by Scott Johnson

 

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We are fortunate to live in a country where most communities have police, fire and other emergency services just a phone call away. In mere minutes, helpful people can be at your house to arrest scary individuals, capture sick or injured animals, rescue children or jumpstart an ill heart. But, based on a number of recent discussions, it seems that more folks are doing the simple math and realizing that in a disaster or other bad situation, there just aren’t enough helpful folks to go around. In my part of the country, there is only one police officer for about every five hundred citizens. This is why the common question comes up “should I go purchase a firearm to protect myself and my family in an emergency”?

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The answer to this question varies. Some folks take the “absolutely, you should always exercise your constitutional rights” stance. Others will respond with “never, owning a gun makes you more likely to get shot” response. Something to keep in mind is that many of the people who are asking this question are not current gun owners. They are literally starting at zero knowledge of the subject, unless you count what they’ve seen in action movies or read in books. Because of this, perhaps we should lean more towards “Yes, as long as you realize that getting a gun is a package deal” and suggest the bundle of firearm, ammunition and training.

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“Which gun should I buy” and “what is the best ammo for self defense” are the common questions. “Should I get training on how to safely use my new purchase” is the one that is not always asked. This is a shame, considering the number of learning options available. There are NRA certified instructors all over the country who teach one on one classes. Many ranges offer small group training for new owners and there are businesses who specialize in firearms classes. It is also common for clubs that can span everything from just pistol shooting to three gun (rifle, pistol and shotgun) competition to welcome new shooters and help them get started safely. Finding the training that you need to go along with your new purchase is just a matter of asking around or firing up Google.

 

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