Training helps gun users think through scenarios

An editorial from The Register-Herald

BECKLEY, W.Va. — Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin’s veto of a measure to overhaul West Virginia gun laws was the responsible course of action on an issue that creates passion among state residents no matter what their political leanings.

We say that not because we are anti-gun, but because carrying a gun also brings with it tremendous responsibilities on the part of the carrier.

 We were happy that the Legislature reworked the measure to raise the age at which one could legally carry a concealed weapon from 18 to 21.

We weren’t particularly pleased that the revised version of the bill also eliminated the training component that’s required now in the concealed carry permitting process.

That training component is, we think, an essential part of not just using a weapon properly, but knowing when and under what circumstances it is legal to use deadly force against a threat.

This training isn’t for the benefit of criminals. It is for the benefit of the law-abiding gun owner who decides to carry a weapon.

The legal use of deadly force contains gray areas about what is permissible and what may not be. Unfortunately, once a gun is used in self-defense, what at the time seemed clear-cut may well be seen in those shades of gray in the aftermath of the shooting…


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