NRA-certified instructor Rick Ector is once again hosting a free shooting lesson for the women of Detroit. This year this amazing event will take place on August 21-22.
The event aspires to introduce women to firearms and teach them shooting safety and fundamentals. Eye and ear protection, targets, ammo and professional instruction are included for attendees. Registration is open online for lessons at either Top Gun or Recoil Ranges in southeast Michigan.
This marks the tenth anniversary of the event conducted through Ector’s group Legally Armed in Detroit. Last year, the event pulled in almost 2,000 participants. This year, Ector hopes to double that.
“I believe that the enthusiasm of the public will be increased,” Ector told A1F. “Last year we did 1,938 lessons during a full-blown pandemic. One year later, I’m thinking there might be some pent-up interest from people who were cautious about going out.”
Between 60 and 80 instructors will be spread across both ranges, many having flown in from out of state. “They aren’t being paid,” co-coordinator Tanisha Newton said. “These are all volunteers who believe in the cause and reaching into their own pockets to be here.”
Last year, the pickings were slim for those who wanted to purchase firearms of their own. Supplies appear to be on the mend this year, which is fortunate for an event which requires some 80,000 rounds of 9 mm. The ammunition is donated by local manufacturers and groups like Michigan Coalition of Responsible Gun Owners. Ector says it’s about 20 rounds per person, in addition to 4,000 pairs of ear plugs, eyewear and targets.
Since 2011, thousands of Detroit-area women have filed through the lessons.
According to recent reports, gun ownership among Black men and women has been skyrocketing, and Ector is thrilled with those results. “Diversity is phenomenal at these events,” Ector says. “Age, experience, politics, orientation or any way you can classify people, we have it at this event.”
While some of the instructors are men, Ector says the event is ladies-only for a reason: “Women are more vulnerable and often have children with them,” Ector says. “They are easy prey for criminals and must be protected first.”
Ector hopes to grow the event beyond just Motor City. “It’s difficult to start with high numbers. In my experience, this has been an organic growth. You have to build relationships with suppliers, instructors and ranges. I don’t think it can be done quickly.”
“But if you want to do this in your city, no matter where you are, just start and grow it. We had 50 participants our first year. This year the goal is 4,000.”
“It’s a testament to what consistent hard work can produce if you stay at it and don’t quit.”
(David Burnett is an intensive care nurse, health-law attorney and frequent contributor to America’s First Freedom.)