Ladies' only class teaches basic pistol handling - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Ladies' only class teaches basic pistol handling

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by Krystal Paco

Guam - With crime on the rise and the recent passage of the Castle Doctrine Bill, more and more residents are showing interest in learning to defend themselves.

More women are taking their personal safety into their own hands. "A pistol is one of the only things that can really even the odds between a 300-lb guy and a 95-lb woman so a lot of ladies want to learn how to use it, want to learn how to use it safely, and want to be able to protect themselves," said National Rifle Association instructor Darren Alvarez. And that's why he's is offering a ladies-only class starting next weekend.

"Really not just the Castle Doctrine but because of the upsurge in crime last year, I've really seen a lot of women coming to these classes and wanting to learn how to protect themselves," he explained.

Although women are welcome to attend any of his regularly scheduled courses, Alvarez says some women are more comfortable learning to use a weapon in an all ladies setting. After all, with no intimidation from male classmates, women may be more inclined to ask questions and ask for help.

The basic pistol class accommodates girls as young as fourteen years old, on the condition that anyone under the age of 18 is accompanied by a parent who takes the course with them. "It's a class that teaches basics. How to use a firearm - this is designed for people who have never fired a firearm before. Or if they have, have only a little experience with it. In which case it teaches them how to safely handle a pistol. How to fire it. How to take care of it and maintain it. And also how to buy one," he said.

But what are your odds of you needing to know how to operate a firearm?

Statistics show that although we may train during fire drills as school children on how to react to a fire alarm, a person is 400 times more likely to be a victim of a violent crime. "In my opinion, our lives are our responsibility. A firearm is just one tool of many that can help someone to save their own life if something ever happens. The fact is that police are overburdened. They do a good job, they're wonderful people, and they work hard but they can't be everywhere at all times," he said.

The ladies' only class is scheduled for Saturday, May 3.

If you don't own a firearm, Alvarez has a limited number of pistols available for rent.

Classes are $175, which includes a certificate for basic pistol.

In addition, Alvarez also teaches an intermediate class for personal protection inside the home and an advanced course in personal protection outside the home for those who plan to conceal carry open carry a firearm.

For more information, visit http://www.nrainstructors.org

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