First let me say that if you served in the Military my undying thanks. But we must address the fact that your experiences in the Sandbox did not prepare you one bit to train civilians in Defensive Shooting. We have come a long way from the times where a NRA basic Pistol class was enough for anybody to go packing in the real world. Now good instructors will cover not only the operation of a firearm but the mindset that goes along in both engaging a bad guy or avoiding engagement with a bad guy. And let us not forget what comes afterward.
If you still feel that I am wrong, please allow me the following mental exercise:
You are back in the Sandbox. You are told by your superior that you must go to a market in Location X, look around, obtain certain items and return back to base. Intel says Location X is pacified, but you know better and have learned to expect the unexpected. You estimate a minimum of 30 minutes to complete the tasks at the market plus 15 minutes or so for the total trip.
- You are going alone.
- You will only carry your issued Beretta M9 sidearm. You may carry 3 or more fully loaded magazines.
- The sidearm will be kept covered under your uniform coat. At no time it should be visible unless you need the sidearm for self defense.
- No grenades of any type or any explosive device.
- No radios. You are allowed to carry your personal cellphone.
- No tasked emergency support for your trip. If you should find yourself in trouble, you will be assigned help depending on availability and type of emergency. No air support will be available.
- You will drive in an unarmored civilian vehicle to your destination and back.
- At your destination, you will move around the crowd normally. No aggressive postures or tactics.
- You may not initiate any defensive usage with your sidearm unless you have a clearly defined enemy presenting an immediate danger to you. Immediate Danger is defined if the enemy is armed and attacking or poised to attack you within a reasonable distance.
- If you successfully engaged the Enemy, you must call the provided emergency number and request that civilian authorities and civilian medics come to the location. Do not leave the area.
- Upon arrival, the Civilian Authorities will confiscate your weapon and detain you for further investigation. You may have your rights read and you may solicit an attorney.
- Press corps may arrive in full force. They will demand an interview with you. You may decline. They will likely portray you as a vigilante or a murderer now and issue no correction later.
- After preliminary on-site investigation is done, Civilian Authorities may either take you to their precinct for further interrogation or release you on your own recognizance. If so, return to base ASAP since now you are unarmed.
- Upon arrival on base, you will now wait for the authorities to determine if the engagement was justified; it may take up to a year. If the engagement is determined not to be justified, you may not expect us to provide you with a lawyer or any type of support. You are on your own.
No member of the Armed Forces in his/her right mind would take on a mission under those parameter. Yet that is what civilians endure every day they carry a concealed weapon. And yes, you can teach how to pull the trigger, but that is the easy part. The rest of the dance is the bitch that will break you down.