The U.S. Concealed Carry Association Launches #RealityCheck to Promote Responsible Gun Ownership

As part of the national public awareness campaign, the organization pledges to train 1.3 million firearms owners by 2025

WEST BEND, Wis. –​ In response to the rising number of new gun owners across America, the U.S. Concealed Carry Association (USCCA) is launching #RealityCheck, a national public awareness campaign to promote responsible gun ownership. The campaign supports the organization’s mission to train firearms owners to be safe and responsible, and, as part of the campaign, the USCCA is pledging to train 1.3 million firearm owners by 2025.

#RealityCheck comes as more than five million Americans purchased a firearm for the first time in 2020. By sharing responsible gun ownership facts and firsthand “realities” from a diverse group of gun owners, the campaign aims to shed light on how trained firearms owners can avoid danger and save lives. 

The safety campaign will feature compelling statistics about responsible gun owners, the number of crimes they prevent each day and other little-known facts. For example, gun owners prevent nearly 7,000 crimes a day — and 400,000 life-threatening crimes a year never happen because of trained gun owners, according to the Freedom for Economic Education. #RealityCheck will also highlight real stories from people who chose to purchase or use a firearm for protection.

“After witnessing an unprecedented number of Americans purchase firearms for the first time last year, we felt it was our responsibility to spread the message that owning a gun and getting a permit is not enough,” said Tim Schmidt, president and founder of the USCCA. “By launching this campaign, our goal is to raise awareness of the education and training it takes to become a confident and prepared gun owner. We hope this initiative reminds gun owners that getting trained is a vital step toward the ultimate goal of keeping your family safe.”

The USCCA officially kicked off #RealityCheck in Milwaukee, Aug. 6-7, 2021, with a series of events to raise awareness for responsible gun ownership. The organization hosted Reality Check MKE, a non-partisan panel discussion featuring a diverse group of gun owners and those taking the first steps toward firearms ownership. The conversation centered around the panelists’ “realities” — leading to personal stories about what prompted them to consider purchasing a firearm and steps they’ve taken to become safe, responsible gun owners. 

One of the panelists, Jennifer Moston, is a domestic abuse survivor who shared her harrowing experience, which ultimately led her to seek firearms training and carry a firearm for protection. She explains, “I live in fear every day in anticipation of the day when the man who abused and tried to kill me is released from prison. I choose firearm ownership and training to feel safe in my home and to protect myself and my children from him.” Read more about the Reality Check MKE panelists and their stories here

The USCCA also hosted a pop-up training event for passersby to learn firearm safety rules and talk to USCCA Certified Instructors about taking steps toward being responsible gun owners. To illustrate the hard data of responsible gun ownership, the organization projected compelling insights on a prominent building in downtown Milwaukee.

Next up, the USCCA will be taking its message of firearms safety and training to the 2021 NRA Annual Meetings and Exhibits (NRAAM), Sept. 3-5, 2021, in Houston, Texas, and to its annual expo the 2021 USCCA Concealed Carry & Home Defense Expo — Oct. 1-3, 2021, in Fort Worth, Texas. 

“#RealityCheck serves as the reminder America needs about responsible firearms ownership,” said Schmidt. “With this campaign, we aim to highlight how trained gun owners alike save lives.” 

For more information about #RealityCheck, please visit uscca.com/realitycheck

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About the USCCA

The U.S. Concealed Carry Association (USCCA) is an association of responsibly armed Americans whose members get exceptional self-defense education, lifesaving training and self-defense liability insurance, preparing them for the before, during and after of a lawful act of self-defense. The USCCA is the largest, fastest-growing self-defense association dedicated to responsible gun owners. Learn more about the USCCA at www.uscca.com.