Screen Shot 2016-05-16 at 11.22.26 AMAn acquaintance is a firearms instructor and holds classes for those who want to get a permit to carry a concealed weapon. Attending one of these is a requirement in Missouri although it sounds like that might change. The state legislature passed a bill making such training unnecessary. Or so I’ve been told.

I don’t own a sidearm and have no interest in carrying one, concealed or otherwise, but I attended the morning session of one of these yesterday. We saw two hour-long videos by a self-defense attorney in Kansas City. The first hour explained the Missouri statute on concealed carry, and the second hour was about self defense laws in general and Missouri’s “castle defense” in particular. The attorney did an excellent job of making some complex shit mostly understandable.

Frankly, I was amazed that anyone would still want to carry a gun after watching the videos. I came away convinced that most people are far more likely to spend time in jail for misusing a firearm than successfully defending their home or person. But that’s just an opinion.

The afternoon session (I didn’t stay) was spent on the firing range. If I understood correctly, to get a permit you had to be able to put X number of shots into a target from a certain range. Most folks succeed I think.

Couple of takeaways. One, in Cole County, Missouri (where I live) the local sheriff processes 17 applications a day for concealed carry permits. Some of those are renewals but if only half are new permits that’s what… 2,000 a year? My other takeaway came when during the morning break when about 15 of the 20 people in attendance stepped outside to suck down a couple of cigarettes. Since most of these folks were getting permits to carry a gun so they could protect themselves, I found it strange they were not fearful of lung cancer.

All and all, it was an interesting morning and I came away with a slightly better understanding of the concealed carry mindset.