Future Darwin Award winner?

Unfortunately I cannot embed the video, but go watch this video. If the video disappears (updated: it did. Here’s a YouTube link), it’s a video of a shooting drill in a handgun class. Large number of students up at the line, about 3 yards from targets. Instructor is actually up in line with the targets, kneeling down facing the students. Instructor has a camera and wants to shoot the students shooting at him! He gives the command to fire 5 rounds, all the students kneel and begin to fire… again, the instructor is downrange and the bullets are flying in his basic direction. The one student he is shooting with his camera doesn’t fire at first, I assume so the instructor can get a few pictures taken. Instructor then tells the student to start shooting (the instructor is kneeling immediately next to the target being shot at), more pictures taken, then before the student finishes shooting the student has a malfunction. I’m to understand sometimes this instructor has students load dummy rounds to practice malfunctions, so hard to say if this was a real malfunction or not but I suspect dummy rounds (you’ll note others in the video have malfunctions too). Nevertheless, the instructor drops his camera down and instructs the student on how to clear the malfunction and continue, again all done with the instructor downrange. Video ends.

The instructor appears to be James Yeager of Tactical Response. Even with all that training and résumé, he still violates the rules, has his students violate the rules. I’d love to hear his explanation for this one.

Yeah yeah, technically it’s OK because bullets only fly in straight lines and so long as you’re “off the X” and you trust all these students will fire directly in front of them well yeah… strictly speaking you won’t get hit. That doesn’t mean this isn’t stupid and doesn’t violate every damn safety rule. These are students. Note the one that turns around in “Full Sabrina” with his finger on the trigger. No doubt as well that the instructor got muzzle flashed during the one student’s clearing of the malfunction.

The instructor is either really trusting, really crazy, really stupid, or a combination. To me this comes across as irresponsible and reckless. But hey, if he’s been doing it for years and there are people that wish to train that way, I guess so be it. Not for me.

Updated: Ry weighs in.  Robb Allen too.

Updated: ToddG as well. I’m still waiting for someone to say “Wow, what a great idea!” and certainly curious what the justification for such behavior is. And all those people that come out of the class…. what do they think about that behavior?

Updated again: This video of course has been making the rounds and has been subject of much discussion. It has been confirmed by Yeager himself that this is video of one of his classes, but the guy taking pictures is “Jay” not Yeager.

My main beef here is, at least from what you can tell in the video, this is not a class of advanced students. If the one shooter has to be told by Jay how to clear a malfunction, this is certainly a beginner/intermediate-level class.

Furthermore, shit happens. Maybe the students are well and good enough and the “pucker factor” of a person downrange makes sure you keep all your rounds on target. But people screw up, shit happens, and while maybe you haven’t gotten shot yet all it takes is once. If we do all this training so we can preserve our lives, why willingly put yourself in such a potentially terminal situation? What end does this serve? It doesn’t make a lot of sense. But I guess it just means I’m not “man” enough or “warrior” enough to train with Yeager. Fair enough.

He’s gotten his 15 minutes and mountains of free P.R.. We don’t need to give him any more.

5 thoughts on “Future Darwin Award winner?

  1. *makes a note to never, ever take a firearm-related course from that moron*

    They say there is no such thing as bad publicity, but there certainly is scary publicity.

    • Actually there could be a training purpose. Since this is the topic of much discussion the past couple days, one person put it to me there’s a “pucker factor” involved. With cardboard targets you might be a little lax, but knowing there’s real consequences and thus you must have solid aim and focus on that front sight and so on well… so yeah, I could see the training situation. But I think it’s minor and honestly doesn’t accomplish much… cost vs. benefit, IMHO, doesn’t justify.

      Maybe at some sort of higher levels of need, e.g. SWAT or military, I could see drills involving live folks downrange and/or in close proximity. But in a class like this, especially when it’s evident these folks are basically beginners (the need to instruct the guy on malfunction clearing is evidence of that), I don’t see it as wise or necessary. And it’s not like he’s downrange really to involve the pucker factor, at least given how the video plays out; seems he’s just taking some action photos. Well…. there doesn’t seem to be any point to this other than stunt and stupidity.

  2. I took a handgun safety course once. It was conducted by a NRA certified instructor. During his class instruction we were sitting on benches.
    During the instruction I raised my hand to ask a question.
    He said, “Yes?”
    I asked, “Do you not like me?”
    He responded, “What? Why do you ask?”
    I said, “I asked because you keep pointing that gun at me.”
    What do you think he said?
    WHAT ELSE????
    I said, “That’s what they all say just after someone has been shot. I want my money back because I’m leaving.”

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