Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Taking a new shooter to the range...

Taking a New Shooter to the Range | Cornered Cat

There are few things more satisfying than introducing a newcomer to the shooting world.  New shooters are the lifeblood of the firearms rights movement. Beyond that, it is just plain fun to share your hobbies with a friend.  If you shoot for very long, you can expect that sooner or later, you will have the urge to invite a friend to come to the range with you.

"Give the gift of marksmanship. Take a friend to the range." Image courtesy of www.olegvolk.net

When your friend agrees to come shooting with you, she will very likely have some concerns about safety.  Listen to those concerns.  Do your best to set her mind at ease by both telling her and showing her how a responsible shooter stays safe at the range.

One way you can make your friend more comfortable about the safety of your hobby is to go over range safety long before you set foot on the range.  Give her an opportunity to ask questions, and be sure to cover the following points.  This is best done away from the range, so your friend will be able to hear you easily and ask questions.

First, talk about The Four Rules. If you cannot recite them from memory, you probably are not yet ready to take a newbie to the range. Learn them!


The Four Rules

Rule One: All guns are always loaded. This rule means that no matter what, you will always treat a firearm with the respect you would give it if you knew it were loaded. You never do anything with an unloaded gun that you wouldn’t do with a loaded gun. This is the most basic rule and all other safety rules follow naturally from it.

Rule Two: Do not point the gun at anything you are not willing to destroy.This rule applies whether the gun is loaded or not! (See Rule One…) Do not allow the gun to point at your toes or your lower leg after you fire. Do not allow the gun to point at your abdomen or left arm while you rack the slide. Do not allow the gun to point at other shooters, no matter what you are doing with the gun and no matter where the shooters are standing. Do not allow the gun to point at the sky because you don’t know where the bullets would land if the gun fired.

Rule Three: Keep your finger off the trigger until your sights are on target.Make sure your newbie understands that she will probably need to be reminded of this rule more than once, and that if you remind her, it isn’t anything personal. Most new shooters have a hard time teaching the trigger finger to do what the brain knows to do, so there is no shame in being reminded. Make sure she understands that “off the trigger” also means “outside of the trigger guard.”

Rule Four: Be sure of your target and what’s beyond your target. Make sure there’s nothing between you and your target, too — and if you’re not sure the area behind the target is clear of people and will stop a bullet, don’t fire.

The Safety Briefing

After discussing the Four Rules, there are some specific things your newbie will need to know.

First, make sure she understands and agrees that you will stop her if she is about to do something unsafe. Explain that it’s part of the learning process and that you don’t mean anything personal by it. If your friend does not seem to be taking this or any other part of the safety briefing seriously, stop right there and don’t take her to the range with you. 1

Tell her that if she is shooting and you say, “Stop,” she needs to stop moving and stand still, not turn around to see what’s wrong. Tell her you probably won’t need to do that but that if you do, it doesn’t mean anything except that you are taking care of keeping her safe.

Warn her that you might tap her on the shoulder to get her attention, but that if she is holding a gun she must not turn around.

Talk about the safety gear you’ll wear — eye protection, hearing protection, hats, and high-collared shirts. Explain that sometimes people get hit with empty brass cases. Hot brass isn’t really dangerous by itself, but sometimes people do very dangerous things when they’re hit with brass. Let her know that she will need to trust her safety gear rather than freak out if a piece of brass hits her. Add that even if a piece of brass goes somewhere it’s not supposed to, that she must keep the gun pointed downrange at all times … and that it is best to carefully set the gun down on the bench if she needs to get rid of a piece of brass.

Discuss rules specific to your own range, rules such as staying behind the yellow line during cease fires, or not going forward unless the flag is up. Explain that range rules are different from one place to the next, and that the specific range rules are posted so she doesn’t have to work too hard remembering that kind of stuff.

Then and only then, you can discuss how to shoot, and the shooting basics of sight alignment, grip, and trigger squeeze. Try not to overwhelm your newbie here. If her eyes glaze over by the time you get to this point, stop talking. The only really important thing she needs to know is how to be safe. Everything else is just gravy.


Things to bring with you to the range:

  • Ear muffs for you and for her. Electronic muffs are best because you will be able to hear questions or comments from your friend and keep track of what the people around you are up to.
  •  Ear plugs for her to wear in addition to the muffs, after the safety briefing is over. Remember you’ll have to holler to be heard over doubled-up hearing protection, but it will help her avoid developing a flinch.
  • Eye protection for both of you. Basic prescription glasses are not generally good enough.  Get a pair of protective glasses that fit over the Rx ones. Make sure the eye protection has decent side shields to keep the brass out.
  • Hat with a brim for both of you. The side shields and the hat brim prevent brass from dropping in behind the glasses, an important issue especially with a newbie who cannot be expected to keep the gun pointed safely downrange when in pain and distress.
decorative element


Your first priority is to keep your friend safe. Your second priority is to help her have fun.

Everything else is a distant third behind those two goals.

  • Shirts with high collars. Make sure to warn a new female shooter to wear a shirt with a high collar for range outings. The hot-brass dance is dangerous.
  • Big targets. And you’re going to put them close rather than far away. You want your newbie to experience good success. If your range allows it, use reactive targets, things that pop or fall over or make a noise when shot, because reactive targets don’t keep a record of misses the way paper targets do.
  • Small caliber gun. A .22 is ideal. 9mm is better than .45 — at least in this context!  A .38 special is a good choice too. Stay away from super-lightweight guns, however. Basically, you want a heavy gun and a small caliber, so recoil is minimized. Your newbie may or may not mind the feel of recoil, but her shooting will definitely be better in the long run if she starts out on something mild.
  •  Hand wipes to clean up with. You can talk about lead contamination some, but full instruction about that isn’t necessary unless and until she becomes a frequent shooter herself.
  • Your most patient attitude. The newbie is going to do some things “wrong.” Don’t try to fix everything at once! Focus on safety issues — those are the only issues that really matter for the first outing.

Things to leave at home:

  • Your own plans to shoot. The first outing is all about your newbie. If things go well, you might have a chance to shoot a little; if they don’t, you won’t. Understand that going in and you’ll be a lot happier if your newbie needs more hand-holding than you expected.
  • Arrogance. The attitude you want to convey is that you want to share your world with her, and that safety is important — not that you know everything there is to know about guns and that you are the source of all shooting wisdom. If she asks a question you don’t know the answer to, tell her you don’t know.
At the Range

Before loading the handgun:

Put the target close.  Four to seven yards is ideal.  Anything over around ten yards will probably frustrate your new shooter, and stymie your attempts to help her have fun.

Set out only one gun.  If you’ve brought more than one, keep the others boxed up until she is ready for the change. Set out only one magazine. Don’t put the ammunition out until after dry fire.  When you do, set out only one kind of ammunition. Avoid confusing your newbie with clutter!

Show her how to hold the gun and how to stand. Do not make this complicated. Stick with the basics of keeping her thumbs out of the way of the recoiling slide or her fingers away from the cylinder, so she’ll be safe.

Tell her she’ll need to grasp the gun tightly. Do not talk too much about recoil, but do mention it in passing as a reason to hold the gun firmly.

Before loading the gun, show her the gun’s controls, and have her practice racking the slide a few times.  Watch her trigger finger and remind her to keep it alongside the frame rather than on the trigger while she is dropping the magazine or working the slide.

Show her how to put the magazine in and take it back out again. Show her how to lock the slide back, or how to open the cylinder. Show her how the ammunition feeds into the gun. Show her where the brass comes out and explain again that it isn’t anything to worry about.

Talk to her about what the sights look like and how they are supposed to line up on the target. Draw a quick sketch of that if she seems to need it, otherwise don’t.

Have her dry fire.   While she dry fires, be especially conscious of her muzzle direction and remind her to watch it if necessary.

Watch her trigger finger while she dry fires, and remind her that the instant the gun comes down off target, her finger must also come off the trigger.

Going live:

Show her how to load ammunition into the magazine. Have her watch you while you fire one or two rounds, so she knows what to expect.

Fire very, very slowly so she doesn’t try to imitate you shooting fast.

Then it is her turn.


Have her load only one round at first.

Start by having her load one round.  Later on she can load the magazine full. You do not know how a new shooter will react to the first shot firing, so it is safer to load only one round at a time.  You also want her to familiarize herself with manipulating the gun, which she will do as she repetitively loads it.

Watch her muzzle direction while she loads the gun.  Remind her about muzzle direction if necessary.

Resist the temptation to reach in and “fix” anything for her, unless she asks for help. If she does ask for help loading the gun, show her again how to do it, and then unload it and have her do it herself so that she can learn how.

Have her load one, then shoot one, for at least 10 rounds.

Stand just barely behind her strong-side elbow, within easy reach, while she is firing. A surprising number of newbies willturn around with the gun in their hands immediately after the first shot goes. By standing close, you can be ready for this and are able to stop her if needed. Another reason to stand close is that the most common reason a new shooter turns around is to look for her mentor.  Your presence next to her avoids giving her a reason to turn around in the first place.

Be aware that a certain number of new shooters have an emotional reaction to the first shot firing, and may even get tears in their eyes. In my experience, unless your newbie is working through some personal traumatic event related to guns, this reaction is a normal, physical response to the major adrenalin dump caused by the unfamiliar sensations of firing a gun. If it happens to your newbie, reassure her that it’s a normal response and doesn’t mean she’s weird. Help her to settle back down again and encourage her to work through it once she has settled down enough to remain safe.

Watch her hands while she fires, not the target.  Keep your eye on her trigger finger especially.  Remember, the holes in the target will still be there when she is done shooting, but you must see what her hands are doing right now.

Everyone likes praise!

If she is doing well for a newbie, say so.

Say so again.

And then again.

Also watch her weak-hand thumb. Some folks will put it behind the slide sometime during that first trip to the range. For revolvers, watch to be sure her fingers do not get too close to the cylinder. Your new shooter does not need to hurt herself today.

Nag about her trigger finger as often as you need to, but do it politely. Don’t give up on reminding her if she forgets more than once.

Do not say anything bad about her marksmanship.  You weren’t all that hot the first time you shot either and marksmanship is not the name of the game today anyhow. First priority it to be safe, second priority is to have fun. If she is doing both those things, she is doing very well.

After she has fired at least ten load one/shoot one rounds, she may be ready to load more than one at a time. Some folks take longer.  Don’t suggest she move up to that until you are convinced she can do so safely.

Suggest that she takes her first target home to keep. Write the date on it, and sign it as a witness.

Invite her to come shooting with you again.  Not “sometime,” but for a specific date and time. And follow through.


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Monday, September 28, 2015

You ARE the first responder in an emergency


On September 9 Breitbart News reportedthat a female Dayton, Ohio homeowner who had been targeted for crime multiple times called 911 to report an alleged invader, then shot and killed the suspect herself.

News reports have since revealed that the police response time for that 911 call was over an hour long.

For example, ABC 22 ran a story titled, “Why did it take over an hour to respond to a home invasion call?” In it, they report that the female homeowner called 911 only to be told “to keep an eye out for the officer and call them back if [she heard] anything else.”

An hour later the officer had not arrived, but the suspect had made it inside the home and was allegedly coming toward the woman, who shot and fatally wounded him.

WHIO reported that the alleged invader “confronted” the woman and she opened fire. Police say the suspect then turned and fled out the same window through which he had entered and ran about a block before collapsing. He was taken to Miami Valley Hospital “with at least one gunshot wound” to the chest, and he succumbed to that injury later in the day.

The female homeowner then called 911 again to say, “Someone broke into my home, I shot one.”

According to 2 News WDTN, Captain Matt Haines with the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office addressed the delayed response by explaining that “each call is classified based on priority level. Priority one being the highest and priority nine being the lowest. Each level standing for a number of things.” He said, “The first call from the woman calling about the intruder was a priority three (suspicious persons call), which by policy means a two person crew will come when available.” But “the second call was classified as a priority one (shooting), which…Dayton Police responded to within minutes.”

Follow AWR Hawkins on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at awrhawkins@breitbart.com.


Sunday, September 27, 2015

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Saturday, September 26, 2015

Stupid Shooting Drills


By  on April 16, 2015

Student Approaches a Doorway During a Live Fire Drill

There are tons of shooting drills out there, some good, some bad, and some stupid. I really only think there should be two categories; Good and Stupid. Shooting drills need to focus on learning a skill. That skill needs to focus on things you want to learn or have an applicable situation towards what you are training for.

For me in the self defense world it’s an easy test. Does this drill help me with a skill that will make me more likely to survive a gunfight? That’s it. All the drills that have skills outside of that realm, I don’t much care about. I also like a balance of safety. Every thing we do with a handgun has an element of danger to it, but that danger needs to be measured against what is to gain. What is an expectable risk is different for everyone, but you won’t find me down range close to the target while someone else is shooting at it, and I won’t be the person shooting if someone is standing next to my target. The risk isn’t worth what is gained.

One drill that I’ve seen a lot is passing the gun from hand to hand to shoot. So you get the go signal, draw your gun (best skill to learn), and fire a couple rounds with your strong hand (okay so far), then pass the weapon to your off hand and fire one-handed, and then pass the weapon back and forth to learn changing hands in a gun fight. I think this drill is on the stupid side. Passing the gun back and forth really has no use unless you are a high-speed operator that is going to run the gun in either hand depending on which one is more advantageous to you going through a building. But then you have to be great at both hands, including reloads, malfunction drills, shooting, and have your gear set up mirrored. So probably not you in the civilian concealed carry everyday life (me neither).

I won’t be doing this.

So here is why the drill sucks… The idea is to teach you to swap hands if your strong side is injured during an attack. If my hand still works so I can pass the weapon back and forth, I’m probably not going to need to swap it. More then likely (and the shooting that I’ve studied where this has actually happened) you will have to pry the gun from your destroyed side, or pick it up off the ground after you drop it because your strong side isn’t working like it should. So I miss the advantage this drill gives you.

When you have limited shooting time (like all of us), pick a drill that works on the skills you will most likely need during a gunfight. I like to start with drawing. You have to get the gun out of the holster to start the fight one way or another. Then I like to look at what I’d like to do with the gun and myself. I’d like to move so I don’t get shot. Then I’d like to be able to hit the bad guy. So I do dry fire and live fire drills based around this simple thought. And don’t forget the rule of three’s, three rounds, three yards, three seconds is the most common gunfight. I want to be able to take care of that one first and then move to the weird stuff.

Learning the Draw

So when you get a drill that you think would be cool to work on, make sure it’s teaching you a skill you want to learn. Don’t waist your time doing drills that have no likely hood to help you in real life.

There are tons of drills out there. We trainers are always coming up with new ones, some of us try to make drills around learning a skill you may need in a gunfight, others are just trying to come up with something cool and new. I love cool and new, but not when it comes to my self defense training. I’ll stick with those skills I need to survive and you can keep your cool box drill, swipe drill, 2-2-2-2 drills, and even your bill drills. I’ll keep working on hitting the target and not getting shot.

Stay Safe,



Friday, September 25, 2015

Gun laws for criminals

Gun Laws For Criminals

Jul 29, 2015 

“When I say severe I mean the perpetrator should lose his or her trigger finger on the first offense, on the second offense they would lose their entire hand, and on their third and final offense they would lose their life.”

So we’ve done a great deal of fighting over gun laws and additional gun control. The fundamental error that leads to all of this infighting over greater restrictions is that people know these laws do not affect criminals in any way. This is due to lack of consequences, criminals know that they can get a gun faster, cheaper, and with zero traceability, illegally. Furthermore the criminal has very little to worry about other than some time in jail.

For the career criminal jail time is just a part of the equation, often times these thugs prefer time in jail over the difficult challenges of living in the real world. So what is another background check going to do? What is another waiting period going to do? Absolutely nothing, these are already non-issues for these thugs because the vendors they are using to obtain the weapons  are found in back alleys not in reputable stores.

So where do we go from here? We go to extreme measures, illegal gun crimes need to be met with consequences so severe that there is never any temptation for these criminals to obtain an illegal gun in the first place. By limiting the scope of these laws to illegal guns you immediately factor out law-abiding citizens who have made a mistake with their gun, not that they wouldn’t be charged with the appropriate crimes for their actions but they would not fall under this very severe “illegal gun” law.

What do these “extreme” laws look like? The severity should be equal to someone who wants to perpetrate heinous acts like child rape or the production and distribution of child pornography and perhaps the severity of those laws needs to be raised as well as they’ve done in Louisiana. These laws should make the criminal fear illegals guns so much that they would never consider obtaining one. This is a very simple delineator, if you’ve got an illegal gun you’re screwed, if not regular charges apply for your crime. When I say severe I mean the perpetrator should lose his or her trigger finger on the first offense, on the second offense they would lose their entire hand, and on their third and final offense they would lose their life.

Now it is important for me to call out here that I am aware that this sounds very, very, extreme but the fact is that we do not have anywhere left to go other than to extremes. Our country is coming apart at the seams with gun violence and this violence is being perpetrated by criminals with absolutely no fear of consequences.

I am also aware that these sound like Middle Eastern consequences and I by no means support a system that is so broad reaching like they’ve implemented in some of these countries. Looking at the numbers comparing Saudi Arabia to the United States the crime rates are so much lower it is high time for us to consider consequences that actually matter to criminals. I think that in the case of the first offender, looking down at his or her dominant hand and seeing the absence of a trigger finger, coupled with the challenges that person would face having to learn how to do just about everything all over again would be a sufficient deterrent from becoming a repeat offender.

Ultimately I know that none of us want to see the addition of any gun laws, but in my opinion that is due to the fact that we all know that more gun laws that are aimed at law-abiding citizens will do nothing to reduce gun violence but actually stand to increase gun violence. Criminals will not obey the law, that’s what makes them criminals in the first place and until gun laws actually scare the criminals we will be doing nothing more than giving criminals more power by taking away or limiting our ability to protect ourselves.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

The USA does not have a gun violence problem

The United States does NOT have a Gun Violence problem.

“Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” –    Albert Einstein.

We had another shooting; this time the shooter was white and was of an acceptable religion, so instead of radical Islam being the culprit it is the Second Amendment that will get the blame and come under attack. The gun control crowd is in already in the thralls of ecstasy at the prospect of another reason to attack the Second Amendment.

I don’t have the time or inclination to clear up the common misconceptions about the 2nd – the misunderstandings regarding militias, need to have an automatic weapon, or restrictions on type of weapon. I am a pure constitutionalist so let it suffice to say that only two basic pieces of knowledge are required to completely comprehend the Second Amendment. If you understand the function a commaserves and grasp the definition of “shall not be infringed”, you will understand the Second and need no interpretation; but that’s another article altogether.

For now, pretend we live in Bernie Sander’s world and the Second Amendment is void; pretend that gun control legislation has no constitutional hurdles and private gun ownership may be restricted at the whim of whatever lesser evil we elect.   – Is it a good idea?

Well… Let’s think on it a spell; what kind of a track record does international gun control have? – Has it been tried before? – Has it ever worked anywhere? – Is there empirical data available?  The answer to the last question is an emphatic YES! 

Gun control isn’t a new concept. It has been around in one form or another for a few thousand years. From Cyrus to Caesar; from Stalin to Saddam every world despot has placed some form of weapons control on the masses. History proves it didn’t work for them and the only effective way to enforce such law is with brutality.

But even if gun control legislation was constitutional and could be enforced in a civilized manner – is it worth the effort?   It should be easy to figure out. A little research should give a definitive answer so I’ll do the research, you check my facts , and together we can come to an educated conclusion.

If Gun ownership or guns in public hands are a significant factor in gun violence, research will show some kind of correlation between gun ownership and gun violence –let’s see if we can find one.

The most popular statistic the Gun control movement uses is the fact that the United States has more guns per capita than any other nation. This is true; we have a whopping – 89 guns per 100 people in the US, and it could almost make sense that the number of guns on the street would be a factor in gun violence – but just almost; and only if you ignore history and the available data.

What does the data tell us about the correlation between guns and gun violence? If a correlation exists then the Gun Lobby has it right; if it does not – you can decide what the data reveals. 

If guns are even a minor factor, the connection should be clear and we should be able to easily establish a causal relationship between guns and a high rate of violent crime.

Table 1 shows the ten nations with the highest per capita gun ownership. If guns are a problem it would stand to reason that the same nations would have a high per capita murder rate and the lists should be about the same. i.e. If gun ownership or availability is a factor, the nations with the highest guns per capita should also be the nations with the highest murder rates.

Table 2shows the ten highest murder per capita nations. How odd; not one of the Top Ten gun nations is on the Top Ten murder nations list. Maybe they use clubs and knives in those places because they don’t have guns. Hmmm – does that mean even without guns there will be violence?

You think I made a bad comparison? Does it include too many variables? OK, I’ll bite – The conclusion could be skewed so let’s see how the highest gun ownership nations list matches up with the highest “GUN” murder per capita rate list. Comparing apples to apples we can get clearer picture of the correlation between gun ownership and gun violence.

Table 3shows the top ten nations for the total number of Gun Murders and Table 4 shows the nations with the highest per capita “GUN” murder rates. I find it intriguing that only one of those nations is on the Top Ten gun ownership list. That nation – The United States, in spite of a much larger population, has a lower per capita murder rate than any other nation on the list.

The United States ranks 92nd in the world for per capita homicidesand 29th in the world for per capita gun homicides with less than three gun homicides per 100k – the world average is 5.3 gun murders per 100,000 population.

Now… I may not be much on ciphering and I might have issues counting any higher than 21 unless I take off my shoes – but even I can see these statistics don’t support gun control as a viable solution to gun violence. In fact the data reveals exactly the opposite; it shows a correlation between gun ownership and a lower murder rate.

Given that The United States is #1 in per capita gun ownership and an estimated 35 – 50 % of the world’s civilian-owned guns are found in the United States, a simple mathematical analysis shows that gun control is a waste of energy. The data shows that an armed society is much safer than an unarmed one.

Just a thought … there are 92 sexual assaults per 100,000 people in the US,  more than 30 times the gun murder rate — Is it possible that calls for “Common Sense Penis Legislation” will be in our future?

Gun violence is not a problem in the US; it is a symptom of a dozen other problems that our Politicals are too busy to address so they default to old faithful –Treat the symptom and let the media deal with it. Gun Control is just the civilian version of “two Motrin and some Robitussin.”

“I have done; you have heard me; the facts are before you; I ask for your judgment.”  -Aristotle

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Tuesday, September 22, 2015

We support this...

Trump Announces Huge Gun Policy… Calls for National Concealed Carry and Blasts Efforts to Violate Rights on Magazine Sizes!

Sep 21, 2015 | 

Protecting Our Second Amendment Rights Will Make America Great Again

Well this is the kind of gun control I like to hear about, NONE! Donald Trump has released his position on gun control and the stance he is taking would make any of us pro gunners happy as can be. He summarizes that stance with this very simple modification to the Second Amendment:

The Second Amendment to our Constitution is clear. The right of the people to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed upon. Period.

This is a very refreshing stance as the current administration and the gun control groups have made it clear that they feel that the Second Amendment should be done away with altogether. These groups believe the only people who need guns are the police and the military, ironically though the same groups do not trust police at all so I am very unclear on where this “common sense” comes from.

Ultimately Donald Trump has an uphill battle due to his lack of political prowess but from what I have seen watching the early campaign unfold, Americans may just finally be done with politicians altogether.

Via Liberty News

During the Wednesday’s CNN Republican Debate, moderators allotted for very little time for candidate to make clear their position on the Second Amendment.

Being given literally zero time to discuss his position on the issue of gun rights, front-runner Donald J. Trump released an official statement pertaining to the matter directly on to his campaign website. Let me tell you, Michael Bloomberg and his ‘Everytown’ ilk are not going to like this one bit…

The opening statement reads “The Second Amendment to our Constitution is clear. The right of the people to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed upon. Period.” 

Yes… He added “Period” after a period with another period, making it clear that he believes the people have the right to keep and bear arms under the constitution, end of story. Ok, I dig that… Moving on.

Trump’s statement immediately addresses liberal arguments on gun control by explaining that the right to bear arms is an essential part of self-defense.

“The Second Amendment guarantees a fundamental right that belongs to all law-abiding Americans. The Constitution doesn’t create that right – it ensures that the government can’t take it away…. the Second Amendment’s purpose is to guarantee our right to defend ourselves and our families. This is about self-defense, plain and simple.

It’s been said that the Second Amendment is America’s first freedom. That’s because the Right to Keep and Bear Arms protects all our other rights… Protecting that freedom is imperative.”

Oh, it gets far better…

Going on to attack gun-control efforts by the Obama administration along with a list of catastrophic gun-control failures around the nation that have done absolutely nothing but harm law-abiding citizens, Trump states it is time to get serious about prosecuting criminals.

The Obama administration’s record on that is abysmal. Violent crime in cities like Baltimore, Chicago and many others is out of control. Drug dealers and gang members are given a slap on the wrist and turned loose on the street. This needs to stop.

Why does that matter to law-abiding gun owners? Because they’re the ones who anti-gun politicians and the media blame when criminals misuse guns. 

Here’s another important way to fight crime – empower law-abiding gun owners to defend themselves. Law enforcement is great… but they can’t be everywhere all of the time. Our personal protection is ultimately up to us. That’s why I’m a gun owner, that’s why I have a concealed carry permit, and that’s why tens of millions of Americans have concealed carry permits as well. It’s just common sense. To make America great again, we’re going to go after criminals and put the law back on the side of the law-abiding.

Trump goes on to cover the nation’s broke mental health system, explaining that “all of the tragic mass murders that occurred in the past several years have something in common – there were red flags that were ignored.” 

Trump covered the “total failure” of gun and magazine bans while attacking gun-grabber efforts to strike fear in the minds of the general public by using “scary” terms such as “assault weapons”, “military-style weapons” and “high capacity magazines.”

The policy calls for an end to efforts to strip rights to own such magazines and firearms.

In probably one of the most important parts of the policy, Trump calls for a National Conceal Carry program to function like a driver’s license. While we believe the 2nd Amendment serves as a carry permit and other permits should not be required, Trump’s stance is a huge step in the right direction.

NATIONAL RIGHT TO CARRY. The right of self-defense doesn’t stop at the end of your driveway. That’s why I have a concealed carry permit and why tens of millions of Americans do too. That permit should be valid in all 50 states. A driver’s license works in every state, so it’s common sense that a concealed carry permit should work in every state. If we can do that for driving – which is a privilege, not a right – then surely we can do that for concealed carry, which is a right, not a privilege.

Very well done.


Monday, September 21, 2015

A different approach to firearm training

A Different Approach To Training: Shooting Better For The Sake Of Shooting Better 

November 9, 2014

by John Van Swearingen


(The opinions below are those of the author, and they do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the American Gunfighters crew. No endorsement is implied by the mention of any brands or products. Further, the authors is not that tough. You can probably take him.)


Back in 2008, the weirdest thing happened: firearms training became… sexy. Magpul posted the trailer for “Magpul Dynamics: Art of the Tactical Carbine” to YouTube that fall, and they released the DVD set shortly thereafter. It seemed like you couldn’t enter a barracks, attend a read-off, or go to the range without hearing two trigger-pullers talking about those videos.


Since then, there has been a renaissance of veteran soldiers, officers, and defense contractors starting training-based YouTube channels, releasing DVDs, buying billboards outside military bases, and utilizing social media, all with one objective in mind: selling you a spot in their training course. Production values and editing in these videos are top notch, and they look really cool.


These classes can teach you great lessons, but they may not be making you better as a shooter. Training is not only there to develop a shooter’s mindset, but the American shooter should not forget the most important part of training: getting better at shooting.


This is where the tactical shooting community as a whole could use a kick in the pants. Putting on your kit (and showing off your new plate carrier) and diving into “supine-urban-modular-dynamic-ninja-prone” can give you quality trigger-time and help introduce you to useful techniques, but the purpose of this article is to offer a different viewpoint about training and training classes: if you are not training like (or with) a high-level competitive shooter, you’re doing it wrong.


That’s Ridiculous


No, section title, you’re ridiculous. As a portion of the shooting community, advanced competitive shooters can generally run any given firearm proficiently than their peers. No, they may not have a tactically sound or particularly defensive mindset, but they can drive their gun like they freaking stole it. Everyone that shoots (especially those that count on their firearm to defend themselves and others) can learn something from that.


The biggest difference is the way the best competitors practice. They don’t just drill shooting positions or situations. They drill the very basics of firearms manipulation to an excess. Dry-firing. Reloads. Drawing to a sight picture. It is not unreasonable to claim that the best competitive shooters can shoot weak-handed while moving with a higher degree of proficiency than the average patrol officer can shoot two-handed. It all comes back to the attitudes toward training.


Well, That’s Insulting


It’s not meant to be insulting. Consider one of the archetypal arguments concerning defensive/tactical firearms training: sighted fire vs. point shooting. You can go to any forum or gun range and find this argument still being waged by everyone from combat veterans to casual gun enthusiasts. The best competitive shooters figured it out a long time ago, though. Simply put:


See what you need to see when you need to see it.


Most shooters do this subconsciously in one sense or another, but elite competitive shooters and trainers hone this skill just like the rest of the shooting community practices shooting groups. Do you know the distance at which you need to obtain a focused sight picture in order to ensure an accurate shot? Jerry Miculek does. Do you know to what degree this distance changes when you introduce target and/or shooter movement? Bob Vogel will. Have you figured out the fastest speed you can move to make acceptable hits at different ranges? Ben Stoeger probably does. Do you know how close you have to be for accurate point shooting?


Advanced competition shooters have practiced these skills ad nauseam, and if you count on a gun for work or the defense of your family, you should as well. Sure, every serious shooter has done “shooting and moving” training, but analyzing and drilling these skills like a serious competitive shooter can make the process of determining sufficient sight picture faster and more reflexive. That sounds like a serious tactical advantage.


But Doesn’t Competition Hurt Your Tactical Edge?


Look, this isn’t about just training tactics. This is about getting really damn good at the fundamentals. Taking a class with a competition instructor and shooting a serious IDPA or USPSA match will have great practical benefits. You will be forced to safely run your gun as hard as you can under the stress of a clock, and you will get useful feedback on your performance under stress without having to do an incident report or a full-blown AAR. This can give you valuable insight into your personal limits and help further your development as an armed citizen or professional.


A great competition mentor may not have real-world tactical experience (or they may be a certified badass like Frank Proctor), but they can help you take the fundamentals of shooting and push them. Hard. Good training can take a strong shooter with a sound tactical mindset, push them past a basic perception of “combat effectiveness,” and help them realize that they can shoot consistently, accurately, and quickly to a much higher level under stress.


Okay, Finish It Up


If you are military, LE, security, or a defensively-minded civilian, you owe it to yourself to reassess your training budget and branch out. Take the war-belts-and-plate-carriers, no BS, balls-out tactical course. Learn lessons from those who have already been in foreign combat or LE shootings. See how hard you can drive your favorite carbine or pistol, make sure your gear works in the dirt, and learn valuable lessons that you can bring back to your unit, agency, or household.


Instead of taking ONLY those courses, though, try to hook up with a decent competition instructor, and shoot a match whenever you can. Compete with yourself; play by whatever “rules” they ask you to. Do not treat that class or match like a tactical training session. Treat it as an opportunity for you and your gun to find out just exactly how hard you can go. You can (and will) get better if you take a step back… and work on simply shooting better. Eyes. Hands. Trigger. Repeat.


What was the last class you took, and what is the next training session on your schedule?


Bonus Question:  Have you shot a competition or taken any competition training recently, and how do you think it has affected you as a shooter?