The Wrong GunSteven Lieberman
The wrong gun.
This last weekend we had another CCW class.
As is the case with most of our classes we had quite a cross section of our local Orange County demographics.
From a couple of lawyers, a cartoonist, soccer moms and and bankers to a husband and wife preacher- biker, and educator this was a fascinating group of participants.
One of our students told me… apologetically… that she had no choice… she HAD to qualify on a Ruger 44magnum single action revolver….
yeah… a cowboy gun.
Interesting carry choice… especially for a woman that at best weighed a 100 pounds.
“Why on earth are you putting that on you CCW???” Was my first question when she filled out our CCW Intake form sheet.
(Now understand… I have a Ruger Vaquero in .45 long colt that I would put on my CCW in a heart beat if I could. There is really not a lot of practical application for it, and since I am limited to three guns, I just can’t justify placing it on my card… but If I had unlimited space you better believe it would have a home there!)
Well, as it turns out she really had no intention of carrying this bear killer. It is however the only gun she has registered to her currently. Having a conditional approval letter from the Sheriff she felt that she is in a race to at least “get the card” before any other judicial or legislative changes come down the pike.
Her thought was that she would put the Ruger on her card then get the gun or guns that she really wants and do a modification to her CCW.
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Because it is so difficult to quickly reload this weapon she was not able to participate in our tactical marksmanship qualification. She watched as her husband qualified on his Glock, then when it came time for our students to qualify on their second and third guns she prepared herself for the adventure that was to follow.
At Artemis we do a tactical qualification shoot for the trainees first gun. This way students can experience, (many for the first time) shooting at an outdoor range, drawing from the holster, dropping magazines in a combat or speed reload, and shooting from various distances.
Once the first guns are qualified we rejigger the range into what equates to a standard indoor static range. Trainees place their guns on a bench and shoot static their qualification rounds into paper targets.
Our single action shooter was relegated to shooting with this second group.
With her first shot we knew we had problems.
This gun is aggressive in the best of conditions. She was nervous… that was obvious… and her flinch on her first few shots was… well… “breath taking” is the best I can come up with.
David, one of our instructors… and our de facto “revolver guy” worked with her.
After the first few shots he asked her if she really wanted to do this. The gun was literally “beating her up”. She looked at him and stated… I need to. I don’t want to loose this opportunity to legally carry. If I don’t get this now I’m not confident on what the future holds.”
David looked at her and said… “Ok… let’s do this!”
And they did.
I have no idea how much Tylenol she ultimately had to take, but I know it was substantial.
With Davids’ help she actually became pretty damn good with that gun, putting the majority of her shots into the eight ring or better from 14 yards away.
Still, her hands got bloodied, and I know it was bone jarring throwing those huge rounds down range.
She was determined though, and as her husband told me there was no chance that she would give up. It just was not her.
While this was admirable, the fact that she felt she needed to do this riled me. She was doing what she could, with what she had available to beat someone to the punch who would rob her of her right to protect herself.
Make no mistakes… the gun that she qualified on is not a good gun for her. She learned to shoot it well, but hell… I shoot my AR-15 well… it would not make for a good concealed carry weapon.
No, she chose this weapon not because she is afraid that she is about to be victimized by a thug or a stalker. She chose this inappropriate weapon because she is afraid she is about to be victimized by a politician.
This sickens me.
The irony is that Madison, Jefferson, and the other Framers sought to have this paradigm fundamentally reversed.
The politicians should be afraid of her…not