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Riding Shotgun With Charlie

Jan 12, 2021

Riding Shotgun With Charlie
|John  Petrolino
Decoding Firearms

John Petrolino “relentlessly harassed’ me (his words, not mine) about having Mark Shean on the show. With some experience in writing and publishing, John was helping Mark turn his blog into a book.  Then John wrote his own book about firearms for new gun owners. He’s also been writing for Ammoland as well.  After spending some time with John, I found out he’s been writing & publishing books for over 20 years. 


John and I have been going back and forth and finally set a date to film a show in New Jersey.  John has been around firearms since he was a kid, going shooting and hunting with his father. After a number of years shooting long guns, he decided it was time to get a handgun.  With limited training and a less than satisfactory course, he knew there had to be a better way.  So he became an instructor. He started writing his own book to offer his students, incorporating what he wanted to make sure students know. 


We talk about the reciprocity between a number of states in the northeast, and how some permits work, some permits used to work, and some aren’t needed at all.  The laws vary from state to state as we all know, but some are more confusing than others.  Massachusetts and New Jersey are kindred spirits that way. 


John also writes for Ammoland.  He’s been covering the things that are centered in New Jersey. He’s covered a number of topics from bear hunts on state and private lands to the changes with marijuana and how it's still federally prohibited. John gets into how tobacco is also regulated and how it affects hunting, and how it will also affect marijuana use as well. 

We head to a couple ranges for a quick selfie. I wasn’t able to carry or transport in New Jersey, but since we weren’t going straight to a range, John said we couldn’t even bring any firearms with us. We also talk about how it is very important to support our local ranges. And that our state 2A grassroots groups need the help of everyone involved with, not just shooting and competitions, but the gun rights activity, as well. 


John has been a really good friend, too. Since we’ve been communicating, he’s been pushing for t-shirt sales because he wanted an RSWC shirt. And a mug.  And a hoodie. But he’s also guiding me with things that I need to do better. 

Favorite quotes:

“There’s got to be a better way for a guy to get on the target.”

“I wanted to write something that would work out for inexperienced shooters and veteran shooters alike.”

“New Jersey doesn't issue concealed carry permits to regular peasants”

“From a freedom perspective, I want people to be able to do what they want to do.”

“The bulldozer of freedom is going cross the country, we got to try to stop it”

John Petrolino Website


John’s Articles on

Coalition of New Jersey Firearm Owners

Association of New Jersey Rifle & Pistol Club

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