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1 less gun for grandkids to worry about

Discussion in 'Legal' started by Battlespace, Jul 31, 2007.

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  1. Battlespace

    Battlespace Member

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    "Maybe we should buy a gun," I told my husband.

    As I waited for him to answer, I listened to the birds chirping. I looked toward the sky, hoping for rain.

    "No, we shouldn't," he said finally.

    "Listen to this," I said, picking up Sunday's paper. I read aloud from the front-page story, "Forced to Kill," about four Charlotte people who had each shot someone trying to protect themselves.

    The killings were legal. Necessary. The police said so.

    I could slip instantly into the shoes of one south Charlotte man, who woke to the sound of the doorbell seven years ago. When he heard loud banging, he grabbed a revolver and ran downstairs.

    A young man had thrown an iron patio chair against the window, shattering the glass. The older man fired two safety shots. When the young man swung the chair again, the older man aimed a third time and fired, killing the intruder.

    I could imagine us in the exact situation -- without a gun -- defenseless.

    Not in my house

    "Can't you see that happening to us?" I said."Sure, I can," my husband said. "But we have an alarm system. And we're not getting a gun."

    "Your reason?"

    "Two reasons," he said. "Our granddaughters."

    That stopped me cold.

    About 200 people in the United States kill someone each year in self-defense.

    But how many die each year -- innocently -- from guns?

    Let me tell you.

    In the 10 years ending in 2006, 486 children under age 18 in North Carolina, alone, died from gun-related injuries.

    Amazing the figure is that low, considering that 82,000 kids in this state are exposed each year to unsafely stored firearms.

    Thanks to my husband's unruffled thinking, our grandchildren won't be among them -- not in our house.

    Unforgettable near miss

    Our conversation triggered a memory, one I usually manage to tamp down.

    I was 9 years old, visiting a neighbor a year or so older, whose father had been a colonel in World War II.

    Her mother ran out to the grocery store, leaving us alone for about half an hour.

    As soon as she'd pulled away, my friend unearthed her father's gun -- a relic from the war -- ornate, as I recall. Official-looking, heavy.

    It's not loaded, she said, pointing the gun at me.

    We sat there, each of us cross-legged in our chair, about eight feet apart. She tried to squeeze the trigger.

    I felt no fear. She'd said it wasn't loaded. Why doubt her?

    She squeezed and squeezed, still pointing. The trigger didn't budge. When she heard her mother in the driveway, she ran to put the gun back.

    My friend called the next day, tearful. Her father had found her out, and spanked her. The gun, she whispered, had been loaded after all.

    I sat speechless, the phone to my ear.

    She was lucky. I was luckier.

    In our house, we'll remain unarmed.

    Defenseless is better than discovering someone we love dead.

    IN MY OPINION by Dannye Romine Powell
     
  2. lamazza

    lamazza Member

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    What a heart worming story..its all for the children. Until some dark hearted
    psycho breaks into your house and you only have a kitchen knife in your hands. What about the children then?
    Does it take so much effort to teach your children the safe handling of firearms? Lady are you that pathetic and lazy that you would endanger your family by being the defenseless victim?
     
  3. Evil Monkey

    Evil Monkey member

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    I lock my guns up and there's no way kids can get to them. Why can't you do the same?

    It's called responsibility. You probably are a responsible person, but you lack logic.
     
  4. joab

    joab Member

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    Quick someone do the math for her
    486 children out of 82,000 unsafely stored firearms, what would that percentage be

    What would the percentage be in her household if she was not one of the unsafe gun storers

    The logic of these people escapes me
    but logic seems to escape them too
     
  5. Agouti

    Agouti Member

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    Just store the guns unloaded, and keep the loaded magazine on you. Sounds like the safest answer to me.

    And you don't point guns at people, period. It's a crime here in Michigan, even if you don't mean to hurt them. Also, always make sure it's unloaded, always check first... and that doesn't mean by pulling the trigger! Take out the magazine, if your gun has a detachable magazine, or simply take out all the bullets, depending on your type of firearm. Then make sure the chamber is empty. After visually inspecting the chamber, I find a good safety precaution is to stick my finger into the action, and look into the chamber from the business end -down the barrel. Your fingernail should reflect enough light, considering the chamber is facing a light source, to be visible. However always check the chamber first before doing this, I cannot stress this enough. This part of the test is only to make sure there is no debris or bullet (the actual projectile from the cartridge) stuck in the barrel. You have no need to fear that any lead projectile caught in there should be coming out at you, as you have already checked the chamber for the actual cartridge. (Of course the only reason you should ever have any lead projectile barrel is that the cartridge was wrongly loaded -once in a great while handloaders forget to load powder into the cartridge). This could be a potential problem is you fire another bullet or perhaps a blank off if there is already a bullet in the barrel.
    (The problem with a bullet going off with a live round is that you may damage the barrel, and a problem with a blank round is that you may be shooting when you don't wish to, such as a movie prop or a starter pistol. Bruce Lee's son, Brandon Lee died this way -there was a fragment in the barrel, and it went into his spine from a blank, and killed him!)
     
  6. bowline

    bowline Member

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    This is a signed editorial 'opinion piece' in the Charlotte Observer.
    Man, it is a good thing that rapists, thugs, and thieves don't read the paper! With a phone book and a few minutes, they'd have an address to go with the 'certified gun free' home.
    Its' a good thing that rapists aren't interested in very young girls.
    Darn it - get a pistol or shotgun, and TEACH your kids how to handle and use it safely. It could save their life.
    Its' worse than refusing to teach a kid anything about driving until they turn 18 and get a car.
     
  7. Battlespace

    Battlespace Member

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    As I posted this article I am in a house with two teenage daughters. (The youngest of five - we are rapidly becoming empty nesters). Both of them went through Eddie Eagle several years ago. We all go to the range every few weeks, and they can hold their own with most "adults" there. They do not hesitate to correct anyone for safety violations.
     
  8. brentn

    brentn Member

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    Yep, keep in a safe with the ammo in there as well and you will not have a problem. For quick access, get a handgun safe with a fingerprint reader, one touch and she pops open and grab said gun. The only way I would ever bring a gun into a house with kids, is if it was always locked up and they didn't know about it.
    Kids are curious as hell, I mean when I was about 8-10 I knew my dad had a shotgun and whenever he was out, I would ALWAYS sneak a peak at it. Pull it out, check the chambers, fool around. Yea kids are dumb, including myself back then, but I gaurentee you that if the kids know you have a weapon in the house, the first thing they are going to do when your out is look for it.
    I did when I was little.
     
  9. Bartholomew Roberts

    Bartholomew Roberts Moderator Emeritus

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    Great example of using statistics to paint a big lie. Let's examine the stat mangling.

    First, let's skew things towards the anti argument by not addressing all the cases of self-defense where someone is only injured or the crime is stopped by the mere display of the firearm (98% of all cases if I recall Gary Kleck's figures correctly). Let's only discuss those cases where someone is killed in self-defense. That reduces self-defense to the smallest possible number.

    First, notice the slick juxtaposition of words... she says "how may die each year -- innocently -- from guns?" Then she goes on to give a number of gun deaths for the entire decade hoping the reader won't notice that she has pumped up her numbers x10. Notice she also didn't mention that even by her own figures the number of self-defense uses would be 2000.

    Second, die innocently? Well there were nowhere near 486 accidental gun deaths for children under 18 in North Carolina over the last decade. So right away, we know she must be including suicides and/or homicides in her figures.

    Hmmm...according to the WISQARS report from CDC, the total number of firearm deaths (accidental, homicide and suicide) for North Carolina in 2004 was 50 (5 accidental, 28 homicides, 15 suicides and 2 of undetermined intent). If you look at the last ten years, then you find that she is including suicide and criminal homicide in the number of "innocent" deaths. Either way you can see the playbook - claim "innocent" deaths that include teen criminal homicides among drug gangs in order to pump up the numbers and scare the uninformed from gun ownership.
     
  10. SaMx

    SaMx Member

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    someone should write a second editorial to correct the first one.
     
  11. scurtis_34471

    scurtis_34471 Member

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    I have a 9 year-old and a 2 year-old. The 9 year-old goes shooting with me three or four times a month. She knows the 4 Rules cold and even nitpicks my gun handling. She is competent and safe with her rifle and knows the basics of handling a pistol as well. She even helps me clean the guns once in awhile. The rule is very simple. She can handle guns anytime she wants to under supervision. All she has to do is ask. Guns are so commonplace to her that she has no curiosity and feels no need to experiment with them behind my back. I do not worry about her with guns.

    The 2 year-old is too young to understand. She is even too young to reliably teach not to touch guns. That is why I keep my handguns in a locking steel box when they are not on my person. She has no access to them, so there is zero chance of an accident. When she turns five, I will buy her a .22 Cricket and start taking her to the range too.
     
  12. the pistolero

    the pistolero Member

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    Whoever wrote that, her husband ain't much of a man. And that's really all I can say without going any more off the high road. Pathetic, just absolutely pathetic. *spit*
     
  13. Standing Wolf

    Standing Wolf Member in memoriam

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    The most valuable slaves are those who fashion their own leg irons.
     
  14. Silver Bullet

    Silver Bullet Member

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    How many of those were gang-related ?

    As Mr. Roberts points out, this is outrageously disingenuous and deliberately misleading.
     
  15. obxned

    obxned Member

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    Responsible gun owners who teach their kids and grand kids firearms safety are not amoung the grim statistics listed above.

    Where are the statistics about the deaths and injuries prevented without firing a shot?
     
  16. Agouti

    Agouti Member

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    Bah, when I was 10, I understood the importance of guns, but was bored to death by them. Guns were there to stop criminals and were a right of any free man -that was what I knew. It was something inborn. I was the exact opposite of most people I guess, heh. I was never really curious about them.

    Of course, I understood the fun of them when I got glasses at 14.
     
  17. Thefabulousfink

    Thefabulousfink Member

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    I fixed her last sentence for her.

    We are defenseless once someone dies, there is no way to arm ourselves against that horror. This is equally true for the death of a child by accident, or a loved one killed by an intruder. We can, however, arm ourselves and our loved ones against the many causes of deaths. As Ms. Powell pointed out, a gun can be vital against a determined intruder. Ms. Powell saw the threat and sought to arm her family against it. Then Mr. Powell pointed out another threat, that of their granddaughters finding the gun and shooting themselves or others. Why didn't Ms. Powell seek to arm her granddaughters against such a threat? Storing the gun in a quick-access safe and teaching the children gun safety would be all that is required.
    Unfortunately Ms. Powell and her husband are still defenseless against a home intruder and their granddaughters are defenseless in their ignorance if they should encounter a gun at a friend's house.
     
  18. target1911

    target1911 Member

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    I am curious as to how many KIDS have used a gun for SD? I remember a story a few years ago where a 14yo boy shot and killed a BG that was stabbing his dad. Shot em with a dear rifle. I reas a gun rag last month that had many stories of kids even younger than that using guns for SD.
    You shouldnt shield the children from guns because they will come in contact with them sooner than you think. EDUCATE them so they know how to handle the situation ( SD or a friend showing off dads gun) safely should it arise.
    My best friend has 9yo twin boys. Both of them shoot every gun he owns (300win mag, 2 12ga pumps, 2 1911 45's and many more) and has thier own 22s that they dont dare touch without an adult.
    I also know that if someone broke in and hurt Dad, the BG would be sorry cuz these boys can shoot what they aim at.
     
  19. MattB000

    MattB000 Member

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    If your only two options are to leave a loaded gun on the coffee table for the kids to play with, or have no gun, then you probably made the right decision. However, we could consider EDUCATING the kids along with SAFE gun storage. That way, if something were to happen and your home was invaded you would be able to protect yourself and your family.
     
  20. fletcher

    fletcher Member

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    Being defenseless could have even worse results.
     
  21. Prince Yamato

    Prince Yamato Member

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    That was one of the dumbest articles that I have ever read. There's no logic behind it. "Defenseless is better than dead". What kind of dumbass logic is that? No defenses = dead, in many cases. This is what happens when emotions cloud reason. Oh, and on top of the the author signs the article. You've just invited criminals to attack you!
     
  22. brickeyee

    brickeyee Member

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    "In the 10 years ending in 2006, 486 children under age 18 in North Carolina, alone, died from gun-related injuries"

    Even the CDC ends the 'children category at around age 13.
    Sounds like we rolled in a bunch of teenage gang bangers to inflate the numbers, and then they needed 10 years to get it up high enough to seem large.
    NATIONWIDE there are less than 200 children killed in firearms accidents PER YEAR.
     
  23. ZeSpectre

    ZeSpectre Member

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    Actually, defenseless can equal far, FAR, worse than dead. I wasn't an LEO for very long but I saw a few things that would make most here lose their cookies. (One particular case made ME lose 'em).

    I am absolutely certain that in those cases the victims were BEGGING for death, it being far preferable to the horrors they were being subject to.

    I'm always reminded of the old "hippie commune" setups where they wanted to go and "live in peace and harmony" with nature, not realizing that nature doesn't give a flick about "peace and harmony", just survival and balance.
     
  24. 748

    748 Member

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    +1 for what ZeSpectre said, their are fates worse then death.
    When seconds count remember the police are only 16 minutes away on average :uhoh: ...
    Remember any thing can happen.
    When I was in Japan in 2004 or 2005 their was an 8 year old and his mom at home alone (not to far form where I lived in Maine). When their dog went nuts they started looking out windows to see what was going on.
    They found a wild eyed looking racoon had their cat up a tree, while it was eating the cats food and drinking its water in the middle of the afternoon and went on trying to pick a fight with the dog who was in a kennel in the back yard.
    The boy and his dad went shooting all most every weekend in the back yard with the boys single shot NEF shot gun in 20ga. So the mom unlocked the gun and got the ammo and handed it over to her son. And about 1 minute later there was -1 rabid racoon in the world.
    I think I even got an email form the Brady bunch about how it was an out rage and how the mom should be put in jail for endangering her son and the normal anti gun BS.
    I say, good shot.
     
  25. brentn

    brentn Member

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    heh.. yea but still shooting in the city is pretty dumb most of the time, especially a young one doing it. What if he misses?
    Although I can easily see the anti-gun nuts making a huge deal out of it, I say its irresponsible but certainly not an outrage.
     
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