My response to the story of the toddler who recently shot herself...

This is a discussion on My response to the story of the toddler who recently shot herself... within the Basic Gun Handling & Safety forums, part of the General Firearm Discussion category; Although I'm really new here, I wanted to share the action I took upon reading about that horrible tragedy. This is a copy of an ...

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Thread: My response to the story of the toddler who recently shot herself...

  1. #1
    Member Array chefjon's Avatar
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    May 2011
    Central FL

    My response to the story of the toddler who recently shot herself...

    Although I'm really new here, I wanted to share the action I took upon reading about that horrible tragedy. This is a copy of an e-mail I just sent to CNN in their "suggest a news story" section:

    While I think the national debate over the legality and morality of firearms use and ownership is a great example of true journalism, I believe not nearly enough time is spent on the practicality of the situation. Regardless of anyone's personal beliefs about the scope of the 2nd Amendment, the universal truth is that guns are out there and the possessors (both legal and illegal) are responsible for them and their use.

    It always makes me cringe when the media reports a tragedy that involves the use of a firearm, for three reasons. First, of course, is the tragedy itself. When someone is injured or killed without proper intent (Defense of life, limb or property, to my mind) it is a waste of a precious life, and that is always sad. Second is that these tragic acts are almost always avoidable. The adage that "guns don't kill people, people kill people" has never been more true, even where an intent to kill or injure is not there. Guns, like all in-animate objects, require manipulation from some force to operate. Hammers don't cock themselves, triggers don't pull themselves. It's not legality or morality at that point, it's physics and mechanics. This leads me to my third issue in these tragedies: often, these tragedies are irresponsibly-reported by the media (In my mind). I've seen news reports of people who are "accidentally shot " or (as in the case of the story that led me to write this) children who "accidentally shoot themselves" when what happened was nothing more than sheer negligence. The standard refrain of "It just went off in their hand" is incomprehensible to me, and it is to most gun owners.

    My suggestion for "a news story" is actually a suggestion for several. I believe that these stories are both beneficial to Americans as a whole and to your network as well (in terms of "ratings"). They are as follows:

    1. Reporting on the use of the term "Accidental Discharge" vs "Negligent Discharge" when referring to tragedies involving guns. There are not only opportunities for information (how guns operate, mechanically) but debate over which instances are accidents and which are negligence. It is my opinion that cases of mistaken identity or intent ("I thought he had a gun") are accidents while the rest are negligence.

    2. Providing a series of stories on how firearms operate. This, of course, would not include the legality or morality of the issue- just the practicality. Speak with manufacturers about what they are doing ( and have done) to make guns inoperable without human interaction.

    3. I think a "special episode" devoted to the aftermath of firearms-related incidents would be of great interest. Include as many different types of scenarios as possible, from "Justifiable Homicide" to "Negligent Discharges" and the impact they have on those involved.

    4. A series on "firearm safety" would also be a great idea, in my opinion. Collecting "experts" in the field and having them exchange opinions and information would be a good way to convey this. It would also offer both informational and entertainment value to introduce people who have never fired/wanted to fire a gun,to a gun, on camera. You could also provide tips on safety for citizens who do not own guns themselves.

    These are my ideas for news stories, and they are mine alone. I do not speak for any party or organization but solely for myself (I am not currently a member of any party or organization that deals in the legality or morality of firearms use or ownership). I do legally own a firearm to defend myself and my loved-ones from those who may try and do us harm, and I can tell you one thing with certainty: I am human and am susceptible to mistakes, but a loaded gun will NEVER "just go off in my hand". Thank you for your time and consideration.
    joker1 and RevolvingMag like this.

  2. #2
    Senior Moderator
    Array gasmitty's Avatar
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    Jun 2007
    Gilbert, AZ
    Nicely done. Do post back if you get a response from CNN. My skeptical side thinks you probably won't.

    What WILL get a feature story rolling is a suggestion from inside a news organization, one that percolates up to the editorial staff. Thus if anyone here on DC has a friend who is a reporter or writer for a news organization in a good-size town, or a national news org, consider planting the suggestion per chefjon's post with them.
    AZCDL Life Member
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  3. #3
    VIP Member Array Hiram25's Avatar
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    Feb 2010
    Wyoming, DE
    Nicely written, and well thought out. However, I can not say the same for many of the articles I have read regarding these issues, and I don't see them changing for the better.
    You can educate ignorance, you can't fix stupid
    Retired DE Trooper, SA XD40 SC, S&W 2" Airweight
    dukalmighty & Pure Kustom Black Ops Pro "Trooper" Holsters, DE CCDW and LEOSA Permits, Vietnam Vet 68-69 Pleiku

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