The myth of the uniform: Training smart!

There are millions of former soldiers and cops  who never fired a shot in anger or outside training. However, thanks to the proliferation of the hero myth in regards to these individuals and their proclivity for tall tales, one shot one kill or the kill shot has become standard verbal fare on most ranges today. Contrary to popular myth, a uniform does not a better shot or tactically proficient person make. Rather, the American hunter who provides their families with game regularly should be approached when looking for training in certain areas. IMG_00000137_edit_edit

The American hunter and the honest soldier or cop will tell you that a bleeding out and struggling to live creature is the norm. In fact, it is the American hunter who can teach you how to track that creature should the shot made not terminate their lives within a few seconds.

No one knows the environment you live in now better then the American hunter who lives and hunts in it regularly. They will know where the water is, where the game trails are and more importantly will be able to show you which camouflages and tracking approaches work best. Now, it is necessary to understand that not all hunters are capable, some are of the four wheeling, tracker hiring, dog using variety. Not of course that this is necessarily a bad thing, just that when desiring training in tracking, stalking and successful hunting techniques it is the hunter who avoids the modern accoutrements and uses the older forgotten ways that will be the greater asset. In many cases the bow hunter or black powder medium to large game hunter may be your best asset for training.

These are men and women who value integrity and the land they live and hunt on. They are more beneficial for the environment than any number of Greenpeace advocates and will help to keep a larder full when the shelves are empty at the local supermarkets. I was taught by the old brigade of hunters. My father had and still has a disdain for electronics, glass and more. I had to make shots using iron sights and learned early on in life to track a faint animal trail over rocky ground as we live in the high desert of Arizona. I became quite proficient and eventually word got out with neighbouring ranchers who would pay the boys in my family to rid their property of feral dogs and cats, which, are quite difficult to hunt and dangerous when packed up. We were taught that every round must have an end result, and as a result became quite adept at hitting targets whether running, walking and at all angles that exist. IMG_00005435_edit

This article is meant to help others who may be under the mistaken impression that a uniform makes one a better fighter. I would remind all of those reading that throughout history it has been farmers and regular family men that have historically been the hardest to defeat or in some cases provided the win when attacked using standard military protocols. Remember that you are only as good as your instructors and teachers and while some individuals are capable of improving without others assistance, in most cases it is necessary to have feedback from others. I have improved greatly over the past decade and done so as a result of the Pistolero who graciously took me under his proverbial wing and assisted me in correcting numerous faults. The result is better accuracy, thinking and above all a more confident ability to succeed regardless the odds stacked against me. I will be contracting this individuals assistance in the further education of my daughter and possibly even son should he so desire.

Proper grip, all fingers under trigger guard wrapped firmly around strong hand.

Proper grip, all fingers under trigger guard wrapped firmly around strong hand.

Remember training is essential, however, more essential is the quality of training. No amount of degree’s, certificates or photographs with famous people can make a person better. Hard work, constant regular practice and invaluable educated feedback is what will do the best for those who desire to better themselves. While I offer this to others, I would also recommend you go to local shooting ranges and get to know the men who dont talk. Not the walking show boats and car show gun owners. You know those guys who have all the latest gadgets. No, ask the range masters in charge when the least popular day is at the range, attend it than and watch those individuals who are placing each shot with purpose. If you ask for help or they offer it, accept it gratefully and dont be to proud to admit you may in fact be doing it wrong.

Remember above all that a uniform does not make a better person, in most cases it does the opposite. If you would like to set up a group training event with myself or others in my network, let me know directly. Liberty Practical Training is meant to help others, not hurt them.

Free the mind and the body will follow.


About Jesse Mathewson

Jesse Mathewson is the author of the popular blog, and provides commentary to many varied places based on a background that includes education in criminal justice, history, religion and even insurgency tactics and tactical training. His current role in his community is as an organizer of sorts and a preacher of community solidarity and agorism. He also runs Liberty Practical Training, a self defense school specializing in the practical applications of defensive approaches versus the theoretical. As an agorist, voluntaryist and atheist his life is seen as crazy and wild by many, though once they get to know him most realize he is a bluntly honest individual who will give you the shirt off his back if he believes it is necessary to help you. Very simple, "That which is voluntary between all individuals involved is always right, if it is not voluntary, it is always wrong."
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5 Responses to The myth of the uniform: Training smart!

  1. While not mutually exclusive, I can agree for sure about military training.

    This is much like college or other things, it’s highly dependant not only on the situation, individuals, and the like, but also the individual making the best out of what they are getting. That said, I know a couple of motivated uniformed individuals that do a lot outside of their normal “work” to be well trained and ready. But for the standard uniformed person who simply goes through the motions, they will nowhere near equate to the types of training Jesse’s emphasizing.

    I worked range control for a year of my time in the military, and I’m amazed that so many people that are supposed to be one of the best military organizations in the world sucked so horribly. And that’s in a non-stress environment. Worst to this day was a full Battalion I watched have a 75% fail rate on the rifle range. And that’s with the ease of popup targets, and 26 out of 40 required to pass. Not hard at all with the targets at 50, 100, 150, 200, and 300 meters… not really difficult.

    I’ve had many discussions with law enforcement individuals who echo that same situation, it takes an individual’s desire to do better. But to be honest, the civilian shooters i’ve met are far more impressive in their training and skills.


  2. “Remember above all that a uniform does not make a better person, in most cases it does the opposite.”

    Ouch! From someone who learned loads from a long military service, then carried all that training, discipline, and weapon craft forward into the mess called civilian world shooting, THAT HURTS!

    I’ve been in all sorts of active theaters, on ranges, and hunts and it never fails to amaze me the number of wanna-be Rambo lookalikes with their Gucci-cam and bolt on goodies, who’s field craft, weapon handling, and marksmanship is a disaster on two legs!

    Heck the few times I’ve taken fire was because of a couple of PC’s who turned out to be ex-militia from the US of A and a couple of deer hunters from the same who shot at movement without positively identifying a target!

    It’s true SOME hunters and professional oath takers are skilled proponents of weapons craft but a large majority of the trigger brigade are a danger to themselves let alone others.
    Personally I’d rather shoot alongside someone with mil training if only because I feel safer!


  3. Anonymous says:

    Wise words my friend.


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