Monday, December 10, 2012

Secure Your Firearms Properly

As I clocked in at work this morning I took a quick peak at the news on Yahoo. The first article I read was about two boys, age 7 and 11 who attempted to rob a woman with a gun. According to the article after unsuccessfully trying to carjack the 22-year-old woman, during which the younger male told the older male to "Show her your piece" they then proceeded to demand for cash and her phone. As the victim, Ami Garrett drove away, she said that she saw the 11-year-old boy pull a gun out of his pocket.

As gun owners it is our responsibility to A) know where our firearms are at all times, and B) ensure that they are secured in a way that allows for no unauthorized access. According the the article, police were still trying to determine just how the boys came into possession of the firearm but one can only assume it came from one of two places. It was either taken from one of their parents or an adult in their lives, and it was not secured properly, or they got it from a friend who gained possession in the same manner. Of course they also could have gotten it off the street, but in my opinion the chances of a 7 and 11 year old being sold a gun even from a criminal is slim.

As a parent and a gun owner I take the safety of my family extremely serious. The main reason I own firearms is for their protection. Leaving a weapon unsecured undermines that purpose completely. It puts my children's lives at risk as well as anyone they could potentially harm if they got a hold of a gun. Talk to your children about guns, even if you do not own one. Teach them the three funatamental NRA rules for safe gun handling. Allow them to gain respect for firearms so that they too can share that knowledge with others. We put our kids through driver's ed before they get their license so that they can learn to drive safely, it only makes sense to apply that same belief to firearms. After all, more people die as a result of vehicle accidents then firearm deaths.

The fundamental NRA rules for safe gun handling are:

1. ALWAYS keep the gun pointed in a safe direction.

This is the primary rule of gun safety. A safe direction means that the gun is pointed so that even if it were to go off it would not cause injury or damage. The key to this rule is to control where the muzzle or front end of the barrel is pointed at all times. Common sense dictates the safest direction, depending on different circumstances.

2. ALWAYS keep your finger off the trigger until ready to shoot.

When holding a gun, rest your finger on the trigger guard or along the side of the gun. Until you are actually ready to fire, do not touch the trigger.

3. ALWAYS keep the gun unloaded until ready to use.

Whenever you pick up a gun, immediately engage the safety device if possible, and, if the gun has a magazine, remove it before opening the action and looking into the chamber(s) which should be clear of ammunition. If you do not know how to open the action or inspect the chamber(s), leave the gun alone and get help from someone who does.

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