No gun control argument is complete until someone cries out, “Think about the children!” It is supposed to be the trump card for which there can be no argument. It’s as if the Founding Fathers crafting the Constitution and Bill of Rights didn’t take into consideration their own children or the generations of children to follow. Or maybe they believe today’s gun owners simply hate kids. I’m going to say no.
Yes, I’m a bit older. I grew up in a time when children where allowed to have and use firearms. You were taught firearms safety in school, by your parents, grandparents or extended family and you were taught to respect them. While I didn’t grow up in a school that had a shooting club or marksmanship classes, there were others that did. Students regularly hunted before school and on the way home during hunting season. Talking about guns, going out and shooting guns, hunting and fishing, it was all okay. If you saw someone walking down the road with a rifle slung over their shoulder, there was no need to call the police.
Fast forward to today. A child in school mentioning a gun in any way, shape or form, drawing a picture of a gun, pointing a finger like a gun, or even eating a pop tart into a shape that someone thinks remotely looks like a gun gets the school locked down, a massive police response and earns the child a suspension or expulsion. How did we get to this point?
Here’s a hint. Former United States Attorney General Eric Holder, at the time the U.S. Attorney for Washington D.C. made the following statement in 1995:
“We just have to be repetitive about this. It’s not enough to have a catchy ad on a Monday and then only do it every Monday. We have to do this every day of the week and just really brainwash people into thinking about guns in a vastly different way.”
Having earned his JD at Columbia Law School, Holder is no doubt aware of what brainwashing is. For the rest of us, here is a reminder:
“A method for systematically changing attitudes or altering beliefs, originated in totalitarian countries, especially through the use of torture, drugs, or psychological-stress techniques.”
We seem to have traded the three R’s – reading, writing and arithmetic – for the indoctrination of values based on a politically motivated agenda. Perhaps our students would have a better future if our elementary and high school teachers weren’t cross-trained in psychological operations.
Children and firearms do not have to be a bad thing. One of the greatest pleasures I had while working in a gun shop was seeing parents come in with their young children. Of course they would want to see items in the store and the parents would allow them, but not until they correctly recited the four basic firearms safety rules. Then, and only then, they would hand them the firearm and closely supervise them. These kids, some not even big enough to look over the display counters, would then demonstrate the safest handling, muzzle and trigger finger discipline I’ve ever seen in my life.
Children can be taught to use firearms safely and to respect them, as well as the laws surrounding their use – even in today’s society. But I’m going to take it one step further. I’m going to say ALL children should be given the opportunity (note: not mandatory) to know about firearms. Why? Quite simply because we as parents cannot be with them all the time. It will be up to them to decide what to do if they should come across a firearm at some point in their life. If the only information they have received on the topic is from television and movies, it’s probably not going to end well.
I am very strong proponent of Project ChildSafe, a nonprofit charitable organization committed to promoting firearms safety and making communities safer. Even for families strongly opposed to firearms, I encourage them to visit the Project ChildSafe website and view the video on Have a Conversation with Kids about Firearm Safety at www.projectchildsafe.org to help their family stay safe.
Allowing our schools to teach children that firearms in any way, shape or form are bad – is wrong. Punishing them for celebrating their family’s traditions and their country’s heritage – is wrong. Brainwashing them into believing a right guaranteed by the Second Amendment is unacceptable in today’s society – is wrong.
So yes, let’s think about the children and not let political agenda determine their future.
#oddstuffing #thinkaboutthechildren, #secondamendment, #2a, #projectchildsafe