New Colorado gun law bans all-online firearm training

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Fox News: In an age where you can buy a car or get a college degree without ever  leaving the house, Colorado lawmakers have made one thing impossible to obtain from comfort of the couch: A concealed weapon permit.

A new law requires people to show a firearm instructor in person that they  can safely handle a gun before they get a permit, seeking to close what  lawmakers say is an Internet-era loophole they didn’t envision 10 years ago.

“There was no thought of anyone going and sitting in front of a computer and doing the whole course online,” said Democratic Sen. Lois Tochtrop, a sponsor of the new law, and one of the legislators who voted in favor of Colorado’s concealed-carry law in 2003.

Most states require proof of training to carry a concealed weapon.  Instructors teach basics like how to load and unload a gun, how to hold it and fire it and ways to store it properly. Only a few states allow people to  complete a concealed-carry training course entirely online.

Some Colorado lawmakers were astonished at the ease with which people could get a concealed-carry training certificate. Democratic Rep. Jenise May, who sponsored the bill with Tochtrop, said one of her staffers found a course online and got a certificate in less than an hour after answering eight questions and skipping a training video.

Colorado was one of the few states to pass gun legislation this year, despite  national outrage over mass shootings and President Barack Obama’s failed  attempts to get federal gun laws through Congress. Laws to provide for universal  background checks and limits on ammunition magazines made it through the state Legislature with no Republican support.

The change in training rules got a handful of Republican votes, although most  in the state GOP rejected the idea of scrapping all-online training permits.

“We allow people to obtain full, four-year college degrees online. Why  wouldn’t you be allowed to obtainthe training for a concealed carry weapons  permit completely online?” said Republican Sen. Greg Brophy.

The importance of in-person gun training is debated. Those who offer the all-online courses insist their teachings are rigorous, and say they’re filling a market need of the digital age by allowing people to complete a class quicker and cheaper than before.

Eric Korn, the president and CEO of Virginia-based American Firearms  Training, said he started offering online handgun training in Colorado about two years ago, and his company also offers training in other states where all-online  permits are allowed — Oregon, Idaho, Wyoming, Iowa, Missouri and Virginia.

He said the online courses are just as effective. His company’s training includes six videos and more than 100 exam questions, and is much cheaper than  in-person training: $50 once you pass the course to get the certificate, free if you don’t pass. In-person training courses can cost three times as much. “I think what we did was socially conscious and relevant,” Korn said.

Other firearm trainers say there’s no substitute for learning gun safety in  person. “My point of view is, nobody knows everything about firearm safety,” said  Kevin Holroyd, who runs a business called Colorado Concealed Carry. He said his  training — which is offered at his Aurora location — lasts about eight hours and includes information on shooting fundamentals such showing people to always keep a gun pointed in a safe direction and always keep their finger off the trigger  until ready to shoot.

Colorado county sheriffs, who are the final authority on whether to approve  or deny concealed-carry training permits, supported the bill, even though they opposed the other new firearm restrictions.

Some counties already refused to approve permits if the training was done  entirely online. Sheriffs don’t keep track of how many certificates were approved from all-online courses, said Chris Olson, the executive director of  the County Sheriffs of Colorado.

Sheriffs had concerns about the online training, saying it wasn’t enough to  learn proper safety procedures, Olson said.

In Oregon, Democratic lawmakers also want to get people away from their  computer and to a real instructor. The proposal would specify that training  courses could not be taken online. However, the bill doesn’t appear to have enough support to get out of committee.

“There are responsibilities that come with having a concealed handgun permit, and one of them is knowing how to use it,” said Sen. Floyd Prozanski, a Eugene Democrat and chief sponsor of the bill. His proposal would’ve also required  people to pass a “live” fire test but that provision has been dropped from the bill.

John W. Jones, the executive director of the Virginia Sheriff’s Association,  said online training has not surfaced as a big concern for his group. Although  in Virginia the court clerks issue concealed-carry permits, the sheriffs have  veto authority, Jones said. “Everybody does things online. My sense is that we can live with it if it’s good course,” he said.

Colorado’s new law, which took effect after the governor signed it last  month, still allows most of the training to be done online. It requires, though, that a gun owner complete show an instructor in person they know how to handle a gun.

It’s like driver’s training, May said: People can learn the basics of driving  and the rules of the road online, but have to take the actual driving test in  person.

“People need to know how to shoot a weapon and store correctly so it doesn’t  go off,” May said. “Those are all things that you can’t necessarily learn from  the Internet.”

stoopid

I think online training, in addition to real practice, could be a good thing. I took a 4-hour in-person training course and it cost $75. Other courses offered at my gun range run about $100 up to $650 – it can be very expensive. I’m all for every gun owner learning about firearm safety.

And I don’t know how you can obtain a conceal carry permit on-line: In my state I had to appear in person and give my finger prints in order to complete the criminal background check.

But here’s the thing: every gun owner I know always takes their shooting and safety seriously. It’s the criminals that don’t follow the rules. It just seems that Colorado is going out of their way to make legal gun owners go through many hoops to practice their Second Amendment right.

DCG

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0 responses to “New Colorado gun law bans all-online firearm training

  1. I am just speaking “for myself only.”
    I should have been trained correctly by another person.
    I had a break-in and was attacked in the middle of the night. I bought a 25 Cal. to keep in my bedroom.
    I told my daughter who was away at college to ALWAYS let me know if she was coming home at night.
    My daughter came in from college one night “unexpectedly.”
    She didn’t call. She opened my bedroom door waking me in the middle of the night, and I almost shot her.

     
  2. Hickenlooper and the rest of these commie idiots need thrown out of office by the scruff of their neck. They are “null and void.”

     
  3. If you have to pay in order to exercise a right , is it truly a right ? Someone needs to tell that May person that driving is a privilege , gun ownership / carry is a RIGHT . There’s a BIG DIFFERENCE between the two .

     

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