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Fire at will:

Federal law unconstitutionally bans the sale of handguns to adults less than 21 years of age.

Yet this 22-year-old hero, Elisjsha “Eli” Dicken, was alone able to take out a mall attacker armed with a rifle, who had already killed three and injured two.

Reports are that Eli began shooting 15 seconds after the killer began opening fire, that Eli fired ten shots from a distance at least initially of 40 yards (some reports indicate he closed distance as he fired, which is even more impressive), and that eight of the ten shots hit the attacker. Truly awesome shooting by a 22-year-old under stress of live gunfire, at what is considered long range for a handgun. Add that he directed others to safety, this is one level-headed young man and I doubt I would have performed as well even with my decades of training and instructor experience.

Handgun trumps rifle? Yes, with training. Training that goes beyond statutory requirements. One report says that this 22-year-old had no police or military training, was trained by his grandfather, and did not even have a concealed carry permit so he probably had no statutory training, either. He was simply exercising his right to carry under Constitutional Carry in his state of Indiana. Statutory training is not the gold standard of training, and at times it is little more than indoctrination against drawing. So maybe missing that class was a good thing here. Whatever training he had, did the job.

The 376 law enforcement officers who for over an hour waited outside the classroom in Uvalde, TX, where 19 students and two teachers were killed by an 18-year-old shooter, apparently lacked the requisite training.

We are a very patient society when it comes to children getting murdered.

You could say Eli Dicken is a one-man argument against statutory training requirements. What we need is gun culture and legacy of firearm training.

Oh, and the day after Uvalde a woman used the pistol in her purse to stop an attacker with an AR-15 from shooting up a high school graduation party. Again, handgun trumps rifle. The handgun is there at the right time and place, in the hands of someone trained. Cops are almost always too late to save life, and at times can be useless when they arrive.

For links to news reports on this incident and others like it, click here for my full list of mass shootings stopped by armed citizens.

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