As with any business owner, I am faced with the challenge of finding balance between doing what is best for me, what I want to do, and what is best for my customers and the community.
As a teacher in the firearm field, my passion, my love is to work in depth with individuals who really value the self- defense aspect of training. This is the passion that drives me to strive for new and better teaching methods, and more exciting, interesting curriculum every day.
On the other hand, teaching gun safety, and by that I mean introductory classes to the masses, for me is work. Even as much as I love what I do, as much as this career has given me an incredibly flexible and well balanced lifestyle, some days I just have to go to work like everybody else. Gun safety classes are those kinds of days.
You see, working with beginners is tiring. I cannot lie. Nonetheless, it is my obligation to the world. Few can fully appreciate the enormous responsibility, difficulty and complexity that gently molding the thoughts, attitudes, questions, and assumptions of a new student truly entails.
If we look at today’s heated debate about the role of firearms in our modern society, clearly no one is advocating the trampling of rights, and no one is advocating for the murder of children. We all want to see greater safety in our streets and communities, yet the two sides attack each other because there is ignorance on both sides of the aisle. The truth is in the middle, and in order to find the truth we as a population need to be willing to have logical, rational, conversation that is supported by the facts of history.
Our job as educators is not to give our young people an opinion. Our job is to give them the logical reasoning tools, and the attitude of respect and discourse, such that when it is their turn to run the country, our future generations can figure out problems which have no easy solution.
When working with advanced students, they generally already have an opinion formed on fundamental issues. Novices on the other hand must rely upon us, the teacher, for guidance. This subtle, nuanced responsibility of molding young minds is the great educator’s burden.