This Is Why Those Videos Aren’t Funny

To all you YouTube jackasses that think it’s a real hoot to hand a big gun over to some inexperienced little lady in hopes of catching a laugh.

This is why that isn’t funny.

Yes, that is a worst case scenario, but there is really no good done with these stunts. In the best of cases, you alienate someone from the sport. You might even turn them into an active crusader for gun control. Or, like in the story linked above, your negligence could kill them.

Don’t want to share your hobby with your girlfriend? Try using your words like an adult rather than scaring her away from your little bromance.

If you are working with a new shooter, it is your primary responsibility to make sure they come away from the experience unharmed. Hopefully, they will enjoy it and want to learn more. Film that new shooter grin, it’s far more entertaining.

ETA because is seems applicable: This is me shooting a 500 Magnum just like the one in question

I absolutely agree that starting a new shooter with 22LR is best, but if one is not available, it can be done. First gun I ever shot was a S&W 629 loaded with 44 Magnum. I’m not going to claim I shot it well, but the only thing in danger was the target hanger. An instructor assured me that I’d be fine because I was heavier than the gun. He then explained how to grip it and instructed me to lean in. I was fine.


24 thoughts on “This Is Why Those Videos Aren’t Funny”

  1. I have found excellent results using a Sig Mosquito and a Ruger 10/22 to teach people new to the sport. I have used those firearms to convert several people to enjoying the sport.

  2. Yeah, even without this worst-case scenario, those videos are pretty horrible, for all the reasons you mentioned.

    I have to admit, I wasn’t aware that unintentional double-fires with large-calibers was such an issue until I saw this posted elsewhere, along with some videos. It’s definitely something I’ll keep in mind when introducing new people to shooting, even if I’m not using a monster-caliber gun.

  3. My friends have learned not to show me those videos.
    Every link to such results in a lengthy rant about Cooper’s rules, basic maturity, and the obligations of the teacher.

    After the stick of the rant there is also the carrot of my open ended offer to anyone that wants to learn anything about firearms. I’ll bring everything they need to learn except the open mind and teachable attitude. If there’s something they’re curious about that I don’t have or don’t feel well grounded in, well, I know lots of folks that have similar views on the matter of guns and am pretty sure I can find them an answer.

    In regards to this particular tragedy…
    The article states that no charges are expected and my libertarian heart is okay with that. Had a prosecutor decided to go after the idjit that let someone unprepared for that powerful of a handgun for negligent homicide or involuntary manslaughter though I’m not sure I’d have it in me to object too much.


  4. Indeed. It makes all of the true instructors look bad and my primary goal for new shooter classes is that everyone leaves with the same amount of holes in their body they came in to class with. No more!

  5. While the subject is open. I’m trying to get my wife into pistol shooting and she likes the compact 9mm semi-autos. Problem, she doesn’t have enough strength to pull off the first round with a double action. Anyone know one the doesn’t have a trigger like the last turn on a Spam can?

    1. My best friend’s carry gun is a Ruger SR9C, and his 4’11” wife has no problem with it when they go to the range together. Not sure if that’s compact enough for her, or if you were looking for something pocket gun sized.

      1. Thanks Andy, that was one I’d thought to try. The problem gun was my S&W 469. Maybe a Sub-Compact would give her a better grip, though I’ve heard most of them have very hard triggers.

    2. Have you thought about going Single Action?

      Compact 1911 in 9mm?

      Or my favorite, Browning Hi Power? Wife and daughter both shoot mine well (and I’ll have to do an inventory when darlin’ daughter leaves for college in a few years as apparently Coveting Thy Father’s Pistol is not as sinful as Coveting Thy Neighbors)

  6. Girls start out with a 22 cal. That is common sense. You girls have small hands and wrists. I know that. These guys have small balls. I hate to say that. Don’t give a girl a cannon , to start out. 🙂

  7. Wasn’t there a case a few years ago of a child who was killed firing some semi-automatic or automatic rifle? In the presence of his father, IIRC.

    The videos that end with mere bruises and embarrassment make me cringe.

    There is a level below manslaughter in criminal law, something on the order of criminal negligence. I’m surprised the DA isn’t using that.

    1. That’s the first thing I thought of when I read this. An eight-year-old boy had an Uzi get away from him at a machine gun shoot and gun show in Massachusetts, and shot himself in the head.

      I took a long break from shooting and didn’t get back into it until my kids were older. My oldest son was a 6’2″ 16-year-old varsity athlete the first time I took him to a range, and he started out with a Ruger MKI. The degree of irresponsibility here just boggles my mind.

  8. I have a family member with a 12-year-old (at the time) son. The son had been mouthing off that he wanted to grow up to be a soldier or police officer so he’d have a gun. So, naturally, they took him shooting.

    And let him take the first shot of the day. With a .357 Magnum.

    He took one shot. Didn’t want to shoot any more after that, not even different guns in lighter calibers.

    Conversely, I took my 8-year-old (at the time) son shooting. Took a couple friends as well – their first time shooting, too. Guys’ day out in the woods. Went over “The Rules” during the drive.

    Started with the .22s. My son shot last, and was NOT overwhelmed by the recoil or report. His first two shots hit in the 10 ring, less than an inch from the bullseye, from about 20 feet.

    Moved on to 9mm. Son stuck with the .22. Didn’t get out any bigger guns (fading daylight), but nonetheless good times were had by all. Man, you should have SEEN the New Shooter Smiles all around!

    Sorry, I have little-to-no respect for those who play these stupid tricks on new shooters. It doesn’t make us any new friends and makes the whole gun-owning community look really bad to those folks who’d prefer we don’t have guns.

  9. My wife saw a couple of those vids and wondered if those guns were so hard to control.

    I happened to have a 4″ .44 Anaconda at the time so we hit the range. Because she’d been taught properly, it was a complete non-event. She didn’t care for the Anaconda and found the blast unpleasant, but she had no trouble shooting safely. Teaching her took all of ten minutes too.

  10. Like many of us, I keep a wide variety of firearms mostly because I want to, but it sure comes in handy when a friend asks me to teach them how to shoot (meaning handguns, I don’t usually teach people rifle or shotgun).

    I always start them out with a .22, then progressively move up the scale of power as the new shooter seems ready. I watch carefully to know when they reach their limit. A few I have had to cut off before they wanted to, but it was obvious that they were having issues. This is why I don’t like to teach men to shoot. Their machismo gets in the way of their good sense. Women usually don’t have that problem.

    The last person I taught was a woman who had only ever fired a .22 rifle once before in her life. She was motivated to learn because she had had some bad things happen to her and didn’t want to be a victim any longer. She worked all the way up to firing the .44 Mag on the first outing. I had been watching her carefully and KNEW she was ready for the .44 before letting her try. As it turned out, I was right and she handled the .44 better than I do because she listened carefully and learned proper form (I, on the other hand have some bad shooting habits that I really need to work on). I had her firing both revolvers and semi-autos, both single and double action so that she would be able to decide what she liked on her own. She decided on a S&W Night Guard in .357 Mag. because that suited her.


  11. “I absolutely agree that starting a new shooter with 22LR is best, but if one is not available, it can be done.”

    And I believe this is a very good argument for having at least one handgun and one rifle chambered for .22LR.

    Indeed, I believe this could be extended further to having at least one pistol, one revolver, and one rifle in .22LR.

    Indeed, I believe this could be extended even further: one SA revolver, one DA revolver (so you can teach the difference), at least one pistol, and at least one rifle in .22LR.

    Indeed, I believe this could be extended…wait, why are you people looking at me like I have a problem? I NEED all of those .22LR revolvers, rifles, and pistols; what if I have to take more than one new shooter to the range?

  12. I believe it was at Wade’s in Bellevue WA that a young woman did much the same thing, but managed to shoot her douche boyfriend that had given her the handgun to start with. Far better result imho. I hate those damned videos, always make me want to take some new person to the range just to counteract the effect.

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