September 21st, 2006 01:08 PM
Gun control VS. Kid control
I just found out my Pastor's 3 year old son found a loaded gun in the house, and managed to shoot it. Thank God no one was injured, but I've got to wonder what these people were thinking. It's not the first time he's gained access to a loaded gun, the first time was over a year ago and it was in his great Grandfather's house. They got to it before he could shoot it, but not this time. There's an older sister in the picture, but she was at school. Apparently the child's aunt had left a shotgun loaded after a dove hunt and left it where he could get to it. Here's the kicker, apparently the child was in the house alone. I'm so mad I could spit. Rant off. Now, the reason for the post. If someone had been hurt we would have heard "Why did someone have a gun?" or"Why was the gun not properly stored/locked?" Well here's my Why. Why was a three year old alone in the house? Why has he not already been taught some kind of saftey(ie: do not touch guns.) I know he's small, but he's teachable. Some would recommend taking the guns out of homes with children. I recommend removing the children from homes of parents that aren't.(parents, that is)
Social services would be all over these people if they were abusive or neglectful in other ways. I happen to think this is neglectful.
I guess I'm trying to say stupid people shouldn't breed.
"An armed man is a citizen, an unarmed man is a subject."
Sights? What are those?
September 21st, 2006 01:39 PM
Did you just call your Pastor stupid? If I really thought so little of my pastor, I would have a different one.
Education and proper storage are the two keys to eliminating accidents involving children and firearms. Even if the kid hadn't been left home alone, you can't watch the kid every minute, and you can't assume that your child's friends have been taught anything about weapons. Teach your kids, and don't invite an accident by leaving weapons where the kids can get to them.
As far as leaving a 3 year old home alone... this _is_ neglect, at least in my state, and can be prosecuted.
Liberty is an inherently offensive lifestyle. Living in a free society guarantees that each one of us will see our most cherished principles and beliefs questioned and in some cases mocked. It's worth it.
September 21st, 2006 01:57 PM
You make a very good point. Why was a toddler left alone in a home, whether there was a gun in the home or not. I have six kids and five grand-children. I can tell you from experience, they WILL get into things and places they shouldn't. At age two or three - actually, until they are about six or so. That's why kids don't begin school before then - children are just too young and immature to even realize the danger of many things they do, despite what we tell them. What really scares me about this situation is you said this is the second time this has happend with this same child in the past year. I don't necessarily agree about the "breed" part of your statement, but as for "stupid"...
Contrary to what some people like to think, children are not miniature adults. In fact, if you have teens around the house, you know THEY don't even think the way adults do! If there are children of any age around a home, it's the homeowners and adults who are there that are responsible for making sure all firearms - and anything of danger - are secured in a way that only those who need to, have access to them.
Don't blame a kid for playing with a gun (not that you did), but blame the adults there for leaving a gun out in the open and/or unsecured, which allowed children access to it ... and unauthorized adults as well! The idea you can "train" a two-year-old or any young child in gun safety is BS. You can explain safety to young children and even punish them if they do something they know - or at least were told - they shouldn't do, but the bottom line is: If a gun, knife, medicine, etc. is not put someplace that prying fingers can't get to, it's only a matter of time before a tragedy happens. Then, it will be too late for a blame game.
The adults in that house need to have a reality check soon, or there will be hell to pay... in more ways than one!
Last edited by rachilders; September 21st, 2006 at 02:20 PM.
"... Americans... we want a safe home, to keep the money we make and shoot bad guys." -- Denny Crane
September 21st, 2006 03:21 PM
+1 on Childers.
Being at college and having weapons around.... geez. I have some friends who are freshman that are so immature that I won't even take them to the range or let them handle my firearms. These kids want me to teach them to shoot and when I tell them I have give them a safety brief they groan or sigh. At that point, they get very angry because I flat out tell them they won't touch my weapons if they won't even listen to safety. And because of their initial reaction, I tell them to take a class and pay some money because I won't be responsible for them killing someone.
It sounds like I'm ranting off topic, but I think kids are much the same way. These older kids were never taught and all they ever see is Gov. Arnold wasting aliens with M-16's. They just want to play with guns because they see them on TV - both of them. I am of the mindset that one should educate a child about the dangers of firearms at the earliest possible time, but I think that it is useless until 6 or 7 unless the kid is growing up faster than most. All you can do is crowd control until then.
I won't even get started about leaving a child in a home ALONE with unsecured firearms.
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"It is enough to note, as we have observed, that the American people have considered the handgun to be the quintessential self-defense weapon." - Justice Scalia, SCOTUS - DC v Heller - 26 JUN 2008
September 21st, 2006 04:07 PM
See, I actually think you can train a child to stay away from guns. Heres what I do-
I show them guns at a young age. I make it very clear that they may look and touch them any time at all, as long as they ask first. I never say no. They see me clear and check them and then I let them fiddle with it a bit. This takes away all mystery. Now it's "oh dad has the guns out again lets go play in some dirt"
I also explain what guns are capable of (no they do not understand completely, but they will soon as they are going hunting with me).
I have left guns laying on the couch with the slide back while "spying" on them. They thought they were alone and they never really even looked twice.
That being said, I still secure all my guns of course, but you never know when kids will run into a gun somewhere else. I think my system has worked very well. My twins are six and have been good so far.
September 21st, 2006 05:24 PM
Another question that comes to mind is: Why was the weapon left loaded?
Now I am not saying that all weapons in a home should be unloaded, that would make for some rather expensive paperweights.
Consider the circumstances. First of all, you know that there will be children in and around your home. I have two of my very own. The two that I carry are loaded at all times, and stored in a fashion (when they aren't on me) as to prohibit my very curious two year old from getting either of them. I have another that is locked in a safe and loaded. I have the shotty on the top shelf of the closet with a box of shells close at hand. The shelf is high enough that I have to reach for it. My wife would have to get something to stand on, and she isn't that much shorter than I am.
My two year old will be going with me to the range in about three of four short years, depending upon his mentality. He will have a full respect of firearms before I give him the one that I have already bought for him.
September 21st, 2006 05:50 PM
I taught my boys at pre-school ages that guns are not toys.
I took them out back to my shooting range (wish I still had it), let them handle the unloaded guns, then shot up a bunch of water-filled milk jugs.
The exploding jugs and the noise really impressed upon them the danger. They grew up being safer gun handlers, shooters, and hunters than most adults I know.
Be Safe and Careful,
Mountaineers Are Always Free
September 21st, 2006 05:55 PM
It's ture that a child that age should not be unsupervised. There are plenty of bad things to get into in a house besides guns: household chemicals, balconies, electrical sockets, etc.
Havings said that, even when properly supervised kids get into things fast. If you have in the house a child, elderly person with a wandering mind, or anyone that you would not trust UNSUPERVISED with your firearms, then those firearms should be secured on your person or in a locked cabinet or safe.
Merely teaching your children about guns and gun safety is not enough. You by definition you can't rely on a child doing the right thing. That is a backup to you, as an adult, being responsible and not allowing the dangerous situation to occur in the first place.
"Supervised" childeren drown in swimming pools every day. It only takes a moment of inattention to create a tragedy.
"I am a Soldier. I fight where I am told, and I win where I fight." GEN George S. Patton, Jr.
September 21st, 2006 06:39 PM
My mother told me when my first child was born about how she used to get us to do things we didn't want to do. Her favorite was to take a book she wanted us to read and put it on the top shelf of the bookcase and tell us to never ever read the book. Yeah, she wasn't even out of the room and we already had the book down reading it. The reverse was true about ones that she didn't want us to read. She put it in plain sight on the lowest shelf and told us that "we just had to read it".
Unfortunately, that is how kids minds work (and most adults). I started with my children when they were very young. If any of them want to see my guns all they have to do is ask. They understand what guns are for and what to do when they see one. I have never worried about one of my kids picking up a gun without me around (of course they don't have the opportunity - I keep them locked up with the exception of my carry gun). They have been taught a healthy respect for firearms.
I guess what I'm trying to say is that the mystery has been taken away from them. They have all also witnessed what a .30-06 can do to a whitetail up close and personal. How a quail reacts to getting hit with a .28 gauge. Its my responsibility as their parent to teach them that guns are tools, tools that in the wrong hands will cause irreparable harm. Its the same reason that I won't buy them or allow them to play with toy guns (I know what a stick in the mud I am).
There are so many things wrong with the picture that was painted in the initial post. But bottom line the best way to keep our children safe is by educating them properly about firearms, teaching them respect for them and making sure that access is restricted.
"Do not fear those who disagree with you; fear those that do and are too cowardly to admit it" - Napoleon
September 21st, 2006 06:48 PM
Yep, in my opinion the real "Why?" is the one of the child being alone.
Given a short time and the natural inclination to explore, the kiddo could have just as easily burned the house down, inhaled or ingested any number of poisonous substances (been under your sink lately?), ingested medications that we lovingly manufacture to taste like candy (child-proof caps? Yeah, right.), or caused a heavy object to fall onto him. That of course leaves out sharp objects and electrical outlets.
The pastor and family are hopefully better at The Book than at the reality of child endangerment, which is a crime in many (most?) jurisdictions, though I must say I've probably been fortunate in the sense that "But for the grace of God there go I." I'd imagine any parent can look back and see narrow escapes in the past.
My three boys are out in the world now and my only grandchild is far away, so my days of that are over, until the grandson comes to visit for the first time in January, and you can bet I'll be scouring the house and making adjustments beforehand, though we'll probably be spoiling him so much he'll probably never be out of hand.
September 21st, 2006 06:56 PM
You Can't 'Child-proof ' the Gun...
but you can 'Gun-proof ' the child.
When my boys were young, I allowed them to see and hold the weapons in the house. I took them out to show them what a gun could do...and when old enough, I taught them to use a gun properly.
They knew the limits and did not 'cross the line'...but then I did satisfy their curosity by opening the gun issue and the rules associated with them.
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September 21st, 2006 10:32 PM
As many have already stated, the child left alone is the real issue here. With that said, I believe children should be educated on firearms as early as practical. I was hunting rabbits/squirrels with 22LR and 20G shotguns when I was 7 years old & had BB guns before that.
+1 for retsupt99
My kids likewise started shooting young. When my daughter was 4 she could (always under supervision) load/unload and shoot BB pistols and rifles very safe and accurate for her age, and graduated to larger guns as she got older and more experienced. My boys followed in her steps. I always kept the guns locked up (and ammunition) in a gun safe but allowing my children to shoot and handle them took away the curiosity many children have with guns, because they have never been around them(a gun). My whole family would go to my "backyard range" and shoot different guns when ever anyone mentioned the idea and it fit our schedule. The result; when my kids were pre-teen they handled guns safer than many adults.
September 22nd, 2006 12:07 AM
Interesting. It's not so much training, as taking away the "forbidden"
The idea you can "train" a two-year-old or any young child in gun safety is BS.
aspect. My daughter is not yet 2 and a half years of age. Anytime she sees a gun, she tells us, "Dangerous. Hurt the baby. No touch." She also has handled my guns, with them unloaded and seperate from ammo, while I was present. It was neat for a minute, and when she figured out it didn't do anything, it was back to her far more exciting toys. The other day, I left an extra mag on the kitchen counter while I was getting ready to leave. She came and got me, telling me,"Dangerous". When I got to the kitchen, she pointed to the mag and said,"Don't touch".
So, while I would agree that you can't "train" children in anything, you can educate them in gun safety.
"Water can flow, or it can crash. Be like water, my friend."-Bruce Lee
"Luck, often enough, will save a man if his courage does hold."
September 22nd, 2006 12:57 AM
I was five years old. My grandpa took me out in the woods. Saw a rabbit and said "Watch". Then put a round in its head at about 15 feet. Rabbit obviously died where it stood. He explained to me that the rabbit is dead and is not going to come back to life. He said "that is what guns do. If you don't want that to happen to you or someone else, don't pull the trigger on something that you don't want to end up dead like this rabbit. Respect the gun and it will respect you." Powerful stuff.
September 22nd, 2006 01:01 AM
Pastor or not, this one and his/her adult family member are (stupid, that is). They're not thinking about realities, with their firearms. They're putting their children at risk. They're criminally liable for that access, depending on the state's laws. They're going to have a future attitude adjustment, it seems. Bad juju.
Originally Posted by cmidkiff
Your best weapon is your brain. Don't leave home without it.
self defense (A.O.J.).
How does disarming
the number of victims?
Reason over Force: The Gun is Civilization (Marko Kloos)
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