I still thumb through the slicks because they are one of the first conduits of info for the new gun owner. Let’s face it, most newbies don’t start their shooting “career” by attending a $1000, four or five day class at a top-notch shooting school. If they’re anything like every gun owner I’ve ever met, these folks are just testing the waters to see what’s out there. A few dollars invested at a newsstand on a magazine that catches their eye is a cheap and safe way to start.

Most gun owners have at least two things in common:

  1. They all have purchased guns (of course!)
  2. They all have read through various gun/hunting magazines at least on occasion.

If we can consistently get a better class of info in these common sources of info, at the points of purchase and at the newsstands, we can get a better class of marksman.

We need a better way to pass along good, proven information. Too many self-important Unconsciously Incompetent hucksters float around the gun scene. That’s why I’m big on organized shooting and befuddled as to why so many gun owners seem opposed to it. Of course, it is difficult to maintain a delusion of competence if you allow someone to observe and/or score your attempt.

If you want to pass on the idea that shooting and hunting is good, you need to give people an opportunity to see for themselves. Not just gun owners, ALL people.

“Take a kid hunting.” Good idea. What if it were spring or summer? If someone approached me interested in deer hunting, I’d have to tell them to wait until late November. But I can take them to a HunterShooter event this weekend, or just go to the range and shoot some Scenarios today.

And what about non-gun owners? Some people just aren’t interested in shooting, just like I’m not interested in golf.

How can we demonstrate that shooting is worthy activity pursued by skilled practitioners, and eliminate the “Bubba” image? Ask Bill France, who took a bunch of redneck moonshiners with fast cars and organized races for them. We call it NASCAR today.