At Gunsite, I was talking to another one of the writers present about the whole “point shooting” thing. He’s a mulitple Gunsite attendee, having taken their 250 course as well as a few other classes, and as such he’s a big believer in “watch the front sight”. Obviously, my background is in competition shooting, where “watch the front sight” is also the key to victory.
During the conversation, we had one of those moments where angels descend from on high, and the crown all knowledge briefly passes over you head, because the whole “point shooting” thing finally made sense. Point shooting was really laid out as a tactical doctrine by a couple of dudes in the first half of the 20th Century as a method for fighting with a pistol. The original advocates of point shooting pistols also believed in using the sights if you were fighting with a rifle. So why then did they say to not use the sights on pistols?
Have you ever seen the sights on a pistol from the 1930s? They barely even exist on a lot of guns. The sights on a military issue 1911 from back then were among the best sights in the game, and they’re not even close to what I’d consider an adequate sighting system. So it actually makes sense that for close range combat shooting you’d adopt a school of thought that taking the time to acquire the itty-bitty-teensy-weensy sights isn’t really worth the effort, because the sights were just awful.
The issue of course is that times have changed, and we have modern, quality sight systems for handguns that allow the shooter to rapidly pick up the sights and place accurate hits on target just as fast as someone using a point shooting method of looking over the gun. Teaching the flash sight picture isn’t even that difficult for most people, especially if you’re using a gun set up with Express sights.
What I’m saying is that now, I finally understand the point shooting guys. And I want to welcome them into a new world, a world of awesome, easy to acquire, fast, accurate sighting systems. No longer will you be slaves to an 80 year old shooting system, but now you can be free! Free to aim, free to accurately engage targets past 5 yards, free at last, free at last!