The movement of the National Rifle Association into the world of concealed carry training and “insurance” in the form of Carry Guard certainly took many people, myself included, by surprise. There is much that remains unknown about the training side of the Carry Guard equation (itself the source of much head scratching), but the movement of the NRA into the “insurance” business has already garnered critical responses from the likes of Marty Hayes of the Armed Citizens’ Legal Defense Network who has published an open letter to the NRA and its Executive VP Wayne LaPierre.
Also coinciding with the launch of Carry Guard at the NRA Annual Meeting in Atlanta was the announcement by the United States Concealed Carry Association that they had been disinvited from exhibiting at the meeting (though I have since heard that they may have been disinvited as early as February and held back the news for maximum effect).
Whatever the case may be, it is clear that the NRA is in the process of creating a revenue stream that will attempt to marry concealed carry firearms training and a post-shooting legal plan. Among Carry Guard’s major legal plan competitors, Second Call Defense, U.S. Law Shield, and CCW Safe offer legal defense programs but no training.
Closer to what Carry Guard provides is the Armed Citizens’ Legal Defense Network, which offers a tremendous amount of education about the use of lethal force in self-defense and also has “affiliate instructors” who provide firearms training, as well as the USCCA with its Self-Defense SHIELD legal plan and certified instructors.
Given the direct move against the USCCA by the NRA (don’t forget about the Carry Guard Expo which mimics the USCCA’s Concealed Carry Expo), it is not surprising that the USCCA is striking back. Yesterday, the USCCA announced a new partnership with firearms trainer Rob Pincus of I.C.E. Training and the Personal Defense Network.
As the subject line of an email from USCCA founder Tim Schmidt said: “USCCA + PDN + Pincus = ?”
To me it equals fighting fire with fire. And alot more research for me.