Sept 11 Update
We just passed the 13th anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks. Watching footage replays of what happened that day always forces the question: “Are we any more prepared today then we were then?” This is a question each of us needs to answer for ourselves before we can answer as a community or a nation. For me, the answer is unequivocally “Yes”. Yes, I am better prepared now than I have ever been before. The next question is “Am I prepared enough?” This is a much tougher one to answer. Against what I feel are the most likely threats to my life, happiness and wellbeing and of my family, I am well prepared. Street violence, a home invasion, localized disruption of services or a short period of civil unrest I can mitigate pretty effectively. If the calamity is more widespread or last an extended period of time, I know I am not prepared enough. When I perform a threat and security assessment on myself I give myself a solid C+. Maybe even a B-. How about you? You have done at least a very quick and informal assessment of the most likely hazards in your life, haven’t you? Hopefully you are not the kind of person who blindly strolls through life thinking that bad things never happen, or if they do, they only happen to other people. On September 11, 2001 there were many people who woke that day thinking along similar lines. For some of them, it was the last morning they would have. Please honor their memory by committing to yourself and your family that if trouble does find you, you will have done all you can to prepare for it.
Obtaining a license to carry a concealed firearm is certainly one step to becoming more prepared. But without the correct mindset and the training on how to respond and use the firearm, the license is no advantage. It can even be a severe liability. Depending on where you went to receive the training required to obtain the license, the instructor may or may not have stressed the importance of mindset and continued training. If they did not, then they did you a huge disservice and you need a better education. In the interest of providing for the critical continuing training, development and practice, we have started to create the Absolute Protection Solutions Academy. My vision for the Academy is that of a firearms higher education institution and community of practice. By asking APS Alumni and other industry professionals to help shape all aspects of the Academy including the courses, drills, facilities and events we will create a venue where anyone truly committed to the mastery of personal protection can begin or further their quest while also helping others achieve the same. Utilizing the best practices of multiple industries combined with the life experience of our membership, we will be able to offer practical and relevant training that is constantly evolving.
The first course we are offering thought the Academy is “Living Armed”. This course is geared toward those who already have a Concealed Carry license or permit, but it is not required. We will begin with review the importance of mindset and awareness. Next we will discuss how to evaluate which tools are the best for us, and their utilization. The fundamentals of shooting cannot be over emphasized, and a significant amount of time will be spent practicing. Once everyone is comfortable with their basic drills, we will follow the crawl-walk-run progression to intermediate and then advanced drills. This lays the foundation, and from here we can look further into actually “living armed”. We will discuss and review how we integrate carrying a firearm into our daily lives. At home, away from the house, while at work or while recreating, this is where class participation will shape the course as it develops. Armed companions are a huge benefit only if we know how to safely work together. You certainly do not want to get shot by your spouse or buddy during a situation because you haven’t practiced how to respond to a threat without compromising each other. The course will finish up with some thoughts and strategies on the social aspects of “living armed”. What do we say to friends and family when they ask us about it? How can we all do our part to further the acceptance and education of others regarding firearms? Again, the best answers will come from class participants and all of their varied experience.
While offering set courses, such as “Living Armed”, we will also be offering regularly scheduled practice sessions that will address the four critical areas of dry fire, basic fundamentals, speed and accuracy, and virtual simulations or other Reality Based Training including F.A.T.S. simulator sessions.
Also, we are actively looking for somewhere to grow our outdoor shooting facilities. If anyone knows anywhere that might be a suitable location to conduct outdoor live-fire exercises I would really appreciate the information. Whether we need to rent, lease or purchase something I am looking for either something that already has an adequate backstop or berm to shoot into, or enough area to push dirt up to make one. Please contact me with any leads. I have also revamped the “Schedule” page on the APS website. Rather than having to update class information in three different systems, I am only changing class dates in the SkeeDazz scheduling system. From any course description on the web site, simply click “Scheduling System” to see a list of when those courses are being offered.
Thank you again to all of you who have been so very supportive. We are living in an uncertain and potentially dangerous time, but by leveraging our collective abilities, we will help all of us and the people we care about safer.