Well, how often do you testify in court? How many agencies are you a consultant or advisor for? I was called out nine times so far this year for officer involved shootings. I have had interviews with gun publications, news media as well as qualifying in courts But acceptance of my qualifications by anyone other than those in the cases where I am involved is up to individuals.
Now for a lengthy reply to your concerns.
Nope, officers do not hold their guns sideways. They are trained not to do so for several reasons. Gangbangers doing drive by shootings do not practice for variousl reasons as well. One is they are often unable to do so at ranges because of legal problems such as felons in possession of a firearm, possession of a stolen firearm, etc. Many states have passed laws about shooting on unowned lands as well to prevent many gun offenses to keep people from shooting around residences, livestock, and such.
BTW: Has your area seen an increase in livestock being shot? Gangbangers were forced to shoot someone (a felony) to prove their guts but soon found they get caught and go to jail. Now they shoot livestock since it is a misdemeanor offense, usually with no jail time, even if they get caught. Their lack of practice is also a reason they often accidently shoot themselves or some fellow gang member. More than once, they have been killed or hurt by taking out a mag and then leaving a round in the chamber due to lack of experience with firearms.
As to officer's being able to hit targets, they often fail to qualify in their attempts for re certification until several tries later. Many NEVER shoot other than to qualify once a year. Are they bad officers? Not at all. They just have a job and do only as they have to so they can remain on the department but are not gun fanatics. They simply carry a gun as part of their job.
The statement about single shot weapons is revelant since it shows accuracy. Any movement, be it from a slide, flinch or distraction will effect accuracy. For maximun accuracy, the type gun will come into play as well as shooting skill.
A sad fact is most people will not practice for many reasons. We have become more busy with our lives than we should. There is seldom time to practice and there are fewer places to practice. Then there is the financial factor. Ammo can cost $30 a box and it would be easy to shoot two boxes during a practice session as well as the range cost, the expense of travel to and from the range and a lot of other costs. Money is tight for many and shooting is an expense that can be cut. Because a person buys a gun does not mean they will practice, at least regularly. I do not know you and have no beef with you at all but I will bet you washed your car more in the first three months of ownership than you did in the last year of ownership. It is the same with guns. People buy, people handle for a while and then forget about it until they need it. I took a neighbor to buy a new gun (Glock 27) five years ago. We then went to the local police range and he shot a box of shells. Since then, he has never fired it and never cleaned it. This same man is an educated professional that has the time and money to practice but does not do so and he is the typical gun owner. Not all gun owners are gun lovers.
Now for an additional comment for what ever it is worth. I think and investigations bear this out, people buy guns and then never show family members how to use them. The children want to play with the guns and do so when adult supervision is not present. Their natural curoisity about guns leads to an accidental shooting. This has also led to many communities to pass laws permitting prosecution of the adult gun owners for negligence.
Many of us grew up with guns in the residence and were accustomed to firing them as well as seeing them fired. This is no longer the way of life for most households. The guns are placed in a drawer and forgotten about until an incident happens. An example of this is my youngest daughter. She is 28 and was shooing regularly as a preteen. She last shot at about 16. She has her gun I bought her and I asked her last week where her gun is located. It is in her home, in a drawer and has been there since she moved into the house five years ago. Additionally she does not know if it is loaded or not. Her time is spent trying to get out of med school and maintaining a social life. She is a gun owner, knows how they work and grew up around guns. She is not gun responsible. Should her gun be involved in an incident, it would be her fault as an unresponsible owner.