My definition of a good gun owner is anyone capable of keeping and bearing arms without causing vandalism, undue injury, or other misconduct.

If the goal is to produce a pile of brass and a smile, and the gun owner can keep everything downrange and in the berm or similar safe and appropriate backstop while doing so, have at it! No need to keep score or record elapsed time. Hell, don’t even bother with a target of any kind. Shoot all your ammo straight into the dirt and enjoy making the gun go bang. You’re a good gun owner in my book.

An example. While at Camp Shelby I met a number of the local members of the Moss Branch range, all nice people. One member owned a MG34 and had built a custom mount for it that allowed him to shoot his legally-owned machine gun right out the back of his minivan. Intrigued by this, I politely asked him where the T&E (Traverse and Elevation) mechanism was. He openly admitted not knowing what such a thing was. Upon closer examination I saw the mount had no provision to move the gun in any direction.

His range session consisted of backing the minivan up and roughly pointing the rear bumper at the berm. The mount attached to a trailer hitch and buckets for spent brass and links where positioned to catch the empties. After mounting the gun and confirming it was pointed safely somewhere inside the berm, this proud gun owner gleefully expended whatever ammo he brought for the day’s session, always following range safety and cease fire rules, being careful to change barrels on occasion and not shoot too much as to overheat the gun. Onlookers were welcome to wail a few bursts into the berm if they liked. Use of a target was never considered. After the ammo was gone and the barrels cooled, the gun and mount were carefully stored and the spent brass and links gathered up in buckets to load for the next session. With the ammo gone and the friendly chatting done, he would be on his way home.

This is an example of a good gun owner. He kept his firearms safely, caused no vandalism, undue injury to anyone, and no misconduct. He was even a nice gentleman to boot.

Of course, being a good gun owner doesn’t make one a skilled gun owner… Needless to say, I never consulted with him about machine gun gunnery or other training concerns. But these things didn’t interest him and he should be free to enjoy his equipment how he sees fit.

Here are examples of gun owners that are not good:

Benning sign
Traffic sign shot at on Fort Benning. Yes, that is an airfield behind that sign and downrange from that terrible group.

Safety Sign
A sign with safety rules that was obviously ignored. This sign was up range and well behind the firing line, so the slobs shooting it were firing toward the range's parking area.

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Stop shooting my signs.

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Vandalism obviously done by a gun owner can't be blamed on "anti-gun media." Sadly, sometimes gun owners and hunters are their own worst enemy. Obviously, this was by someone that is not a good gun owner.

Stop shooting road signs!

Teenager Accidentally Kills Marine After Shooting at Road Sign