Col. Jeff Cooper (May 20, 1920—September 25, 2006) is known as the father of the Modern Pistol Technique and as an author with a somewhat acerbic bent. If you are a student of the gun, your study should include a complete reading of his works—several times. You may not agree with everything he said—I don’t—but even those matters with which there may be some disagreement, his logic is clear. With that in mind, I offer some quotes from the Colonel for your consideration:

“The 1911 pistol remains the service pistol of choice in the eyes of those who understand the problem. Back when we audited the FBI academy in 1947, I was told that I ought not to use my pistol in their training program because it was not fair. Maybe the first thing one should demand of his sidearm is that it be unfair."

“Hoplophobia is a mental disturbance characterized by irrational aversion to weapons, as opposed to justified apprehension about those who may wield them.”

“The media insist that crime is the major concern of the American public today. In this connection they generally push the point that a disarmed society would be a crime-free society. They will not accept the truth that if you take all the guns off the street you still will have a crime problem, whereas if you take the criminals off the street you cannot have a gun problem.”

“One bleeding-heart type asked me in a recent interview if I did not agree that ‘violence begets violence.’ I told him that it is my earnest endeavor to see that it does. I would like very much to ensure—and in some cases I have—that any man who offers violence to his fellow citizen begets a whole lot more in return than he can enjoy.”

These are but a few of the jewels of wisdom Col. Cooper left us with. One of my prized possessions is a copy of "To Ride, Shoot Straight and Speak the Truth" that he signed personally for me. Of all his works, this one speaks to the core values American shooters have—or should have. Not only should it be on your must-read list, it should be on the must-read list of your children at the proper time.

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