For the record:
I am a gun owner. As I explained in an earlier blog I do keep a small cache of weapons here on the ranch by virtue of where I live – a mere nine minutes away from a police response should I ever have to call on them to get me out of a particular jam I find myself in.
Nine minutes is about eight and a half minutes too long. I and my family could be murdered several times over in the span of nine minutes so rather than rely on the police I’m resigned to taking matters into my own hands. The local police and sheriff’s deputies understand this and they know instinctively that if anyone calls 911 from here and it’s not a request for the paramedics or the fire department they’re to bring a mop, bucket and a liberal supply of body bags.
I pride myself on being a responsible gun owner and have no aversion to guns having been raised on them since childhood and having been trained in their proper use both in my civilian and military life.
And, yes, I am a Liberal who’s in favor of sensible gun control and background checks.
I also believe that guns are dangerous and they do kill people – that’s kind of what guns were designed to do in the first place. In fact, if a gun doesn’t kill someone it’s a defective gun. I ridicule anyone who refers to a gun as a “tool”; a hammer is a tool, a screwdriver is a tool, a chainsaw is tool and you wouldn’t work on your car or do home repairs with a gun so we can dispense with the ridiculous notion that a gun is a tool.
Having said that, guns aren’t something to shun or be afraid of handling if you know the rules (which there are four):
First, the gun is always loaded.
Even if you think it isn’t loaded, or it doesn’t look loaded you never assume it isn’t loaded. That way if you’re stupid enough to pull the trigger “just horsing around”, it goes off and shoots somebody there is no court in the land that’s going to give you a pass for that unless your name is Dick Cheney.
Second, you never point a gun at anyone or anything you don’t intend to destroy.
I take all the rules of gun handling seriously and treat them just as equally as the others. There are no rules that are more important or more special than any of the others and the one thing I always say is that if I ever have to pull a gun on someone or something (such as a mountain lion or a bear), I’m going to use it and someone (or something) is going to get shot.
Third, your finger stays off the trigger until your sights are on the target.
I can’t stress this one enough. I have seen one too many times people walking around handling guns with their fingers on the triggers where they end up shooting themselves in the foot, someone else or a stray bullet goes flying off in some direction.
In other words, if you’re not aiming at something don’t put your finger on the trigger. And check the safety.
Finally, know your target and what’s behind it.
I don’t really understand the fascination of some people who think they need a ridiculously large caliber gun capable of shooting through a rhinoceros. I once had a discussion with a friend of mine who was thinking of getting one of these hand-held bazookas for “home defense”, which is fine except he lives in an apartment in a major metropolitan city.
That bullet is going to go through the target, through the wall behind the target and possibly end up in the adjoining apartment, possibly in the tenant living there.
Now, out here in Farmville we can sort of get away with large, powerful guns but in the city (especially in an apartment) this simply isn’t going to fly. I suggested to my friend that if he was keen on home defense that perhaps he should look into purchasing a 12-gauge shotgun as this is the perfect weapon of choice for close-quarter combat.
As an added bonus, just the sound of racking a round in a 12-gauge is enough to dissuade all but the truly insane, stupid or suicidal.
Which brings me to this.
An Arizona woman died after her boyfriend accidentally shot off a handgun he had tucked into his waistband Tuesday morning.
Yes, once again, the final collision between the Second Amendment and outright stupidity happened today.
So this guy has his gun tucked in his waistband, goes to hug his girl, girl complains that the gun is making her uncomfortable so he chivalrously attempts to move the gun off to the side by pulling it out of his waistband (with his finger on the trigger and the safety off) and as he pulls it out he shoots her dead.
I’m just going to go ahead and say it after all the years of self-inflicted and accidental shootings that have graced our Emergency Rooms from coast to coast: it’s time to add mandatory gun safety classes for any and all gun purchases, provided you can pass a background check.
- Woman Killed When Gun Goes Off During Hug (kmvt.com)
- Personal Gun Control: Safety Tips for You and Your Family (simplisafe.com)