Tally Ho, Lads!
Last week it appeared that the world was preparing to come to an end. It still might… but last week was a doozy.
Disney closed its theme parks, movie premiers were pushed off, states of emergency were called in various states, the President closed travel from Europe, then declared a National State of Emergency.
Various colleges canceled classes, and the military academies decided to take a couple extra weeks off for spring break. (Yes… Chaney is home now until the 28th of March… so it’s not all bad!)
Even a criminal case for which we are set to begin trial in San Diego next week appears to be in jeopardy of being pushed off again.
All this, and people are scared… really scared. I’m not sure if the fear is of COVID-19 or the crumbling sense of security we have built up in our structural and procedural institutions. After all… if Disney is closed… martial law is right around the corner!
Then there is the gnawing reality that if the State is preoccupied with battling the virus, and people can’t buy staples like toilet paper, and employers are laying off people in droves because they are closing their businesses during the crisis… well… there is a possibility that some individuals may take to the use of force to procure some of the more scarce resources in this peculiar market.
As is always the case in these situations, the interest in guns among non-gun owners spikes.
Therein lies the danger.
(If you have arrived here from our newsletter, continue reading here…)
Sandy’s mother last week had her last session of chemotherapy. (She is doing quite well in her recovery… thank you.) Sandy took her to the session and began chatting with the nurse. The nurse asked Sandy what she did for a living and was excited to learn she owned Artemis. (She had been doing research on guns, and had run across us on Google searches, so she was already familiar with what we do.)
This nurse is not particularly concerned about the virus.
She is terrified with what she has seen as the public’s response. As such, she has decided that she would like to get a firearm. She has absolutely no training, and was shocked to hear that if she buys one today, she has to wait ten days to pick it up.
“But… that is stupid! What if I need it tomorrow?!?”
“Yep… welcome to our family.”
She has never fired a firearm, has extremely limited knowledge about guns, the buying process, or the etiquette one needs when one goes to the range.
Still… she wants one, because if things continue to go the way she is seeing them go, she is concerned that she may need one to defend herself.
Sandy was, fortunately, able to counsel her on the absolute unequivocal need for training. She is probably going to buy the gun (a Glock 19 per Sandy’s suggestion) asap… but is signing up for our Pistol Series classes concurrent to her ten-day wait.
I stopped by our Turner’s Outdoorsman in Lake Forest yesterday to see our good friend, Ben. The place looked like they were giving away free cases of ammo.
The capacity of the store was near max, and people were starting the DROS process on literally anything that went bang. A ton of people were taking the firearm safety card test too, which told me they were either first-time purchasers, or they were buying a gun for the first time in at least five years.
Time and time again I saw service people behind the counter diplomatically counsel their clients to keep their fingers off the triggers of their display firearms, and not wave the gun around or point it haphazardly at people.
These people need training! Fortunately, many of the local gun stores encourage their patrons to take classes with us… but, as you can imagine, not all take advantage of our services. They do all end up walking out with a gun though… and that, frankly, scares me.
Not knowing the safety protocols for a weapon, or not knowing even the basic functionality of a weapon, is a recipe for disaster.
Should you encourage your terrified neighbors to buy a gun?
Sure… why not?
What I would rather you do is offer them your protection until they get a gun… tell them, instead, to go get training, either from us or from any reputable trainer. Then… go buy a gun.
Things are weird out there, my friends. We must acknowledge that and understand the fears that many people have… even if they are irrational, they can breed group panic and panicked groups do weird things.
Stay strong, stay vigilant, train constantly, consistently, repetitively, and with purpose… and God damn it… wash your hands!!!