Aspring Wisconsin concealed carry license holders will have to take a “safety course.” The “Eat Cheese or Die” state legislature didn’t define terms. A “certified firearms instructor” must conduct the training and . . . that’s it. In theory, an enterprising instructor could create a web-based course to satisfy the requirement. How different would that be compared to sitting in a stuffy room and listening to the safety information? Or from Missouri, where license applicants will now have to shoot 50 rounds with a revolver and a semi-automatic pistol instead of 50 rounds with any handgun. Some Badger Staters are concerned that a CCW license holder could qualify for a CCW permit without ever having touched a gun. Are you?

20 Responses to Question of the Day: Is On-Line Firearms Training Good Enough?

  1. Not particularly. MD already has web-based safety courses for those wishing to purchase a restricted firearm (pistols, evil assault weapons). I honestly think that web training is better than no training, although I did enjoy walking into the sheriff’s office in my hometown in PA, dropping off a form and $30 and returning 10 days later to get a LTCF, no questions asked.

  2. I really don’t know. I took an online course for my VA CCW, but only because I had already done a huge amount of my own research on the law and CCW in general, and I’ve also been around firearms since I was a kid. I know I can shoot more than well enough to pass any basic CCW shooting test.

    I felt confident that an online course met MY needs, and it saved me a LOT of time and was about $50 cheaper.

    For most people though, I think in class might be better. Especially since some people I know who are interested in getting their CCW have never even owned a firearm before.

  3. Web training is better than nothing but the CC class I was in had two people that had trouble putting rounds on the silouhette, much less be acceptably accurate. Yes, I mean on the actual paper. I told someone afterwards that the safest place around them was directly in front of them…

    Our state requires 11 out of 20 rounds on the silouhette. I think individual CC holders should take personal responsibility in keeping their accuracy tuned by shooting often (which several CC holders do anyway as they usually have a background/love with shooting sports). People that lack ability (as I explained above), if nothing else, owe it to their fellow man to become proficient with their firearm. If they have trouble puching paper in a controlled environment, you can only guess what happens when stress is induced.

    I know these comments are generally shared by all, but the standard I set for myself is pretty high in regards to accuracy. Living in a metropolitan area, I have a higher risk (by far) than say my parents, who live in a very rural area, of employing deadly force in a public and crowded setting.

    Accuracy and staying proficient should be second nature to CC holders. If the balloon goes up, you will have more things to be working out in microseconds, and hoping that “this time” you can deliver lead where its aimed, should be a non-issue. I am selling a Ruger LCP for the only reason being I cannot achieve the level of accuracy I desire. For me (and my large hands) keeping the rounds in an acceptable group just isnt there. This being 5 yards and beyond. I love the pistol for its size and weight but I will be giving up that comfort of an easy carry for a pistol I am very accurate with, my Springfield Sub-Com XD .40. Trading off a lot more weight and comfort is a sacrifice I will just have to live with..

    • “the CC class I was in had two people that had trouble putting rounds on the silouhette, much less be acceptably accurate”

      In my class one person apparently had never shot a handgun but decided to get a subcompact in 40 S&W. That turned out to be the proverbial hand full!

  4. I guess it’ll have to be if it meets the rather ill-defined terms of the bill.

    Whatever shape or form the safety course takes, hopefully, the majority of the new firearms/CCW license holders understand that, “Owning a handgun doesn’t make you armed any more than owning a guitar makes you a musician.”

    But. As they say, you can take the horse to water but you cannot make it drink.

  5. I’m not too concerned either. It’s my understanding that accident/incident rates in states not requiring special training are no higher than in those that do.

    While I’d love for people to get and much training and education as possible, especially in the aspects of basic gun safety, I oppose it on the grounds that it’s easily abused as a hurdle imposed by bureaucrats with agendas.

    Frankly, I’m around way more people who do stupid, unsafe stuff with cars, motorcycles, bicycles, cigarettes, mouths, and bodies every day than I am around people doing stupid, unsafe stuff with guns. I can certainly worry most about the latter, much rarer case like some do, but it’s better to just not worry about any of it. Stay aware and stay safe.

  6. Training is good. You should do it wheher it’s required or not. You should retake it every couple of years. I am have signed up for a Virginia hunting class this year even though I have a license. Just need the refresher.

  7. I think most folks would be okay without state mandated training, but I’m afraid there are some really stupid people out there and so I support it.

    In SC eight hours of training are required for a CWP with six hours of classroom instruction on law and firearms handling and two hours of range time. In a class of fifteen or so applicants, one was disqualified on the range for poor marksmanship. Based on what I saw of the others that day, I trust the system we have here.

  8. I took a web-based course once, and whaddaya know, I was able to place ten rounds into center mass of my monitor on the first try. Then I had to throw out the monitor. And replaster the wall behind it. But it was worth it to know that I’m safe from monitor attacks.

  9. What about the legally blind gentleman in Minnesota who got his license? His vision isn’t good enough to drive but he still has a right to armed defense.

    I don’t think a marksmanship standard should be enforced by a state, but I still feel I have the individual responsibility to be the most accurate shooter I can be.

    • “The notion of online firearms training is absurd”

      The notion of an online medical degree is absurd. The notion of online firearms training is merely amusing. None of the “training” I was required to take for my Massachusetts CCW required my physical presence; in fact, 45 minutes of the 4-hour course involved watching a video. The rest was lecture. It all could have been done online. In fact, it should have been done online.

  10. Mandated Training has no impact on safety or use of firearms in defensive situations. Folks who claim otherwise rely on anecdotes and their feelings but none can provide statistics that show no Mandated States are worse off than Mandated Training states.

    Mandated Training is a tax on self defense and intended to make sure the “right people” can carry, ie not the poor or minorities.

    • No, it is not a tax and it has nothing to do with the poor or minorities. It is protection for the rest of us who could become collateral damage because somebody with a gun lacks basic skills.

  11. The CCW class that I attended was such a joke that I think I will take an online class just to see what I missed. One student passed our class without the ability to operate the revolver that she had been carrying loaded and loose in her purse illegaly for years. The instructor gave everyone an 80% for marksmanship regardless of actual performance.

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