Lock, Shock & Barrel

I am a girl. I am a gun owner. I am aware.

None of us are immune from hearing the stories. Stories that echo in hysteria and haunt with the ever elusive demons of minds that are too ensnared to understand. Things must seem so simple from atop the soap box from which the screams of “gun control” and “second amendment rights” can be heard.

Let’s step away from the criminal aspect of the gun control argument.

Instead, if you will, please side step into the minds 0f every day fire arm owners.

As a gun owner, I can tell you that becoming an owner of a gun is both a right and a privilege.

You have a right as an adult to make your own life choices including what to purchase or use for self defense.
You have a privilege to make a choice within that right to buy a fire arm.

Just recently there have been 5 documented deaths within 1 hour of where I live involving guns.

2 of those 5 were ruled “accidental”.

As a human being, and a particularly clumsy one at that, I know that accidents happen. We trip and stumble. We spill and break things. We are day dreaming when we should be focusing and focusing when we should be casual observers.

Guns are designed to penetrate. That penetration is meant to disable, destroy, or kill. Take it for what it is, guys. Guns are not meant to cook, look pretty or help with fuel efficiency in cars. If you own a gun, you are using it to disable, destroy or kill someone/something. Okay, okay. Maybe you own a gun to protect yourself/family in case you need to disable, destroy or kill someone/something. Call it whatever you want. Guns have a very limited purpose.

My husband is a retired Army Veteran. We have four active duty state troopers in a three block radius from our home. We live less than a mile from our town’s Rod and Gun Club. At any given time, I could know anything I needed/wanted to know involving a very wide range of guns.

The day I purchased my first gun was the beginning of an entirely new understanding of what all the soap boxers were screaming about.

First let me tell you this: If you own a gun, it is your responsibility to keep it clean, maintained, in a safe place, and properly stored.

Guns need to be cleaned every other week or every month at a minimum. Yes, even if it has never been touched or fired. Cleaning a gun means having all the right tools to do so. Gloves, rags, oils, brushes and cotton to name a few. Like any other functioning machine, well maintained mechanical parts are necessary for the device to function properly. Jamming and backfiring can be fatal to the shooter and anyone near them at the time of the malfunction.

Okay, so you clean your fire arm regularly. You make sure everything is ship shape. All the functioning mechanics are being taken care of in a way that will produce success in using the gun for the purpose you desire it to.

Where are you going to keep it?

Gun safes come with keys, passwords, keypad codes, dials and fingerprint recognition. There is a style and design to fit every taste and need. But why lock it up at all? It isn’t like a robber is going to wait for you to turn a dial nine times to get your gun out to protect yourself in a home invasion. Easy access means easy access. To you and anyone else who comes across it. But what really makes a difference in where you store it, is how you store it.

1) A bullet should never be kept sitting in the chamber of a gun. It takes less that 2 seconds to cock back a gun to move a bullet from the clip into the chamber. Sometimes even quicker for experienced or regular gunman. A bullet in the chamber of a gun can be released with little effort from a firearm with no safety on.

2) The safety mode of a gun is there for exactly that: safety. The safety is an added feature that prevents the gun from firing even if the trigger is touched or pulled. Some guns even have multiple safety options. The safety is there for peace of mind should the gun get handled the wrong way. Conceal and Carry holders rely on safety features to travel with their fire arm close to their person without needing it to be in view at all times.

3) Never look down the front of a barrel of a gun. Well what if…? How about when…? No. Never look down the front of a barrel of a gun. If you need to check the barrel for cleaning or maintenance then remove the clips, double check that the chamber does not have a bullet inside and proceed to disassemble the gun. Then look through the butt of the chamber. Never down the front. Ever. It is the one rule I have heard a thousand times. No pointing the front of a barrel of a gun at anyone for any reason, including yourself, unless you intend to use it.

2 out of the 5 recent fire arm involved deaths near my home were ruled accidental.

Both, I feel, could have been prevented if the proper care and handling were taken.

If the safety was on and the chamber did not have a bullet sitting in it, a conceal and carry licence holder could still be alive. If proper precautions were taken to remove the clip and empty the chamber before attempting to clean a gun and following the rule of not staring down the barrel of a gun, someone could still be alive.

There will always be shoe prints on top of soap boxes. There will always be dents where heels were dug. There will always be “what ifs” and “buts” and blame swirling into a tornado heading straight towards the Second Amendment.

Gun owners, please hear me.

Be responsible. Be educated. Be safe.

**If you need information or lessons on how to handle, clean or use a firearm, contact your local police department for information. Police are here to help us. They want us to be safe with firearms just as much as we want to be safe using them**

As always,


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