Concealed-Carry Class Draws Large Crowd
KREX News Room
GRAND JUNCTION, Colo.- Since a new state law that bans online-only concealed-carry certification training took affect, officials have seen an increase in those looking for another way to get certified.
On Saturday, a free concealed-carry class in Grand Junction had many residents interested.
A group of nearly 150 residents learn all about concealed-carry weapons during the five hour class, hosted by the Mesa County Patriots.
“One of the things we teach in these classrooms is the importance of life,” said Edgar Antillon, NRA firearms instructor. “Having a handgun doesn’t mean that you are a killer. Owning a gun isn't about killing. Having a gun is about defending yourself.”
Antillon says it's not normal to have this many people participate in a session but with the recent changes in gun control, which make for more strict rules, he's not surprised.
“Here in Colorado alone, the demand for concealed handgun permits have gone up,” said Antillon. “People want to exercise their second amendment right.”
According to the Colorado Bureau of Investigation, the state's concealed-carry permits have seen a dramatic increase in 2013, with 87 percent more people looking to get a gun.
“My whole family has been pretty much raised around guns and my father is the one that taught us to believe that we need to be able to protect ourselves in case of something,” said Adam Gilegos, a Grand Junction resident who participated in the class. “Classes and stuff like this help out the community.”
“We believe in the right of self defense and that's it’s a fundamental human right and I believe it’s a responsibility to protect yourself and to protect your family,” said Jeff McCloskey, president of Mesa County Patriots.
Though it's a constitutional right, for Antillon, these classes are necessary for those interested parties, and way to make sure residents are safe when they exercise their second amendment to bear arms.
“Come out here and learn how to handle a hand gun responsibly, carry concealed responsibly, know the proper laws,” said Antillon.
For more information on classes: concealedcarryforfree.com