I'm proud that when someone mentions a passion for firearms or firearms related issues, some folks ask me for my opinion. I am in no wise an expert on anything, but I am a virtual cornucopia of sometimes useful information. Here are answers that I give folks if they ask me one of these firearm related questions.

#1.  Do I need a Handgun License to buy firearm?

If you watch the Mainstream Media, they probably have you convinced that you do. The good news is that this is still the United States of America, and you do not need a license or prove to anyone a need to purchase a firearm. That being said, it is THE MOST REGULATED 'RIGHT' we have. You do have to meet specific requirements to purchase a firearm. As long as you are a legal US Citizen, mentally competent, of age and not a felon and you meet other specific criteria and pass a background check, you can purchase a firearm.

#2.  I'm thinking about getting my Concealed Carry License, what gun should I get?

Congratulations on making a wise decision to carry concealed. I'll answer this question in two parts. First, when taking your CHL course, use a service model sized pistol. This may or may not be the gun you end up carrying daily, but your hands won't ache so much after the course and the recoil will be easier to deal with. On the flip side, don't bring your dad's .44 Magnum. Your hands, ears and classmates will thank you. If you are (and you should) qualify with a semi-automatic pistol, preferably one with a magazine count of 10 or more. Most .45 1911 style pistols only carry 7-8 rounds, so bring several (MORE THAN 2) magazines with you. Second, go to the range with someone who knows a little about firearms and has carried for a couple of years. Try out as many as you can, finding the balance between carry-ability and knockdown potential. A good range is between a .380 and a .45....I personally find that new shooters dislike the .40 because it's a little snappy. Don't hate, that's just what I've learned. After finding the gun that meets the balance of all that criteria...you should still have a few models that are about equal in performance. Your final decision might be based on esthetics. To summarize, get good training and you'll know what kind of gun to purchase.

#3  Where can I go to shoot my new gun or the one I'm thinking of purchasing?

Up until recently your choices on where you would be able to target shoot or plink were limited. There were a couple of outdoor ranges in Midland/Odessa and the occasional caliche' pit on private land but if you wanted something that would be accessible and where you could (legally) shoot just about anytime in any type of weather, your choices were almost nil. That was up until about a month ago when the new Family Armory and Indoor Gun Range opened, a mile or so north of Highway 191 on 1788. When you get close from those directions, look right and you'll see a big Texas flag blowing in the wind; that's where you're heading. There, you can shoot in the comfort of a clean, climate controlled environment.

Fun day at Family Armory and Gun Range in Midland today!

Posted by Spencer Bennett on Tuesday, November 17, 2015


#4  How old should my child be before I consider teaching them about guns?

Start at birth! But seriously, if you own a firearm, you should begin as soon as possible. Here are some guidelines offered by the NRA. Always make sure that your firearm(s) is secured away from children. Being a former child and knowing how they operate, your child will be able to get into ANYTHING. That's why it's important to have a secure gun safe to secure your firearm. There is nothing more tragic than losing a child to an unsecured firearm. There are a number of options out there including biometric safes that keep your gun secure and yet give you quick access if the need arises. The NRA has put together a great gun safety program to educate children about firearms, you can access it here.

#5  Why should carry a gun every day?

This is a question that should be obvious but still, many folks won't carry everyday. They say the gun is '...too heavy', 'it's uncomfortable' or 'I have to dress differently if I carry'. The sayings go, 'A gun is not always comfortable, it is comforting.' and ' You don't dress the gun to you, you dress around the gun.' There is one more saying that I want to share with you: 'It's better to have a gun and not need one, than to need one and not have it.'

Finally I leave you with 'The 4 Rules':

The Four Rules
  • All guns are always loaded. (Treat them so!)
  • Never point the gun at anything you are not willing to destroy.
  • Keep your finger off the trigger until your sights are on target (and you have made the decision to shoot).
  • Be sure of your target and what is beyond it.