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Are we better shots?

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by twoblink, Dec 13, 2005.

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  1. twoblink

    twoblink Member

    Dec 22, 2002
    Houston, Texas
    Question, if we had a head to head match, THR/TFL'ers against local LEO and you military GI Joes, are we, better shots than they are?

    If so, by how big of a margain?

    I'm fairly curious for two reasons:

    First, all my Leo friends can't outshoot me, and my military friends don't even know how to properly handle a gun safely IMHO. So I'm wondering if that's me (and the type of friends I keep) i.e. the norm or the exception.

    was wondering if there was a civil war, reading from another thread, if we had similiar weapons and the air force wasn't dropping bombs, if it was Mono E Mono and skill vs. skill,if we'd stand a chance..

    (No offense meant to the LEO's and Joes who are on "our" side on the guns issue)
  2. JohnKSa

    JohnKSa Member

    Jan 1, 2003
    DFW Area
    I doubt it. The membership here encompasses a wide range of shooting skills. I suspect that a large percentage of the membership has relatively poor shooting abilities, a good number probably doesn't shoot at all and a few members don't even own guns. The average member of the military/police may not have exemplary marksmanship, but they have all received at least a minimum of professional training and have all been qualified to some level--even if the standards are not stringent.

    I'd guess that on average, the cops/military will outshoot the membership of a large general gun forum like THR.

    Leaving the marksmanship contest behind and answering your question about combat brings up the question of what happens when you pit someone with excellent shooting skills and little to no military style training against someone with mediocre to poor shooting skills and combat experience. IMO, the guy with combat experience is going to have a pretty significant edge.
  3. Preacherman

    Preacherman Member

    Dec 20, 2002
    Louisiana, USA
    Err... "Mono" is an abbreviation for a particularly nasty disease round here. I think you meant "Mano a Mano"... :D
  4. crashresidue

    crashresidue Member

    Dec 27, 2004
    Maui HI
    Boy, I'm sure glad I didn't start this one!

    Not being an LEO, but being a former "Joe" - I think the difference isn't so much the marksmanship as it is the mind set to stick you head over a berm or around a tree when you have someone else capping at you with the intent to kill, and you intend to do it to them first.

    Before any of you want to jump in - please wait until you've been "barked" before you trot out all you shooting experiences and tell me it's marksmanship that counts most. Wiping the dirt out of your eyes or spitting dirt out of your mouth from a near miss is a real "eye opener".

    The military training I got before Nam was to teach you to be able to function with dirt in the eyes/mouth. Being the best shot in the unit didn't mean squat if you couldn't shoot back. The "couldn't shoot back" is NOT cowardice - it's survival! Everyone HAS to overcome it!

    If it's close quaters and an M-16 will do the job - HELL, a frag will do it even BETTER! AND you run less risk of getting your ticket punched!

    Yes, I LOVE it when I can touch bullet holes with my 45-110 at 200 yards, but in the combat world, I'd be doing a lot of "duckin and a weavin" between rounds.

    Gentle winds,
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2005
  5. twoblink

    twoblink Member

    Dec 22, 2002
    Houston, Texas

    "Mono E Mono" <-- Referring to 2008 elections :neener:


    Thanks for the correction, shouldn't type on 2 hours of sleep..
  6. HI express

    HI express Member

    Feb 4, 2005
    southern CA

    I have to add one element. Having served in 'Nam and attending (as observer)in competitions and having practiced with leo candidates in simunition scenarios, there is one big variable.. when someone is shooting at you, it changes a lot of your strategy. Of course, in competition there are some who can translate their practical experiences into real self-defense situations. Some do not.

    In soldier type combat, you have a learning curve. If you learn and have some luck, you survive. If you make mistakes, you can pay the ultimate price.

    All I am saying is that when someone or a bunch of someones are shooting back, your technique is different and so is your accuracy. So is your sense of self-preservation.

    If you are speaking about pure competition, I believe a lot of the folks in THR/TFL. etc/. are quite good. I don't feel that a lot of the line doggies are that good in competition. My nephew is in his second tour with the 101st Airborne. He was a SAW operator on his first tour, and now he is a designated marksman carrying a M-14 and a M-4, and also a Remington 870 pump for CQB. He is not confident with a lot of guys that deployed with him to the big sandbox. They are untested and they barely qualified in training. If they survive, they develop into better and more accurate shooters.. at least the ones that choose to shoot back.

    Remember, just my opinion.
  7. DevLcL

    DevLcL Member

    Dec 28, 2004
    Actually, your both wrong. It's a spanish saying... 'mano y mano' meaning 'hand and hand', translating further to 'one on one'. :D

    Mono E Mono means cute and cute....

    Mano a Mano means hand by hand.... I suppose this could be right also... :banghead:

    I don't know anymore!

  8. Phantom Warrior

    Phantom Warrior Member

    Mar 7, 2003
    Joe here. I know your situation is hypothetical. However, working in an arms room full of select fire M-16s and heavy machine guns and full-auto grenade launchers (Mk 19) a quarter mile away from a motor pool full of Bradleys, I can say that the odds of facing the military on equal terms is...slim.

    If the government just decided to send in the NG w/ rifles only for political reason, maybe. If they got serious and pulled out all the stops, no way.
  9. Sinsaba

    Sinsaba Member

    Apr 14, 2005
    Northern VA
    I'll wade in since I know nothing about it.

    1) It seems to me that overall the people on this forum have enough interest in guns to waste their time and energy reading and typing. I'm willing some of that interest spills over into practice. Based on that unsupported assumption I'm willing to say that it is possible to likely that the ratio of good shots is higher than in an organization whose main component is some kind of support and not shooting (I think this applies to all armed forces and some LEO organizations... the largest number of people support those few whose jot it is to shoot).

    2) I imagine (since it applies to me) that a large percentage here have never been shot at. I assume the same is true for most of the military.

    3) However, what the military does have IMO is a higher percentage that have been taught tactics (this too may be false since I assume a significant percentage of THRs are exmilitary/LEO). I think that would win the day.

    BTW... how would current LEO or Military who are also THR count? THR? :)
  10. Wiley

    Wiley Member

    Sep 1, 2003
    Marietta, GA
    crashresidue gave the answer.

    Also the thread on Audey Murphey and the 'real deal'. Murphy had the midset to crawl close enough to chunck in a grenade or spot for artilery. Close counts with grenades and artilery.

    W. Hickock wasn't fast, he was determined. He had the mindset to stand there and make his first shot the only one he had to fire. While the other guy was shooting fast enough to miss.

    As I remember, Hickock's three rules were: Determination, Accuracy, Speed.
  11. jdkelly

    jdkelly Member

    May 9, 2003
    On average the shooters I've seen at the three (four if you include a commercial range) shooting clubs I belong to, shoot much better then the LEOs of the three or four PDs I've seen shoot.

    I wouldn't venture to guess how a protracted confrontation between sport shooters and LEOs would work out as there are just too many unknowns.


  12. NoahFN

    NoahFN Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Dayton, Ohio
    Currently, I can outshoot my father who has been a LEO for almost 30 years. His eyes aren't what they used to be (he uses bi-focals now) and his joints are getting stiff. (He's also not a fan of autos and despises .40 S&W, his current issue is a Glock 27.)

    I'm certain though, that in his prime he could outshoot me. He has probably a dozen trophies boxed up in a closet that he is too modest to display from when he would shoot in police competition. This was when everyone carried revolvers and his carry and competition revolver was a Colt Python. I've had the opportunity to shoot it, and I have accused him of cheating by using that gun. :)
  13. Tequila_Sauer

    Tequila_Sauer Member

    Nov 16, 2005
    My LEO friend has a glock and a S&W .40 (not sure of the model). When's he's rocking the Glock, I can outshoot him with my CZ 75. But he's dead on with that Smith, he'll beat me almost everytime. It's like an extension of his hand (and it should be, the thing weighs a TON!!).
  14. Oldtimer

    Oldtimer Member

    Oct 5, 2005
    35 years combined combat and police experience here, along with 53 years as an avid shooter and hunter. The "above-average" non-military/LEO shooter MIGHT be able to cope with targets that shoot back, but only if they have the proper mind set.

    Most shooters practise on inanimate objects, such as paper targets, reactive targets and non-moving "targets of opportunity". They practise their skills from "fixed" shooting points, for safety reasons. They rarely DROP their expensive magazines on the ground, for that would damage them. Probably only a few non-military/LEO shooters even have a CLUE as to what a "combat reload" is.

    Add to that, most non-military/LEO shooters don't know what the difference is between "cover" and "concealment".

    You might be able to closely simulate a combat situation (where the targets DO shoot back) by shooting paint ball matches....but it's not quite the same. In REAL combat, the firearms are LOUD and you don't have the luxury of using hearing protection. In REAL combat, you're not worrying about getting painful "welts" from paint balls... you're worried about being KILLED! Paint ball game "wounded" players usually don't cry out for their mama's! They don't poop or pee their pants! They only get spattered with paint, not blood and body parts! They don't smell death!

    Practise, knowing your firearm, self confidence and mind set. They're all necessary, but don't discount the experience of actual combat. I saw a LOT of "FNG's" that froze up in their first firefight....but that first experience was enough to get them through the next firefight!
  15. kid_couteau

    kid_couteau Member

    Nov 5, 2005
    Speaking just for fun

    I think that in a contest for accuracy and speed I could hold my own with LEO or most military folk.

    I do cowboy action shooting and am a decent shot. I also like to "play" in the action pistol group too.

    But there is a huge difference in that and real life where the targets are shooting back at you.

    Accuracy goes bye bye when you are trying to stay alive.

    Kid Couteau


    Nov 10, 2003
    Home of the Brave
    Interesting Question

    I'd say that our membership here at THR embraces quite a number of shooters who are either current or former military and current or former LEOs. We also have a number of members who are neither but are armed civilians who take skill-at-arms seriously and want to improve their skills.

    The common myth is that 'cops can't shoot so good' because it is widely believed that most only draw their weapons when it's time for the regularly-scheduled qualification days. I know that a number of news stories have disclosed the high number of shots fired in ratio to the number of hits, and this is the basis for the myth.

    I would hazard a guestimate that if someone cares enough about quality firearms and quality training, skill improvement etc. to be a member of the THR then it is more likely than not that the THR member also regularly practices with the weapon(s) at the range and wishes they had time to do it even more often than that.
  17. HankB

    HankB Member

    Mar 29, 2003
    Central Texas
    LEOs seem to come in two flavors when it comes to shooting ability - very bad or very good, there is very little middle ground. (Forget about those few LEOs who are in the national spotlight at places like Camp Perry or the Bianchi Cup - they're so few in number as to be statistically insignificant.)

    The vast majority are in the first (very bad) category.

    I've found that in IDPA and other competitions, it's easy to shoot rings around the "average" LEO . . . things only get competitive if a shooting instructor shows up, or one of those rare LEOs who's a "gunny." Most rank-and-file LEOs would only rate "Novice."

    As for the military, the big thing there isn't necessarily marksmanship ability (I wouldn't be eager to go against a school-trained sniper), it's teamwork. Take a squad-sized group of THR-ers, and even if they're individually better than any member of a squad of GIs, if those GIs happen to be vets of, say, the urban fighting in Fallujah, things could get dicey even if the THR-ers have seriously trained together as a team.
  18. trueblue1776

    trueblue1776 Member

    Nov 16, 2005
    I shoot to stop, i dont shoot IPSC. Big dif. I train my men on entire situations, not the 10 ring. I am very impressed with some competition shooters but they are not cops or war heros. Good calm judgement and hit ratios are what counts for us. Most people on here could probably outshoot me. I don't get points when I win, I go home.:cool:
  19. Kramer Krazy

    Kramer Krazy Member

    Dec 1, 2004
    Easley, SC
    Hmmmm....interesting question. I'd think that if it was an "us and them" and shooting at each other, I'd probably give the edge to the police and military. For IDPA style shooting, it may be a whole lot closer, but the edge would be given to the police and military, also, as most people here have probably never shot in that kind of competition (I haven't). Bench shooters probably wouldn't help us too much in these two scenerios. We just wouldn't have enough time to let them set up, but for bullseye shooting, I'd like to say that THR members would win, depending on the rules. I believe a lot of THR members would really be hurting for targets at more than 100 yards with iron sights due to all of the threads on scopes that I tend to see here.......Hmmmmm......yes, definitely an interesting question.
  20. Old Dog

    Old Dog Member

    Aug 11, 2004
    somewhere on Puget Sound
    Eh, I know civilians with no military or law enforcement experience who are great shooters, both in terms of accuracy and in action shooting disciplines.

    I've known many in the military who are useless around firearms, and whom I would not allow to carry firearms ...

    I shoot a lot down at Fort Lewis, at a few commercial ranges and a couple gun clubs in the Puget Sound area. I've also worked with civilian law enforcement officers. Maybe it's the departments I was around, but I've known a number of cops who were very, very proficient with their handguns and several who were dedicated IPSC and IDPA shooters as well. As far as the Army goes ... I've not been overly impressed with handgun ability of some of the soldiers I've shot with, but then, the Army has an awesome marksman unit ... Several soldiers have impressed me with advanced skills on the M16/AR15 platform. As far as military, I give the nod to some of the USMC riflemen I've know, who were incredible shots with iron sights at incredible distances ... I learned my handgunning from the Marines, and there's a bunch of them I'm simply not competitive with ...

    I just tire of the generalizations: cops are not normally good with firearms ... many civilians are better with guns than military or cops ... one branch of the military has better shooters than another (ever been to interservice competitions? The Navy and Air Force guys would surprise you.) ... it's simply all a matter of individual training, discipline, practice time, and yes, even equipment ... doesn't matter whether you're on your PD's SWAT unit, a Navy SEAL or a clerk down at the 7-11 ...

    . Obviously, just the people you know ...
    No, you wouldn't.
  21. LeonCarr

    LeonCarr Member

    Mar 20, 2003
    At The Range
    In my experience the average (C Class) IPSC Shooter, or Sharpshooter Class IDPA Shooter, can outshoot about 90% of police officers. The other 10% consists of SWAT guys and Instructors, who in most cases have to maintain 90% firearm qualification scores to stay an instructor or stay on the SWAT Team, and as mentioned, those few officers that are competition shooters or gun enthusiasts.

    I saw one police officer show up at an IPSC match, giving off the air that he was all that and a bucket of chicken, and he came in dead last out of 20 shooters. Hopefully he spends more time at the range now.

    Just my .02,
  22. MechAg94

    MechAg94 Member

    Apr 17, 2005
    I think the comment about Teamwork is the key when talking about combat. That kind of training is what separates professionals from amateurs. Same concept in air to air dogfighting or even in football and other sports. A group of individuals will rarely beat a good team.

    Personally, I think you are overestimating who is on THR. There are a lot of good shooters, but there are also a lot of amaturs like me who just like to talk about guns and talk with other people who also like guns. Think of the average civilian in general.

    MICHAEL T Member

    Feb 3, 2004
    outback Kentucky
    I guess I look at this in a different way. It seems in a Civ. SD shooting min number of rounds fired and problem solved BG on ground or runs away to seek medical treatment. Looks to me in officer involved shootings large number of rounds fired either by 1 or more officers resuling in BG killed or put down. Both have done the job just seems Police need a lot more shots to do it.

    I belive shootings were Police fire 100's of rounds in to a car to kill a BG are not good shootingd. That one in PA earlier this year fired somewhere around 350 rounds Killed driver Passenger got a way in this hail of fire.

    They only used a little over 100 rounds to take out Bonnie and Clyde . Today that would have been a 1000 rounds given the spray and pray thinking that has come about since police started to carry these hi-cap pistols.
  24. M2 Carbine

    M2 Carbine Member

    May 29, 2003
    In just a shooting match?

    I've been in the USMC, Army and an LEO.

    The average Marine would probably out shoot many or most (non military) THR/TFL'ers with a rifle, especially long distance. Every Marine, no matter what his job is, is first a trained rifleman.

    The average soldier I'd guess would be a toss up. In the Army and THR/TFL'ers, the people range from very poor in weapon's use and knowledge to very good.

    It was many years ago, but I only knew a couple LEO that could hit a barn wall from the inside.
  25. Bartholomew Roberts

    Bartholomew Roberts Moderator Emeritus

    Dec 26, 2002
    In a competition, THR members might do well (assuming they got to keep those members who were military/LEO on their side). I would have given them the edge in general; but I think that if you include ALL members then the level of experience probably goes down quite a bit.

    In a conflict, I think there are a lot of important skills that are as necessary or more necessary than shooting well. The ability to work as a team is certainly one of those. There is also a lot of basic day-to-day knowledge in running a squad or platoon that many THR members would lack. Just being able to read terrain and position people correctly can be quite a trick to master and its something that I doubt many of us get to practice.
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