My son turned 17 in August and for his birthday I bought him his very own Springfield 1911 A1 .45 ACP. We have been going to a few local ranges over the past couple of years. A few of them have 'run and gun' live fire competition. It's for bragging right only. I started with a friend of mine with a G19 and eventually moved up to a Wilson Combat modified Sprinfield 1911 of my own. I let my then 15 year old son start shooting with the G19, and he was good.(I can still smoke his ass though) The range instructors were reluctant at first, but when they saw how he handled a weapon they were very impressed. He followed their every instuction to the letter and in my opinion is safer than most adults I know. I know some people are mortified by the idea of a 'kid' shooting handguns, or any gun for that matter, but I can say this, if he wasn't ready for it I would never have got him started or even bought him own handgun.(It stays locked in the safe when not in use, along all of mine.) I just wanted some of your opinions on this as some people I know think I'm a gun totin' redneck and a complete idiot for trusting my teenage son with a loaded weapon. By the way most of 'them' are scared to death at the sight of a handgun, my father-in-law nearly had a coronary when he happened to see my CCW under my shirt once. He said he would rather the bad guys hurt his family than have to shoot somebody and live with that forever.