Numbers Matter. Opinions Dont.

“Men lie. Women Lie. Numbers Don’t”

-Jay Z.

Even if you despise hip-hop & rap music, the above line by JayZ is no less true.

Its a relevant topic, because in human socializing there’s a common tendency to BS and exaggerate. Whether we’re talking about rap lyrics, the size of a truck engine, or the latest quarter’s earnings by an ethically challenged company cooking its financial statements, there’s the temptation to decieve and exaggerate for one’s own benefit or to appear like a “boss” in front of a crowd.

The gun world isn’t exempt from this social more, sadly.

My goal in using practical analytics to improve my shooting isn’t strictly to help GardoneVT hit the target faster and more accurately. Its hopefully to chart a better way for folks across the country to improve besides bringing a box of ammo to a range and winging it.

Lets take it back to Colonel Jeff Cooper. If you don’t know who that is, please ask Google and come back. No gun owner should be ignorant of his name and contributions.

Why? Because before Col. Jeff Cooper, there wasn’t a civilian accessible training industry to speak of. Sure there was the FBI and various government shooting academies, but they were public agent accessible only and , being institutions, were not free of internal bias and politics. In short-Jeff Cooper broke open the knowledge logjam and made advanced firearm skill acessible to the Ordinary Joe.

Sadly, there’s no shortage of unsafe and bogus charlatains out there huslting lies instead of teaching people viable firearms methods and techniques. Stopping that is practically impossible-unlike other industries with regulatory bodies , there’s an active subset of the US government which seeks to end gun ownership in this country. That political bloc will have no qualms using a Firearms Instructors Oversight Agency as a fulcrum to ban nationwide gun instruction by attrition.

So, the practical counter to avoiding the hucksters is individual, measured improvement. This is not to say that proper outside instruction isn’t necessary-in fact its critical for outside oversight to ensure errors are not being perpetuated which the shooter doesn’t know they’re doing. But that outside instruction must also be balanced with internal measurement and calculation of one’s own performance with one’s own gear on one’s own resources.

Because in the field, thats exactly what all of us will have to rely on in the Terrible Moment-our own performance, and at whatever level it really is. For the sake of our own safety and that of our families, we should work to ensure our performance is charted and evaluated as accurately as possible.

That means using numbers. Because when the flag flies, marketing copy and bro-manship ego won’t save you.