Guns and kids


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zahc
May 20, 2005, 09:44 AM
I'm as pro gun as they come.

The other day though I delivered pizza to a house, and a kid about 8 years old answered the door with the check (with tip thankfully, usually when a kid answeres the door, BOHICA). There were other children, some smaller in there playing around. I sensed parental presence, but I didn't see any parents.

What I did see was some form of repeating shotgun leaning in the corner by the stairs. All I could see was the bottom so I couldn't tell its condition.

I also saw some mounted game birds.

It struck me as refreshing to see someone that owns guns and is not trying to hide it. However the gun and the kids thing bothered me. Do you think kids can be trained to be safe around guns at such a young age?

When I reached ten years old it was my implicit duty to keep the guns clean and make sure they were all working periodically. But if you had seen the same houshold, what kind of judgement would you have passed?

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ID_shooting
May 20, 2005, 09:51 AM
Depends on the parrents and how they taught thier kids. Growing up, we had no less than 5 loaded guns in various places around the house (very rual Idaho with no LEO presence and less-than-trustworthy neighbors). My brother and I never touched them without dad telling us we could, and we never did for fear of the wrath dad would impose.

Nio
May 20, 2005, 09:57 AM
But...you can't always trust other people's kids.

When my daughter was 3 1/2, I unloaded a few guns and let her handle them and we talked about them and what to do. I have an AirSoft gun that looks just like one of my carry weapons. I unloaded it and started leaving it places. On the coffee table, on the bar, etc., every other day or so. When she noticed it, she would come to me and say, "Daddy! You left your gun out again!"

From time to time she will come ask me if she can look at the guns, and I always oblige her. She's 4 1/2 now and keeps asking, "Daddy! When are you going to teach me how to shoot!?" :)

I don't leave any guns laying about where kids can see or reach them. That doesn't mean that I can't reach them, though. Most of my friend's children get the same lesson - most often from me - but I wouldn't take a chance that one of her friends hasn't gotten good lessons.

Nio

Ransom
May 20, 2005, 10:01 AM
I just think look back at how an awful lot of us grew up. Back before this "my precious baby" form of parenting came around we grew up with shotguns and rifles on the wall or your fathers carry piece sitting on the coffee table or whatever and we didnt even have to be told not to touch them, it was almost ingrained in us from birth.

I think the worst thing you can do as a parent is assume your kid needs your protection all the time. A gun sitting out might seem dangerous now but really its no different than an awful lot of us grew up and not only did we survive but we got a better understanding of firearms and respect them.

Amy
May 20, 2005, 10:35 AM
Where I grew up guns and kids never were a problem. There were seven of us kids, and there were guns all over the house. I got my first gun when I was ten, a Sears 20 ga. pump, and it lived by the front door, the shells were in the box on the top of the refrigerator.

We were raised to respect guns, and we knew what they could do. The younger kids never messed with the guns, they knew better. Everyone had guns where I grew up, it was just part of life in that area.

I was taught that I was personally responsible for everything and anything my gun did, and never forgot that. Also, if you couldn't take care of a gun you weren't going to have a gun. You kept your gun clean, or it would be taken away for a while until you wised up.

We lived in an old schoolhouse in the backwoods of Michigan, and the roads were often impassable in winter. I drew hunting duty, and had to put food on the table. None of the other kids wanted to deal with that.

I think if there is a problem with kids and guns in this country it has to do with poor parenting more than anything.

Amy

cracked butt
May 20, 2005, 08:39 PM
Uh, I had to give a little redirection to my 2 1/2 year old son this morning. :uhoh:

Last night he was in my workshop with me when I was packing up my shotgun and shells to go shoot some clays. He, having a bit of an idea of what a gun does though he's never seen one in action (little kids are like sponges when it comes to knowledge, I'm absolutley amazed every day by the somewhat abstract connects he makes) asked me what I was going to go shoot. I told him clay birds. He asked me if he could go shooting too, I said no, but when you are older I'll take you any time you want. He asked me about what else I shoot, as he's seen pictures of me with deer and ducks etc. I told him thaT I sometimes shoot deer and birds so we can eat them.

This morning he got out of bed at 6 am. Whenmy wife woke up, he went over and said to her "I shot you momma". :(
Mom says "Dad! you need to have a talk with your son."

I sat him down and talked to him about what we shoot and what we don't shoot. He seemed to understand. After I had the sitdown with him, I asked him if we ever shoot people, he said nooo, we don't shoot people.

Darn kids are smart, now that I've opened pandoras box at such a young age, I'll have to constantly reinforce safety with him and what we can shoot and what we can't shoot, but I think he'll turn out alright.

Standing Wolf
May 20, 2005, 08:49 PM
Kids have been around firearms and assorted other weapons for thousands of years. They're around kitchen knives and stoves and stairs and bath tubs, aren't they?

Sunray
May 21, 2005, 01:18 AM
"...Do you think kids can be trained to be safe around guns at such a young age?..." Yep. Teach a kid to respect firearms and he/she will.
"...I'll have to constantly reinforce safety with him and what we can shoot and what we can't shoot..." Exactly.

pax
May 21, 2005, 01:23 AM
I sat him down and talked to him about what we shoot and what we don't shoot. He seemed to understand. After I had the sitdown with him, I asked him if we ever shoot people, he said nooo, we don't shoot people.
Yeah, I had a very similar conversation with one of mine when he was about that age. Thought we had it all worked out.

One day not too long after, the kid came to me and said, "Mom, what if it's a Bad Guy? Can we shoot people if it's a Bad Guy?"

Careful how you answer that!

pax

entropy
May 21, 2005, 08:27 AM
I answered that with, "when I believe you are mature enough to do so, I will teach you how to do so, when to do it, and how to do it right." He's 11, and God help any armed robber he confronts, he will fire, and accurately!
Unfortunately, I had to teach him because his mother has not stepped up to the plate on this one; she will shoot (handguns only), but will not train to respond, even after me attempting to discuss several scenarios with her. She was amazed at how much thought I had put into the subject. (We fight how we train. I train physically at home some, and also nearly constantly with thinking "what if..." ). It forces one to raise one's level of Situational Awareness.

oneshooter
May 21, 2005, 11:25 AM
Both of my older sons started shooting BB guns at age 6, they were kept in the safe with the others. At age 8 they graduated to 22cal single shots, and also learned to clean and maintain them. They are now 20 and 18 and shoot Highpower and Practical Pistol. My youngest is 6 and has inherited a well used Red Ryder from his brothers. At this time he is the "Brass Monkey" whose job is to retreave, under mommas supervision, the brass between relays at the matches. Some of the other shooters also use his services, he gets to keep the brass. :D
Start em young, teach em well, watch em grow. It's all you can do.

Oneshooter
Livin in Texas

M2 Carbine
May 21, 2005, 12:04 PM
I was raised in the big city by my Grandparents.
They weren't "gun people" and I didn't know any parents that were.

That didn't stop us boys from getting guns, when we knew absolutely nothing about them. :uhoh:

I guess we were about 8 or 9 years old when one of the boys found what I think was a small 32 automatic and ammo.
We took it to a local woods and shot it. We were so dumb that one boy insisted that the case followed the bullet out the barrel.
We shot it on several different days.

A little later I found a 32 revolver and bag of bullets that my Grandfather had hidden.
Again several of us boys shot the gun several times.
The last time I shot it I dropped the gun and broke off half of the hammer spur. I put the gun back in hiding hoping my Grandfather wouldn't notice it was broke.

He drove an ice truck and someone had probably given him the gun as a back payment on ice, so he knew nothing about guns and didn't notice it was broke.
I still have the gun although it was burned in a fire.

Something else you don't hear about now-a-days is kids making guns. A boy that couldn't make a "Zip" gun was bad mechanically challenged.
I guess the kids today are given so much spending money they can just buy guns. :rolleyes:

So I can tell you for a fact. The way to protect your kids around guns is to teach them about the guns and gun safety.

The way to get the kids hurt is to make the guns a big secret.

Guns_and_Labs
May 21, 2005, 12:32 PM
I don't leave any guns laying about where kids can see or reach them. That doesn't mean that I can't reach them, though. Most of my friend's children get the same lesson - most often from me - but I wouldn't take a chance that one of her friends hasn't gotten good lessons.
Ditto.

Black92LX
May 21, 2005, 02:11 PM
i grew up with guns all around my grandparents home (where i spent a lot of time) from the time i was little i can remember my grampa telling all about them and what they can do. he taught me to respect them. i knew where they were i knew where the ammo was but i never thought about going and touching the gun with out asking im first.

ewb45acp
May 21, 2005, 04:07 PM
When I was growing up, there were always guns in the house. I knew where they were and I knew not to mess with them. I was taught respect.
Now my kids are growing up in a house with guns. They know where they are, and not to mess with them. They are taught respect.

1911 guy
May 22, 2005, 02:46 AM
The fact that there were mounts you saw on the walls tells us that this was a hunters home, so his kids are probably being raised the same as a lot of us were. I haven't heard "bohica" since I got off active duty! :D

torpid
May 22, 2005, 03:25 AM
But...you can't always trust other people's kids.

Repeated for truth, with the addition that the only experiences that someone else's kids may have with guns is seeing how they are misused in movies and tv.

Remember to use common sense with your firearms, because if unsupervised folks have access to them, they may not.



.

kngflp
May 22, 2005, 02:38 PM
I am only 23 and have no kids but I do have a nephew. After you talk to them about guns and how serious they are, what do you do when they are playing? I know kids are smarter than we give them credit for, but when you see a kid playing army or cops and robbers what do you say? I was thinking about toy guns and their goods and evils. Most little boys have toy guns, but how do you teach them the rules when they have a toy that looks just the same that they are allowed to break all the rules with? I remember being very young and getting a suction cup dart gun, I was told that since it actually shot something not to ever point it at anything living. Some of the gun games I played when younger got pretty heated, I remember we had uzis, m-60s, revolvers, and autos and that was back when they really looked real too. How do we teach kids to distinguish between real and make believe.

Farmer00-1
May 22, 2005, 02:52 PM
I was raised to be safe around guns and so are my sons.So are my nieces and nephews. So I'd say yes,children can be safe around firearms.

Ed

MikeIsaj
May 22, 2005, 11:32 PM
Children can be safe around firearms but, if your children have friends, you don't know what they have been taught.

I know most here have been around guns as children and knew at a young age how to safely handle them. The difference between then and now is that we were also taught to respect other peoples homes and belongings. A gun could be hung on a coatrack and we would not touch it because it wasn't ours. Not today. Almost every friend my kids have brought home needed some remedial teaching on basic good manners and respect of others property and privacy. That's why my weapons are unloaded and locked up when company comes.

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