Stepdad's Thoughts

My thought and feelings.

Children and guns

Growing up I was always around guns and knives. I was either hunting or fishing and needed each for the tasks at hand. I never had a fear of either, I was taught early that a knife or a gun could hurt you and it was not a toy. I was given times when I could hold and/or use both. By the time I was 10 or so I had my own gun cabinet in my run which housed a .22 cal. rifle and a 410 shotgun, oh and a BB gun. My parents had no concerns I would use them improperly.

My step children did not grow up with guns in the house so when I met their mother I began teaching them the respect needed to be around them. I spent time showing them the weapons I had and tried to explain the dangers. My step son did a project showing proper gun safety when he was in the third grade. He used pictures of my .22 rifle and the manual. I was a bit worried the teachers may frown on the topic, they did not and he got a pretty good grade.

As time progressed I began taking both kids to the gun range to let them shoot and become more familiar with guns in general. My step daughter was scared of the loud noises more so than the gun itself. All the other shooters made it hard for her to go more than the one time. My step son would stay there all day if he could. He has become very proficient with the .22 rifle and the .243 rifle I bought him for hunting.

I have been able to take the mystery away from the gun for my step kids. They understand what they are for and the dangers associated to guns. We don’t have the worries that some people have with guns and kids in the house. That being said all my guns are kept in the safe to prevent any accidental access for all of us.

My step son now enjoys hunting; this will be his second year, with me. I look forward to spending more time in the woods with him.

My step daughter and my wife just completed a driving and gun defense course that I believe has taught both of them many things. I can’t wait to talk with them over dinner to get all the details. From what I have been told of the course I am jealous. My wife has stated that when her son gets to driving age he will be talking a similar course.

My step daughter and wife went though basic gun safety then were put through a house clearing scenario and shooting from the car and through the car. I am guessing the fear of the gun shot repercussion is no longer a problem for my step daughter.

Children and guns and the safety required is simple; teach them the right thing to do, the dangers associated and they will be ok.

The NRA has three rules that are very good to know:

  • Always keep the gun pointed in a safe direction. Whether you are shooting or simply handling a gun, never point it at yourself or others. Common sense will tell you which direction is the safest. Outdoors, it is generally safe to point the gun toward the ground, or, if you are at a shooting range, toward the target. Indoors, be mindful of the fact that a bullet can penetrate ceilings, floors, walls, windows, and doors.
  • Always keep your finger off the trigger until ready to shoot. When holding a gun, rest your trigger finger outside the trigger guard alongside the gun. Until you are actually ready to fire, do not touch the trigger.
  • Always keep the gun unloaded until ready to use. If you do not know how to check to see if a gun is unloaded, leave it alone. Carefully secure it, being certain to point it safely and to keep your finger off the trigger, and seek competent assistance.

October 12, 2009 Posted by | General, Kids, Parenting | , , , , , | 1 Comment