larry_bergeson

“I think (students) should know what gun safety is and the dangers around a gun, but I’m not always in favor of having everything addressed in school. It just seems like a lot of this could be addressed just as easy if not better at home around families and parents.” – Washington County School District Superintendent Larry Bergeson in Utah students may soon be getting lessons on gun safety [at thespectrum.com]

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59 Responses to Quote of the Day: The Proper Place to Teach Gun Safety?

  1. Does he mean real gun safety or “gun safety?”

    You know, the “guns, ooga booga” anti folks’ gun safety.

    • Political indoctrination ie. “the ooga booga” does no good, like most liberal ideas. But, guns exist, so if the government cared whether you lived or died, of course they would have real 4 rules based gun safety in public schools. If it saves one little gang banger’s life, it’s worth it.

  2. Of course this would be best addressed at home by the parents…just like sex ed, how to balance a budget/checkbook, how to take care of a child, and many other life skills that are taught in schools today. But modern parents are too lazy to teach their children those skills and disciplines; they just rely on the good ol’ public school system to teach their kids everything they need to know.

    • I am a “modern” parent and I have taught all of those things to my son and more. I have also never been called lazy, at least to my face. My son has experienced both home schooling and the disaster which is public schooling and I believe his is better off having experienced both.

      He got to learn (by direct experience) a lot more about how the real world works with regards to people attempting to control and indoctrinate him with complete nonsense. Showing him the areas his public school has gotten completely wrong is a very useful exercise and just out of high school he is much more informed about how the world works than many adults because of it.. Correcting the misinformation of the public school system can be tedious but also very rewarding and my son gets it.

      • “I am a “modern” parent and I have taught all of those things to my son and more. I have also never been called lazy, at least to my face. “

        Then I don’t think he’s talking about you. It seems like he’s talking about the parents that do BOTH of the following:

        (1) Drop their children off at public school for a government education

        AND

        (2) Don’t stay involved in that education at home; ie, leave it ALL up to the “Schools.” No oversight of homework, no challenges to the teachers/schools when they do something stupid, etc.

        I think we can agree that the term “lazy” applies to folks in that set.

        • I agree. He was definitely not describing me or a lot of other parents. I just took exception to his assertion that modern parents are lazy period. He didn’t indicate that any were not.

        • Yeah, I guess that wasn’t perfectly clear; I should have put “modern” in quotes. I have a 3-year-old, and when I say “modern” parent, I mean the same thing as the New York Times’ “Modern Man” shtick.

        • Thanks for that clarification Chief Master. I understand what you are saying with that follow up and agree. My reaction was from repeatedly hearing about how horrible all parents of this generation are which often comes from senior citizens and those that have no children or any experience parenting. The latter really think they have parenting all figured out.

          I am very proud of what my son has become and the efforts of my wife and I to raise him.

        • I hear you, GusMac. I hope when our boy is grown, my wife and I can also look back and be confident that we set him on the best path we could.

    • There are cases where a parent can’t provide firearm education because said parent knows nothing about them.

      Such was my case; when I was both old and interested enough, I chose to start taking courses and self-educate.

    • You are definitely on to something. I live in a part of Lancaster County, PA that has a superb public school system (a very far cry from the majority of public education) and yet we still have plenty of private schools and home schoolers. As I stated in one of my posts, I’m not sure if it’s sloth, apathy or just plain dumb, but there’s a growing portion of our populace that believes, whether they realize it or not, that children are to be turned over to the all knowing state for education, and that the state, has fundamentally displaced them in that role. Parents must take responsibility for their child’s education -whether they choose to delegate it to a public school, private school, parochial school, homeschool or any other seat of learning. The parent is ultimately the responsible party for both process and outcome.

  3. Well, if he implying that their choice of instructors may introduce anti-2nd amendment dogma in their classes, I agree. But, I think school is the right place to teach proper firearm safety and marksmanship. At one time, the schools of the rich taught fencing. In the early years, it was not taught as a sport, it was taught as an essential self-defense skill.

  4. Most parents are not only too lazy, but the thing that precedes that, being too stupid. If they have any exposure to firearms, they are the ones who buy a handgun and leave it in the bedside table et al, never train, never clean and nary give it another thought. This is of course their right, but having a nation of well informed, well armed and well trained citizens it does not make. Worst of all, there’s no fixing it. As the saying goes, you can’t fix stupid, and you’re sorely, and ever increasingly outnumbered. Trump’s popularity is evidence of this. We’ve come from Goldwater and Buckley now to Trump and Palin.

  5. Hey we can have the PE coach teach it or the RSO. I may have found a new career.
    We could march around the room chanting, “This is my rifle, this is my gun, this one’s for killin, this one’s for fun! Hey kids here are the four rules of gun safety, now lets watch Lethal Weapon… Bam!

  6. What’s wrong with learning gun safety both at home and in school? Or am I not allowed to teach my kids math since they learned it in school?

    • There’s certainly nothing wrong with it in principle.

      In practice at the present time, however, well, you don’t really KNOW what they are being taught about “gun safety” at school. In today’s political climate, and the political climate in which your child’s teachers were trained at university, “gun safety” will likely amount to little more than “Guns are icky. People that like guns are criminals.”

      A return of gun safety education to schools like it was done once a upon a time? Sure. Why not.

      But…the ultimate responsibility for a child’s education lies with the parent not the state, so even if it IS taught in school, it’s still on the parents to know it is really taught, and taught properly.

  7. As a kid in Utah, I had to take a hunters safety course before I could get my license. The state also sponsored survival classes.

    j.

  8. Teaching children about firearm safety at home is a great idea. The only problem with that idea is that it fails to account for the children whose parents do not own firearms, do not know firearm safety, and thus will never teach firearm safety to their children.

    Depending on your source, something like one-half of homes in the United States do NOT have a firearm and the occupants quite likely lack the knowledge to teach firearm safety. When you also consider how most homes lack firearms and training knowledge in areas like New York City, Washington D.C., Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and large swaths of Maryland, New Jersey, and Hawaii, you realize that Mr. Bergeson is condemning most children in those areas to never receive any firearms safety training.

    Why would anyone ever want to condemn most children in large, densely populated regions of our nation to never receive firearms safety training? I can only think of three possible explanations: you don’t care about children in those areas, you don’t view injuries with firearms as being a significant problem, or you want lots of injuries with firearms as an impetus to ban firearms from society. Which is it?

    • “Mr. Bergeson is condemning most children in those areas to never receive any firearms safety training.”

      Is that a bug or a feature?

      Not knowing anything about Mr. Bergeson, I’ll reserve judgment on that for the moment for him particularly. But, my nascent cynicism is waking up.

    • Love that video! Growing up in rural Western MA in the early 80s my father taught us all how to shoot, storage, maintenance, safety.
      I remember half the trucks in the highschool parking lot having rifles hanging in the back widows.
      Now a days the family structure is more “progressive” meaning more diverse but also means less traditional values, so we shouldn’t be surprised by parents not teaching kids about guns, since according to the progressives in charge, they are evil!

      • The progs have owned the propaganda sphere surrounding this topic for decades. In 2015, if you say you’re in favor of “traditional family values” to most people, you automatically get painted as homophobic. This is because too many Republicans shot themselves in the feet by mouthing off about how gay/lesbian parents are incapable of being real parents, which isn’t true at all. What is true is that a two-parent household, be they straight or gay it really doesn’t matter, is absolutely critical to raising a kid(s) properly.

        Oh sure Jared Leto types come along once in a while, but they’re a rarity. You’re at a significant disadvantage if you don’t have the yin-yang complex at home from a very early age. Progs obviously hate this fact, and praise single moms everywhere because 21st century feminism isn’t about empowering women to be self-reliant at all. It’s about empowering them to replace historical husband dependency with outright state dependency, and in turn, fill their brains with anti-gun rhetoric just like kids in public schools today.

        • … mouthing off about how gay/lesbian parents are incapable of being real parents, which isn’t true at all. What is true is that a two-parent household, be they straight or gay it really doesn’t matter, is absolutely critical to raising a kid(s) properly.

          Nonsense. Men and women instill unique and valuable characteristics, respectively, in a family. Any child who grows up in a family without both a mother and father grows up with deficits, however minor those deficits may be … or their single parent, extended family, and friends have to put in overtime to make up the difference.

          Children who spend their first three years of life in an orphanage without constant, attentive care from the same caregiver grow up with profound deficits. This is a FACT. (Reference the horror that were and maybe still are Romanian orphanages.) That is obviously an extreme case with extreme consequences. More subtle cases (children who grow up without both a mother and father) have more subtle consequences. Nevertheless, there are consequences. What determines the degree of consequences is how much constructive assistance the child receives from outside sources.

        • It’s not that growing up in a gay bar doesn’t possibly matter. The problem with many Republicans, is that they fall hook, line and sinker for the idiocy that them having a say in how other people’s kids are being raised, is important enough to warrant government and legal involvement. When they, were they not expendable progressive trash at heart, would realize that what they should focus on, is caring for their own kids, and getting rid of government.

        • Stuki Moi,

          The problem with many Republicans, is that they fall hook, line and sinker for the idiocy that them having a say in how other people’s kids are being raised, is important enough to warrant government and legal involvement.

          Ooh. I like that. I am the first one to tout that Progressives should not dictate how I raise my children. Turn about is fair play as they say … and if I demand that Progressive government keep their noses out of our homes, it is only fair that I also demand that Conservative government keep their noses out of our homes as well.

    • When I was that age, I could field strip and re-assemble my Dad’s M1 Garand even faster, although it was a simpler process. I taught myself out of a military training manual.Years later, we had to learn the process when I was in Aviation Officer Candidate School. I amazed the drill instructor! He had me teach the rest of the class! I went on to compete with the M1 on a Navy rifle and pistol team.

      I think the kids in the video are fast, but sloppy. No two did it the same way and parts were flying everywhere. The first gal did not remove the magazine first, which is a major error. She could have been stripping a loaded weapon! Does anyone know why their field strip includes removing the flash hider? I’ve never seen that as part of a field strip.

  9. A staggering amount of sexually active people, both adult and children, have no clue about the dangers of unprotected sex. Please don’t teach the children about guns, I fear what would not be conveyed.

  10. Given the mandate for using Common Core for math, science, English, etc, I would shudder to think what Common Core would do for ‘Gun Safety’, regardless of whether it was pro or anti 2A. Probably something like ‘Pull trigger to see if gun is loaded’ – ie, something that will technically work, but is not a generally approved method of addressing the problem (or more specifically, not how it’s been taught for a hundred years or more).

  11. This guy gets it. He sees the 30+ year march of progressives forcing public education on the American kid as a surrogate parent, and thinks the real ones at home can do better. I do think having a gun safety/marksmanship course in all public high schools would convert a whole bunch of fence-sitters, and give kids whose parents simply can’t afford to just go out and buy a gun/ammo a reason to start saving up. If such a program ever had any hopes of becoming reality, it would have to be optional, so the progs who deny human nature can just keep their heads perpetually buried in the sand.

    • I say make it mandatory… A “well regulated militia” requires that all children be trained in basic marksmanship and tactics. Turn their militia argument against them.

    • Whether he gets it or not remains to be seen. His statement could just as easily reflect a hoplophobic mentality, that children shouldn’t be exposed to those evil guns, and he doesn’t want talk of them in “his” school.

      I’d like to see a list of other things he thinks are more appropriately addressed at home rather than by the schools. My cynical nature suspects it’s a very, very short list, and there aren’t many other topics he’s willing to defer to parental judgment on.

      • I’m aware that could also be his attitude, but he doesn’t seem to give off the knee-jerk “eww guns icky!” vibe so many others do, which is why I didn’t read him as the typical anti. Then again, it’s not the typical (read: loud useful idiots who serve as a distraction from real threats) we need to worry about.

    • Is that what you see when you read this guy’s quote? Maybe I’m just more cynical, but what I see is a guy deftly avoiding any responsibility for handling a subject he considers “icky” — “I’m in favor of the Second Amendment but.”

      The way to settle this is to examine his school’s curriculum, and see if, say, lessons in how to put a condom on a banana are something he has no problem sponsoring, but firearms education is “something better handled by the family.”

  12. I was lucky enough to grow up in the woods of Alabama. Recieved my first BB gun at age 5.(daisy golden eagle- high capaticy model no less :-o. Shot supervised always until about age 8.Then shot the .22 supervised always until about age 12. I then recieved a multi-pump air gun that I used to hunt small game with unsupervised. Round about 14 I was allowed to use the old bolt action .22 at will. I would go with friends and “drive” tree rats. Usually beating them 2:1 or better.
    At about 15 I recieved a marlin 30-30 to use for deer, hunting with my father. At some point I don’t remember I was in boy scouts and learned more about guns and gun safety. BB guns then single shot .22’s.

    Also my father was in the 101st and taught me the joy of “point” shooting. * shooting by feel never even looking at the sights. With practice it’s impressive. I joined the Navy at 17 and continued my love of firearms, passing the same Daisy Golden eagle (Had to replace several parts due to age and prob 40,000 shots) down to my son. Iam the caretaker of this family heirloom until he has children of his own.
    Even to this day I still perfer hunting small game with an airgun. Using a Benjamin Discovery .22 with lead dust catcher on the end. 25 ftp of energy is plenty.
    Bottom line, spend time teaching YOUR kids about “gun safety” and build a lasting relationship and real memorys for LIFE. Also gender doesn’t matter Son’s or Daughter’s need/want to spend time with their “dads” doing “dad” stuff. Don’t be a “metro” dad.

    Gotta lay off the Red bull and coffee w/ captian morgan in the AM.

  13. As a USAF SP while assigned to the 38 TMW in Germany, we conducted a lot of tours. As a part of the tour, we would allow people to handle unloaded firearms. Sometimes, we would get students. When we got students from the US schools in Germany, we had to assure the children it was okay to touch them as long as they did not point them at anyone. The first time we has a class from a German school, the kids swarmed the table, grabbed guns off the table, pointed them at each other, and pulled triggers. It took a while to regain control. After that, we did not allow German students to handle the guns, and we often tied them to the table. The US students knew enough to respect guns, but the German students had only been exposed to guns from the movies. To the German students, guns were about make-believe. This experience taught me a lot about a Progressive society that shields kids from the realities of adulthood.

  14. This is what the NRA is supposed to be doing, but they are only doing it at a token level. I don’t think schools should do it. They don’t have enough qualified, non-hoplophobe teachers to do it and the Libtard parents and media would make a circus out of it. Also, there would always be some anti-gun agenda worked in. Nor can we leave it to the parents. In general, parents today are doing a sorry job of every aspect of parenting.

  15. It’s what we used to call parenting – training and educating your child to be a functional, productive adult. You know, one that makes adult decisions and does not require constant parental direction to maintain said functionality. Like many things in life, danger can result from untrained hands interacting with something the mind doesn’t fully comprehend, and firearms are no exception – hence the training and teaching. If your kid does not posses a body of knowledge, it’s up to the parent to facilitate learning. A parent expecting the school district to perform their parental role is problematic for all parties. I’m not sure if it’s sloth, apathy or just plain dumb, but there’s a growing portion of our populace that believes, whether they realize it or not, that children are to be turned over to the all knowing state for education, and that the state, has fundamentally displaced them in that role. Parents are responsible for their child’s education -whether they choose to delegate it to a public school, private school, parochial school, homeschool or any other seat of learning, the parent is ultimately the responsible party for both process and outcome.

  16. If you actually read the linked article, you will see that Senator Weiler is NOT proposing teaching gun control, nor Cooper’s four rules. He’s proposing a cut-down version of Eddie Eagle, just barely different enough to avoid being tarred with the NRA brush.

    Second paragraph: “The instructions would focus on the concept of stop, don’t touch and call for help if there is a firearm.”

    Hmmm, sounds oddly familiar.

  17. I am far from a champion of public schools in general. They claim to try to teach people how to learn to think and solve problems when they are instead mostly about memorizing items long enough to pass a test and forget about it. Any revised history being forgotten is a good thing at least. That is without even going into the attempts at Statist indoctrination.

    Having said that I will say that even in Austin, Texas (that place the uniformed believe have stricter gun laws than the rest of Texas) I had a history teacher that actually taught the true meaning of the 2A. He debunked a lot of anti-2A garbage. He even discussed the right to self defense on an entirely different topic. He was also very interested in looking at the rifle and shotgun I had in my truck in the school parking lot. Once again, this was in Austin.

    Fast forward to my son going to school in Austin and he was also taught in class the real meaning of the 2A before high school. I know it is not the case in all Texas schools but I was quite proud when I asked what the true meaing of the 2A was and he responded with the correct answer. One he learned in a public school. I was already prepared to correct him and there was no need. I also know Texas history books have undergone revisionism from Dems and Republicans. Fortunately some people can study and think for themselves even before leaving school.

    I still assert that being exposed to people trying to deceive you and then exposing their lies is a great learning experience for life in general. I went to the public school system in Austin and yet I have been called a 2A absolutist. I am far from unique.

  18. Agree-home school if you can…and it’s Utah and I would think there’s more “family/Mormon” involvement…

  19. Like a lot of things. Taught by qualified people from outside the school system (linked article says would be taught by outside people. Perhaps NRA itself?) Backed up by either parental training (for parents with the knowledge) or at least by a one page flyer to the parents for those without the training or interest. My only beef is that age 12 to 14 is far too old if “don’t touch, call an adult” is the message. Really needs to be in kindergarten or nursery school, just like don’t put your hand in a strange dog’s mouth, don’t put your hand on top of the stove, don’t run out in the street from between parked cars, etc. Reinforced at age 12 to 14 with more age-appropriate actual gun safety. Same message could be slightly modified for inner city use.

  20. I think kids should learn to handle guns at home.
    School can’t help much, as long as you can assure that real expert and safe gun owners teach.
    It’s not like going to a 20 hours crash course for learning gun safety that can make anyone safe with a gun.
    That only comes with passion, contact, use and experience.
    Last week I brought my 12 years old son with me to the range.
    We had our new Mauser milsurp, our great and loved Garand (.308, like I used in the army in the early stages of my Officer’s School) and our new AK 47.
    I started to shoot the Mauser, with my son behind me, with all necessary safety gear and at respectful distance. Then I adjusted the Garand sights and, at last, I started shooting the AK.
    The range director is a good guy, so, even if in Italy that’s as prohibited as playing in your school with Uranium 235, I asked if I could just let my son fire a few shots.
    No-one around, he said ok.
    Well, the kid took the rifle, inspected it, inserted the magazine, got into firing position with the fingers well off the trigger, took aim and let loose.
    Everything like on a manual, although I never really intended to let him shoot, knowing the local rules, so hes was not really prepared for this.
    The range director complimented the kid, and told us it was really clear he knew what he was handling.
    Those who heard from me about this, mostly told me I’m a fool, but I think I just got the confirmation that all my showing and explaining the guns to my kids is proving to be the best thing I could possibly do.
    But I also know it works because it is based on a voluntary and absolutely free participation to this mutual education.
    I’m learning how to keep quite a few arms in an environment with kids, and the kids are learning that a gun is a wonderful, if dangerous, tool. The curiosity that causes disasters is gone. Now they know and respect the rifles and pistols. I hope, with good reason, I’ll never have any of my kids go and look for the keys of the gun safe to build up a pile of sh****t.
    But that came true with home teaching and by making them feel responsible and showing them the beautiful and the dangerous face of the game.
    It’s difficult to make anything like that work at school, unless you have really committed enthusiasts doing the job.

  21. If one absolutely have to have government indoctrination institutions, you’d hope they could at least teach the kids something useful for a change. “Gun safety”, including basic marksmanship, the 4, and the basic mechanical operation of various types of common arms at a minimum.

    Considering how absolutely integral to the evolution of the sciences and engineering disciplines the military arts and equipment has been throughout history, it couldn’t but help illustrate many of those fields, as well.

  22. Translation: Firearms training should be done at home because we (the school system) doesn’t know anything about them except what we hear from MDA/Bloomberg (black rifles are bad, etc.).

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