Saturday, March 16, 2013

The other day at the range I saw something very much out of place.

 Frankly it frightened me a bit.

I went to the range to shoot groups as I am in the process of working up a good load for an upcoming match.

There I saw two women which, while not unherad of, isn't too common. Generally women gravitate to the pistol range as the club does give self-defense courses from time to time and seeing a woman practicing with a pistol raises no eyebrows.

Both of these women had AR 15s, one in the typical service rifle configuration and the other was in a carbine configuration.

Both women were on their feet practicing offhand shooting.

What was odd about this pair is that they were a pair of soccer moms, complete with a nearby mini van parked alongside.

One was a soap and water woman and the other had makeup and manicured and polished nails. The latter one had the carbine.

I set up and fired my groups and then we all went down to check our targets. Of course, they marveled at my groups which in reality sucked. Time to try another load.

But I pointed out that they were shooting offhand and I was on my belly resting my rifle on a seabag.

We chatted as I wandered over with them to check their targets out. Like most shooters they were not happy. Ain't a single shooter out there that's happy unless they get a 100-10X score, so it was par golf.

I ventured into why they were shooting and the soap and water woman said she was practicing for a match and that her neighbor was learning to shoot for self-defense purposes.

The made up woman let her mouth run away with her and mentioned that between their houses they had a pretty good setup for interlocking fields of fire and that set off a red flag instantly but I didn't let it show.

Soccer moms generally don't talk that way. They are generally interested in the garden club, school activities or things of that nature. Interlocking fields of fire is generally not a part of their vocabulary.

I've not shot a match at the club in a while and wasn't surprised to see a few female shooters had entered the game and while Mrs Soap and Water had joined the match game, Mrs. Manicured nails had not. She was shooting for another purpose.

Mrs.Manicured seemed disappointed in her scores and I decided to give her a little encouragement. I went to the trash and fished out a shot-out target and folded it so it was about the size of my torso. We went down range and I held it over her target. About 90+% of the shots at the 100 yard mark were covered, only a few outside of the folded target.

"Well over 90% of your shots would have been disabling to a guy my size at 100 yards," I said. Then I grinned. "Keep practicing."

I went about my business and started to pack up when an expensive looking car drove up and a man got out of it and walked up to Mrs.Manicured nails. "You two going to teach me how to shoot?" he asked.

He picked up the carbine and it was obvious he didn't know how to use it, but at least he was safe. He kept the muzzle downrange. He also told his wife that UPS had dropped off another two cases of ammunition.

That opened my eyes. I think he just bought the carbine on recommendation. He was clearly not a shooter.

Mrs.Soap and Water tool charge instantly and started a safety briefing. I figured everything was under control and everything was going to be OK so I packed up and as I was leaving I saw that the guy was paying attention. It was clearly his first firearm.

To me this scene just ain't right. I could see it if it was a woman taking a pistol class or a guy that wanted to take up hunting but this was like a latter day Ward and June Cleaver.

They should have been home with Wally and the Beav or over at Fred Rutherford's house. They just didn't seem the type to be at a rifle range learning how to shoot an AR 15.

While I like to see people enter the shooting sports these two are for reasons I would not have thought of even six months ago.

I was kind of shaken when the woman had mentioned interlocking fields of fire. That's GI stuff, and as a former GI I understood but I was floored a civillian scooer mom would be interested in the concept.

Even among longtime shooters the subject of infantry tactics never really came up unless some veteran was telling a war story. Yet here was a soccer mom seemed to be studying up on tactics that were once the realm of the Army and the Marine Corps.

Then it occurred to me that people like that are the reason there isn't any ammo out there for the regular shooters. These are simply two of the many people that are first time gun owners.

These are actually people that used to laugh at the preppers. They thought they were nuts but these are people that are arming themselves for trouble ahead.

The ranges never used to see people like that before. They were the domain of hunters sighting in their rifles, target and match shooters like myself and the experimenters that were trying out different handloads.

While these are the first people like that I have met. On the way out I met the groundskeeper and we chatted. I brought up what I had just seen and he told me that they were only two of quite a few that he had seen learning to shoot military rifles.

He also told me that the club is running self-defense courses every single weekend. They used to run one every six months. He said the questions they seemed to be asking were not the usual questions about street crime. The questions were closer to being infantry tactics. Even the instructors are worried because they have never had to deal with that before.

Most non shooters don't see this, but I do as I am part of the firearms world. Things are going nuts when soccer couples are arming themselves like that.

All I can say is that there are a lot of people out there that are expecting trouble. It doesn't feel very good.

I've said it before, it looks like people are arming themselves for a civil war.

When you see that DHS has just ordered 7000 rifles, over a billion rounds of ammunition and is getting over 2100 vehicles designed for urban assault you stop wondering whypeople are going this route.

To find out why the blog is pink just cut and paste this:


  1. I fail to see what is so frightening.

  2. pic see's it as a warning of things to come. it isn't a bad thing these people are shooting bt when people like that are talking about things like fire fields and infantry tactocs it has moved beyond milita scare stories to a credible threat to our way of life from the government.

  3. I continually hear the author's surprise and his expectations that "woman don't talk that way," or "things are going nuts when soccer moms are arming themselves." But the author makes a great leap to say that people are arming themselves for civil war. Maybe, (and/or) the moms are trying to learn how to defend themselves with the most effective weapons? maybe the current political climate is creating, or waking up, a class of new shooters and we should celebrate that. Not necessarily draw such a negative conclusion. And by the way, I am an ex army officer and I seen more than a few "soccer" moms shoot.

  4. Former NCO here. I have seen many women over the years take self-defense courses and the general reasoning I have heard for this has been 'refusal to be a victim of street crime' or 'what if someone breaks in'.

    The entire context of what I saw was a lot different than that. Talks with the groundskeeper and a few others have told me that the entire attitude out there has changed and people are unsure of the future.

    Civil war? Maybe. Economic collapse? Another possibility. I have come to the conclusion that a lot of people are arming themselves because they are unsure of the future and preparing for the worst.

    All I can say is that there is something in the air.

    1. I agree. If I talk with fellow folk who've been in the army, or with other folk on the force and we end up technobabbling, sure, such terms fly around. It happens.

      You're right with saying that a soccer mom doesn't talk like that. If my mother would suddenly talk about it, or one of my female friends would talk like that... uh... Yeah... that would weird me out. I have to think about such things when on duty, but my mother or friends? It would be very strange, to put it mildly.

      This isn't just happening in the US, it's also happening here. Permits for guns have more than doubled since the 90s in my country and the trend keeps going. More and more people are arming themselves and we're close to 30% of our population owning legal firearms, many for self defense. Those permits especially have exploded in numbers and the number of self defense cases has also gone up.

      There's a certain scent in the air. Just listening to how people talk about certain things tells a lot. Just listening to my dad is interesting. He's about your age Pic and the way he talks now about, for example, criminals, is just not the way he would have talked 20 years ago. There's a shift in the wind and I don't think I like the smell of it.

  5. Embrace new shooters as they are the ones who will vote on the right side. Seeing they were being safe at the range is a very good thing so nothing to get your panties in a wad over. Seeing those two with good weapons and practicing would have given me a slight tingle of hope.
    I do agree that something is in the air and I would much rather have safe neighborhoods with fields of fire well protected than not. If you run into them again invite them over for a beer with you and the wife/GF and get to know them a bit.