Let's talk about CCW classes(your horror stories and opinions)


February 25, 2009, 09:19 AM
Here in Florida you can take a class to apply for your CWP. Before I turned twenty one I paid for the class and the first weekend after I turned 21 I took it (got my first handgun when I turned twenty-one, my uncle was so happy to be remembered as they guy giving me my first handgun).

I took my class with a 'K' license Sheriff's Deputy, and it was shocking, oh I had read and researched plenty about the statutes and such but this guy went and said at one point in the class "you have the right to stomp out evil"...Well it was distinctly mentioned on the Department of Agriculture's website that you were not a cop, should undertake the stopping of crime, and to pretty much just be a civil and law abiding person who has a right(should trouble find you, not you find it) to defend themselves.

He went on about a couple local shootings, asked that if we lived in apartments not to blind fire or use FMJs and to get Magsafe or Glacier rounds and such. He went quickly over the statutes and told some horror stories.

And then we went and shot three rounds into a target and that was it.

Here's the problem though, you can't depend on legal advice of individuals who aren't source's of authority like a regular street cop or deputy. You can as I understand it, and don't quote me or take what I say as legal advice, only depend upon the opinions and advice of Chief's of police, Sheriffs, Attorney Generals, and the directors of groups like the FBI or ATF.

You can't depend upon some deputy who's behind isn't going to be on the line in court. There was an incident as I've been told by a police officer, I know (make sure you have plenty of grains of salt), where a guy took the class and after he got issued his permit he open carried and got busted, and the judge didn't care what his instructor told him.

I only bring all this up because I'm an NRA certified pistol instructor and when I try to explain that the courses I offer are primarily to learn how to safely and competently shoot targets, pieces of paper on a range, and that they are not CWP courses, people don't understand how they can use it to apply for a CWP. It's just how Florida has it I guess, I guess the legislature figured if someone understands that guns are dnagerous and should be stored and fired safely then those persons are competent to keep that gun on their person.

I've walked into ranges where they are advertising CWP courses and when I ask if they are using 'k' license guys I seem to get blank stares, and they only have NRA guys, but the NRA guys aren't teaching Personal Defense outside the home for the course, they are teaching the same courses I am, and that's a problem as I see it. Don't tell the public you are going to teach them law, and put them in a position to reasonably infer that you are going to teach them how to conceal their firearms and carry them properly, when you really aren't going to, oh they might share some 'wisdom' but these are not recognized experts (they are not Masad Ayoob), and if you wind up in court because of what someone tells you in the course, it doesn't matter one bit. One who is not a lawyer or in a judicially recognized position of power(Attorney General or Sherriff and such) should not be giving legal advice.

Okay that was my rant, I was at a buddy of mine's father's place of business and was handling a .460 S&W that had come in early that day, and my buddy ran his mouth to a few folks in the shop and I got all kinds of legal questions, uninformed based questions, and all sorts of inquiries into CCW, and when I politely mentioned that I was not a CWP instructor but only that taking one or two of the courses I offered and they went to the range with me at another time, that they could use the completion of the course and the certificate stating so, to apply for their CWP.

Well that didn't go over well, and now I'm just feeling livid. I tell them the truth and I'm the <expletive deleted>:banghead:.

If you enjoyed reading about "Let's talk about CCW classes(your horror stories and opinions)" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
chris in va
February 25, 2009, 10:43 AM
My CC class in VA was weird. Guy operated the class out of his condo in a highrise in N. VA. He explicitly stated, "do NOT show up early. Get here 5 minutes before class, I will buzz you in."

Fine. 8 of us showed up and entered his place. There was a CCTV monitor in the corner next to his desk. We were being...observed.

Took the class, then were told to head to a range 10 miles from there. Absolutely no legal issues were covered, and we were told to "go find out on our own, IANAL".:scrutiny:

On a side note, my friend in Alabama told me last night there is no safety class in that state. $25 to the local sheriff, fill out the form, get your permit in 48 hours.

February 25, 2009, 10:55 AM
No issues here in PA. 'Course there is no class. Pay the money, fill out the paperwork, get your background checked, pick up your license.

In PA everything involved with the LCTF is administered by the local Sheriff's department and each does things a little differently. Some give you a nice plastic card with your picture electronically printed on it. Some give you a paper card and tape the passport photo you provide for them on the back.

The only "problem" I had was that my local sheriff gave me a page with some carry rules on it and they didn't actually follow the state laws! The only discrepancy was that they said "don't carry in a bar" which may be o.k. advice, but is NOT a part of PA law. And they didn't mention a lot of things they could have about areas that are legal, not legal, and under some dispute.

I recently took the Utah class and that was very well done and pretty exhaustive (although the laws of Utah are very different than PA). The instructor (Steve Silverman) is a great guy, though and a professional trainer for a lot more than just CCW classes, so I would have expected nothing less than the stellar class he put on.


February 25, 2009, 11:31 AM
Deadly force laws are complex and have interesting a complicated case histories in every state. You can not cover that in a day or even 10 days. If feel you want more than just what the laws state, pay the fees talk to a lawyer.

February 25, 2009, 12:21 PM
Being from Washington where no class is required, I think it is a responsible action for anyone to take a gun safely class. I also resent the idea of a State requiring a class to exercise any of my rights. It's not like journalists are required to take classes on reporting stories accurately ;)

February 25, 2009, 12:22 PM
I took the Ohio CCW class (really just the NRA Basic Pistol class) a year or so after I was certified to give it. The class was ok, nothing special. The girl who gave it was reasonably well informed, although not the best instructor I've ever had. She made some mistakes, including on the law. I just took the thing to be sure there were no issues over whether my NRA instructor's class counted.

Claude Clay
February 25, 2009, 12:30 PM
perhaps the sheriff just changed jobs from the agriculture sector and he was referring to 'evil' weeds and such that endangers crops?:cool:

February 25, 2009, 12:55 PM
I took the Ohio CCW class (really just the NRA Basic Pistol class)
Same here (Ohio also)......very basic stuff. Getting a driver's license is harder. However, at least half of the class had never shot any gun before, so the NRA Basic Pistol course was valuable for them.
The only quirk was when it came to the 2 hours of range time. The range they used then only allowed frangible bullets and the course provided both the pistol and the ammo. But, they only had one box of ammo on hand...50 rounds. Since I already had my appointment at the Sheriff's office scheduled for the following day, only I got to shoot. Everyone else had to wait a week until they received more ammo. Just a quirk though and made it easy for me. I shot my 50 rounds and was done. Went to the Sheriff's office the next day, handed them my paperwork, got my thumb print and photo taken, paid the $55 fee. Four working days later I had my permit in hand.

February 25, 2009, 12:57 PM
A chief of police in a city near me shot himself in the ankle while taching a cfp class. I believe he was trying to field strip his glock while holding it under the table out of his view. Not exactly sure why he was doing that but the results were not good.

I also resent the idea of a State requiring a class to exercise any of my rights.

I know what you are saying on this but honsetly after attending the class and seeing some people's gun handling and lack of knowledge I also believe that training well beyond what the class requires would be prudent and unless it is mandated most people simply wont do it.

February 25, 2009, 01:03 PM
what does the Dept. of Agriculture have to do with CCW??? that just seems odd the info would be found there...

My class was here in Ohio was really informative, not so much the NRA basic pistol part, that was pretty basic. My instructor had video clips from different news stories and such and detailed what we can and can't do as well as covered a lot of grey areas and gave his opinion of what he would do if some iffy situtations usually cautioning on the safe side.

February 25, 2009, 01:05 PM
No problems here. My instructor was former military/police, police firearms instructor and civilian firearms instructor, as well as various special departments within law enforcement (I just can't remember what), with over 20 years of service so. I got a very informative class... I think I asked the most questions too. He made it interesting.

On a further note,

We fired a box of 50 rounds, paid for by us. The instructor stressed that if anyone shows inept ability to handle a firearm, they would be escorted off of the premises and their money not refunded. They also had a professional finger-printer come in and do our fingers and photos.

February 25, 2009, 01:12 PM
In Florida, our CWP is regulated by the Department of Agriculture, don't ask me why, guess maybe there wasn't enough work to justify the staff and so it went, of course you get your fingerprints done at a police station or sheriff's station.

Just One Shot
February 25, 2009, 01:41 PM
NRA basic pistol course was all I had to do (again,in Ohio). When we went to the range we fired 5 rds. using a support, five rds. two handed while standing and finally 5rds. one handed while standing.

At the range the instructor set up targets about 7-10' away with an 11x11" piece of paper. If the students put all rounds into the paper from that short distance they recieved a passing grade.

Some of those in attendance had never handled a firearm in their life. during the class time after the instructor covered the part about muzzle discipline we were reviewing some of the instructors hand guns. One guy was swept with a muzzle no less than 10 times.

February 25, 2009, 02:03 PM
My TX instructor was a cop. Tx mandated that we be taught the relevant deadly force/carrying statutes,and take a written test on that.

Also, we had to do a timed shooting test of 50 rounds from 3, 7, and 15 yards.

Also extensive background check.

TX is pretty good I think about doing this.

Kind of Blued
February 25, 2009, 02:05 PM
Colorado doesn't force you to prove proficiency in order to get permission to carry a weapon to defend your life, so I took a class which didn't have a shooting portion (some still do).

While I could always learn some more, I'm pretty proficient, and I'd prefer to take a dedicated shooting class instead of a safety/"here's how to make a gun go bang in the right direction" class.

The teacher is/was a local gunsmith/shop owner and spent most of the time covering legal aspects as well as setting up multi-faceted shoot/no shoot scenarios for us to discuss.

He conveyed some misinformation, specifically on open-carry laws, which he essentially opposed for a couple of common reasons, but mentioned none of it's advantages, nor did he tell us that we could legally open-carry without a permit if we wanted to while waiting on the bureaucrats to shuffle papers. I would have done differently, if for no other reason, in case one of my students was currently being stalked, endangered, etc.

All in all, he was witty, entertaining, generally very insightful, and creative with his teaching. His style was very opinionated, but from what I've heard, that's more of a 24/7 personality than a teaching style. It was an ok experience, although I could have been just as (un)happy with anybody else. I was really just there so I could say I had been there, and show the Sheriff some proof.

Pork Fat
February 25, 2009, 02:13 PM
I took my class at a large shop/range north of town. Local gunnies, you know where it is. I had to wait about 4-5 weeks after I signed up to get in one, they have been booked up since you-know-who ascended. Our class was full, 35 all told.
We arrived early and had to fire 50 rounds at various ranges from ready and from holster. I blame the shop for not making clear to some that this was not a firearm instruction class and that you had to show proficiency with your handgun. A few older ladies present had arrived with guns in a box expecting to learn how they worked. After all, they paid $150 for a gun class.
The instructor took shooters back in groups of 10, only 10 lanes in that section of the range. The rest of us waited and listened to sporadic rounds going off. The instructor threw open the door and strode out, tearing off his hearing protection and loudly declaring that some people had no business being around guns. How inclusive and welcoming the gun community looks at this juncture. He then goes behind the gun counter for his coffee, gulps some, and returns to the range shaking his head.
After some more ragged fusillades, he storms out again and commands the next 10 shooters to fall in. We look at each other, gulp, and get in line. He then asks if anyone who is there does not know how their gun works or is unsure that their gun functions. Silence.
He goes back in, a few more volleys are heard, the first shooters come out, one lady is crying, all look tense. Instructor still looking parboiled. We file in like the condemned, silently cursing whatever set this dude off.
He rushes through an explanation of the course of fire. No more than 5 rounds loaded in the gun at a time, firing on command at prescribed ranges within time limits. The targets are life size silhouettes with an orange bullseye at center of mass and scoring rings out from it. We have to get 35 of our 50 rounds into it to pass.
We all seem to know how our guns work and follow the instructions by the numbers.
He is pleased with us, I am pleased that I shot well enough with my Bulgarian Makarov to get a compliment, all was well.
We then adjourned to the classroom. The first 10 shooters are there waiting. When we arrive, only 15 more people have do their 50 rounds before the class can start, so we wait, talk, go to the can, etc. I already notice a big problem with the classroom. It is OVER the other range, the one that you can shoot rifles in. There is a class of Navy guys in there getting AR-15 and Beretta familiarization. AR-15's are loud. The classroom is no hushed hall of learning, it is noisy as heck.
The class was mostly about law, mixed with opinion and borderline sexist "joking". I can tolerate that stuff when I'm just in a group of guys, but the class was 1/3 female of varying ages and it makes me uncomfortable. He also shared a personal story of his wife cheating on him with his best friend, and how he wanted to shoot them but didn't. Inspiring stuff.
We were shown a long video from the NRA about home defense, a couple of years old, but done well enough. Absolutely useless for the purposes of CCW, though. We got fingerprinted and photographed and took an easy test.
Bear in mind that when the Navy was done, the range hours started in the store and people apparently like to shoot rifles inside. One of the shop guys that was helping muttered ".300 Magnum" when one of them was going off, and I believe it. Incredibly distracting.
I found some of the law section confusing because it seemed to apply mostly to non-CCW holders, leavened with CCW specific commentary by the instructor. Holsters and proper concealment were not touched upon.
I left at 5:00 after 9+ hours feeling let down, not excited. It takes 3 months to get the CWP after successful completion of the course, so maybe in May I will feel as though I have accomplished something. Especially if I can find a Smith&Wesson 442 for appreciably less than $500 around here.
Still, a better experience than the CCW process in Maryland, which starts and ends with NO.

February 25, 2009, 02:21 PM
Being in close enough to one individual gave me a new appreciation of 'pointing downrange ONLY' when the person began to point (loaded) in nearly every direction. Hey, LOOK OUT where you are pointing the BARREL! :what:

February 25, 2009, 02:59 PM
NRA basic pistol course was all I had to do (again,in Ohio). When we went to the range we fired 5 rds. using a support, five rds. two handed while standing and finally 5rds. one handed while standing.
We were allowed to keep shooting after we shot the minimum. I'd brought a 100 round box of Winchester White Box 115gr. 9x19mm for my new Glock 19. I'm a bullseye competitor, so shooting two handed at seven yards wasn't especially taxing. After I shot the X ring out, I shot at the NRA logo, the copywrite notice and anything else that I could use as an aiming point.

February 25, 2009, 03:19 PM
My CHL class was interesting - The sad thing, and I've told this story before, was that it was taught partially alongside a course for those getting their security guard certification. When we got to the range there were about 24-28 shooters - class cut into two groups. Of those 4 were CHL renews, 4 (including my wife and I) were brand new CHL applicants, and the rest security.

So the range rules were very basic, standard range rules - nothing exotic or out of the ordinary. I went first, my wife second. The moron two guys down from my wife (security guy) kept turning and pointing his gun down the firing line, and I kept having to remind him to keep his gun pointed down range. He'd have a question, and turn again and finally one of the instructors got onto him and he did fine, until towards the end he wasn't sure if he still had a round chambered - had a cheap little pistol where the slide didn't lock back - so how did he check? idiot pulled the trigger and discharged a round in the dirt. They should have pulled his butt of the line and failed him - they just gave him one of their guns and chastised him again.

But out of all the shooters - There was this guy there for a renew standing next to me who had a brand new .45 HK who had all 50 rounds in about a 3in group - he turned to me and said, "this is the first time I've fired this gun, guess I'll keep it!"
I was in the top 3 (IMO!). My wife, who had only shot a pistol two or three times prior was easily in the top 5. The security guys? There was one guy who I felt shot better than I did but not as good as the HK guy. All the others were pitiful - about half had to stay behind and retake it. Gave me more incentive to carry. If I ever had to rely on one of these jokers for help I'm done.

February 25, 2009, 04:16 PM
8 hours in a hard, metal folding chair, going over some very basic things (which I guess is good.)

20 minutes for lunch. That irked me.

Half hour of range time. I got a perfect score (wasn't hard), as two other men, one who was recently hired at the gunstore, and another who just moved down here from New York, who shot the tightest groups with his Colt Python I have ever seen. I mean, tight like the instructors had to measure to make sure the guy shot the required number of rounds tight.

The Lone Haranguer
February 25, 2009, 04:22 PM
No horror stories here. I took my AZ class here (http://scottsdalegunclub.com) in early 2006. They had three instructors (one who was there throughout the day and oversaw it, two guests), a fourth person who showed up near the end of the day to take our fingerprints, and were 100% professional.

I have yet to take any class in TN so cannot comment on that.

February 25, 2009, 05:24 PM
The safety class I took here in Oregon about four years ago was very cool. The instructor knew his stuff, he went over law, how important it is to always carry, how impractical trigger locks are, etc.

In Oregon, they do not require a shooting test or a written test, so we got neither. Based on what I've read on previous posts, I think it's better if nobody shows up with their handguns. Much easier to teach familiarity one-on-one, especially when people bring a wide variety of pieces.

February 25, 2009, 06:00 PM
Our initial course is 8 hours and every two years we have a four hour renewal course.

I took my 1st course at an outdoor gun range. It was cold and we were inside a metal quanset hut with dirt floors and hard chairs. We were right next to the rifle range and we noticed numerous bullet entry holes into the metal hut. It was a bit disconcerting to say the least. The instructor said the holes were shot there during sme LEO excersize.

February 25, 2009, 06:19 PM
Hankdatank and I took our class in the same place! I had mine 2 weekends ago, VERY basic info, as in "dont shoot fleeing BG in the back" and no carry on school property. Shot high score in my class, again, not to hard to do.

February 25, 2009, 07:24 PM
I took the NRA $100 VA CHL class a few years back while long term TDY at the Five Sided Basement. Best $100 I've spent. First evening was bring your unloaded firearm and then, 4 hours of classroom instruction. Focus was on legal aspects, safety, liability and interaction with law enforcement. Second night was weapons proficiency. Have forgotten how many rounds I fired, but it was coached individually, fired at various ranges and single and multiple fire. Even though I used my DD-214 for obtaining my CHL, I still used the NRA CHL certificate to obtain my CHL. Friend, don't blow your money on some fly by night course. Spend the money and time and get quality classroom and hands-on firearms qualification training. Will make you strongly consider our image as gunnies to our fellow citizens and law enforcement. You'll find that yes, an armed society is a polite society. You'll probably let off the gas pedal a bit, knowing what will pop up on the screen should you get pulled over. You'll also save yourself some $$$ and avoid any repercussions by avoiding drinking while carrying.

February 25, 2009, 07:42 PM
Mine was at the range while working. Gander Mountain gave basic firearms classes for CCW by a guy who looked like he needed to be retired to a retirement village. I had the ranges that morning and 14 students showed up, everyone had a holstered handgun and not one had a the chamber locked back or the cylinders open. I decided to watch them because the instructor wasn't there yet. It only took a couple of minutes before girl pulled her weapon and decided to show it off to the rest of the class. That's all it took for me to walk up and start disarming everyone of them. I called the other RSO by radio and told him I needed help pretty fast. And I'm glad he showed up. 3 of the 14 had loaded weapons including the girl that was "showing off" her cool gun her boy friend bought her. Thank God no one was shot.
The instructor finally showed up 45min late and he got his butt ripped pretty badly. It was finally agreed by Gander Mountain that an RSO would always be present during any of their classes.

February 25, 2009, 07:52 PM
No horror stories at my Nevada class. Four hours of classroom time in a comfortable backroom of a local Pizza resturant. Lunch at the resturant was included. NRA instructor doing a good job on safety; ways of carrying; very good handouts covering all of the law; good emphasis on being aware of your surrounding to keep your butt out of trouble.

After lunch was range time. I was worried as there were four or five out of a class of 30 that hadn't fired a gun before. Those of us who were experienced went on out to the range first (30 min. drive) while the newbies were coached and encouraged.

All went well and everyone had to qualify at 7 yards into a mansize target. If someone was having a problem, the RO's (three of 'em, one for every 10 of us) would work with the shooter to find and correct the problem. They were pretty strict on accuracy too. If you couldn't hit inside the prescribed lines, you either figured out how too or you would have to come back. I got some flack because a little CZ 82 I was using kept having flyers but I couldn't see a problem. I had nailed the target with my big Colt, putting rounds on top of each other into the target. One of the RO's gave me his XD 9 to see if the problem was that I was using a semi-auto. Nope, the XD was dead on accurate. One of the RO's looked at the pattern, looked at the gun, whipped out a screwdriver and tightened up the grips---problem solved.

All in all, it was a good class but very basic. Folks could use their weapons, fire and hit consistently at 7 yards and had a grasp of basic safety rules.

Hungry Seagull
February 25, 2009, 07:52 PM
Oh my goodness. Oh my goodness. What a dangerous class that Gander story is.

February 25, 2009, 08:01 PM
My class in Taos NM was great. The instructor was a gal who took us to a range and we practiced shooting from concealment and on the run heading for cover. During the class hours, our District Attorney showed up and gave a talk on how important this training was, his views on the importance of the Second Ammendment, and his support for educated self defense in practice.

BTW he has been as good as his word in handling cases where gun fire has been exchanged in seld defense.

February 25, 2009, 08:12 PM
Not a "horror" story but definitely a deciding factor on which class to attend:

when I was looking for classes to take for my CCW a couple years ago I was interested in one offered by a local shop that had a downstairs range. One Saturday a month the instructors would hold his classes at this indoor range and one time I happened to be shooting that day when the instructor and his students arrived. I minded my own business while I practiced but I paid attention to how the class was conducted. It seemed like they were being taught well on safety and weapons handling so I figured I'd pick up an application and get in on the next class. That was until I heard the instructor say something in the range lobby.

He was talking to a female student that had just qualified and it sounded like they were talking about what her reaction should be to an attacker. He said, "shoot until the mag's empty," and that, to me, just sounded like horrible advice.

I ended up getting a class somewhere else where we discussed the law portion of CCW and what happens after a shooting for about 4 hours and were only at the range for an hour, tops. I'm glad I didn't take that other class.

Va Vince
February 25, 2009, 08:40 PM
Well, 22 years ago I took the Virginia Hunters saftey class to be legal to hunt. This past year I used that same certificate to get my CCW. No BS class where some charge $150 and some charge $50 to go thru either 4 hours or 16 hours to be qualified.

I dont understand the states tha require mental checks and all. Just do a severe backround and issue or dont. This country is much safer with citizens carrying than not (legallly). Bang Bang.....

February 26, 2009, 04:14 AM
I took the Utah class in CDL, Id. It was a very informative class. IT was supposed to be 6 hours but ended up being about 8. No one minded. Almost the whole class was about the legalities. Much was about ballistics, and we spend about an hour shooting, we had to qualify at 21 feet. Alot of time was spent discussing police cases, events and what actually happens during a gun fight.
Not part of the test but part of the class, we had to shoot under stress, THAT is interesting. I am an OK shot with a pistol, but toss in sirens, flashing lights, target that is charging, it gives a good idea what your reaction will be. Even the really good shooters were not doing so well. Just goes to show that being a good shot does not always matter

Very enlightening.


February 26, 2009, 04:44 AM
Was told to show up around such and such a time. We all proceeded to listen to the guy talk for about 2 hours. No shooting. Done.

February 26, 2009, 06:26 AM
We don't require classes here... went into the county sheriff, did some paper work, got fingerprinted and sent on my merry way :)

February 26, 2009, 07:36 AM
I have recently (last year) completed all the requirements in NC to teach concealed carry. I am saddened by some of the stories I hear about other instructors. Seems like they are all in it to make a buck.
I have decided that anyone who signs up for my class must take a "basic competency" test to determine if they need a basic pistol class first. I don't want to hand a certificate to anyone who cannot shoot a pistol. My course of fire is 50 rounds, more if the shooter wants to stick around and work on it some. They are paying for it. I want competent people out there packing, not someone who is in "panic" mode and wants to get the permit just because of the current events related to the current administration.

Here in NC, you have to become an NRA basic pistol instructor before you can get certified by the state to teach concealed carry classes.

February 26, 2009, 08:45 AM
Reading some of these posts makes me thankful for the class I took. The class was limited to twelve students. You could bring your own firearm or use one of theirs. There were around twenty to choose from. The ammo was provided. The time shooting was on thier indoor range with four to one ratio. We went over basic stance, hold and trigger press. There were some there that never shot a gun before and with the help of the staff were able to hit the target by the end of the day. One lady was having issues and the staff offer to have her stay over after class for some one on one time. The first day we were told that they had a lawyer coming in the next day to go over the different laws and how they effected us. I thought this was going to be dry and boring. I was wrong! This was the best part. The lawyer was very interesting, spent around two and one half hours talking and taking questions. He stayed after class intil we were out of questions. Over all this was a great class.

February 26, 2009, 08:49 AM
I'm admittedly biased a tad sum, I'm an NRA certified Pistol Instructor and am hoping to work exclusively with a shop & range openning up. I plan to stick strictly to the NRA book, add some handouts which name the statutes that are significant to concealed carry, some handouts which name resources I've discovered over time (www.theboxotruth.com, www.thehighroad.org, thebrassfetcher.com, etc. etc.) with the premission of the websites. I will not give legal advice because (drum roll) only lawyers are supposed to give legal advice, anyone else who does it opens themselves up to major liabilities in my fear at least.

If the NRA, who certifies us, wanted us giving legal advice they'd probably hold a class for that too. I'm in law school, and if I can, I plan to be a pro-gun attorney, take in one of Massad Ayoobs classes, and add to my specialty the defense of lawful shootings(not that they often need defending with our Castle Doctrine down here in Florida), on top of my family law and alternative dispute resolution training.

When you get your NRA credentials, on the back it says that you, the cardholder, represent to the rest of the country how people will view gun owners and firearms (and oh the "Good Luck" bit). So yes now I'm a certified pistol instructor and happy to be so, but I understand the responsibility it carries. Online I'm a bit rabid against antis admittedly, but in person I'm better self-controlled (although in one of my classes I yelled at someone saying that regulation of firearms was okay), because I have to be, it's not good if all us instructors look like we are "they're coming for our guns!!!", from my cold dead hands, full of themselves egomaniacs.

I want to bring people into the fold, the more new gun owners we get, the better our chances are of not having a new AWB. I've bought three EBRs and am waiting on two FFL recorded receivers to finish my YUGO AB02 and AMD 65.

February 26, 2009, 11:54 AM
More of a humor story than a horror story.

It was time for the shooting part of the class, so we were set up on the firing line at the indoor range where the class was held. There was an older gentleman on the far left, then me, then everyone else down the line. We all have our hearing protection on, so the instructor says, "Shooters, I will sound the buzzer three times, lift your hand up after each buzz." He wanted to make sure that we could all hear it when it came time to do our drawing and shooting. So it goes *buzz* (hands go up) *buzz* (hands go up) *bu-BOOM

Apparently the older guy beside me thought that we were supposed to start shooting on the third buzz? And everyone's looking down at me like I did it, and I'm mouthing "IT WASNT ME" at the instructor. So yeah, pretty hilarious. I later found out that it was his second time taking the test, because he hadn't qualified on the shooting part the first time :uhoh:

Oh and then there was the other guy that kept muzzling everybody...

February 26, 2009, 12:37 PM
When I took the NRA basic pistol course, there were several people who consistently could not safely handle a handgun. EVERY TIME they picked it up, the finger went automatically to the trigger and they swept the entire class (we did a "show and tell" where we got up in front of the class and picked up one of the various handguns on the table and explain what it was i.e. revolver or autoloader). These people could not get used to safely handling a handgun, yet they all passed the course and received their certificates, which in Maine is the only requirement for a CCP. The instructor was constantly reminding them, but to no avail. I still don't know how these people passed, even on the last day, they couldn't handle a handgun safely, and they even thought it was humorous and silly that they just couldn't remember the safety rules. Jeesh.

February 26, 2009, 02:12 PM
I'm in Georgia - no class required...

February 26, 2009, 04:12 PM
When I took the class I had a serious armchair commando for a teacher. Guy shows up with a glock plus four mags, two knives, and a surefire on a duty belt. Oh yeah he is wearing 5.11 pants and a black 5.11 type shirt. As we proceed through the class I see a badge and during the break ask him if he is LEO nope it is his "CHL Holder" badge at that point I stopped listening. He also ran around the class room giving demonstrations with an airsoft pistol.

February 26, 2009, 04:19 PM
I took the NRA First Steps Pistol in a guys basement.

2 hours, no shooting. He ran out of First Steps certificates so 2 out of the 3 in the class got "Basic Pistol" certificates.

Worst legal advice: In VA CCW are illegal in bars or restaurants serving alcohol, open carry is legal. Instructor informed us that no one has ever been prosecuted for this so he would go ahead and conceal carry in those places.

Hungry Seagull
February 26, 2009, 04:21 PM
There must be a way to double check what comes out of mouth of teacher against the local and state law in your area, in a language you can understand.

February 26, 2009, 05:29 PM
I'm in Seattle. My CCW permit experience consisted of me walking into the sheriff's office, filling out a form, getting fingerprinted, and writing a check. Four weeks later my permit came in the mail. At no point was any information offered or asked for regarding rights, laws, carrying methods, or gun safety.

If you enjoyed reading about "Let's talk about CCW classes(your horror stories and opinions)" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!