If You Are Going To Buy It Or Carry It, Learn How To Use It!

published 10 years ago

Due to recent events, there has been a dramatic rise in the number of purchases of both rifles and handguns in the US. Whether purchased out of concern for personal protection or the fear of a potential ban, we often overlook one of the most important aspects of owning a firearm…Do we know how to use it, not only from a safety standpoint but also from a proficiency standpoint? And, do we know the State and Federal laws that pertain to carrying and using it?

It is often said that knowledge is power and as responsible gun owners, we need to embrace that idea and use it to support our views and our rights. It is no longer acceptable to argue just beliefs but now we need to be educated on facts, laws, statistics and techniques so that we may rationally discuss our beliefs and convictions.

All training should be relevant and realistic, and should be performed under the supervision and guidance of a reputable trainer. Avoid the YouTube craze and attend real training from a reputable academy or training facility. Check the Internet to see what’s available but keep in mind that with the rise in gun sales, there is also a rise in the demand for education so anticipate having to wait to take a class.

Training and equipment selection should be tailored around the needs of the individual and mission-oriented. Will you be carrying concealed, using the firearm for home protection or shooting in competitions? Who will have access to the firearms, just the shooter or everyone in the household? Will I have access to the firearm when I need it but still have it secure from unauthorized hands?

These are just a few things you should consider asking yourself before you buy or carry.

In California you want to get a pistol. Where do you start?

  1. To purchase a handgun, you will need to obtain a California Handgun Safety Certificate (CA HSC).
  2. Now obtain the basic handgun skills necessary to store, operate and clean a handgun by attending the NRA Basic Pistol Course.
  3. You want to keep a handgun for self defense in the home? Attend the NRA Personal Protection in the Home to enhance your skills for personal protection in the home. This course will teach you the difference between cover and concealment. It will teach you how to shoot from behind cover, along with ways how to make your home more safe.
  4. You wish to obtain a Concealed Carry Weapons Permit (CCW) for Sutter or Yuba counties, complete the following steps….
    1. Ensure pistol is CA registered
    2. Attend an approved CCW course, with pistol you wish to carry.
    3. Complete CCW application for County
    4. Make an appointment with Sheriff for interview and fingerprinting
  5. Now that you have a handgun for self defense, and a CCW, take the NRA Personal Protection Outside the Home for follow on training. This class will teach you how to draw your self defense pistol from a concealed holster, reload under stress, and how to use and shoot with a flashlight at night.
  6. It is recommended that you practice with your defensive handgun at least once a month. Reload your own ammunition to reduce costs. Attend the NRA Basic Metallic Cartridge Reloading course to learn how to reload. See course description for details.

About the author


Stephanie Carney
Stephanie grew up learning the safe and sane use of firearms and got her feet wet teaching at a Boy Scout summer camp. Since then she's had a passion for helping others improve themselves.