Is "Just OK" OK?
Do you remember the TV commercials satirically depicting individuals being told something was “OK” and this ranged from sushi to medical treatment. They were quite funny but got me thinking – many people who carry a concealed weapon or practice some type of self-defense (Krav Maga, karate, etc.) ‘feel’ they are prepared for the ultimate test. But, when tested in any fashion be it qualification, time restraints, force-on-force, they find out they are not who they think they are.
I have had many conversations with CWL (Concealed Weapons License) holders, and the large majority have never had any formal training. When questioned about that, they usually say something like, “I shoot OK” or, “I’ll be OK when the time comes.” Hmmmm …. I have my doubts. First, shooting a gun is not difficult – pick it up and pull the trigger. It’s all the other ‘stuff’ that gets in the way for many. Second, as Larry Vickers has said, “In a real situation, you’ll only be as good as your worst day on the range. You’re not going to get better in the middle of a gunfight.” I have to agree.
In the last five years I have had five major surgeries. Each time, I sought out the best I could find (i.e., specialists). I spoke to other professionals and patients, and I questioned the doctor at length about what they planned to do, what the recovery time would be, etc. Only when I was 100% confident did things proceed. I did all I could to make sure things would turn out well. I was not going to settle for ‘Just OK’. To date, all is well.
Would you settle for ‘Just OK’ if someone was working on the brakes of your car? “Sure, they’re OK. They should stop you.” I think not. I see people all the time send food back at restaurants. Apparently ‘Just OK’ was not good enough for them. There are dozens of other examples.
So why are so many people satisfied with ‘Just OK’ when it comes to proficiency with their firearms? I’d think they would want to be as proficient as possible regarding the use of a potentially deadly weapon in defense of their life or the lives of their family.
Some may read this and come up with a dozen reasons why they don’t train and/or practice. I’ll go out on a limb here and say, none of them are valid. Everyone can come up with some reason they can’t go to the range or do ten minutes of dry-fire practice. You have to commit a bit of time and energy toward your own well-being.
Shooting a firearm is a perishable skill and needs to be maintained on a regular basis. You don’t have to spend hours on the range and hundreds of dollars on ammunition. But you do have to seek out good training and then develop good practice regimens and try to always improve.
Being ‘Just OK’ may be fine if your newspaper is delivered late but it’s not ‘OK’ if your life may depend on lifesaving skills.
Be Safe · Be Effective · Be Ready