What do you do if you overhear bad gun advice?

Discussion in 'General Firearm Discussion' started by raftman, May 14, 2010.

  1. raftman

    raftman
    Oregon
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    Prompted by a recent topic about a certain notorious gun shop's questionable practices, I kind of wonder how people hear react if they're at something like a gun store, and they hear someone like the gun shop employee give blatantly erroneous information, whether it's just false, or even advice that if followed, could be potentially dangerous or illegal.

    For example, I was a gun shop in which a woman was shopping for a handgun, and said Glocks were recommended to her, and that she wanted compactness coupled with manageable recoil. The guy told her that G19 was the smallest-framed pistol that Glock offered (my guess is, the G19 is smallest Glock the shop happened to have in stock that day). Now, that's just bad/false information, but I've also heard gun shop employees giving potentially dangerous information, for example, that PSL rifles work best with heavy ball ammunition, when in fact a steady diet of anything other than light ball can damage, if not destroy the PSL.

    In any case, when this happens... what do you do you? Do you feel obligated in the interest of truth and propagating accurate information, and out of concern for the safety and well being of others, to chime in? Or do you feel as though anyone not prudent enough to do their own research is largely responsible if the ignorant and/or unscrupulous give them bad info?
     
  2. JumpWing

    JumpWing
    NK WA
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    I would make a discreet attempt to get the customer's attention and draw them out of the employee's earshot. If he/she goes for it, then I'll be happy to quickly and quietly impart whatever info I have. If they don't go for it, well, my conscience is clean.
     
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  3. j.barnum

    j.barnum
    Oregon
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    One way to introduce the smaller Glock was to butt in and ask the clerk if they had the smaller model and see what the reply was. That way the customer would hear your asking for the compact model.
    Otherwise it is none or your business or find the store manager and plead your case against the other clerk.
     
    Last edited: May 14, 2010
  4. smithmax

    smithmax
    here
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    I think the best way to handle it is to ask a polite and leading question about the topic. Like asking the shop if they ever carry the G26. I heard about a local store telling customers that they should tumble milsurp ammo if they want it to be shiny before they shoot it, but this changes the the shape of the powder and can cause a higher pressure than intended.

    If you are at the range and see someone giving bad advice, then I think it's acceptable to be more blunt when giving your two cents on the matter.
     
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  5. eldbillbo

    eldbillbo
    clackamas
    New world samurai and a redneck none the less

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    you do what ever you feel you should do that you are comfortable doing if its the right thing to do just that simple

    if you don't feel comfortable saying something then don't but then you'll regret it and end up posting a thread on a board asking what you should have done rather than doing the thing you know what the right thing to do and patting your self on the back knowing you did the right thing instead .
     
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  6. toobigtofail

    toobigtofail
    PDX
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    If someone is coming into a gun store and doesn't know anything about anything and they're fed bs from the staff, that's on them. Gun store presence isn't a public service, it's a money making operation. As long as they aren't telling the people dangerous stuff I wouldn't say anything.
     
  7. cyclesarge

    cyclesarge
    Eugene OR, DUH! We're ALL in the NORTHWEST
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    I beg to differ, I feel a gun shop or any other store have a responsibility to know and tell the truth about about what they sell, beyond whatever it takes to make a buck. I know if I were the customer I'd want you to butt in.
     
  8. unionguy

    unionguy
    Portland
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    If its just BS, I try to intervene creatively, as others have suggested.

    If its dangerous, I intervene. I'll be polite if I can, but will be blunt if I have to.

    We have a shared responsibility to prevent dangerous information circulating. Think about it this way, store employee says something wrong & dangerous, that person goes home and tells someone else, etc etc.
     
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  9. BroncoFan

    BroncoFan
    Eastern Oregon
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    I'm in the Banking business (run a small financial institution) and have had to watch as ignorance/greed on the part of the consumer and ignorance/greed upon the part of loan providers contributed in a complete wreck of our financial system. When it comes to something as potentially politically charged as responsible gun ownership and bringing one more much needed person into the sport, I'd say something.

    How about "It's great to see ladies expressing interest in the shooting sports/self defense! My wife loves my Glock 26..." This way I'm not directly conflicting with the clerk and I've providing an opening to the lady. Just my .02.
     
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  10. longcolt

    longcolt
    Zephyrhills, FL
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    To me it always depends upon the individual circumstance. At times I have offered my advice and suggestions when I knew the gun salesman was in over his head.

    Other times when a obviously ego centric gun store employee was boasting total BS I knew I would be in for a big confrontation if I interjected my comments, so I walked away.

    Each situation is fluid and different.
     
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  11. raftman

    raftman
    Oregon
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    That's exactly why I feel conflicted in such situations, I have no issues with putting in my two cents if it's clear the salesman just isn't sure, and doesn't know about a particular question. But the most notorious purveyors of BS seem to be the know-it-alls with the unstable personalities.

    I guess, another example I've overheard, was when the salesman tried to sell a .50BMG rifle to a customer, and went on and on about how even if one missed the target by 5 or 6 feet, the sheer energy of the round would still destroy the target. Went on to say, snipers have done it all the time, even if they miss by a fairly large margin, it would still tear the skin off the target's face or something.

    He seemed really dang sure of it, what was I to do? Say, "That's Nonsense, if you miss with a .50BMG, it's no different than if you miss with .25ACP. A miss is a miss."
     
  12. The B

    The B
    NW Oregon
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    i dont think i'd have any problem butting in and stating "no, the 26 is smaller, and in the same caliber."
     
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  13. MrNiceGuy

    MrNiceGuy
    between springfield and shelbyville
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    There's a local gun store that employs a knife maker.
    I over heard him telling customers not to buy a 9mm. He told them that no police use 9mm anymore because most of the time the bullet wont even penetrate the skin. I heard him compare it to a hard paint ball.

    I didnt interject. I just laughed.... and pointed.... and laughed some more
     
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  14. The B

    The B
    NW Oregon
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    i dont know why people wouldnt correct obvious misinformation, wherever it's heard. i'll stay out of an argument about metal compositions, if i'm not fully committed to laying out numbers and citing sources- but for something as on/off as whether or not Glock makes a handgun smaller than the model 19.... all you need to do speak, and it's so.
     
  15. e28rusty

    e28rusty
    Newberg
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    I have a hard time speaking up, especially if I'm not totally sure of my facts and sources. I'm amazed how much bad gun advice I've recieved since I got into this a couple years ago. I don't want to pass any of that bad advice on, but if I know something for sure I don't mind speaking up about it, not in a confrontational way, but more like: I thought the G26 is even smaller than the 19, what about one of those? I do my research on my own online so I take everything I hear in a gun shop with a couple big grains of salt. Many of the employees are motivated to sell and/or idiots but I've heard just as much stupid crap from other customers in the shops.
     
  16. MrNiceGuy

    MrNiceGuy
    between springfield and shelbyville
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    Because I hate nosy people who step in and try to correct everything.
    Coming from a golf background, everyone wants to be your golf coach and none of them agree with each other. Eventually you have to say "You may be right, You may very knowledgeable, but this is a private conversation and nobody asked you so be quiet and walk away."
     
  17. The B

    The B
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    so if you overheard proshop staff tell a customer that ping doesn't make a 2-iron, you wouldn't correct him, and would find it offensive if somebody did?

    i get what you're saying- and i'm actually totally on board. most people offering advice or even just information on gun stuff generally seem to be wrong/full of crap. i'm not suggesting people convey crap- i'm asking why somebody wouldn't convey factual information. things the individual knows to be true, by first-hand or readily verifiable sources. this is also why i added the bit in my post about generally not bothering to interject with technical info. but whether or not a smaller glock exists.... that's not disputable, and the conversation can be over the moment you finish the sentence.

    for what it's worth, i have actually been standing around debating something with shooting partners and had eaves-droppers interject with good information/perspective. just because somebody's essentially butting-in doesn't mean their opinion/information is unwanted.
     
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  18. SgtKashim

    SgtKashim
    Wilsonville, Oregon
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    Here's the deal as I see it... Any person in a position of expertise or implied expertise is under a moral obligation to act in good faith. The salesperson at a gun store is in such a position. It would be the same if I went into an art gallery. If I asked for a painting to be appraised, I would expect the gallery owner to give me an honest and fair estimate of the value of the painting, not say its worth $20 and offer to buy for $25.

    I would expect the same thing if I asked for purchasing advice - a fair and honest opinion based on facts.

    That said, these are my moral expectations - how I would expect myself to behave. In reality, people don't seem to be above selling toxic financial derivatives to their own grandmothers.

    Sorry for the mixed metaphors, but I'm trying to put it into terms where its pretty clear people were getting screwed over.
     
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  19. MrNiceGuy

    MrNiceGuy
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    Funny you mention that. I've been that customer before... When I was told that Titliest didnt make a 100 compression tour balata (which they did at this point) I was just going to play it off and move on with my other purchases, but someone had to stick their nose in it. The random person and the salesman got into it a little, and I moved on.... The only person who could have rang me up was now involved in a back-and-forth with a random customer over something that simply didnt matter.

    So, yes... after many instances like this, I do get offended when people butt in... no matter how correct or informed they are.
     
  20. The B

    The B
    NW Oregon
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    i would have stepped in on that one too... that was my favorite ball for a while.

    ****, you can still get them online. http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=150442938669
     

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