weekend? Go sailing or go to the firing range? Food for thought...