Aiming For The Tactical Trainers?

BY Herschel Smith
8 months ago

One of the things the awful governor of Virginia tried to do is shut down tactical trainers for civilians.  I don’t know how that turned out.  Some media outfits are also targeting tactical trainers.  Wired has a hit piece on Gunsite Academy.

We had all signed up for a two-day tactical firearms course, where we’d be learning how to shoot as if we were engaged in small-unit armed combat. Once the purview of law enforcement officers and military operators, these kinds of skills are increasingly being passed down to ordinary, armed Americans by a sprawling and diffuse industry. Gun ranges and private facilities around the country teach the art of tactical shooting, in setups that range from the fly-by-night to the elaborate: At a Texas resort, you can schedule a combat training scenario inspired by the Iraq War after your trail ride; at an invitation-only facility in Florida, you can practice taking down a mass shooter at the Liberal Tears Café; at Real World Tactical, a former Marine will teach you how to survive “urban chaos through armed tactical solutions.”

Under the aegis of his one-man company, Green Eye Tactical, Dorenbush says he trains SWAT teams and military contractors, but that about half of his students are people who don’t carry a gun professionally. In recent weeks, he’d worked with a 22-year-old mechanic who’d been robbed at work, a teenage girl, and several married couples. “Everyone has different things they’re preparing for, different threats,” he said.

[ … ]

But the tactical shooting world also attracts a much wider range of people: gun bros and gamers, preppers and adrenaline junkies, LARPers who want to spend their weekends cosplaying as commandos, and crime victims seeking a particular flavor of empowerment. Women make up a growing proportion of students, and the industry is increasingly catering to preachers and teachers who want to know how to face a mass shooter. “We’re getting a lot of nontraditional gun owners, and some people who don’t want people to know they’re learning to shoot guns,” says Ken Campbell, the CEO of Gunsite, which claims to be the country’s oldest tactical training facility.

As we head into an era that seems destined to be marked by escalating vigilantism and political violence—or, if we’re very lucky, just the fear of them—it’s time to reckon with the whole of American tactical culture. For all its power to shape this moment, that culture has roots that long precede it. The tactical world is a byproduct of years of rampant mass shootings and of our nation’s longest wars, the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. It’s a space where paramilitary ideas thrive and where ordinary gun owners learn to see themselves as potential heroes; but it’s also where many Americans have simply gone looking for a way to negotiate living in a country where there are more firearms than people. To try to understand it better, I spent this fall absorbing its mix of skills training, political indoctrination, and camaraderie. Sometimes it felt like CrossFit with bullets; sometimes it was more alarming than that.

The gun world we live in today, in which millions of Americans don’t blink an eye at the idea of eating lunch with a loaded pistol on their hip, is a relatively recent invention, and part of the credit goes to Gunsite’s founder, Jeff Cooper. Cooper, who died in 2006, is revered at Gunsite, where his photo hangs on the classroom wall and his house is preserved as a museum. An upright, broad-chested man with a stern, scholarly manner, Cooper was a veteran of World War II and the Korean War with a degree from Stanford and a library full of history books.

[ … ]

It was over fast—we’d secured the hostage, Dorenbush declared. During the debrief, I cried. Dorenbush stood next to one of the targets, a visibly pregnant woman gripping a pistol. “You just shot a pregnant female—how does that make you feel?” he asked Jody. Realistic training was important because it helped acclimate the body to stressful situations, he explained. “You’re taking steps to help yourself so it’s not such a drastic departure from your reality. You inoculate yourself to trauma. It takes time to build that up to where it’s not bothering you that much anymore.”

She would cry more if she ever had to suffer the indignity and assault of rape.

As for the alleged societal change of people eating lunch with a weapon on their side, she isn’t educated enough in history to understand that not so long ago, gentlemen and churchgoers carried firearms to worship.

I think I related an experience I had several years ago when my mother-in-law had to be removed from her home and placed in assisted living. Her home was a wreck, and had to be repaired, worked and cleaned for days.

The duty fell to me.  I used the weekends for the job, while my wife had to stay and tend home.  The home where she lived had become known to the locals as having had break-ins and strange visitors due to the absence of my mother-in-law.

Every weekend evening for several months – because after work, the evening was as soon as I could get there – I arrived and knew I had to engage in some tactical work.  I would engage in “room clearing” as taught to me by my son.

I never found anyone, usually only found the results of critters who had wandered in despite the locked down house (I never did figure out how they were getting in).  I also noticed that windows were unlocked, when I know that I had ensured all windows locked before having left the home the last time.  If someone was getting in, I never could figure out how, but this did add to my discomfort.

It was difficult to hold the weapon steady and upright for ten or fifteen minutes to check every room and every closet, to turn lights on as I entered or left rooms, to maintain awareness of rooms behind me (because light bulbs had burned out and I had very little light), and nerve racking to continue that until finished.

It helped when I had my Heidi-girl, a 90 pound Doberman, who would usually go ahead of me, but I didn’t always have her.  I was alone at times.

If you think you don’t need that skill (and I’m not here claiming that I have a skill set beyond the very basic), you’re mistaken.

Here is a prediction.  In the near future, it will be illegal to give this training to civilians.


Comments

  1. On January 18, 2021 at 12:26 am, Jimmy the Saint said:

    “She would cry more if she ever had to suffer the indignity and assault of rape.”

    Maybe not. There have been more than a few stories in the news about women who did crazy stuff like not reporting rape (Sweden), or rationalizing it (American worker in Haiti), in order to protect certain sacred cows.

  2. On January 18, 2021 at 3:26 am, Old Bill in TN said:

    Our opposition are past-masters at incrementalism. They will go after training, ammo, accessories, etc., whatever they can to get at the guns.

  3. On January 18, 2021 at 8:15 am, ragman said:

    Little Mikey Bloomberg has started going after utubers via something called
    “The Trace”. They are targeting “gun influencers” or some such rot. Apparently the training the people that “carry guns professionally” is not very good. They shoot doggies, innocent bystanders and each other. Or maybe it’s not the training but the sorry quality of the trainees(professionals). In any case, they’re coming after everything.

  4. On January 18, 2021 at 11:02 am, billrla said:

    Imagine a world in which ignorance is preferable to knowledge.

  5. On January 18, 2021 at 3:50 pm, Ned said:

    “…not so long ago, gentlemen and churchgoers carried firearms to worship.”

    And still do.

  6. On January 18, 2021 at 3:53 pm, Fred said:

    I’m no gentleman but rest assured, at church, I have a firearm and dozens of rounds of ammo.

  7. On January 18, 2021 at 7:36 pm, Jimmy the Saint said:

    @billrla: “Imagine a world in which ignorance is preferable to knowledge.”

    So, this one, since at least the 20th Century, and probably before?

  8. On January 19, 2021 at 9:18 am, Fred said:

    Defensive Training Group blog was nuked overnight by WordPress.

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URL

Leave a comment


You are currently reading "Aiming For The Tactical Trainers?", entry #26725 on The Captain's Journal.

This article is filed under the category(s) War & Warfare and was published January 17th, 2021 by Herschel Smith.

If you're interested in what else the The Captain's Journal has to say, you might try thumbing through the archives and visiting the main index, or; perhaps you would like to learn more about TCJ.

26th MEU (10)
Abu Muqawama (12)
ACOG (2)
ACOGs (1)
Afghan National Army (36)
Afghan National Police (17)
Afghanistan (703)
Afghanistan SOFA (4)
Agriculture in COIN (3)
AGW (1)
Air Force (36)
Air Power (9)
al Qaeda (83)
Ali al-Sistani (1)
America (21)
Ammunition (161)
Animals (112)
Ansar al Sunna (15)
Anthropology (3)
Antonin Scalia (1)
AR-15s (291)
Arghandab River Valley (1)
Arlington Cemetery (2)
Army (79)
Assassinations (2)
Assault Weapon Ban (27)
Australian Army (7)
Azerbaijan (4)
Backpacking (2)
Badr Organization (8)
Baitullah Mehsud (21)
Basra (17)
BATFE (120)
Battle of Bari Alai (2)
Battle of Wanat (18)
Battle Space Weight (3)
Bin Laden (7)
Blogroll (3)
Blogs (23)
Body Armor (20)
Books (3)
Border War (11)
Brady Campaign (1)
Britain (38)
British Army (35)
Camping (4)
Canada (3)
Castle Doctrine (1)
Caucasus (6)
CENTCOM (7)
Center For a New American Security (8)
Charity (3)
China (15)
Christmas (12)
CIA (28)
Civilian National Security Force (3)
Col. Gian Gentile (9)
Combat Outposts (3)
Combat Video (2)
Concerned Citizens (6)
Constabulary Actions (3)
Coolness Factor (3)
COP Keating (4)
Corruption in COIN (4)
Council on Foreign Relations (1)
Counterinsurgency (217)
DADT (2)
David Rohde (1)
Defense Contractors (2)
Department of Defense (185)
Department of Homeland Security (26)
Disaster Preparedness (4)
Distributed Operations (5)
Dogs (12)
Donald Trump (26)
Drone Campaign (3)
EFV (3)
Egypt (12)
El Salvador (1)
Embassy Security (1)
Enemy Spotters (1)
Expeditionary Warfare (17)
F-22 (2)
F-35 (1)
Fallujah (17)
Far East (3)
Fathers and Sons (2)
Favorite (1)
Fazlullah (3)
FBI (32)
Featured (186)
Federal Firearms Laws (18)
Financing the Taliban (2)
Firearms (1,394)
Football (1)
Force Projection (35)
Force Protection (4)
Force Transformation (1)
Foreign Policy (27)
Fukushima Reactor Accident (6)
Ganjgal (1)
Garmsir (1)
general (15)
General Amos (1)
General James Mattis (1)
General McChrystal (44)
General McKiernan (6)
General Rodriguez (3)
General Suleimani (9)
Georgia (19)
GITMO (2)
Google (1)
Gulbuddin Hekmatyar (1)
Gun Control (1,374)
Guns (1,896)
Guns In National Parks (3)
Haditha Roundup (10)
Haiti (2)
HAMAS (7)
Haqqani Network (9)
Hate Mail (8)
Hekmatyar (1)
Heroism (4)
Hezbollah (12)
High Capacity Magazines (16)
High Value Targets (9)
Homecoming (1)
Homeland Security (1)
Horses (1)
Humor (35)
ICOS (1)
IEDs (7)
Immigration (93)
India (10)
Infantry (4)
Information Warfare (2)
Infrastructure (2)
Intelligence (23)
Intelligence Bulletin (6)
Iran (170)
Iraq (379)
Iraq SOFA (23)
Islamic Facism (64)
Islamists (95)
Israel (18)
Jaish al Mahdi (21)
Jalalabad (1)
Japan (2)
Jihadists (80)
John Nagl (5)
Joint Intelligence Centers (1)
JRTN (1)
Kabul (1)
Kajaki Dam (1)
Kamdesh (9)
Kandahar (12)
Karachi (7)
Kashmir (2)
Khost Province (1)
Khyber (11)
Knife Blogging (4)
Korea (4)
Korengal Valley (3)
Kunar Province (20)
Kurdistan (3)
Language in COIN (5)
Language in Statecraft (1)
Language Interpreters (2)
Lashkar-e-Taiba (2)
Law Enforcement (4)
Lawfare (7)
Leadership (6)
Lebanon (6)
Leon Panetta (2)
Let Them Fight (2)
Libya (14)
Lines of Effort (3)
Littoral Combat (8)
Logistics (50)
Long Guns (1)
Lt. Col. Allen West (2)
Marine Corps (270)
Marines in Bakwa (1)
Marines in Helmand (67)
Marjah (4)
MEDEVAC (2)
Media (61)
Medical (73)
Memorial Day (6)
Mexican Cartels (35)
Mexico (51)
Michael Yon (6)
Micromanaging the Military (7)
Middle East (1)
Military Blogging (26)
Military Contractors (4)
Military Equipment (24)
Militia (5)
Mitt Romney (3)
Monetary Policy (1)
Moqtada al Sadr (2)
Mosul (4)
Mountains (25)
MRAPs (1)
Mullah Baradar (1)
Mullah Fazlullah (1)
Mullah Omar (3)
Musa Qala (4)
Music (23)
Muslim Brotherhood (6)
Nation Building (2)
National Internet IDs (1)
National Rifle Association (73)
NATO (15)
Navy (23)
Navy Corpsman (1)
NCOs (3)
News (1)
NGOs (2)
Nicholas Schmidle (2)
Now Zad (19)
NSA (3)
NSA James L. Jones (6)
Nuclear (58)
Nuristan (8)
Obama Administration (221)
Offshore Balancing (1)
Operation Alljah (7)
Operation Khanjar (14)
Ossetia (7)
Pakistan (165)
Paktya Province (1)
Palestine (5)
Patriotism (7)
Patrolling (1)
Pech River Valley (11)
Personal (66)
Petraeus (14)
Pictures (1)
Piracy (13)
Pistol (2)
Pizzagate (21)
Police (538)
Police in COIN (3)
Policy (15)
Politics (890)
Poppy (2)
PPEs (1)
Prisons in Counterinsurgency (12)
Project Gunrunner (20)
PRTs (1)
Qatar (1)
Quadrennial Defense Review (2)
Quds Force (13)
Quetta Shura (1)
RAND (3)
Recommended Reading (14)
Refueling Tanker (1)
Religion (241)
Religion and Insurgency (19)
Reuters (1)
Rick Perry (4)
Rifles (1)
Roads (4)
Rolling Stone (1)
Ron Paul (1)
ROTC (1)
Rules of Engagement (75)
Rumsfeld (1)
Russia (32)
Sabbatical (1)
Sangin (1)
Saqlawiyah (1)
Satellite Patrols (2)
Saudi Arabia (4)
Scenes from Iraq (1)
Second Amendment (430)
Second Amendment Quick Hits (2)
Secretary Gates (9)
Sharia Law (3)
Shura Ittehad-ul-Mujahiden (1)
SIIC (2)
Sirajuddin Haqqani (1)
Small Wars (72)
Snipers (9)
Sniveling Lackeys (2)
Soft Power (4)
Somalia (8)
Sons of Afghanistan (1)
Sons of Iraq (2)
Special Forces (28)
Squad Rushes (1)
State Department (22)
Statistics (1)
Sunni Insurgency (10)
Support to Infantry Ratio (1)
Supreme Court (30)
Survival (53)
SWAT Raids (55)
Syria (38)
Tactical Drills (2)
Tactical Gear (6)
Taliban (168)
Taliban Massing of Forces (4)
Tarmiyah (1)
TBI (1)
Technology (17)
Tehrik-i-Taliban (78)
Terrain in Combat (1)
Terrorism (95)
Thanksgiving (10)
The Anbar Narrative (23)
The Art of War (5)
The Fallen (1)
The Long War (20)
The Surge (3)
The Wounded (13)
Thomas Barnett (1)
Transnational Insurgencies (5)
Tribes (5)
TSA (22)
TSA Ineptitude (13)
TTPs (4)
U.S. Border Patrol (5)
U.S. Border Security (14)
U.S. Sovereignty (17)
UAVs (2)
UBL (4)
Ukraine (3)
Uncategorized (58)
Universal Background Check (3)
Unrestricted Warfare (4)
USS Iwo Jima (2)
USS San Antonio (1)
Uzbekistan (1)
V-22 Osprey (4)
Veterans (3)
Vietnam (1)
War & Warfare (315)
War & Warfare (40)
War Movies (4)
War Reporting (21)
Wardak Province (1)
Warriors (6)
Waziristan (1)
Weapons and Tactics (73)
West Point (1)
Winter Operations (1)
Women in Combat (21)
WTF? (1)
Yemen (1)

September 2021
August 2021
July 2021
June 2021
May 2021
April 2021
March 2021
February 2021
January 2021
December 2020
November 2020
October 2020
September 2020
August 2020
July 2020
June 2020
May 2020
April 2020
March 2020
February 2020
January 2020
December 2019
November 2019
October 2019
September 2019
August 2019
July 2019
June 2019
May 2019
April 2019
March 2019
February 2019
January 2019
December 2018
November 2018
October 2018
September 2018
August 2018
July 2018
June 2018
May 2018
April 2018
March 2018
February 2018
January 2018
December 2017
November 2017
October 2017
September 2017
August 2017
July 2017
June 2017
May 2017
April 2017
March 2017
February 2017
January 2017
December 2016
November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006

about · archives · contact · register

Copyright © 2006-2021 Captain's Journal. All rights reserved.