It was never my intention, nor John’s, to use this blog as a political soap box. A few of our posts have dabbled in this area, but we feel like others do a better and more focused job in the political arenas. Nevertheless, a couple of articles recently jumped out at me, and I wanted to share my opinion on them vis a vis something that happened in my life that I found rather humorous.
The articles—actually editorials—in question both dealt with whether or not pediatricians should be allowed or required to ask their patients’ parents about the presence of guns in their homes.
Among the many things gun owners can be leery of, this, in my opinion, does not rank too high on the chart. I do not really see some vast conspiracy to find out who has firearms and who does not. There are plenty of other ways for the “evil government” to do this without relying on honest answers from parents.
If I am right, then I “get” where this comes from. Readers of Claude Werner’s blog, tacticalprofessor, are by now only too familiar with what he terms “negative outcomes”. He does some fairly careful tracking of accidents, negligent discharges, etc., and the stories he links to from various local news sources are often heart-breaking. What nearly all of them have in common, however, is that the incidents described were preventable. It seems we read almost daily of a child who took a gun out of mom’s purse/dad’s sock drawer/the hall closet and shot himself, a sibling, a parent, or a friend. As a gun owner who is very careful with the storage of all of his firearms, I find these stories incredibly frustrating. Common sense does not always seem so common, so if the questions by a pediatrician are enough to make a light bulb switch on in the minds of some parents about their firearm storage methodology, then that is probably a good thing.
Readers of this blog will recall the near-tragic story I shared back in March (here). Thankfully, it all worked out with what could only be described as the best possible outcome. Over the course of the first few days of this event, something funny occurred, and I thought I would share it with the readers.
My wife is the oldest of three sisters. The middle sister, who we will call Cathy, lives about an hour away. The youngest sister, a doctor who we will refer to as Nancy, lives about two hours away. Cathy arrived at the hospital first, and we dealt with everything as best we could. Nancy arrived a few hours later, in the early afternoon. Cathy and I then left for a little while to take care of some things at my home, my kids, etc., and I told her, “Hey, I know you know that I own some guns. I want you to know that they are ALL under lock and key. I’m not one of those people who leaves guns in the nightstand or in hollowed out books in the bookcase. Okay?” So she said she appreciated that.
Unsure of what the cause of my wife’s issue was (her sisters suspected a drug issue….my wife has no drug issues, so it’s funny how her family’s thoughts immediately went to deep, dark places!), at some point over the weekend the two sisters did some rummaging in my house looking for “evidence”.
The day after Nancy went back to her home and my wife was released from the hospital, I got a text message from Nancy:
“Rob, I know you told Cathy that the guns were all locked up. I didn’t know whose dresser was whose, so when I opened up one of the top drawers of what turned out to be your dresser, I saw two handguns. I’m not sure if you forgot about these but I thought I should let you know if that was the case.”
I had to laugh. When she opened the drawer in question, this is what she saw:
First, be thankful that this was not my underwear drawer (athletic wear instead)! Second, for those of our readers who cannot identify these two items, they are an ASP “Red Gun” inert Glock 19 training tool and a Next Level Training SIRT pistol. The Red Gun is for practicing disarms or to teach others how to grip and such, while the SIRT pistol is mainly used for dry practice of various types.
So, I replied, saying that these are simply training devices and do not fire anything more harmful than a laser (explaining that that is why they are RED!). I keep them so easily accessible so that I can practice during any available time I have and then don’t have to access–and possibly unload and then reload–a real firearm each time I want to get in some dry practice. She thanked me and that was that.
This event was fresh in my mind when I read the editorials linked to above, so all I could think was that if I want advice about anything having to do with firearms (besides a generic “make sure you keep them locked up so your kids cannot access them” kind of statement), then I will go to someone who actually KNOWS SOMETHING ABOUT FIREARMS!