"I carry my handgun in my purse."
Okay- I get it... Keeping a firearm in your purse is better than not having a firearm... Barely. And that's only if you're hyper-aware of your surroundings and very capable of retrieving your firearm from a shoulder-slung handbag under stress. The problem is that the purse is often the target. Therefore your assailant will lunge for the purse as their primary target in attempt to rob you. This basically neutralizes the advantages of concealed carry that you previously had since the entire idea is to employ a handgun that your attacker was previously unaware of. If that firearm is in your purse and your purse is being clung to by your attacker- well..... No such luck.
For instance, the tragic events where a 65 year old woman died over her purse in Covington, Georgia shows us that if her only means of defense was in her purse then she was still virtually unarmed when her attacker surprised her and went for the purse as the primary objective.
I know many women that can't retrieve their ringing cell phone from their purse before their voicemail grabs it, let alone somehow retrieve their firearm while someone is actively fighting for the very object that is containing said firearm! The people that could probably get away with purse-carry are the people who are ultra-sensitive to their surroundings, carrying their purse in such a way that it is protected by their arms and allows for retrieval of their weapon, and who have trained drawing a weapon from that purse in numerous positions of disadvantage. Ironically, the people who meet the above criteria are more-often-than-not in agreement that purse carry is not reliable and therefore they don't use that method of carry.
Instead, it has been my experience that women who choose to carry their weapon in their purse will use it as a method of convenience and are armed (in my opinion) with a false sense of security. It wouldn't be surprising to see this same woman utilizing purse carry to leave her purse in the booth as she went to the restroom during dinner. It wouldn't be surprising to see her placing the purse nonchalantly in the "child seat" of the grocery cart while blissfully unaware of anyone around her.
In short, I'm not a huge fan of open-carry, but I would rather my wife carry a firearm outside the waistband with a light pullover as opposed to dropping the firearm in her purse and all but forgetting that it is there. If you are going to carry in your purse- do so systematically and be trained to do so. Otherwise, modify your wardrobe to accomodate your firearm, not the other way around.
It is very rare that I would vocally call out a firearm instructor that I disagree with. Very rare. There are plenty of ways of doing any given action, and many instructors don't always agree on these different methods. No problem. There are even differening opinions and philosophies that all have certain value to understand, even if you don't agree.
However, when there is an instructor or set of instruction that is downright dangerous- I feel inclined to tell people to steer clear. And that's what we have here...
Sweet Lord, this is a great way to kill a student. It defies logic why a firearm instructor would ever point a firearm at their student or have their students point firearms back at him (or each other). If you ever find yourself in a situation where an instructor is using a real firearm to demonstrate while pointing it at students then I would beg you to GET THE HELL OUT OF THEIR PRESENCE AS QUICKLY AS POSSIBLE.
You can see that other people are equally against the dangerous and irresponsible instruction that this group is spreading HERE.
"I'm afraid to carry a firearm because the attacker might take it and use it against me."
I don't know where to begin with this statement... I've never heard this said by anyone who has ever taken a firearm training course. This is usually said by people who are almost looking for a reason to not have to learn the skill of shooting.
There is the cliche response from Clint Smith of "My attacker might kill me with my own gun, but he'll have to beat me to death with it because it'll be empty by the time he gets to it." Okay- I see the point...
However, I don't stop there. I want to analyze the logic of the person that decides in their mind that potential harm from their own firearm at the hands of their attacker is somehow worse that any other harm at the hands of their attacker. Is it somehow morally superior for an unarmed person to be beaten to death than for an armed person to have been shot by their own firearm? I think not... Statistically, are you better off by not having a firearm when an attacker has chosen to do harm against you? Not according to any modern, unbiased study of violence. You're actually far better-off by fighting your attacker than by idly letting violence be imposed on you.
Let's be clear about one thing: you most likely won't get to choose the time and place of violence. Responsible, legally armed-citizens (the ones that I prefer to deal with) are not the ones doing the attacking, but rather being attacked. Therefore, we are on the "reaction" side of the equation. Since action is always faster than reaction then we need something to help level the playing field: a force multiplier.
Colonel Jeff Cooper is known to many as the father of modern pistol shooting. While I admire his position on how we as civilians and society can and should deal with violence- it is the below excerpt that particularly caught my attention for handgun instruction. Colonel Cooper provides an outline of ideas and teaching methods that are just as pertinent in my mind as the ability to shoot. When teaching others to use a firearm proficiently, it is equally (if not more) important for me to be able to convey the information effectively enough that those unfamiliar with firearms can achieve reasonable success.
The Master of Arms
When I founded Gunsite here in Arizona (1975), I sought to establish the fountainhead of information and doctrine on the serious use of the service pistol. To do this I tried to enlist those competitive shooters who had distinguished themselves over the previous fifteen years in California. Not all were agreeable to the proposition, and some who were agreeable were unable to handle it. I did discover, however, over the opening period, the qualities which make for a proper Master of Arms. In the classic sense a Master is not a practitioner, but rather a teacher. Being an expert at any practice does not necessarily mean making a good teacher. Various champions who have attempted to set up schools have met with no success because, while they could certainly do what was necessary, they could not properly explain to others why they could. So in the course of time I have concluded that the essential characteristics of a pistol or rifle coach may be stated as follows.
To begin with, the instructor should know his subject thoroughly. That may seem obvious, but knowing how to shoot well is more important than being able to shoot well. Naturally the instructor must be able to demonstrate personally all elements of the techniques he teaches. He cannot expect his students to do what he cannot do. It is certainly not enough, however, to demonstrate an expert stroke and then simply tell his people "Now you do that." The physiology and geometry of the human body as it serves as a gun mount must not only be demonstrated, but clearly explained. The instructor must invite both question and criticism, and be able to answer articulately.
The qualified smallarms coach must possess, besides complete knowledge of his subject, a strong desire to impart. Not everyone who performs well with his weapon possesses this attribute. I have known people who were excellent shots who rather resisted teaching anyone else how to shoot, even professionally, because they evidently wanted to keep such skill to themselves. But a good instructor, above all, must seek his student's excellence. He must place more value on his ability to teach a man to shoot than on his own ability to shoot. His work gratifies his ego when his student becomes a good shot, and improvement is more satisfying than excellence. It is fine to raise a B shooter to the A category, but it is far better to raise a D to a B. Shooting excellence at all levels, however, is what makes his work worthwhile.