Column: Research guns before you need one


Commentary by Jason Peek

Since the end of June, I have taken 31 hours of handgun courses, and I learned more than I thought there ever was to learn.

It blew my mind when I learned that, in Indiana, one can get a lifetime concealed-carry permit at age 21 with no required training. All one has to do is go to the firearms store, pick out the biggest, coolest gun a heart desires, get hollow-point bullets and start carrying a gun around.

Consider: Just to drive vehicles, we all took courses and a test. Everyone that is licensed for his or her profession (doctors, lawyers, etc.) had to do the same thing. Barbers? Yes, of course. I had to take 1,500 hours of school just to cut hair, and there is no possible way I can kill you or alter your life forever by giving you a haircut.

Increasing numbers of people are carrying firearms, or they’re thinking about doing so, and many folks I encounter don’t carry because they are scared they will mess up. That’s a good call on their part.

If you desire to protect yourself and your family at a bare minimum, then I would suggest you go to a firearms store or range where you can hold and shoot a firearm before you buy one.

Get a professional instructor to help you with what you need, then take responsibility and enroll in a course – and I mean an outdoor course that allows you to draw from a holster and not simply shoot in a range. Point Blank, Tim’s Shooting Academy and other outlets in our area offer basic safety and handling instruction, and they also offer advanced classes as for those who progress or want to learn more.

I highly suggest signing up for the defensive handgun course at the Boone Co. Sheriff’s Dept. with some absolutely awesome officers with tons of experience and professionalism. It’s affordable and more than your money’s worth, I assure you. I did it, and I left more confident and feeling safer and more helpful than ever.

The Second Amendment is a right; you can choose not to carry or to carry, but firearms are not a joke and life is not a movie, so be responsible to all your fellow Americans and spend a little time and money to make sure that when something bad is happening down the road, you’re not making life-changing decisions for others around you.