I’m glad to see NRA seeing the need here. I think the establishment of these classroom programs was a mistake, and has created a barrier to entry for hunting it can ill afford in the 21st century. Much better would be an apprenticeship program, with certification available for hunters who want to mentor new hunters. I strongly believe there need to be a variety of ways potential hunters can get educated. The one-size-fits-all approach isn’t working. NRA is pushing online courses, which apparently only Indiana is investigating, with other states threatening to cease recognizing Hoosier hunters as having completed the requirement in retaliation.
I suspect the greatest resistance to this will come from hunters themselves, who I’ve consistently believed are the greatest enemies of their own sport. It’s is very important for the shooting community to save hunting, but I’m not that optimistic. I think hunting will continue to decline, as previous generations of hunters reflexively resist change, and actively help hunting’s enemies to eliminate forms of the sport they don’t approve of. Sorry to be grim, but if there’s a survival instinct in the hunting community, I haven’t seen it.