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Old August 8, 2006, 12:28 PM   #1
v8fbird
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Terrible NRA CCW Course

I've always disliked the NRA (pro-gun control); that's why I've never become a member. I use their range, and I took their class, but I figure that is different than offering direct monetary support. Anyway, I took my CCW class yesterday night.

Here are the problems I had; you all can let me know what you think:

#1 - While showing us how to hold a gun, the guy stressed keeping the hand as high on the backstrap as possible. When he demonstrated, he actually had the skin between his thumb and pointer finger stretched up and ON the slide of his Glock. As most of the people in the class were novice shooters, I can just see someone going to their range time and getting their hand pretty chewed up when they follow his instructions.

#2 - TWO minutes after the guy talks condescendingly about "NEVER POINTING YOUR GUN AT ANYONE," he comes walking around the room showing his "proper" grip, and as he shows the girl next to me the barrel of the gun is pointed directly between my eyes. COME ON.

#3 - They said that people ALWAYS should keep their firearms and ammo SEPARATELY in the home. Not "if you have kids" or any other qualification. Apparently it is the NRA's position that you keep your gun upstairs and your ammo downstairs.

#4 - Then a lady went over what to do if stopped. She pointed out that, in VA, you have no legal obligation to tell a LEO you have either a permit or a gun. But she said that you should tell them anyway. When asked what would happen, she said "Because the officer might look on his computer, find you have a gun, think it is suspicious that you didn't tell him before, and if you make a furtive movement towards your wallet or something, he could shoot you, AND YOU WOULD DESERVE IT." So if you have broken no laws, done nothing wrong, you deserve to be SHOT.

#5 - Direct quote about open carry in VA: "NRA does not recommend open carry; if you do, you're an idiot, asking for trouble. DON'T DO IT. It's your right. DON'T DO IT." That one speaks for itself.

#6 - Direct quote about places off limits for concealed carry: "places of worship; there are some exceptions, only the pastor can grant it, usually to the treasurer."

I attended a Virginia CLE class about VA Firearms Law. We discussed this. The VA Code says you can't carry in a place of worship "without good & sufficient reason...while a religious meeting is being held." (Sec. 18.2-283)

Basically, nobody knows that "good and sufficient reason" means. It hasn't really been challenged in court to my knowledge; plenty of people carry in church and I don't think anyone has had problems with it.

The part about pastors giving exceptions being part of the law was, quite simply, fabricated.

#7 - The woman again, about not shooting fleeing felons: "A policeman's not gonna shoot a fleeing felon, so you don't do it either." Obviously you can't shoot someone in the back. But to say that cops don't shoot fleeing felons! Anyone ever watch COPS???


Other things I didn't like:

#8 - We were told to just release the slide in an empty gun and let it fall on an empty chamber. I've always heard this is hard on the gun, I always just use my hand to let the slide forward gently. Maybe I don't have to, but I have no idea why their way is MORE RIGHT and why I got yelled at about my way.

#9 - We were told not to use the slide release button when reloading, but to just rack the slide. Again, this was put forward as the ONLY right way to do it.






Obviously, I went into this class disliking the NRA, and detesting the fact that Leviathan must license me to exercise my God-given rights. But I do think that at least some of my concerns are valid. Let me know what you guys think.
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Old August 8, 2006, 12:41 PM   #2
281 Quad Cam
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Don't put another thought into it.

My CCW class was also an NRA type thing or some such...

Guy did alot of talking about why you shouldn't use Glocks because their "Tri-action" system isn't safe.

Alot of strange information going around in these meetings. But I believe that all of the instructors have their own brand of strange - and that, while yours was worse than mine... You shouldn't worry about what these guys say for very long after you leave.
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Old August 8, 2006, 12:42 PM   #3
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Would you mind sending me a message about through whom this course was offered if other than NRA itself? I didn't know about 8, and I usually let the slide chamber the first round in a mag. It sounds like both were interjecting (without prudence) their personal beliefs within the course material. And that guy must be a jackass for no. 2.
As for open carry, I do it, my instructor at the range does it, lots of other people do it. Why shouldn't you exercise your right by law? If you go along those lines of thinking, you shouldn't have guns either. "It's your right. DON'T DO IT."
Telling the cop you are CCW is not required, a friend of mine at work didn't know the cWP is linked to your license and he didn't tell the officer. Officer came back and asked him, "Where's your gun?" He didn't have it, but he didn't get shot either.
I am attending a course tomorrow night offered by the Personal Protection Institute so I can submit my app. for VA CWP. I'll let you know how that goes.
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Old August 8, 2006, 12:46 PM   #4
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Any time you're taught anything, there's going to be some nonsense. It's merely a result of having people determine what is to be taught and then presenting it.

I got tripped up in the beginning though. You're pro-gun-control but carry? I understand a lot of the at-first-glance paradoxes involved in gun rights, but that really makes no sense. And any articulate shooter can easily explain why gun control is a farce, seeing as it only restricts those who already use their guns lawfully.
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Old August 8, 2006, 12:51 PM   #5
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It sounds like you were in a class run by jerks who don't know their subject, and don't practice what they preach.

I can't say that I know that the stuff they tried to teach you was the NRA's official word. I imagine it's very possible that it is not.

If it went down like you said, your concerns certainly are valid.


What I would like to hear is that you detailed these problems in a letter to the people who ran the course. (I'd wait til I had my CCW license in my hand, though.) These people need to be told what they are doing and saying wrong. (It might have been unpleasant if you had raised the subjects right there in class and challenged them at the time, so you didn't do wrong by not rising up to do so.)

Really, you should be writing to them, or if they have bosses, to their bosses.


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Old August 8, 2006, 12:59 PM   #6
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I'm not pro-gun control, the NRA IS PRO GUN CONTROL. No, I won't explain because it will start a debate. If you want me to explain my position, you can PM me.
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Old August 8, 2006, 01:02 PM   #7
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azurefly,

Haha, yeah, I sure didn't say anything in the class. I'd end up dumping $100 and not coming out with my certificate.

My eyes did bug a little bit and I sort of giggled when the woman said I deserved to be shot for not telling a cop I was carrying.


Dreadnought,

This was an OFFICIAL NRA course.
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Old August 8, 2006, 01:09 PM   #8
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Even though this may have been an "official NRA course", the instructors were interjecting their own personal opinions. Rather than condeming the entire NRA training system - which is the de facto go-to group for information on the safe handling of firearms - maybe you should call NRA training headquarters and express your displeasure regarding your specific instructor.

Just a thought.
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Old August 8, 2006, 01:16 PM   #9
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mpthole,

I agree that you can't hold an organization responsible for what their instructors say.

These instructors, however, were NRA employees. They were NRA instructors, not independent contractors. So the level of separation from official policy was not what it would have been if they were just some schmucks NRA brought in to teach the course.



But this course is not why I have problems with the NRA.
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Old August 8, 2006, 01:43 PM   #10
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PM me the name and location, I know a student filmmaker who is good with hidden cameras and mics, this would make a hilarious "blooper" video.
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Old August 8, 2006, 02:37 PM   #11
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I am confused. To my knowledge, the NRA does not offer a CCW course. They recently started rolling out a Personal Protection Outside the Home Course but I doubt very few classes have taken place.

Can you be more specific on exactly which course we are discussing?
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Old August 8, 2006, 03:47 PM   #12
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I just received a copy of "Personal Protection Outside the Home" from the NRA WEB site. 80% of the book is a repeat of "Personal Protection Inside the Home". Even some of the photo images are the same. The good news is that they are in color now. Many of your points / quotes are verbatim from the book. The NRA certainly has its faults and flaws. Sounds like you got a couple of bad instructors that dont know S*** other than what they read from a book. Putting your hand behind the slide of an auto is a bad plan!

Glad you got your paper
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Old August 8, 2006, 04:10 PM   #13
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"#7 - The woman again, about not shooting fleeing felons: "A policeman's not gonna shoot a fleeing felon, so you don't do it either." Obviously you can't shoot someone in the back. But to say that cops don't shoot fleeing felons! Anyone ever watch COPS???"

Police officers are no longer justified in shooting a felon simply because they are fleeing. The individual in question must present an immediate risk of death or great bodily harm to others. Both law and department policy largely prohibits this.

Also...NEVER judge what a police officer can/should do by COPS. Most cops (including myself and my friends that are still active) see that show as a constant reminder of how a lot of guys throw safety to the wind when they get in front of a camera. (Granted: occasionally you will see someone whose head is on a swivel and is on top of the game...but not often).
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Old August 8, 2006, 04:17 PM   #14
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"To my knowledge, the NRA does not offer a CCW course."

http://www.nrahq.org/shootingrange/n...nge/events.asp

Look at August 7-8.

Tues is the class, Wed is the range time.





In fact, I just got back from the range. It actually was useful. I have always shot off to the left; I've never bothered to figure out why, I have the same clusters as everyone else only 4" to the left at 25'. Turns out I was pulling the trigger with my first knuckle joint instead of the pad at the tip of my finger. We changed that, BOOM BOOM BOOM BOOM BOOM five through the center X.
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Old August 8, 2006, 04:31 PM   #15
v8fbird
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"I just received a copy of "Personal Protection Outside the Home" from the NRA WEB site. 80% of the book is a repeat of "Personal Protection Inside the Home". Even some of the photo images are the same. The good news is that they are in color now. Many of your points / quotes are verbatim from the book."

I'd love to see it, but it's not worth the $20 based on your critique.
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Old August 8, 2006, 04:57 PM   #16
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v8fbird:

The instructors you ran into were NRA certified instructors. The course was not necessarily orchestrated by the NRA.

Here's what you should do:

1. Contact the NRA Training Division, and tell them forthwith about your classroom experience. Give names and dates.

2. If you want some training, find another school with a good reputation who does not employ clowns.

To the best of my knowledge (and I am an NRA Life Member) the NRA does NOT advocate ANY form of gun control, nor restriction in the right to keep and bear arms in any degree. Anyone who states that they're from the NRA and acts like these people did has something seriously wrong with them.
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Old August 8, 2006, 05:16 PM   #17
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Wow!!!

I have a lot of problems with the original post. First of all, I am dying to know how NRA is pro gun control. Secondly, you should hold a gun however it feels comfortable in your hand, while keeping in mind that you ought to stay clear of the moving parts. You then claim that the instructor pointed his/her weapon at you. If they did then let them know. Just because they know gun safety doesn't mean that they practice it and they need to be reinforced. To the next point, it is not the NRA's policy to keep your ammo and weapons seperate. You don't know what you are talking about. The instructor may have said so, but that doesn't make it NRA policy. Yet another point, if you want to tell a LEO you have a weapon then do so. If not then dont. Who cares what someone else thinks? Which goes along with my next point as well. If you want to open carry then do so. Like you said it is your right! #7 is just plain ridiculous! I have never seen a cop shoot someone in the back on the show COPS. Come to think of it, they don't show shootings on COPS. The "shootings" they show have already happened by the time the officer and camera crew arrives. Your last few points go back to what is comfortable to you! If it is safe and it feels natural to you then do it your way. Quit complaining about it and go on with your life. You aren't a member therefore you dont have to put up with them anymore. Forgive and forget and move on.
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Old August 8, 2006, 05:23 PM   #18
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I'm a former NRA Certified Instructor. I never taught anything like that. And I always had the DA come into my classes to instruct on the proper law. Only reason I gave it up was that most people in my area think they were born to shoot and carry and don't need any outside instruction. FWIW, AL has no class requirement to get a CCW.

As for as open carry, it is theoretically legal in AL. IMO, even if 100% legal, I'd still rather carry concealed. Why give away the fact you are armed?
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Old August 8, 2006, 05:43 PM   #19
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"I'm a former NRA Certified Instructor. I never taught anything like that. And I always had the DA come into my classes to instruct on the proper law. Only reason I gave it up was that most people in my area think they were born to shoot and carry and don't need any outside instruction. FWIW, AL has no class requirement to get a CCW. As for as open carry, it is theoretically legal in AL. IMO, even if 100% legal, I'd still rather carry concealed. Why give away the fact you are armed?"

You're right about people. As for me, I don't think I am born to shoot or to carry. I haven't been well trained. I'm not a terribly great shot. But at the same time I think the government has no right to make me any of those things before I am allowed to carry concealed. "Shall not be infringed" wasn't followed by "after licensure is obtained." If we keep and bear arms in part to fend off tyranny, what kind of nation do we live in where the state decides who can carry arms?

As for open carry, I've never done it. I probably won't. If someone asked me, I'd probably recommend against it. But there are a lot of Virginians who have been starting to. I am 100% behind them. If someone gets hassled for open carrying, there need to be 10,000 people out there the next day doing the same thing -- just try to hassle us all. If the rights of one can be violated, then none of us have the rights. For it to be official NRA position to NOT exercise one's rights is absurd.
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Old August 8, 2006, 05:53 PM   #20
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"First of all, I am dying to know how NRA is pro gun control."

I said I didn't want to start this debate. Start with the preconception that ALL gun control is immoral and unconstitutional. Then go start reading NRA material; it will become clear that while they fight for some things, they quite easily give in to most gun laws on the books today.


"Secondly, you should hold a gun however it feels comfortable in your hand, while keeping in mind that you ought to stay clear of the moving parts."


You're making my point. My problem was that he was teaching it to 23 other people who didn't know any better.


"You then claim that the instructor pointed his/her weapon at you. If they did then let them know. Just because they know gun safety doesn't mean that they practice it and they need to be reinforced."


Again, the point was that he should have known better.

"To the next point, it is not the NRA's policy to keep your ammo and weapons seperate. You don't know what you are talking about."

Apparently. But yeat again, the point was neither did he.


"Yet another point, if you want to tell a LEO you have a weapon then do so. If not then dont. Who cares what someone else thinks?"


Fourth time -- point wasn't that I'm going to listen to him, the point was that he shouldn't have been saying what he said.









"Quit complaining about it and go on with your life. You aren't a member therefore you dont have to put up with them anymore. Forgive and forget and move on."

This is the proper forum to air complaints such as this. If you don't like what I had to say, then "Quit complaining about it and go on with your life. You aren't MY MOTHER therefore you dont have to put up with ME anymore. Forgive and forget and move on."
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Old August 8, 2006, 06:07 PM   #21
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Yikes!

The NRA needs to be informed about this doofus.

As a NRA certified instructor myself, all I can do is wonder where he completed his training. The guys that run the instructor course at Camp Perry every year would not put up with this kind of nonsense.

Please let a friendly NRA person know about this horrendous sham! If they don't know about it, they can't fix it and TRUST ME... they will want to fix this.

Where did you get the idea that the NRA is pro-gun control?
If your definition of gun control is: "holding securely onto your guns untill someone kills you and takes them from you cold, dead hands", then you are right. Otherwise, no dice...

Drop an e-mail to them about this guy for the sake of the rest of us, if not for the NRA. Please... I'm begging you. This must be set right.
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Old August 8, 2006, 09:30 PM   #22
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Once again...

you dont need to worry about everyone else. Take care of yourself. If the instructor doesn't know any better then that is his own fault. And to your first comment, yes it does say "shall not be infringed" in the bill of rights. However, that is not how things are today. We should fight for them to be that way again but right now there are laws against that and if you break them then you are just as much a criminal as the guy down the street robbing the local 7/11! You did nothing but prove all of my points in your post so I am glad you are starting to understand.
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Old August 9, 2006, 07:45 AM   #23
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Quote:
"First of all, I am dying to know how NRA is pro gun control."

I said I didn't want to start this debate. Start with the preconception that ALL gun control is immoral and unconstitutional. Then go start reading NRA material; it will become clear that while they fight for some things, they quite easily give in to most gun laws on the books today.
Very true, V8fbird. I have gently tried to explain this to people from time to time. The tragic thing is that, although the NRA leaves something to be desired in terms of absolute regard for the RTKBA (demonstrated by their support of much existing unconstitutional legislation), they are the best bet we have to hold onto some semblance of our rights. Therefore, they have my cautious support.

In the moral sewer we live in today, those who will stand up for right no matter what do not have a chance. Though I respect and admire such people, my vote is cast on the side of tact and political savoir, which the NRA exercises in abundance to gain whatever victories it can.

It's a no-win world, isn't it?
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Old August 9, 2006, 08:20 AM   #24
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My two cents...

It probably wouldn't take a lot of searching to find the thread on which I posted a very similar recent experience at the hands of a "certified NRA instructor." I actually think mine was worse because we were taught almost nothing. The emphasis of the "course" was war stories and how not to get sued if you shoot somebody. The extent of the course material provided was the instructor held up a tattered paperback book without comment. He took us shooting on a woods road with no backstop...

In my post, I pointed out that I teach a non-gun related course dealing with state licenses. My course material must be submitted to the state for approval: outlines, quizzes and tests, etc. On the night of my second class I was "audited" by a state inspector. A recent change in law means my students must now pass a state adminstered test after my course. I can assure you, lives are not at stake over the subject matter, but the quality of the teaching is taken seriously.

I suppose some would cry that the student's rights are being infringed since these are state requirements. Well, sometimes the state does things after "we" prove that we're not capable of doing them very well ourselves.

If the NRA is going to promote the value of "Certified Instructors" they should consider themselves obligated to perform some level of quality assurance. From what I have seen based on experience and their own information regarding the certification process it really is a bit of a sham. If you're willing to spend the money to take the instructor's course, they'll certify you forever, no checks, no renewals, no requirements. Sorta like a mail order minister's license or college degree! (Hmmm... if you become a mail order minister can you grant concealed carry rights any where you consider a place of worship?)

I'm certainly not "anti" NRA and am not even interested in a political debate about the organization. I am pro-education and I am pro-responsible behavior. It would appear that we have some doofus NRA Certified Instructors producing uneducated people who do not understand the responsiblities of owning and carrying their weapon. I think that's a problem for all gun owners. I can assure you that you would NOT like to be in the same room with my classmates if a situation developed that meant guns were likely to be drawn.

Instructor ignorance is not just a problem for the instructor. It's a problem for other gun owners and innocent by-standers.

Asking the students to solve the problem by reporting it is putting the cart behind the horse. The damage has been done... how many students will realize they haven't learned or have learned improperly? 50% of the class I was in were clearly there because they needed the certificate to get their concealed carry permit PERIOD. They're done learning. And they may be standing next to you in the 7-11.

Again, if the NRA wants help with "enforcement" then there needs to be a mechanisim... a place to rate instructors on the web site, a hot link or number to call to report problems... these are not really such difficult concepts or ideas. How about requiring the instructor to hand out evaluation sheets at the end of his course that are mailed directly to the NRA? (I'm required to send student evaluations in, btw.)

It's good to see some certified instructors posting here, obviously concerned about what students are getting... since the NRA has accepted the responsiblity of acting as your professional association, you might want to "lobby" them to do the job a lot better.
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Old August 9, 2006, 08:31 AM   #25
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Quote:
#8 - We were told to just release the slide in an empty gun and let it fall on an empty chamber. I've always heard this is hard on the gun, I always just use my hand to let the slide forward gently. Maybe I don't have to, but I have no idea why their way is MORE RIGHT and why I got yelled at about my way.

#9 - We were told not to use the slide release button when reloading, but to just rack the slide. Again, this was put forward as the ONLY right way to do it.
So...
Use the slide release when the gun is empty.
But manually rack the slide when you change mags?
How pertarded.
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