How to Win Friends and Influence People.
Winning Friends and Influencing People
I expect to see bad behavior from anti-gunners.
I expect to see arrogance and hyperbole from those that “know what is best for us”.
I expect to see elitism on display amongst the ranks of our self appointed betters.
What I am really upset by is bad behavior from our own ranks.
We are each ambassadors as well as advocates. We represent not only ourselves but our community as a whole. We need to be aware of the ripple effect our actions can have.
(If you arrived here from our newsletter continue reading here:)
Today I had a private client who that needed to get his CCW training completed.
Normally our classes are run on Saturday and Sunday, but this guy is a pastor, and he sort of has a standing conflict on Sundays.
To qualify on his pistols we went to one of our local indoor ranges.
The place was fairly busy, but we were quickly able to get a lane.
We found ourselves sandwiched between a Range Safety Officer / Instructor that works for this range teaching a student on our lane to our left, and a family shooting on the lane to our right.
The “Dad” of this family looked to be in his mid forties, and I would guess his daughter was somewhere in the fourteen to fifteen year range, with a son that was around ten or so.
I could hear the directions that the instructor was giving to his student, and they seemed sound enough… sound enough that frankly I stopped paying attention to him.
While my student was loading his magazines the father and daughter left their bay and walked over to the back bench where their range bag was sitting.
The father reached into the range bag and picked up a handgun, (it looked like a beretta, but I’m not 100%… what I could see was that it had its slide locked to the rear and a safety cable was still locked in it).
He reached deeper in the bag and picked up what I think was a box of ammo.
While placing the gun back into the bag the RSO/Instructor pushed past me and went up to the father:
“DO NOT EVER TOUCH A GUN OUTSIDE THE SHOOTING BAY! IF I SEE YOU TOUCH A GUN AGAIN BACK HERE I WILL THROW YOUR ASS OFF THIS RANGE!!!”
The dad was frozen in fear and left humiliated in front of his two children as the “Instructor” turned and went back to his student.
As soon as he had returned to his student he began speaking to her again in a normal, even tempered voice.
This guy was not really angry at the father… he was “acting”.
He was going to be the Alpha, and bark at the beta… he was going to let the dad know who the boss was.
I could feel my blood beginning to boil.
I turned and looked at the father and he and his kids were no longer smiling. They were packing up their gear and leaving.
Did the dad do something wrong?
Handling the gun at the benches is a flat out breech of safety.
Could the RSO have come up to him and said, “Hey… please remember you can’t handle your firearms back here even in a limited capacity”. ?
Yes…. and that would have been far more effective.
I don’t know the dad. I don’t know how he might have reacted to that more professional approach. I would like to think he would have acknowledged his error, thanked the RSO for pointing it out, and had an opportunity to instruct his own children on etiquette and safety.
Instead that moment was lost.
I have no idea how his children will ultimately be effected.
Will this event become a distant memory?
Did one moronic RSO just snuff out the passion for shooting in two members of the next generation?
I hope not… but it is entirely possible.
The anti’s like to parade around a notion that since we own guns we are somehow insecure broken creatures that use a firearm as a crutch for our own inadequacies.
We should not tolerate behavior among our own that feeds into this caricature.