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Old January 14, 2014, 12:44 PM   #1
MikeNice81
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James Yeager Opinions

I came across James Yeager on Youtube. The guy is definitely brash and confident. However, he seems to be quite controversial. What is the general opinion of James Yeager and his training, minus the personality issues?
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Old January 14, 2014, 12:49 PM   #2
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Okay -- this needs to stick to facts with evidence and back-up.

Innuendo, rant and unsupported opinions will at least get this thread locked.
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Old January 14, 2014, 12:53 PM   #3
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Definitely. I have no interest in all the name calling. I've seen the controversy over his permit and such. My only real interest is in his quality as a trainer and his knowledge. If this turns in to a mud fest I will ask for the thread to be locked. I've seen Suarez threads and don't want that repeated.
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Old January 14, 2014, 12:58 PM   #4
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Getting past the "Ego" ....

Quote:
What is the general opinion of James Yeager and his training, minus the personality issues?
Last week, a shooting buddy of mine, E-mailed me with the same question and of course I had to go and watch some of his videos. Kind of reminds me of Masab Ayoob. Not easy to watch but really not too far off, on his information. Of the videos I have seen, I really can't take issue with them. He is very intense on personal protection and perhaps more of us need to listen. ....

By the way, my shooting buddy can barely tolerate his attitude. .....

Be Safe !!!
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Old January 14, 2014, 01:45 PM   #5
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Yeager's problems aren't confined to his colorful public statements. He has exaggerated and possibly falsified his credentials.

His attitude toward safety has also been called into question. There are plenty of self-defense instructors out there without this kind of baggage.
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Old January 14, 2014, 02:16 PM   #6
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good & bad......

I have mixed views of JY.
I, for one don't respond to his assertive personality but in fairness he does offer a detailed instruction style. He gives the viewer/student a honest opinion & doesn't sugar coat it.

The scandals & problems he had related to his TN carry license were bad but Yeager also made a video where he apologized & took responsibility for his acts/statements.
That to me was a very mature adult way to deal with it.
As for JYs background, he was a "police chief" in a small community with only 2 sworn LE officers.
He was separated over a dispute when he wanted to set up a SWAT/SRT unit.
Yeager was a PSC in SW Asia. He was in a serious gun battle where some reports say he avoid any direct contact with the enemy combatants who attacked his damaged vehicle.
I don't think I'd spend any $ on his classes but overall he's not a bad instructor. Many PSCs take his course before working overseas.
I'd go to Thunder Ranch, S2, Bill Scott Raceway, SIG Sauer Academy, Vickers Tactical and/or Jeff Gonzales class.
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Old January 14, 2014, 02:53 PM   #7
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I consider James a personal friend, and I say so without qualification or reservation.

The training is solid, and based upon sound principles and reasoning. This does not mean that I personally believe that every technique or method taught is "the bestest evaaaaaar!"

What ever complaints anyone has about "safety", I'd suggest that you are looking at (or reading) isolated factoids devoid of context or explanation. I see much worse "safety violations" at gun counters and in the parking lots of ranges every day ... often by people who are instructors or carry a gun for a living.

Personality conflicts have no place in this discussion, unless it's degraded to a 7th-grade ad-hominem fest.
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Old January 14, 2014, 08:46 PM   #8
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I have watched a lot of his videos, I think they are pretty solid for the most part. I can't say I have seen any direct contradictions in his videos with any of the training I have received.

as far as his overall demeanor, I have seen other instructors that have the same "intensity" on various issues as well, his didn't seem out of line.
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Old January 14, 2014, 09:16 PM   #9
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"Intensity", passion....

I agree that some gun & tactics cadre have "passion" or intensity but you have to ask yourself; "Is this someone Id hand a fully loaded select fire weapon to?"
Or "should this person be carrying a loaded firearm concealed in public?".
If the honest answer is; no. Then I wouldn't take the class or really take the Youtube.com videos to heart.

Yankee Marshal is a popular video personality. He claims to be a ex-cop(in a small rural PD). I enjoy watching his clips & he makes several coherent points, re; guns & concealed carry. I also disagree with some of his expressed views(convicted felons should get 2A rights restored, everyone is racist to a certain extent, etc).
No gun or tactics trainer should be your only source of material or education. You, as a grown adult or CCW holder can decide what you want or who's class-material you select to learn.

As a gun-owner/security officer I've seen a few students or seminar members get the "be-like-daddy" mindset.
Role-models or mentors can have merit but don't base 100% of your skills on just one gun/tactics program. Be open & see what's out there.
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Old January 14, 2014, 09:34 PM   #10
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Quote:
I agree that some gun & tactics cadre have "passion" or intensity but you have to ask yourself; "Is this someone Id hand a fully loaded select fire weapon to?"
Or "should this person be carrying a loaded firearm concealed in public?".
If the honest answer is; no. Then I wouldn't take the class or really take the Youtube.com videos to heart.
That's all fine and good, except that you are inviting everyone to simply (uncritically and without intervening argument) adopt the implied notion that Yeager is precisely the kind of guy you wouldn't, " ... hand a fully loaded select fire weapon to ..." as though it's some kind of foregone conclusion.

It's not.

Everyone is entitled to their opinion, but let's not let this degrade to schoolyard insults, ad-hominem attacks, half-truths and innuendo.

Last edited by zombietactics; January 14, 2014 at 09:40 PM.
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Old January 14, 2014, 09:57 PM   #11
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Not true....

I've stated several times that viewers or forum members should make up their own minds about any gun trainer including JY.
If you watch Yeager's own clips(that he produced & aired by his own choice) he gets very animated & aggressive.
"agro" as the teens say.
Is JY the only Youtuber who gets amped up? No!
Look at EJ Owen's videos. Or Patriot Nurse or Yankee Marshal.

You can imply or make inference to what ever you choose. I'd suggest the viewer or student make the decision if a cadre/teacher has merit.
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Old January 14, 2014, 10:51 PM   #12
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Quote:
Is JY the only Youtuber who gets amped up? No!
No, but character matters. It matters quite a bit when we're taking advice on life-or-death situations from the speaker.
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Old January 14, 2014, 11:30 PM   #13
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I'd say that 90% of what he puts out I agree with. He tells it like it is. Some people just don't like to hear it.
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Old January 15, 2014, 01:14 AM   #14
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No, but character matters.
Absolutely, and I would say JY is a man of very good character. He gives a ridiculous amount of money to charity every year. He's taken several out-of-work vets into his team room and let them stay there free of charge until they get on their feet ... sometimes giving them jobs, etc. There's more, but you'll seldom hear it because he doesn't toot his own horn in that regard.

It's probably not a good mark of character to judge someone else's character until you actually know something about them.

Various versions of "I don't like Yeager, so I am going to find a 'clever' way of saying it, while still giving myself plausible denial" are still only ad-hominem "I don't like Yeager" statements.

The OP was clear he wasn't interested in discussions of that nature, and a mod has made it clear it won't be tolerated.

Last edited by zombietactics; January 15, 2014 at 01:22 AM.
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Old January 15, 2014, 04:05 AM   #15
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Very intense. I think a guy could just take what he could use from the videos and discount the rest...without dissecting the guy.
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Old January 15, 2014, 05:54 AM   #16
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James Yeager Opinions

I will try to keep this as professionsl as possible, as per Frank's directive.

I think it is very unfortunate for a person in a position of training authority with a large YouTube viewership to get mad and post a video about how "if it goes any further I'm gonna start killing people."

Regardless of what I think about him personally, politically and strategically that's about the worst thing to say in public to bolster pro-gun causes, no matter how infuriating gun control is.

I think a gun owner seeking training would be much better served obtaining training from a more responsible, more even-keeled, and less divisive person. There are plenty out there. Yeager's videos seem to be as much about trashing equipment he does not like as they are about training. I have no use for that.

Politically speaking, I also know a bunch of independent voters who I have gently swayed pro-gun over time with calm, logic, and respectful dialogue about gun rights. Knowing the personality of these folks, I believe if exposed to a confrontational, brash persona like Yaeger's when first learning about guns, they might well have joined the other side at the polls.
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Old January 15, 2014, 06:17 AM   #17
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I'm hoping to get some training from him in the next year or two.
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Old January 15, 2014, 08:13 AM   #18
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Absolutely, and I would say JY is a man of very good character.
After the video about how if things didn't change he was going to have to start shooting people, the notion of "good character" went out the window.
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/0...n_2459456.html

His idea of stress inoculation training by putting people by targets while others shoot them unsafe, despite his claims to the contrary.

His ability diagnostic ability also came into question for me during his 1000 round Glock test of his personal carry gun. I liked the test, but his assessment that the malfunctions were due to cheap ammo was bogus. They only occurred when he was firing the gun...which tells you something.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0_JuF23qazI
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Old January 15, 2014, 11:12 AM   #19
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Quote:
... After the video about how if things didn't change he was going to have to start shooting people, the notion of "good character" went out the window. ...
If you buy HuffPo's version of the story, I think your comments make perfect sense. The problem is that Jame's was not reacting to "if things didn't change" or "more control measures" ... those statements are inaccurate to the degree that one strains to not simply call a lie by its proper name.

Rather, his reaction was to widely-reported accounts that the administration would bypass Congress and abrogate the 2A through executive order ... including such plans widely floated (by the administration's surrogates) as total confiscation of so-called "assault weapons" . His conclusion that such a move might spark a civil war may be provocative, as well as his "I'm gonna start killing people" ... is far more understandable in that context.

Shooting your mouth off in an intemperate way is hardly a mark of "poor character". But please don't let that stop you from finding clever ways to assassinate the character of someone you simply don't like.

Quote:
His idea of stress inoculation training by putting people by targets while others shoot them unsafe, despite his claims to the contrary.
It's one of the few case where I think you had to have done it to understand it. I'd like also to introduce you to Hackathorn's "snake drill". As to "safety", I think the 4 rules work just fine. I see worse everytime I go to a public range. You've also once again simply stated the case in a sloppy, unprofessional manner. You make it sound as though people are just summarily lined up and "other people" are shooting at them. That's not really accurate but - with respect - I don't think accuracy is really something you are concerned with regarding someone you dislike.

If you'd like to have an extended discussion about drills like this ... another thread is probably the best approach.

Quote:
His ability diagnostic ability also came into question for me during his 1000 round Glock test of his personal carry gun. I liked the test, but his assessment that the malfunctions were due to cheap ammo was bogus. They only occurred when he was firing the gun...which tells you something.
I'd like to hear more about this. If you aren't just taking side-swipes, how did this video demonstrate anything which indicates James or his instructors teach a poor program, or are unable to teach effectively?

How was the assertion that S&B target ammo might be the cause of a couple of malfs "bogus"? The idea that under-powered ammo might be the cause of a stovepipe is hardly odd or revolutionary. Why don't you open a few boxes and check the primers, and then chrono some out and get back to us?

Last edited by zombietactics; January 15, 2014 at 11:27 AM.
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Old January 15, 2014, 11:33 AM   #20
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I have a very simple way of looking at this controversy.

Quote:
Originally Posted by zombietactics
... but the context is far more understandable. Shooting your mouth off in an intemperate way is hardly a mark of "poor character".
I doubt there's a person on earth who hasn't said something in the heat of the moment that they later regretted. However, most of us have enough control that those things we regret are relatively minor. We don't go "off the deep end", in a manner of speaking. Those who do, have a serious problem with self control.

First, his statements were completely and utterly, out of control, over the top unacceptable. I entirely disagree that they were "understandable in the context." They were totally, completely, unarguably out of bounds. To me, that is a clear indication of an unacceptable lack of self control.

Second, the trouble with Yeager's statements were that they were made on video, which may have been "at the heat of the moment" when the filming happened but they weren't LIVE. This means that he had time to think about it. The video had to be edited, produced, whatever was done before publishing. It wasn't live streamed. This means that there's not only time to think about what you've said, you've most likely even SEEN yourself say it again.

Still, he actually published the video. Even after having time consider what he had said, no matter if it was 5 minutes or 5 days, it should have been obvious to him that the statement was completely unacceptable... but it wasn't. He either completely failed to recognize how people would respond or he didn't care.

Every other consideration becomes moot when I ask myself how many trainers are available in this country. Why would I choose someone with this kind of dirty laundry? There are THOUSANDS of firearms instructors. I might over look this, maybe... just maybe... if he had something important, something life-changing, mind-blowing earth-shattering, to offer that NO ONE ELSE did.... but he doesn't. He's just another trainer. Is he good? Maybe... but he's not THAT good.

There is a mile long list of other choices.
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Old January 15, 2014, 11:46 AM   #21
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Every other consideration becomes moot when I ask myself how many trainers are available in this country. Why would I choose someone with this kind of dirty laundry?
It's one of my favorite bar-bets. I have a game called "Gypsy's, Tramps and Thieves" where someone names an instructor, and I'll tell you why he is a "bad" guy, weirdo, pervert, criminal or puffs up his credentials. It's a great way to get ammo money. People are welcome to their opinions, and I'm not interested in trying to change anyone's opinion of Jame's Yeager if they are operating either under a set of foregone conclusions, or labor under "special pleading" standards of their own.

I'm of the opinion that "Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice ... and that moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue!"

Quote:
There are THOUSANDS of firearms instructors. I might over look this, maybe... just maybe... if he had something important, something life-changing, mind-blowing earth-shattering, to offer that NO ONE ELSE did.... but he doesn't.
That's probably true, and I think it has a lot to do with what you are hoping to learn or achieve. I'd submit that there are indeed aspects of Tactical Response's program which are uniquely valuable. I can say that from a perspective of having taken dozens of classes from various well and not-so-well known schools and instructors. Whether those particulars are absolutely necessary or of equal value to everyone else ... well, that's why it's a world chock full of opinions, isn't it?
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Old January 15, 2014, 11:51 AM   #22
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I personally like Travis Haley, Cory Jackson, and Jeff Bloovman.


James Yeager has a lot of good info and a lot of personal info of his own. You don't have to listen to him and/or watch his videos.
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Old January 15, 2014, 12:04 PM   #23
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So, the big knock is that he made an outlandish statement about 2a rights and their protection. The only other serious knock is that he had a cameraman down range. A person that volunteered to do it and was not forced.

Okay, I'm of the opinion that nobody can prove that he teaches anything dangerous or idiotic. I will continue to watch his videos. However, since a future in LE may be in the cards, I will skip his class. Training with someone like that might come back to bite me later.

The admins are invited to lock this up before it gets out of hand.
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Old January 15, 2014, 12:06 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zombie tactics
It's one of my favorite bar-bets. I have a game called "Gypsy's, Tramps and Thieves" where someone names an instructor, and I'll tell you why he is a "bad" guy, weirdo, pervert, criminal or puffs up his credentials. It's a great way to get ammo money.
And I ask myself, if I had such a list of every available instructor arraigned by controversy, would the list have them all equally controversial, lacking in character or judgement or whatever, same skeletons in their closets, same-same all the way around?

Or would it be much more reasonable that I might expect this list to have a great many instructors, most in fact, who have few if any significant controversies?

Wouldn't it make a lot of sense that there would be a great big group of excellent instructors that don't give me pause over not just one issue but a whole laundry list?

I think it's pretty obvious that this is true. The great majority of instructors, most of which no one person has ever heard of, have no such baggage.

What logic would have me choose from anywhere but the top of the list?
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Old January 15, 2014, 12:23 PM   #25
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It looks like the OP has the information he came for.

Thanks to everyone for participating.
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