Gun owners in America face decisions on whether or not to make their firearms accessible to their children as part of parenting.
When should you teach your children basic firearm safety?
That one’s easy: You teach basic firearm safety about the same time you drown-proof your kids around water and teach them not to play with fire or electricity.
When do you teach your kids the fundamentals of how to use your guns to defend their lives in case of an emergency? That one is more difficult and every family has to weigh the maturity and level-headedness of a child with the great responsibility of access to a life-saving firearm in case of an emergency.
There are two stories in today’s media about people who had access to their family’s firearms defending their homes and their lives from home intruders.
First up, in Calera, OK, a 12-year-old girl was home alone when an intruder broke into her home, according to a story by the Durant Daily Democrat.
She retreated to her parent’s closet and hid there with her parent’s Glock .40 pistol, calling 9-1-1.
The intruder confronted the young girl who promptly shot him in the shoulder before police could arrive.
Police captured the assailant and he was taken by helicopter to the hospital for treatment.
In a second story in the Dallas Morning News, a 21-year-old woman was asleep in her bed when a pair of intruders broke in. She opened fire on them as they advanced up the stairs towards her, hitting one and leaving him to push daisies.
Her father told the reporter that his family had been victimized by intruders in the past and trained his daughter how to fight with her pistol. That training paid off today.
Her dad told the newspaperman, “I just hate that she didn’t get both of them.”
Well, dad, it’s okay to think that, but you’re not supposed to say that – certainly not to a reporter.
In any event, both instances had happy endings for the innocent residents.
Unlike the case in Merced, CA some years ago:
When Gun Safety Locks Kill
It has been said that if you don’t study history, you are doomed to repeat it.
That’s why Americans should take note of a horrible tragedy that occurred one year ago this month in Merced, California. It is a tragedy that could have been prevented.
On the morning of August 23, 2000, Jonathon David Bruce was high on drugs. He slipped inside a home when the parents were away and began attacking the children inside.
Armed only with a pitchfork, and without a stitch of clothing on his body, Bruce proceeded to chase the children through the house — stabbing them repeatedly.
The oldest of the children, Jessica Carpenter (14), was babysitting at the time. Having been trained by her father, Jessica knew how to use a firearm. There was just one problem: the household gun was locked up in compliance with California state law.
Because of California’s “lock up your safety” law, Jessica had few options. She could not call 911 because the intruder had cut the phone lines to the house. She could not protect herself, for state officials had effectively removed that possibility. Her only option was to flee the house and leave her siblings behind.
Thankfully, Mr. Bruce’s murderous rampage was finally cut short when police officers arrived at the house. They shot and killed Bruce, but not before two children had already been murdered.
A girl who was home alone this morning at a Calera residence shot and wounded an intruder, authorities said.
Calera Police and other agencies were dispatched to a Michael Avenue home at approximately 9:30 a.m. after a 12-year-old girl dialed 911 from a cell phone and said she hid in a closet when an intruder entered the home.
The girl, according to police radio broadcasts, said she had a gun and she later fired a round which struck the man in the left arm in the shoulder area.
Dallas police are investigating a fatal shooting during a break-in this afternoon at a home in southeast Oak Cliff.
The shooting was reported shortly before noon in a neighborhood southwest of Camp Wisdom Road and Houston School Road.
Police said a woman at home in the 7200 block of Concordia shot at two intruders as the walked up the stairs in the home, striking at least one of them.
Both men ran out the front door, and one of them collapsed. He was taken to Methodist Dallas Medical Center where he was pronounced dead.