I think if a person ever has to use his/her gun to defend themselves, that in the course of the trial and lawsuits that are sure to follow, you'd better be prepared to "Fight fire with fire."
It's reasonable to assume the prosecutors will do everything they can to make you look like a Tennessee redneck hick, uneducated, with a gun-ho gun nut attitude. Everything you can do to prove otherwise can and will help.
One way is to always try to come across as a respectable decent person. And the other is to be good at what you do, and this includes operating a handgun.
The state requires minimal training on gun safety, and the law as it applies to the use of deadly force.
My instructor told us in class, "If you're going to walk around in public with a handgun strapped to your side, you owe it to yourself and your community to be responsible and a damn good shot. You don't want to be left fumbling around for your gun and spraying bullets wildly through the air hitting everyone but the bad guy in the heat of battle."
Furthermore, you only have to qualify with one gun. But what if you choose to carry a different gun than the one you qualify with. Even though the state does not require you to re-qualify, you'd better believe they will use this against you. That is why MOST instructors in Tennessee will allow you to re-qualify anytime with another gun at a MINIMAL charge. The instructors keep records of all this, and these records could be used in your favor in court.
I personally go to the range at least every other weekend and sometimes more frequently. I would love to do some of the IDPA style of practice and shooting, but there are no clubs in my area, and no places in my area to start one. Afterall, you do need a place to shoot. I have looked into the local IDPA clubs, and the closest one I could find to me is over an hour drive away. I guess I'm just not willing to do that. I am hopeful that maybe in the future, more gun ranges, and clubs will become available closer to me, but in reality, it's probably a pipe-dream.
And finally, remember the old saying: "Practice makes perfect." Well that's not true. If you practice doing the WRONG things, then you get real good at doing the wrong things. only "PERFECT PRACTICE" could make perfect.
One should practice not only their shooting skills, but their carrying skills. They should practice quickly drawing their weapon from their holster and acquiring a target instantly. One should practice shooting from various positions. It's hard to do all these things at the range. Clubs like the IDPA focus on "realistic shooting scenarios" and this type of practice is generally taught.
We should all remember, when the adrenaline starts flowing and the heart is pumping, and you're scared for your life, you "Will resort to your animal instincts" and act according to how you've been trained. So if you have NO TRAINING, then you're just "A person carrying a gun" and you may not know what to do with it.
It's best to let the world "Think" you're an idiot, than to open your mouth and remove all doubt.