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Old February 27, 2011, 04:03 AM   #30
HK-Lance
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Join Date: January 13, 2011
Posts: 28
Yikes! It wasn't my intention to ignite this heated a discussion. Lots of replies, so I'll just summarize my response so as to not be up all night. I do appreciate all the (constructive) replies.

First thing, I'm almost 100% certain he was a gang-banger. Moved like one, talked like one, acted like one, dressed like one. Was pretty vulgar and snotty towards his girlfriend too, so he left a very bad impression with me. I live in a pretty nice upscale neighborhood, but it's surrounded on 3 sides by pure ghetto. The range happens to be in one of them. Grew up in Chicago so I'm pretty good at sniffing out gang-bangers.

Second, I could have gotten his brass but it would have done me no good. I have a .45, he was shooting 9mm. Otherwise, I would have!

Had he been alone, I might have considered striking up a conversation and being a "chameleon" and getting on his good side just enough to give him some pointers on at least basic safety issues with him being happy for the advice. But seeing as he was there with his girlfriend, it really wouldn't have gone over well, so I figured it was a waste of time. Who wants unsolicited advice about something like how to shoot a gun when they're trying to impress their girlfriend?

Nothing I saw him doing was technically unsafe, per se. But clearly he had no clue about guns, and having someone who thinks spraying the range wildly while being a short step away from losing his footing while shooting is on the very cusp of "Danger, Will Robinson, Danger!". I was there with a friend so when one of us was shooting the other was keeping an eye on him just in case. He came close to falling backwards at least once, and it's not a stretch by any imagination for someone falling down like that to have an accidental discharge.

The good thing is, he didn't stay long. When you're shooting 15 rounds in 5 seconds, you tend not to spend a lot of time at the range unless you have lots of money for ammo.

I agree with the people who essentially said "I wouldn't help a gang-banger learn how to shoot". Same reason I won't teach them martial arts or anything about knives or whatnot.

I wasn't fearful that he would start a gunfight. I think Double Naught Spy exaggerated what I was trying to say. All I meant was that you never know, when it comes to gang bangers, when they're gonna go berserk. While it would seem unlikely that he would get into a gun battle with a ranger master or anyone else, you just never know. People are crazy and stupid. I was once at an outdoor range in Indiana and a cop was there shooting. He got there shortly before our group was about to leave. Well, he had some sort of feed jam, and he starts grabbing at the slide with his finger still on the trigger, then turns the barrel to point inwards towards his pancreas (roughly) with his finger still on the trigger, while wrestling with the slide. I simply said to him "How about you point that away from yourself and keep it downrange till I leave?". Didn't feel like having to call the paramedics while tending to a cop with a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Anyway, I personally don't mind if there are 10 other people spraying their rounds like machine guns. If there are thousands of rounds shooting off around me every minute, that's fine. Excessive noise is a stress, so that lets me work on handling ignoring it. Just another aspect of training. My only concern is that, as Swamp Yankee pointed out, being sloppy and foolish with a gun is never a good thing, and that leads to accidents. I prefer someone like that have his accident in the privacy of his own home, not on the range with me.

So that's why I asked. Had he been doing something outright dangerous, I'd have left and had the range officer handle it. But it gets trickier when the person is simply being foolish and while not perhaps dangerous outright, is putting himself on the edge of going into very dangerous territory. I'm so used to having a range to myself or to me and a group of trusted friends that when something like this comes up, I'm looking for pointers.
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