It is time For Mandatory Gun Accident Prevention Education In Schools


lukem

Administrator
Staff member
In the past month, no less than four Ohio children, aged eleven, ten, eight and four, have injured or killed people with firearms. Two of the victims, aged eight and two, were shot by their respective siblings. One of the victims, shot by his eleven year-old neighbor, was seven. Three of the victims died of their injuries.

In all but one case (wherein a four year-old boy shot his 18 year-old babysitter with a shotgun because she had accidentally stepped on his foot) the shootings have been ruled accidental.

While the typical reaction from the loudest voices in our society (the establishment media) will be to demand laws that regulate safe storage of firearms (at a minimum) or that make it tougher for people to own firearms at all (more likely). We've tried it their way for long enough, and the results continue to be written in the blood of our children.

Questions most certainly do need to be asked of the responsible adults. Why were loaded firearms stored within easy access of these young children? Why were they not being supervised at the time of the accidents? Why didn't these parents teach their children not to play with guns? And so on, and so on. These are important questions, to be sure.

Teaching children what to do if they find a gun is no different than teaching a child that ovens should always be considered hot. Teaching children what to do if they find a gun is imperative for all parents, whether or not they keep a firearm in their home, for the simple fact that the child will not always be in the home. The potential exists for even young children to come into unauthorized, unsupervised contact with a firearm, and only proactive education by their parents can prevent a negative outcome when they do.

Clearly, the responsible adults have a huge responsibility in the accidents mentioned above. They have failed their children by not properly educating them on what to do if they find a gun, and failed them again by leaving a loaded firearm where the child had access to it. But is it enough to simply stop after making that sad observation? And does anyone really think that such irresponsible people would follow a mandatory safe storage law if one were enacted? Of course not!

Society has determined (after seeing enough homes and apartment complexes burn to the ground because little Johnny was playing with matches) that it cannot be left to parents alone to teach children not to play with matches.

Society has determined (after seeing enough children experience the horrible victimization of sexual abuse) that it cannot be left to parents alone to teach children what to do if they are touched inappropriately.

Society has determined (after seeing enough children on the sides of milk cartons and WalMart bulletin boards) that it cannot be left to parents alone to teach children what to do if a stranger attempts to lure them into their car.

Society has even determined (well, at least our President did when he was an Illinois State Senator) that it kindergartners need to be given sex education.

I simply cannot understand why a society that has decided that parents cannot be trusted to provide the "proper" education on issues like fire safety, sexual abuse, abduction, and even sexually transmitted diseases, is perfectly comfortable leaving the issue of gun accident prevention up to parents.

The NRA has been promoting a safety program for children in grades K-3 since 1998. The Eddie Eagle GunSafe® Program tells those youngsters to "Stop! Don't Touch! Leave The Area! Tell An Adult!" if they find a gun.

Originated by Florida grandmother and past NRA president, Marion Hammer, the program has been awarded the National Safety Council's Outstanding Community Service Award, has been endorsed by the U.S. Department of Justice and the National Sheriff's Association. Additionally, the Journal of Emergency Nursing Online has named the NRA's Eddie Eagle GunSafe® Program tops out of more than 80 gun accident prevention programs evaluated. Yet when I volunteered to teach the program in my area elementary school two years ago, I was told that "this might make the children more interested in guns." Really? Try filling in the word 'guns' with the word 'sex' or 'drugs' or "alcohol', and ask your school to stop teaching sex ed or DARE to your kids.

Why is deterrence-oriented education deemed appropriate on other dangerous topics, but not when it comes to guns? WHY IS GUN ACCIDENT PREVENTION EDUCATION NOT A MANDATORY PART OF OUR KIDS' ELEMENTARY SCHOOL CURRICULUM?

The answer is politics. The gun ban lobby (groups which ironically often given themselves names which include the words "gun safety") have consistently fought against the implementation of such education, especially when that education is offered by groups they oppose politically. Many of the objections that have been presented to me by the school could all be easily sourced back to anti-gun groups like the Violence Policy Center, who have characterized Eddie Eagle as "Joe Camel in feathers" in an attempt to create the belief that the program promotes firearms ownership in some way, when it absolutely, categorically does not.

VPC Executive Director Josh Sugarmann has said "just like the alcohol and tobacco industries have worked to find ways to reach out to underage consumers, Eddie Eagle is one component of the NRA's efforts to reach out to underage gun consumers." Likewise, because of her hatred for the NRA, Toby Hoover, who often appears to be a one-woman show at the Ohio Coalition Against Gun Violence, either lied or betrayed her ignorance (regarding a topic journalists insist on presenting her as an expert on) about the proven effectiveness of Eddie Eagle to the Columbus Dispatch, alleging that "there isn't a program out there that has proven effective."

"There isn't a program out there that has proven effective," eh? The nurses behind the Journal of Emergency Nursing Online study beg to differ.

It is because of comments like Hoover's and Sugarmann's that I place the blame for accidents like the ones we have seen this past month not only on apathetic or ignorant parents, but also on gun ban extremists, who are putting their desire to weaken a political enemy ahead of children's very lives.

And it is because of comments like Hoover's and Sugarmann's that I believe am having difficulty getting my offer to volunteer my time to teach the Eddie Eagle GunSafe® Program in my sons' elementary school accepted.

I've been trying for more than two years now. During the last school year, after working around concerns about how much time the program would take away from class studies, etc., I reached what I suspect is the real reason for the hesitancy, when the powers-that-be referenced "a desire to stay away from any materials printed or published or endorsed for political causes," despite having already been provided with materials stressing that Eddie Eagle is never shown touching a firearm, that he does not promote firearm ownership or use, that the program never mentions the NRA, nor does it encourage children to buy guns or to become NRA members.

I received renewed hope this year when I was able to put someone at my school in touch with the Director of Student Outreach Programs in the Columbus Public School system (CPS has chosen to have the head guidance counselor for the district teach the Eddie Eagle program when they travel around to the schools at the beginning of the school year.) But I regret to report that I am still waiting.

What have we come to in this country when educators fail to take advantage of offers of free teaching materials designed to prevent children from potential tragedy, especially when it is being offered by volunteer instructors? And what does it say about these so-called anti-gun "child safety" extremists that they actively attempt to torpedo a program that has been proven to work to reduce incidents of children having accidents with firearms?

If your children haven't been taught what to do if they find a gun, it is your responsibility to teach them. ORDER THE VIDEO NOW!

If your school isn't teaching the Eddie Eagle GunSafe® Program, ask the superintendent why not. Anyone can teach the material, and it can be covered in 30 minutes to an hour. Volunteer to do it for them!

The Eddie Eagle GunSafe® Program is designed for students in grades K-3. The self-explanatory program includes a student workbook, corresponding instructor guide, reward stickers, posters and parent guides.

School districts wishing to participate in the program should call the National Rifle Association at (800) 231-0752, email eddie@nrahq.org or visit Eddie Eagle Safety Program.

In addition to the steps we can and should all take on our own, it is time for Ohio's legislators to mandate the program be taught in every school in the state. With pro-gun Governor Strickland proposing the addition of a full month to the school calendar, the schools systems will certainly no longer be able to claim they don't have enough time.

Chad D. Baus is the Buckeye Firearms Association Vice Chairman, an NRA-certified firearms instructor and the proud father of two "Eddie Eagle GunSafe Program" graduates.

By Chad D. Baus
Source: Buckeye Firearms Association
 

Piece Corps

New member
The NRA has an excellent gun education program, Eddie Eagle, that could be used by any school. Oh, how the Brady Bunch would howl if we started teaching children about guns in school. Why, it would be worse than letting them pray!
 

Hamster

Hamster
It is an excellent idea to teach a mandatory gun safety program in school, especially since it is mandatory kids attend a health class teaching sex education.
 

carolmo

New member
Thanks for reminding me. I just ordered the DVD after watching the video on the internet. It lasts just under 7 minutes. I think my 2 grandkids would pay attention to it (almost 4 yrs and 2+ yrs). I was not sure how to introduce the video to my daughter and the need to play it. My daughter is worried about my guns and threw a fit when I got my permit. She was sure the kids would get shot. The video shows a rifle and a handgun.

However, last night, she told me her cousin who has 2 kids younger than ours, has a husband who intends to get a shotgun for home defense and both the cousin and my daughter are worried he will not protect the kids from this gun. Also, the 2 older kids of each family were playing with a cap pistol and 2 fake swords. I think she may now be more open to having the kids be trained in gun safety. The kids will visit homes that do have guns.

When the kids are older, I will take them to the range with me. My daughter is not anti gun, she just wants her kids to be protected from accidental shootings.
 

Pure Kustom®

New member
I think the biggest thing with kids and guns is TV and curiosity. My girlfriends son was curious about my gun. And my girlfriend was kind of also. I took them both to the range. He got the shock of his life. A gun firing is not like on TV and she shot my 9mm but wouldn't touch the .357 magnum.

After that he never asked me any questions about my guns. He knew not to touch them and also what they can really do. But I still never left it anywhere he could get to it. I just wanted to cure his and her curiosity.
 
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wolfhunter

Guest
It is an excellent idea to teach a mandatory gun safety program in school, especially since it is mandatory kids attend a health class teaching sex education.

I've been saying for years that Gun Safety should be taught in First Grade, and Marksmnship should be a 5th or 6th grade requirement.
 
There's a former DEA Agent with classroom experience who may need the work... :rolleyes:

He's pretty good at demonstrating what NOT to do!

I agree with Pure Kustoms completely. Remove the curiosity factor while teaching kids how guns really work, and what it's really like to fire them. It's not like TV, or the arcade or the latest X-Box video game. It can be a tough go when you're competing with peer pressure and the tons of misinformation spewed forth by Hollywood and the contradiction of so many in our culture that are anti-gun, but view gun violence in movies regularly.

I'm not sure how the "mandatory" approach would fly though... but Hillary already knows, "it takes a village to raise a child"... so there's bound to be a shooting coach somewhere in that dang village!:dance3:
 

NDS

New member
It is time For Mandatory Gun Accident Prevention Education In Schools

It's not time--it's long PAST time. It isn't going to happen though. You can blame politicians and educators all you want--and they, along with voters, are to blame, but it isn't going to happen in the present world.
 

toreskha

Titles are un-American.
IMO there should be a mandatory class in HS that teaches a number of basic life skills. This would be a broad overview of an assortment of different things - most of these can be taught in a very simple way in no more than a few hours apiece. A lot of kids that age might not listen, but it might get through the heads of some.

  • CPR and first aid
  • Common hazards - tetanus, poisonous snakes, spiders, avoiding electrocution/gas explosions in common situations and what a rabid animal looks like
  • Firearms safety
  • Cooking
  • Basic local geography
  • Dealing with emergency services
  • Basic chemical safety (don't mix chlorine and ammonia, etc)
  • Basic, SHTF firefighting
  • Riding a bicycle; everyone should know how to do this
  • Swimming
  • Sex ed
  • Car repair crash course - changing a tire, basic parts, how to use a jack, etc.
  • Sewing and clothing repairs
  • Paddling a canoe
  • How to recognize and avoid a scam
  • Credit cards, debt and financial advice
  • How to buy a pricey item right - inspect the item, know the warranty terms, and common issues that take people by surprise

These are fairly basic things that most individuals should know how to do by the age of 18, but a scary number of people don't. There's tons of simple but incredibly useful things that, if followed, would make people's lives a great deal simpler.
 

Rick O'Shay

New member
Think about what you are saying here. If you put gun safety education into the hands of the "educators" just think about what that education will look like. The kids will be propagandized from the get go about how "GUNS ARE BAD". "NOBODY NEEDS A GUN", etc.

I don't trust them. Actually I do trust them I trust them to do the wrong thing. My opinion is the responsible adult who allowed the kids to get the gun in the first place be charged with manslaughter.
 

capo2186

New member
Think about what you are saying here. If you put gun safety education into the hands of the "educators" just think about what that education will look like. The kids will be propagandized from the get go about how "GUNS ARE BAD". "NOBODY NEEDS A GUN", etc.

I don't trust them. Actually I do trust them I trust them to do the wrong thing. My opinion is the responsible adult who allowed the kids to get the gun in the first place be charged with manslaughter.

I agree with charging the firearm owners with manslaughter who do not properly store their firearms. This topic also makes me think about teens growing up in bad areas which are strongly influenced by local gangs. How do you reach out to them? These teens get firearms illegally at 14 when they join their local street gang. By 16, they have already done time, potentially killed and so on. All this goes into what hurts us firearm owners. The Brady bunch doesn't take into consideration that these firearms are acquired illegally, nor did these teens receive adequate training. They are criminals in the making. I know I may have strayed off the path here a bit, but how do you reach out to these kids who feel you need a firearm to shop for groceries? Any ideas? I am not trying to mock anyone with this question; I really would like ideas on this matter.
 

Rick O'Shay

New member
I agree with charging the firearm owners with manslaughter who do not properly store their firearms. This topic also makes me think about teens growing up in bad areas which are strongly influenced by local gangs. How do you reach out to them? These teens get firearms illegally at 14 when they join their local street gang. By 16, they have already done time, potentially killed and so on. All this goes into what hurts us firearm owners. The Brady bunch doesn't take into consideration that these firearms are acquired illegally, nor did these teens receive adequate training. They are criminals in the making. I know I may have strayed off the path here a bit, but how do you reach out to these kids who feel you need a firearm to shop for groceries? Any ideas? I am not trying to mock anyone with this question; I really would like ideas on this matter.

Well, frankly I hope those kids NEVER get firearms training. They are dangerous enough. Sure, a safety course for those kids seems like a good idea, but such a program would not be in place only in the inner cities; it would be everywhere, and would go a long ways towards chipping away at the 2nd Amendment. I guess I am getting hard-hearted as I get older, but some folks are just plain lost and are beyond help. Correcting the problem of Inner City kids with goes a lot deeper than some firearms safety training. That whole culture needs help.
 
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wolfhunter

Guest
Why are so many here assuming that Gun Safety classes would automatically be anti-2A? Does safety around guns contradict the Second Amendment? No, it doesn't. Just because such a program COULD be turned against us, doesn't make it a bad thing. Would you rather verify that your local school is teaching a pro-2A gun safety program, or continue reading about evil guns going off by themselves and killing or wounding a child?
 

Rick O'Shay

New member
Why are so many here assuming that Gun Safety classes would automatically be anti-2A? Does safety around guns contradict the Second Amendment? No, it doesn't. Just because such a program COULD be turned against us, doesn't make it a bad thing. Would you rather verify that your local school is teaching a pro-2A gun safety program, or continue reading about evil guns going off by themselves and killing or wounding a child?

Actually such a program WOULD be turned against us. Of that I have no doubt.
 

Sheldon

New member
Btdt

When my kids were in elementary school (the youngest is now 22) I purchased the NRA Eddie Eagle program and the local 'Officer Friendly" put it on.... Just a though but they are not very expensive N U could make a difference...
 

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