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New Gun Owner? Consider this...

I heard a news story a couple of days ago about a father who accidentally shot his son. They were at the range and a hot piece of brass went down the father's shirt. In his effort to get the hot brass out he inadvertently pulled the trigger...

I'm a father of six and I cannot imagine what that father must be feeling.

The events of the past year have witnessed a record number of new gun owners and a corresponding rush of concealed carry permit holders. This video is a recap of the primary safety rules. Whenever there is an accidental discharge, one or more of these rules were broken--without exception.

They are:

  1. Treat all weapons as always loaded.

  2. Don't cover anything with your muzzle that you are not willing to destroy.

  3. Keep your finger off the trigger until your front site is on an identified target.

  4. Know your target. Know what is around it; know what is behind it.

Among concealed carriers there is often a discussion on whether or not you should walk around with a round in the chamber. I think you should--but then I've been around firearms for most of my adult life and I've had the good fortune to have received some excellent training throughout the course of my career. But what about the new gun owner who doesn't have the benefit of that training and/or experience? If you purchased your first Glock last week, should you walk around with a chambered round? No. No you should not.

Like everything else, you need to work up to a level of competency that can support that decision. First you need to imbue the 4 rules into your DNA. Really live it with each handling of your firearm. Go to any public range and watch people there. The lack of awareness is horrifying. People sweeping their hands and arms while using the bench; poor muzzle discipline when talking to people. And look at what can happen with hot brass.

Live the rules, and start your concealed carry routine with the weapon un-chambered. Get used to the feel of the weapon and use the safety rules when holstering and unholstering. Learn how to do a press check.

Live the rules. When you dry fire; clean the weapon; on the range; holstering/unholstering; drawing; moving; when you carry--everywhere and with each circumstance, live the rules. And teach your children. A universal application of rule number one could prevent a lot of unnecessary deaths and suffering in families every year. Always know the status of your weapon. Own a Glock? A straight trigger finger is crucial as there is no mechanical safety as found on the preponderance of handguns.

Once you are comfortable carrying your weapon without chambering a round and can properly handle it correctly EVERY time, then make the move to carrying with a chambered round. It is a learning process and it takes time.

Don't become a casualty, or worse, have a loved one become a casualty because you ignored a basic safety rule. Once that bullet leaves the barrel, you own it until it lands in its final resting place. The Second Amendment is a Constitutional right. It is up to each one of us to act accordingly so that in a worst case scenario, we are prepared to protect our lives or the life of a loved one.


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