Firearms in the United States are a fact of life. Even by the most conservative estimates, throw a rock in a crowded room and you’ve got a 50/50 chance of hitting someone who owns a firearm. Given the fact that a large portion of the American population own or are exposed to firearms on a regular basis, good common sense would dictate that we should be teaching children to safely handle and respect guns. Again, just common sense. At least it is for everyone except the champions of “Common Sense,” Moms Demand Action (a wholly owned subsidiary of Mayors Against Illegal Guns, i.e. Michael Bloomberg). In their book, teaching kids gun safety is “atrocious” . . .
Yahoo had an article about a firearms safety class that’s taught in schools. It’s the standard NRA Eddie Eagle safety course which teaches the “stop, don’t touch, leave the room, tell an adult” should children encounter an unsecured firearm. This isn’t teaching kids to be little Rambos — in fact, it’s the exact opposite. This is teaching them stay away from guns.
You’d think that Moms Demand Action would approve of a lesson about running away from guns. But according to them, the fact that any information whatsoever is being provided about guns (even instructions to run away) is beyond the pale.
But according to Jennifer Hoppe, deputy director of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, a campaign of the Everytown for Gun Safety Action Fund, the best way to reduce gun deaths among children is to be keep the weapons out of children’s hands altogether. “It’s atrocious to put the onus of gun safety onto children — this is an adult problem,” Hoppe tells Yahoo Parenting. “Every gun that’s gotten into the hands of a child has first been under the control of an adult. A program that tries to dodge that is disingenuous.”
What’s more, she adds, “Accidental gun deaths among children are not ‘accidental.’ They’re preventable tragedies.” The organization’s new campaign Be Smart encourages parents to keep guns locked up, ask about unsecured guns before allowing children to play in someone else’s home, and recognize the link between teen suicide and access to guns.
“After all, you can tell a kid to be careful,” she says. “But you’ll still childproof your home, right?”
Yes, you do childproof your home. But you also teach your kids not to touch power outlets, that the stove is hot, and not to get into Daddy’s liquor cabinet. There is no such thing as “childproof” — children are ingenious little devils and will find ways to get into every nook and cranny of your home. Keeping them ignorant about things like guns only increases the mystery about them and makes kids want to touch them even more.
We teach children about drugs in programs like D.A.R.E. even though drugs are illegal because we know that no matter how hard we try kids will still encounter then and be tempted. Wouldn’t it just be, well, common sense to similarly equip them with information about guns if (as Moms Demand Action claim) the goal is to stop accidental shootings among kids? What’s wrong with providing children this basic safety information that doesn’t even have a pro-gun slant?
The problem is that even basic safety information is counter to the long term goals of Michael Bloomberg and his merry band of gun grabbers. The grand plan is to ostracize gun owners, make ownership as difficult as possible, and try to kill off gun ownership with a thousand tiny cuts. Providing any acknowledgement that firearms even exist (beyond the fact that they’re scary and dangerous) is a tacit acknowledgement that guns are an everyday object and undermines their message. They would rather withhold the safety training and have more children die than back a program that actually teaches gun safety to those who need it the most.
How “common sense” is that?