We all have those days where a "crazy accident" happens. Whoops! We pulled an egg out of the box and dropped the box and shattered all the eggs! I can't believe that while trying to pull a wire out from behind my PC, I unplugged it and lost all the work I was working on.. Doh! But some of those "crazy accidents" are just the kind of things that change lives.
A 5-year-old Kentucky boy who received a .22-caliber rifle as a gift accidentally shot and killed his 2-year-old sister on Tuesday, according to state police.http://usnews.nbcnews.com/...
A 5 year old boy received a .22 caliber rifle for his birthday gift, and accidentally shot and killed his two year old sister.
The mother of the two children was at home at the time of the shooting, Cumberland County Coroner Gary White told the local newspaper, the Lexington Herald-Leader. He said that the family did not realize that there was a shell inside the gun. The firearm was kept in a corner, he said.The "Big Three" of firearm safety are these:
“It’s a Crickett,” Cumberland County Coroner Gary White told the paper. “It’s a little rifle for a kid.”
“The little boy’s used to shooting the little gun,” White said.
The shooting occurred while the boy was playing with the rifle, police said. It was “just one of those crazy accidents,” White told the Herald-Leader.
1. Keep the Muzzle Pointed in a Safe Direction
2. Treat Every Firearm as if it Were Loaded
3. Be Sure of Your Target, In Front and Beyond
And most importantly: If you cannot understand of follow these rules, you should NOT use a weapon.
These key rules guide most of those who are safe and legitimate gun owners. Now, look at this story:
This gun and it's series are clearly marketted toward the youth market - you can tell that by their statement of "My First Gun" and the cute dancing crickett animation character on their front page. Guns are available in many colors and types, incuding bright pink to attract young girls.
But at 5 years old, and really until a child can take hunter safety, nothing is really "an accident". The individual who possesses the gun doesn't have the mental faculties to upkeep, comprehend, or follow basic gun safety rules.
Imagine if I were busy selling Tobacco aimed at the 5-12 year old market by putting a dancing animated character on the cover.. sure, I could tell them it might kill you, but does that person have the faculties to make that decision?
In Kentucky tonight, a 5 year old boy is going to go to sleep with the knowledge he killed his sister. He might not comprehend why or how it really happened, but that kid has had his life permanently changed. It wasn't changed by a "crazy accident" after all, firing a bullet is what guns are meant to do.
His life was changed because our gun culture tells us that giving a 5 year old kid a .22 caliber gun for a birthday is a smart and advisable thing to do. It doesn't matter that they do not have the ability to comprehend the safety and risks involved, it just matters that they have the right to own one.
Changing the culture that says owning a first gun is a "right of passage" is a next, important step. Because the accidental deaths and killings that go along with that philosophy are simply a price too high.
6:40 PM PT: Minor update for a correction; the gun was provided to the child at Age four; the context of the MSNBC story didn't quite relay this, as his sister was killed after his fifth birthday. I have to tell you, at age four I think I was struggling to learn the mechanics of a shower, so I while this information is important, I will not castigate the child for not focusing on learning gun safety better during the year he had with a weapon, and will defend him against such claims.