Monday, November 17, 2008

Bang, Bang, She Shot Me Down............

Last week was a very busy time for me. I spent most of it at the North Carolina Justice Academy in Salemburg at a firearms instructor conference. Once a year, the state host this conference so that instructors can catch up on the latest policies and laws and regulations on training, use of force and what the powers that be in Raleigh are up to. It also gives instructors a chance to network, pick up some extra training or just get away from the P.D. or Sheriff’s office for a while. Normally they will have various types of training such as armorer’s courses for various types of weapons, developing proper mindset for combat, various shooting drill that the instructor can take back to his department and other stuff like that. Since they didn’t have any armorer’s courses that I was interested in I stuck with mostly range stuff. (Which with me being on crutches, made for a very interesting time) I did pick up enough ideas to add to my training program to have made it worth my while to have gone, but standing there in the rain and wind, I wondered at the time, just what the HELL I was doing out there. –grin-

To be honest, I felt just a little like a dinosaur out there. I only saw two or three people that I knew. I learned that of the 20 people I had gone to instructor school with (back in the dawn of recorded history) I was the last still instructing. The next to the last one, dropped dead from a heart attack seven months ago. Things have changed so much since those days. I didn’t see a single revolver being used all week on the firing line. Back when I started, Semi-autos were the exception. Now the firing line is populated with young’uns dressed all in black with all kinds of high speed / low drag equipment. Semi-autos with all the bells and whistles, lasers and all other kinds of toys. Now mind you, I am not totally opposed to toys, I even took the opportunity to shoot a Glock model 18 which was a blast in more ways than one. That sucker puts out 1300 rounds per minute, which was pretty cool until I figured out how much it cost to feed that beast. (50 rounds at $10.03 was the cheapest I could find, not counting shipping. Do the math yourself) It sure doesn’t take long to empty a 33 round magazine.

I got to talking to a fellow I met out there on the firing line, older guy, like me. We were comparing notes on issues that we had run into and we both agreed that the youngsters that we are getting out of rookie school are missing a little something that most old cops have. You see, most of today's rookies have never been in a honest to goodness fight in their lives. So when they hit the street, they are like lost sheep. They have been trained by society that all violence is wrong, so they hesitate to take action to defend themselves or others until it’s too late. This fellow told me that he was thinking that there would be a sharp rise in Law Enforcement officers being killed and injured in the next few years, since the bad guys (and girls) are not taught the same thing. I had to agree, since I have trained officers who told me to my face that they would me much happier if they didn’t have to carry a weapon on duty. Now that, believe it or not, that was a uniform wearing police officer who told me that. I don’t know what the answer is, if there even is one but to be honest, I am very worried about the future…..

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