Arming children with the facts about guns
ALBANY — Should children be allowed to handle guns?
In Rensselaer County, two probation officers say yes — although it is unclear if the practice is legal.
Court papers obtained by the Times Union show that two of the county's probation officers said under oath that they allowed their young children to handle their unloaded service weapons as a way to satisfy the children's curiosity about guns.Read a little further down in the article, and the issue becomes clear - there's a nasty divorce, and the estranged husband is trying to paint his wife as an unfit parent because she showed their children her sidearm. You, sir, are an asshole of the highest order. This will wind up resulting in a stupid ruling with predictably stupid results - and there's a more than fair chance that someone will get hurt because their parent was not allowed to teach them. That's all on you, jerk.
Children are highly curious, highly intelligent beings. There will come a day when they put two and two together and realize that "parent being a cop" = "gun in the house". When that day comes, which is better? The children knowing nothing about firearms and exploring on their own, or the children having been taught about firearms from an early age? I think we all know the answer to that one.
My dad was a MA state cop. He had me loading and unloading his service revolver from the time I was like four years old (yes, I blame my dad for both my gun nuttery and my love of Smith & Wesson revolvers). He knew that there would come a day when my friends would ask about his gun - it's a given. "Your dad's a cop, right? Let's see his gun!" Dad rightly figured that it was better his children know the dangers inherent therein and handle the gun properly than to hide it and hope that we never found it.
It's not surprising that this is an issue, though; not in Albany, New York. Fear of an inanimate object overrules basic safety considerations - it's amazing there aren't more chainsaw accidents if people are this afraid of firearms. It's discouraging, though, to read a story like this - firearms are not nuclear weapons nor complex calculus; it does not take much to familiarize oneself with the proper operation and how to handle it safely. The more afraid of firearms people are, the less likely they are to know what to do when they come across them.
The cynic in me can't help but wonder if this is a feature, not a bug, for the gun grabbers. Children knowing how to properly handle firearms - like knowing to leave the room if they find one like the Eddie Eagle program from the NRA teaches them - don't have tragic accidents that can be used to further agendas. A kid seeing a firearm and cordoning off the area until an adult can be found to retrieve it might make the local newspaper as a quick blurb - a pre-teen finding his dad's unsecured shotgun in the back of a closet and shooting a sibling is a national tragedy.
I do have to wonder how many of the "don't teach kids about guns" crowd subscribe to the "free condoms in grammar school because they're going to do it anyways" line of thinking...
That is all.