NEVER BEEN SHOOTING? Would you like to try it?
An offer for Louisville Metro area residents.

If you have never been shooting, are 21 years old or older and not otherwise barred by state or federal law from purchasing or possessing a firearm, I'd like to invite you to the range. I will provide firearms, ammunition, range fees, eye and hearing protection and basic instruction.

(Benefactor Member of the NRA, member of KC3, former NRA firearms instructor, former Ky CCDW instructor)

Email me if you are interested in taking me up on this offer. Five (5) people already have.

August 9, 2007

If you see a gun: STOP!...

We recently entertained a houseful of company for seven days; my wife’s parents, her sister’s family which included a 6 yr. old girl and a 3 yr. old boy, and two other nieces aged 12 and 18. The 6 yr. old girl is one of the most inquisitive children I have ever known, and the 12 yr. old is not far behind her. This presented a problem for me since I own several firearms and typically, since we do not have children of our own, several of them are readily accessible most of the time we are in the house.

In the morning, I separated the firearms from their ammunition and locked both up. At night, I took out my defensive firearms, loaded them, and put them in their customary place. In the morning, they went back into storage. I considered this prudent; I do not know how (or if) my nieces have been trained regarding firearms.

I was reared in a rural home in which firearms were kept. My Mom and Dad taught me early to respect them, so when they taught me to respect firearms, I learned that lesson well. I don’t remember how I was at age six, (and I refuse to believe the stories my Mom tells; surely she exaggerates!) but I remember age 13 quite well. When I was at others’ homes, I respected their privacy and their property. I didn’t go pawing through drawers or looking into closets. If I had seen a firearm, I would have pointed it out to an adult and let them deal with it. I wasn’t unduly curious about firearms anyway. Since an early age, I was allowed to shoot with supervision, and it wasn’t the “forbidden fruit” that it seems to be for many who haven’t had that exposure.

The recent death of a Taylorsville, KY teen, has received much coverage. His death was due to mishandling a firearm. I do not know the circumstances. I place blame on no one. That is not my place. I understand there is talk of starting a “Mothers Against Guns” chapter. I suggest starting a “Mothers for Gun Safety” organization which would ensure children are taught the proper response when they see a firearm.

For whatever reason, many children do not have proper exposure to or training about firearms. Since safety is the first consideration and best taught when young, the NRA has developed The Eddie Eagle GunSafe® Program. The purpose of the Eddie Eagle Program isn't to teach whether guns are good or bad, but rather to promote the protection and safety of children. The program makes no value judgments about firearms, and no firearms are ever used in the program. Like swimming pools, electrical outlets, matchbooks and household poison, they're treated simply as a fact of everyday life. With firearms found in about half of all American households, it's a stance that makes sense.

Eddie Eagle is never shown touching a firearm, and he does not promote firearm ownership or use. The program prohibits the use of Eddie Eagle mascots anywhere that guns are present. The Eddie Eagle Program has no agenda other than accident prevention -- ensuring that children stay safe should they encounter a gun. The program never mentions the NRA. Nor does it encourage children to buy guns or to become NRA members. The NRA does not receive any appropriations from Congress, nor is it a trade organization. It is not affiliated with any firearm or ammunition manufacturers or with any businesses that deal in guns and ammunition.

The Eddie Eagle GunSafe® Program teaches children in pre-K through third grade four important steps to take if they find a gun. These steps are presented by the program's mascot, Eddie Eagle®, in an easy-to-remember format consisting of the following simple rules:

If you see a gun:
Don't Touch.
Leave the Area.
Tell an Adult.
Begun in 1988, The Eddie Eagle GunSafe® Program has reached more than 20 million children -- in all 50 states. This program was developed through the combined efforts of such qualified professionals as clinical psychologists, reading specialists, teachers, curriculum specialists, urban housing safety officials, and law enforcement personnel.

Anyone may teach The Eddie Eagle GunSafe® Program, and NRA membership is not required. The program may be readily incorporated into existing school curriculum, taught in a one- to five-day format, and used to reach both levels or simply one or two grades. Materials available through this program are: student workbooks, 7-minute animated video (available on DVD or VHS), instructor guides, brochures, and student reward stickers. Program materials are also available in Spanish.

The NRA is committed to helping keep America's young children safe. In efforts to do so, they offer the program at a nominal fee. Schools, law enforcement agencies, hospitals, daycare centers, and libraries may be eligible to receive
grant funding to defray program costs. Grant funding is available in many states to these groups to cover the cost of all program curriculum materials.

However, even with training, children don’t always do the smart thing. I didn’t, and you didn’t either. (And if we were honest, we’d admit we still don’t) There will be many children who will die because they did something they were told not to do, went somewhere they were told not to go, or played with something they weren’t supposed to. They have minds of their own. But we should still teach them about the potential hazards they will face. And since parents can’t be with their children 24/7, sometimes that’s all that can be done.
(Some materials in this post are from the Eddie Eagle GunSafe Program website)

No comments: