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  • Writer's pictureJoy Allen

Back to the Basics

Master shooters have simply perfected the basics. No matter how advanced you may be in your firearm handling, the fundamentals must always be reviewed and followed.

UNIVERSAL FIREARM SAFETY RULES 1. Treat every gun as if it is loaded. It's important to always be aware of the condition of your firearm. As soon as one obtains possession of a gun, its condition should be checked, and the gun should preferably be cleared, or confirmed as empty. Even then, a gun is a tool with the ability to cause irreversible damage. It must always be treated with respect - as if it is loaded, at all times. 2. Never point the muzzle at anything you are not willing to destroy. Always keep your gun pointed in the safest possible direction. And remember, safe directions can and will change. 3. Keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to shoot. Unless actively engaging a confirmed target, the trigger finger should rest high along the frame of the firearm, with the finger completely outside of the trigger guard. 4. Be aware of your target and what's beyond it. Never engage a target without understanding who or what may be present beyond what you can readily see.


To enhance firearm handling skills, both training and practice are required - NO EXCEPTIONS! Training involves the guided learning of a skill or behavior. Formal training courses, at least twice per year, are highly recommended for shooters at all levels. This ensures your skills are continuously sharpened and that you are considering knowledge as it is raised within the 2A community. Practice is the application of those learned skills and behaviors. If you don't use it, you will lose it! NO PAIN, NO GAIN Often, when I discuss firearms with other gun owners, I hear about all the reasons they SHOULD NOT engage in training. After all, we Americans are guaranteed a right to bear arms. Many feel that pointing and shooting are all that should be required. The reality, however, is that there's so much more to owning a firearm than simply shooting it. Surely, if we can sacrifice a little time and money for our health, our careers, or our homes, we can do the same for our own safety and that of our loved ones.

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