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Old August 13, 2008, 10:14 AM   #1
Saab1911
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What level of training is prudent for concealed carry?

As many of you have pointed out, the level of proficiency one has to demonstrate with
a handgun to get a concealed carry permit is very low. That is not
necessarily a bad thing. But, what level of proficiency and training is
prudent for concealed carry?

I would argue that if a person is only proficient with a firearm to barely pass
concealed carry practical test, that person needs to achieve a higher
proficiency before concealed carry makes sense.

As handgun experts have said, when you're carrying, a fight automatically
involves one where a firearm is present because you brought it. So, a
fight that would only have resulted in physical and emotional bruises
otherwise may turn deadly simply because a firearm is present.

Someone with little to no training may have a false sense of security from
a concealed handgun, but that handgun may very well be used to take
the bearer's life.

At the very least, I think that someone who wants to carry needs to take
a comprehensive class on safe and effective pistol handling, and on top of
that the person should either practice on his own regularly or take
refresher courses.

What are your thoughts?

Lest you doubt my intentions, I have no intention or authority to take away
anybody's firearm. And I certainly do not have the intention or authority
to dictate who may carry and who may not.

I'm simply saying that a handgun carried by someone with less than ideal
proficiency with the same handgun may create more dangers for the
bearer. Mace or taser might be a better option for some.

Cheers,

jae
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Old August 13, 2008, 10:28 AM   #2
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At least 3 years active duty military service.
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Old August 13, 2008, 10:32 AM   #3
pax
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As much as you can reasonably afford, plus regular practice. Once you have attained a decent level of skill, a good goal is to attend one two-day class per year to maintain your skill and keep your edge sharp.

It's amazing to me how vehemently some people will defend their own ignorance. Why would anyone want to carry a gun but not get training in how to effectively use it?

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Old August 13, 2008, 10:51 AM   #4
Saab1911
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It's amazing to me how vehemently some people will defend their own ignorance. Why would anyone want to carry a gun but not get training in how to effectively use it?
I'm glad you agree. I was trepidatious about starting this thread.

Imagine a diminutive woman carrying a concealed handgun, and imagine
a perp accosting her. With a trembling hand the woman pulls out her gun,
the perp adroitly takes the gun away from her. Now, whatever the situation
was before, it has become a life and death situation for the woman.

Sense of insecurity may cause sleepless nights. False sense of confidence
can get you killed.
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Old August 13, 2008, 11:03 AM   #5
Keltyke
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Basic handgun safety and handling. The basic CCW course, then LOTS of practice. I hit the range once a week and fire at LEAST 50 with my carry piece. A tactical course is good, too.

I'll add knowing the law of where and when you can carry and when you can shoot is of ultimate importance.
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Old August 13, 2008, 11:13 AM   #6
Brian Pfleuger
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At least 3 years active duty military service.

Seriously?:barf:

Let me check my flag..... yep, American, not Israeli
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Old August 13, 2008, 11:35 AM   #7
Stagger Lee
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Not that I'd oppose mandating military service for CCW holders (and everyone else post-high-school), but the military doesn't teach about the laws of self-defense or much anything else useful for civilian carry among other civilians.

I would recommend a high level of training, at least Ayoob's LFI-1 or it's equivalent.

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Old August 13, 2008, 11:44 AM   #8
Brian Pfleuger
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Quote:
Imagine a diminutive woman carrying a concealed handgun, and imagine
a perp accosting her. With a trembling hand the woman pulls out her gun,
the perp adroitly takes the gun away from her. Now, whatever the situation
was before, it has become a life and death situation for the woman.

Sense of insecurity may cause sleepless nights. False sense of confidence
can get you killed.
Jae,

I'd say that a considerable amount of introspection goes hand-in-hand with the training. The woman in your example MUST make sure she is willing to pull that trigger before carrying a gun. I'm not sure ANYTHING is more important than that decision. No amount of training will help if you can't/won't pull the trigger when it has to be done. After that, I think it's a personal decision, you need to be trained to a level that makes the gun you carry more dangerous to the BG than it is to you. Since we all believe in right to carry, that is a personal confidence that I will not dictate to others. (I know that wasn't your intent anyway)
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Old August 13, 2008, 11:47 AM   #9
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I also would like to point out that such a suggestion was not even a consideration until very recently in American history. There was a time when the question would have been "What do mean you don't own a gun?!" (not that everyone carried but almost everyone had a gun in the house). The founders CLEARLY never intended any level of training our they would have either written it into the Constitution OR required it by later law and neither has been the case.
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Old August 13, 2008, 11:51 AM   #10
Frank Ettin
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Jeff Cooper used to say, "It is long been a principle of ours that one is no more armed because he has possession of a firearm than he is a musician because he owns a piano. There is no point in having a gun if you are not capable of using it skillfully."

And I've seen plenty of atrocious gun handling and abysmal marksmanship at the various ranges I frequent. I've seen a lot of folks who apparently have had their guns for a while and who couldn't put two successive shots within 15 inches of each other at 7 yards. Aside from the hazard such people might pose to others, if they needed to use their guns in self defense, they might not be able to do themselves much good.

There probably isn't such a thing as too much training or too much practice -- as long as it's good training and good practice. And I think a good foundation would be the three NRA courses -- Basic Handgun, Personal Protection Outside the Home and Personal Protection Inside the Home. If properly taught, the three together will cover: basic safety and shooting skills; basic self defense shooting skills, including combat accuracy, flash sigh picture, basic point shooting, presenting a gun from a holster, speed reloads, basic movement and use of cover; equipment selection and use; legal issues; mind set and attitude; situational awareness; and dealing with the aftermath of a self defense shooting.

I'm not saying that sort of thing should be a requirement. But if I'm going to be carrying a loaded gun around and think that I may possibly need to use it to defend myself or a member of my family, that's the sort of stuff I'd want to know about.
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Old August 13, 2008, 11:58 AM   #11
chris in va
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At least 3 years active duty military service.


That has to be sarcasm, because I was in the Air Force for 4 years and we touched a gun twice.
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Old August 13, 2008, 12:00 PM   #12
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"Imagine a diminutive woman carrying a concealed handgun, and imagine
a perp accosting her. With a trembling hand the woman pulls out her gun,
the perp adroitly takes the gun away from her. Now, whatever the situation
was before, it has become a life and death situation for the woman."

This could just as well happen to ANY person who hasn't had enough training - male or female.

Don't mean to be a shrew, but it bothers me when I see stereotypical profiling that specifically implies a FEMALE would be more likely to have something like this happen.

I think the MENTAL aspect of carrying is just as important as being proficient with your weapon. I took a little time after getting my CWP to make sure I was mentally ready to carry a weapon - it is a HUGE responsibility, and I wanted to be sure I had my head around it and would be able to pull the trigger if I had to, knowing what the consequences could be.

"Basic handgun safety and handling. The basic CCW course, then LOTS of practice. I hit the range once a week and fire at LEAST 50 with my carry piece. A tactical course is good, too.

I'll add knowing the law of where and when you can carry and when you can shoot is of ultimate importance."

I think this is a pretty good summary for the basic skills one should have. I wish it were possible to practice things like drawing from my concealed holster at the range, but it's not, so it's something I will have to do at home. I would really be interested in some kind of tactical class to give me SOME kind of experience in that area.

I know nothing can ever REALLY prepare you for the real thing, should it ever happen, but the more training and preparation I can do, both mentally and physically, the better off I'll be. I am constantly trying to learn and improve my skills and mindset.
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Old August 13, 2008, 12:09 PM   #13
Saab1911
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Quote:
Since we all believe in right to carry, that is a personal confidence that I will not dictate to others. (I know that wasn't your intent anyway)
I would be opposed to any law that mandates a certain level of proficiency
to carry concealed because liberal lawyers will twist such laws to make it
difficult for anybody to carry concealed (like DC lawyers saying that my
1911 and CZ-75B are "machine guns" ). You know first hand
Peetza, you live in New York.

Having said that, there are certain things that an individual should do for
himself for his own good. And, I can also suggest to another person that
they maybe want to get some more training in correct handling of a handgun.
That other person can do with my suggestion what they wish.

Training and practice breeds confidence, and there's nothing like muscle
memory when @@@@ hits the fan.

Cheers,

Jae
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Old August 13, 2008, 12:22 PM   #14
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I think training which stresses the person mentally should be mandatory with a CPL. Some shooters I have seen are fairly proficient at the range, then when shooting an action sequence where they have to draw, move or change positions, doubletap, seek cover, reload, etc. get very confused and act and shoot very poorly. Things like trying to catch empties out of a wheelgun or retain an empty mag are common, as are botched draws from concealment, failure to use cover effectively, improper shooting technique etc.

Having good range skill with your handgun out to about 15 yards or so is a must IMO; from there the act of drawing, reloading properly, acquiring and firing rapidly, and seeking and using cover should also come naturally. Your focus should be on where and what the threat is doing and if it warrants lethal force, not what you should do if it does.

Basically, if you wonder if your skill is good enough; it probably isn't, and you probably need some training.
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Old August 13, 2008, 12:39 PM   #15
Saab1911
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Having good range skill with your handgun out to about 15 yards or so is a must IMO; from there the act of drawing, reloading properly, acquiring and firing rapidly, and seeking and using cover should also come naturally. Your focus should be on where and what the threat is doing and if it warrants lethal force, not what you should do if it does.
Again, lawyers have a way of gumming up the works. Lawyers will twist
any requirement for Concealed Carry to make it more difficult for everybody
to carry concealed.

Also, if somebody has no idea what any or all of the techniques you
mentioned are or does not know what you exactly mean by "cover", they
need to do themselves a favor and find a way to learn the necessary skills.

Cheers,

Jae
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Old August 13, 2008, 12:46 PM   #16
Erik
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" As much as you can reasonably afford, plus regular practice. Once you have attained a decent level of skill, a good goal is to attend one two-day class per year to maintain your skill and keep your edge sharp."

What Pax said, but applied to firearms related and hand to hand related knowledge, skills, and abilities. Because the fight is not always of our choosing or the way we'd choose it.
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Old August 13, 2008, 12:47 PM   #17
vox rationis
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At least 3 years active duty military service.
What's that got to do with concealed carry and being able to shoot a handgun well...rhetorical question, answer: nothing, and not much, respectively
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Old August 13, 2008, 12:56 PM   #18
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I have lived in two states in my life. Both had the same requirements. Be 21 or over and have a clean record and no mental illness. There should not be any requirements beyond that because it would make it harder for law abiding citizens to protect themselves.

It is a good idea, but should be a personal choice.

There are lots of folks who can't afford to take these classes and get training.

Should that keep them from exercising their right to defend themselves? Some cannot afford to shoot that often either. Does that take away their right to own and carry?

I very seldom get to shoot anymore. I haven't fired my main carry gun in a couple of years. But, I do know how to use it and having it on me will give me the opportunity to defend myself and family.
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Old August 13, 2008, 01:04 PM   #19
Saab1911
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Should that keep them from exercising their right to defend themselves? Some cannot afford to shoot that often either. Does that take away their right to own and carry?

I very seldom get to shoot anymore. I haven't fired my main carry gun in a couple of years. But, I do know how to use it and having it on me will give me the opportunity to defend myself and family.
You can dry fire for free, and practicing drawing from a holster cost you nothing.
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Old August 13, 2008, 01:08 PM   #20
Brian Pfleuger
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I don't think the intention of the question was "When should we strip people of their right to carry?" but more "What level of training should a person obtain before they should feel that they are wielding the power to kill as safely as possible?"


Quote:
...Having said that, there are certain things that an individual should do for
himself for his own good. And, I can also suggest to another person that
they maybe want to get some more training in correct handling of a handgun.
That other person can do with my suggestion what they wish.
I had no doubt that was your intent.
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Old August 13, 2008, 01:15 PM   #21
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but more "What level of training should a person obtain before they should feel that they are wielding the power to kill as safely as possible?"
If I ever have to kill someone I want to kill them as DEAD as possible.

But, that is something that I hope that I never have to do.

A person should be able to determine for themselves when they are ready to carry. Nobody else has that right to decide when I am "good enough" to carry.
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Old August 13, 2008, 01:19 PM   #22
Brian Pfleuger
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Quote:
If I ever have to kill someone I want to kill them as DEAD as possible.
I agree. and....

Quote:
A person should be able to determine for themselves when they are ready to carry. Nobody else has that right to decide when I am "good enough" to carry.

I agree.
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Old August 13, 2008, 01:21 PM   #23
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Again, lawyers have a way of gumming up the works. Lawyers will twist any requirement for Concealed Carry to make it more difficult for everybody to carry concealed.
I don't see alot of problems with having a true practical shooting test to get your license (like a driver's license) which emphasizes the skills I mentioned above, since they should be considered necessary for the effective use of a handgun in a self defense situation. Some people in my CPL class (a while ago) had trouble hitting the paper at ranges under 5 yards. Those people are dangerous to themselves and those around them and they are probably unfamiliar with their weapon and it's safeties as well. Why not make sure they're reasonably competent before letting them carry?
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Old August 13, 2008, 01:27 PM   #24
Brian Pfleuger
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I don't see alot of problems with having a true practical shooting test to get your license (like a driver's license) which emphasizes the skills I mentioned above, since they should be considered necessary for the effective use of a handgun in a self defense situation.
That would be true if it could be drawn up, controlled and administered by other than government agencies.
I say this for 2 reasons:
1) It will be created by lawyers and NOT be what you intend because of the general bias against guns within MOST (most, not all) government and to please the special interest gun control freaks.
2) The test required to get a drivers license (at least in NY) has not been modified since 1937 and, somehow, the powers that be still consider it relevant to the intent of ensuring safe drivers. What, after all, does a 10 minute test REALLY tell you about a person ability to handle driving under real conditions?
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Old August 13, 2008, 01:42 PM   #25
Saab1911
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Quote:
I don't see alot of problems with having a true practical shooting test to get your license (like a driver's license) which emphasizes the skills I mentioned above, since they should be considered necessary for the effective use of a handgun in a self defense situation. Some people in my CPL class (a while ago) had trouble hitting the paper at ranges under 5 yards. Those people are dangerous to themselves and those around them and they are probably unfamiliar with their weapon and it's safeties as well. Why not make sure they're reasonably competent before letting them carry?
Another arena where tests are improper is voting. Southern states enacted
literacy test requirement for voting. Then, the enforcers twisted this
requirement to exclude African Americans from voting. If the African
American passes a literary test in English, he would be then given one
in French. If he passes that, he would have to take another in Latin ...
until they could find one that he wouldn't pass.

I favor no laws which mandate anything for gun ownership or concealed
carry. But I do favor strong, voluntary and friendly encouragement
and suggestion by fellow gun owners.
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