Teach your kids about guns and safety early, or someone else might!

This is a discussion on Teach your kids about guns and safety early, or someone else might! within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; I was discussing with my girlfriend when kids should be taught to shoot, gun safety etc. She thinks 16-18...I think much earlier, and I think ...

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Thread: Teach your kids about guns and safety early, or someone else might!

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    Distinguished Member Array C9H13NO3's Avatar
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    Teach your kids about guns and safety early, or someone else might!

    I was discussing with my girlfriend when kids should be taught to shoot, gun safety etc. She thinks 16-18...I think much earlier, and I think my own life story can kind of attest to it.

    My parents aren't into guns. And when I was a kid, they were pretty protective. They wouldn't let me own a skateboard, a dirtbike, anything dangerous I was pretty much shielded from. When I was about 10, I shot a BB gun for the first time (which I would have been in big trouble had my parents found out). It was fun, and I loved shooting at tin cans. The kid across the street owned one, and I'd go over all the time to play with it. Thus begins my interest in guns. When I was 16, I bought my first motorcycle (which took a lot of convincing of the parents). I went on a lot of group rides, and one of the guys was into firearms, concealed carry, etc. He invited me to go shooting and I went. He taught me the rules of firearms safety, made sure I knew the manual of arms for each gun before I shot it, made sure I wore eyes and ears, and basically had me hooked on safety before I ever got to actually shoot. My parents still didn't know about this. I went shooting with him quite a bit, and it was a lot of fun. Also got me hooked on Sig, but that's another story. I knew I was going to be joining the Marines, so I wanted to practice with an AR. I saved up some money from my job and convinced my friend to buy one for me and I would pay him since I wasn't 18 yet. He did (which in hindsight was not very responsible, and illegal). I stored it unloaded and locked in its case behind my snowboard. My parents never knew.
    Here's part 2 of my story. I worked as a mechanic with a bunch of fairly redneck guys. They all had junkyard offroad trucks and went wheeling all the time. They invited me out once to go "shooting and wheeling", and I agreed. I figured, most people who shoot are responsible about it, since my friend was. I also thought we'd be going to a range. We get out to the boonies, and they are shooting at 55 gallon oil drums, shooting from the hip, no eye and ear protection, drinking beer, and tricking people into stupid things. One guy we worked with also came out and hadn't shot before. He weighed about 100lbs soaking wet, and was pretty gullible. My boss handed him a side by side 12ga with a solid wood stock and no recoil pad. He told him to pull both triggers at once, and that there was hardly any recoil. I quickly got the impression that this was not a good crowd to be shooting with, and left. Also found out that a big bore snubbie shooting right next to you with no hearing protection will leave your ears ringing for 2 days.

    The point of my story is that teenagers get curious about things, including firearms, and they are going to follow through on their curiosities. I was fortunate enough to find someone who was responsible with firearms and taught me safety above all. Had I not shot with him, it would have been with the other crowd, and I may have easily fallen into the irresponsible gun owner group. If I had been taught at a younger age, then I would have been taught the right way regardless. If I have kids, male or female, they are going to be taught gun safety early, probably before they are even 10.

    Just something to think about :)
    -Ryan

    All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.

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    Distinguished Member Array SubNine's Avatar
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    Interesting story, and I can relate to some of it.

    Growing up, I never had the chance to be exposed to the safe use of firearms or air rifles for that matter. My Mother to this day remains totally against private gun ownership. My Dad was never able to purchase any guns, or teach me how to shoot until I was almost out of High School. I remember some of my childhood friends had BB guns, and we would shoot at tin cans and empty soda bottles, but my parents never found out about it. I was 17 years old when I got my first air rifle, and didn't purchase my first actual firearm until I was almost 21.

    In fact as a kid I remember being scared to even touch a firearm. My Mother told me to stay away from them, because they are dangerous and I could get seriously hurt if I was to touch one. The first time I went to the range with my Dad (I was 17), he let me shoot his brand new Ruger Redhawk .44 Magnum. That was the first gun I had ever fired, and I shot it better than him.

    I now have my own little collection of guns, and I just know my Mother would freak out if she ever saw the kinds of firearms I have.
    USMC rule # 23 of gunfighting: Be polite, be professional, but have a plan to kill everyone you meet.

    I am the God fearing, gun toting, flag waving conservative you were warned about!

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    Member Array Jay6's Avatar
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    Due to hunting I was trained in the correct handling of firearms at age 8 and when I was able to show my father that I could do it safely ALL the time I was allowed to carry a loaded gun in the field at age 10 (which is the legal hunting age in Maine). My wife and I are having our first baby (boy) in April and I think I might even go a little younger with my little guy as I have a few .22's which can be trained on before he can handle a larger hunting caliber. Of course this will all depend on his maturity level but I am talking about best case scenario. Plus, I am involved in a great deal of competition shooting which my parents were not so if he wanted to get into that it can be done at an earlier age as long as he is able to prove his safety.

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    IMO If you have kids and you have weapons (guns, knifes, ect) you need to start teaching them saftey when they start movining around.

    There were guns around me for the time I can remember there were guns in the house longer then that. I was taught safety from as far back as I can remember. Treat every weapon as if it was loaded, keep your finger off the trigger till you are ready to fire, ect. I was also taught at that young age to leave the guns alone don't touch them unless I'm told I can. For that reason I have been safe and started teaching my kids from day they started moving. My son who is 6 now fired his first gun at the age of 5 last summer(Mommy's .22 pistol). I didn't just give him the gun I made sure I kept my hands on his hands at all times but he loved it and wants to fire the bigger guns. I will let him in a year or two but even at 6 he WILL NOT touch a real gun unless me, my wife, or my father tells him it is alright.

    So in short IMO the younger you teach them the right way the less they will mess with them and get hurt.
    Bryan A Dreyer
    Sgt USMC/US Army
    .45 ACP

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    VIP Member Array Janq's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dreyerba View Post
    IMO If you have kids and you have weapons (guns, knifes, ect) you need to start teaching them saftey when they start moving around.

    ...IMO the younger you teach them the right way the less they will mess with them and get hurt.
    Agreed 100%.
    And that is exactly how I've played things in my home with my own children; 2 and 6 yrs. old.

    - Janq
    "Killers who are not deterred by laws against murder are not going to be deterred by laws against guns. " - Robert A. Levy

    "A license to carry a concealed weapon does not make you a free-lance policeman." - Florida Div. of Licensing

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    The younger you start teaching them gun safety the better. Start simple and work your way up as they get older. I think any parent should invest in the NRA Eddie Eagle educational series as soon as you find out your going to have a child(you'll have more money before you have the baby than after). Depending on the childs maturity and ability start teaching them to shoot with a .22 around 5 or 6 years of age, it will vary with each child.

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    VIP Member Array dukalmighty's Avatar
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    I learned at an early age from my dad first a bb gun and later a 22 and a shotgun,I still have his 22 in my safe and shoot it occassionally those were some of the best times I had with my dad
    "Outside of the killings, Washington has one of the lowest crime rates in the country,"
    --Mayor Marion Barry, Washington , DC .

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    Distinguished Member Array SonofASniper's Avatar
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    Like some others here, I was learning about guns since day 1.

    I got my first opertunity to actually pull the trigger at around 4 or 5. It was a Ruger 10/22.

    As family tradition has gone, I was given my first rifle at age 10. A Winchester pump action .22.

    Some friends and family have allready been surprised to find out that my two children (ages 3 1/2 girl and 16 months son) allready know what a gun is and have touched a gun. My daughter all ready talks about her first gun that she will get someday, and currently she is hell bent on it being pink.

    Start early, and you have a good start on life.
    I will support gun control when you can guarantee all guns are removed from this planet. That includes military and law enforcement. When you can accomplish that, then I will be the last person to lay down my gun. Then I will carry the weapon that replaces the gun.

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    If you're going to have guns in your home, the mystery needs to be removed and safe use and purpose taught early. I purchased .22 rifles for both my 8 year old sold and 10 year old daughter and proceeded to take them one at a time to the range and learn the in's and out's of how to safely handle and operate a firearm. I expected them to be more wary, but both have really discovered that shooting is a fun and challenging activity. The safety factor is just a given and they haven't complained other than the occasional complaints over their ears getting sore from the muffs.

    I coach a couple of other sports and it the safety aspect is really stressed early ... it just sticks in my experience. Yes, I did go with the pink .22 for my daughter .. hey she's a girl and it's her right to show it! :-)

    Note: I was not raised around guns .. very anti-gun home as a matter of fact. My mom is less than thrilled about me teaching them to shoot, but as they say ... ohh well! :-) I fear the world in which we live is heading more towards need to know how to care for oneself than the world in which I was raised.

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    VIP Member Array HKinNY's Avatar
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    My kids are 9 (girl) and 7 (boy) and 17 month (boy) and WE ARE DONE!!. I have taught both the older ones about the safety that is needed to own a firearm. My older son has a bigger intrest than his sister. I alread bought a bb rifle and taught him how to shoot. Never to early to learn. My kids have watched the Eddie Eagle video many times. They quote EE out of the blue.

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    Member Array oldogy's Avatar
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    I grew up around loaded guns and lots of them. My folks owned and operated an old time country store, beer joint, gas station. There were always loaded long guns placed strategically and visible behind counters around the store and handguns under the counters in several locations. Dad would buy and sell guns, sometime trading gas or groceries for guns, kinda an early day pawn shop. I learned to shoot and learn firearm safety at a very early age. I also learned very early that I did not even think about touching a gun when my folks or other responsible adult was not around. All this was during and right after WW11 so I guess rules (laws) were different then. What rules? Americans then were smart enough to understand that guns did not kill people. and government was not in every aspect of a person's life.
    I won't go into rant mode. Y'all shoot straight.
    ray, the oldogy

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    VIP Member Array Eagleks's Avatar
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    My 10 yr old grandson and 12 yr old granddaughter are great shots with a rifle. She shot her first shotgun this year. She's wanting to move to handguns. You can be assured they have been shown safety measures, including avoidance, about handguns as well.

    When I or anyone else is around them, don't miss any steps in regard to safety steps, or they'll let you know it in a hurry.

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    ...as early as possible

    I shot .22 at 5 years old after being able to recite safety rules with my dad & grandad so I tell my wife its their fault for me being the way I am now

    I think your kids should be taught as soon as they are capable of reciting safety rules and know that firearms are not toys
    the sooner the better
    LEO/CHL
    Certified Glock Armorer

    "I got a touch of hangover bureaucrat, don't push me"
    --G.W. McClintock

    Independence is declared; it must be maintained. Sam Houston-3/2/1836
    If loose gun laws are good for criminals why do criminals support gun control?

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