The 2019 Rangemaster Tactical Conference was held at the Nolatac Training Facility in New Orleans, March 15-17. I’ve been a part of this conference every year since the early 2000’s, presenting training at 17 of the past 21 events. This is part two of a series of posts summarizing the sessions I attended and observed, and my experiences shooting the match.
Massad Ayoob – Controversial Acquittals
The afternoon of day 1, I attended a session taught by Massad Ayoob on Controversial Acquittals. This was new material Mas put together for this year’s conference, including many high profile cases.
The list of cases he discussed included the Michael Brown/Darren Wilson/Ferguson incident, the George Zimmerman/Trayvon Martin case, the Philandro Castile shooting, the Terrance Crusher/Betty Shelby incident, the Diallo/NYPD shooting, the Quan McDonald/VanDyke case, and the Lizzie Borden legend.
The common theme in each of the cases was that even though the person(s) on trial were acquitted, the general public’s opinion and perception of the incident was still that those acquitted were guilty and that the shootings were unjustified. He used the Lizzie Borden case as a historical example. Most in the audience were familiar with the “Lizzie Borden took an axe…” song, but few (including me) were aware that Borden was not only acquitted of the murders of her parents, but those in court cheered when the not guilty verdict was read. The true facts of the case have mostly been lost to history, while the legend, most of which is untrue, survives generations later.
Beyond the One Percent (2 hour version)
The final presentation on day 1 was my own. I gave a 2 hour short version of the Beyond the One Percent talk I had given at a previous Tac Con, and let everyone know that the long version, updated and expanded, was available in the new book. According to Tom, about half of the attendees at this year’s TacCon were first-timers. I was honored to have a big turnout for my talk.
After 20 years of attending and presenting at many TacCons, many of the trainers and regulars are good friends. Most of the trainers that I host each year come from the Rangemaster “family”, as are most of the trainers and ranges that host my road courses. This year’s event in New Orleans not only offered great company but many options for great food, from oysters on the half shell at a fancy restaurant to chicken and waffles from a local food truck at the range.