Do I think the Gov’t should be involved in setting Firearms Training Standards? No.

In the aftermath of a national story about a local instructor in Ohio who fired a round into a student’s arm in a classroom (and apparently had also negligently shot a round into a little girl a few decades ago), I was asked to comment on the possible value of the government setting standards for firearms instructors.  I was interviewed  on this topic by Raquel Okyay for a story in the conservative news publication Human Events, where she has a column called “Guns & Patriots“. Of course, I do not think that would be a good idea.

“The firearm industry does a pretty good job in determining standards in training; the government should not get involved,” said Rob Pincus…”Experts in the field do a better job at research, informing the public, and providing useful resources than the public officials.  When the government gets involved in something this large, it fails miserably.”

In fact, I think that just about anytime that the government sets standards for training, they are set far too low and things quickly become much more about procedure, bureaucracy and CYA than they do about truly  training people. Any quick glance at CCW training courses or the average police qualification requirements should make that obvious.

Personally, I think the government should get out of the way completely. When it comes to defensive firearms, I am a fan of “Constitutional Carry”. If you can legally own a gun, you should have the option of carrying it for personal defense. That said, I think it is up to the firearms community to set the standards for training and competency and that we should all be doing a better job encouraging people to seek out higher levels…. students and instructors. We need to get past the ego driven drivel that leads to complacency… we’ve all heard silly statements to rationalize not training or practicing with defensive firearms:
“I’ve been shooting all my life.”
“I learned everything I need to know about firearms in the *******” (insert your favorite: Army, Police Academy, Marine Corps, etc.)
“My grandfather taught me to shoot, I’m good.”
“I went to the range with my neighbor’s brother’s friend… he’s a cop.”

If we hold ourselves to a higher standard, if training becomes the norm instead of the exception, there will certainly be fewer accidents, there will certainly be more people prepared to defend themselves and our communities and country will certainly be displaying a higher level of responsibility when it comes to firearms ownership. The standard should be high for instructors as well as students. The community should be assertive in its condemnation of practices which put students at more risk than is necessary to achieve training goals.

Keep in mind that “training” doesn’t have to cost thousands or even hundreds of dollars. There is a ton of information available for free on the internet, there are training conferences held around the country throughout the year that are incredibly affordable and you can set a great foundation for your training and practice at the range through inexpensive books and videos on personal defense topics. There are plenty of stops on the way to responsible proficiency, you don’t have to ump straight into a multi-day class halfway across the country.

To read more of my thoughts on this topic, check out the full article over at Human Events:



4 thoughts on “Do I think the Gov’t should be involved in setting Firearms Training Standards? No.”

  1. The government should not be allowed to set the standards, but I would like it if the money individuals spend on school and training toward achieving higher standards could become tax-deductible. That is one way the government can help make our nation safer.

  2. If the government was doing this right (and that is a big ‘IF’), then the government would have to ask the experts in the firearms training field to create a set of standards and training programs. So, the NRA would most likely be the organization to provide that which already exists. So how would the government involvement make any difference. There would still be accidents and we would have additional regulations and bureaucracy that would consume time and money. Not that the government has any business setting training standards in any industry.

  3. Casimer Stawicki

    Government should not only NOT be involved in firearm trainging, government should also stay away from setting standards for training. Responsible firearm owners need to train in order to maintain competiency. Training standard recommendations already come from National Rifle Association courses. Basic safety courses should be expanded, The current attitude of government is not healthy for firearm owners. Government regulated training leaved the door open for regulated training to be a condition of ownership.

  4. The Government is far too intrusive as it is… there are not any other of our Constitutionally Guaranteed Bill of Rights being so deliberately and fundamentally incorrectly debated, taxed, fees placed upon and abused or inhibited in any way so much as our 2nd Amendment. “Laissez Faire!” You do not hear any progressive liberal agenda working so hard to deny any of us our rights to free speech, to practice our religion, what Church we May or May Not Attend, right to an attorney when we are accused of a crime, nor in the safety we have in our papers and persons for undue search and seizure… All of our Civil Rights are intact, all of our Bill of Rights are as they can be under our current administration, yet under our Tenth Amendment, the Federal Government has no authority to limit or dictate any form of regulations upon us as our 2nd Amendment by far is out of the scope of their reach and was done so intentionally. The States have No Authority over us as well, as the Bill of Rights leaves any State Law as UN-Constitutional and therefore null and void, according to The Constitution as it was Originally Written anyhow. What we have now is an affront upon our Fore Father’s Original Intent and an abomination, perversion and molestation of our God Given Individual Rights by those who believe their ways are above The Law! The Left Wing Progressive Liberals and their Anti-Gun Groups of Like-Minded Cronies believe they are our “Betters” and must save us from ourselves, all the while they seem to not be able to understand the most simple of phrases ever written in the English Language…”Shall Not Be Infringed”! The Only Group that should have any say in our firearms training and not even so much as in a Mandatory manner but rather for the purpose of our own betterment at Our behest, is the Oldest Civil Rights Organization within These United States of America… Our National Rifle Association. A Non Governmental Agency that actually Works and Acts in our best interest as Free, Gun Owning American Citizens. All the while our Government attempts to restrict our Civil Right to Arm and Protect ourselves through heavy taxation and other more harsh and nonsensical laws and restrictions that are in no way, shape or form addressed in any other manner than again, “Shall Not Be Infringed”! As I am personally a Constitutional Originalist and Patriotic American Citizen, I take it as a personal insult when these matters are approached by the Left in order to Demonize us in any and every way possible…all the while having their own armed body guards close enough to choke on the stench of their grotesquely rotting Marxist policies. As a Texan and an American, I Refuse and Will Not be submitted to their hypocrisy nor shall I be disarmed by those acting outside of our Laws and Against The Very Constitution They Have Sworn To Uphold when taking their respective Offices of Public Service. As stated clearly by Patrick Henry himself, “The Constitution is not an instrument for the Government to restrain the People; It is an instrument for the People to restrain the Government.” Keeping this in mind, it is all too apparent that our Government has forgotten it’s place in our Society of Being Of The People and For The People, but rather they believe themselves to be above The People to Direct and Dictate Policy To The People… This must be addressed and resolved before we all lose this Constitutional Republic to any other form of non Representative Government by the Elite! I Will Stand My Ground As An American Citizen, My Constitution, Bill of Rights and My Bible In One Hand and My Firearm In The Other, Solid as the oldest of Oak trees, I Will Not Be Moved! Absolutely Not… The Government Has No Place in Any Dictates Relating To Our Firearms, Training, Ownership Or Use Of within The Law of the Land… Our Beloved Constitution. “Shall Not Be Infringed” must be our mantra should we desire to continue the traditions handed down to us as we teach and train our own, be it with or without the direct help of the N.R.A. but we must continue in our ways to be the heart pumping flow of our American Life’s Blood for Generations To Come… Sincerely and Respectfully Yours,
    Benny Bennett 09-01-13

Comments are closed.