Archive for December, 2009

  WHAT SHOULD YOU TEACH YOUR CHILD ABOUT GUN SAFETY? If you have decided that your child is not ready to be taught in a gun’s handling and use, teach him or her to follow the these simple instructions: If you find a gun: STOP! DON’T TOUCH!  TELL AN ADULT! This may be at a very rudimentary level, but it is far better than nothing. To counter the natural impulse to touch a gun, it is imperative that you impress these steps of the safety message upon your child. You can accomplish this by using a toy gun, tell your child that your going to pretend that the toy gun is real. Set the gun down in the house somewhere in plain sight for your child to easily see. Now, when your child spots it, ask your child what he or she should do? When the child repeats to you at least the Stop, Don’t Touch, and Go Tell an Adult, parts of the lesson, make a very big deal out of it, because it is a very big deal, and a lesson that should be reinforced every few days so that the child understands the importance of the lesson. This lesson could well avert a tragedy one day while your child is in a friends home, playing with another child that was never taught at even this rudimentary level.

  Gun Owner’s Responsibilities; Most states impose some form of legal duty on adults to take reasonable steps to deny access by children to dangerous substances or instruments. It is the individual gun owner’s responsibility to understand and follow all laws regarding gun purchase, ownership, storage, transport, etc. Contact your state police and/or local police for information regarding such laws. If you own a gun and do not know how to operate it, do not experiment with it. Seek competent assistance and instruction as soon as you can. An untrained adult can be as dangerous, and in as much danger as a curious child.

  A parent must, in every case, be absolutely sure that the firearms in your home are inaccessible to your children, and that your children may only see them under your direct supervision. There are states that mandate a basic firearm/law course, and have certified state instructors teach the course, like myself. There is also a NRA program pertaining to children called “Eddie Eagle,”call (800) 231-0752 for more information. Note; This was not verbatim from the NRA pamphlet, I added my knowledge, drawn from my life experience’s as well.

{Remember, Firearm Education Will Save Lives, Firearm Ignorance Can Take Lives}. Ignorance of History could cost us our freedoms.

Mark Shean Ma. Basic Firearm Instructor 508-333-6151- www.mafirearmsafety.com  written 12-25-2009

Your comments/insight are welcomed.

NOTE: Some of this information is taken from an NRA pamphlet, and some from my own experience, it is not all NRA verbatim, it is an informative read, especially for people with children or those whom you know have children.

  ACCORDING TO FEDERAL STATISTICS, THERE ARE GUNS IN APPROXIMATELY HALF OF ALL U.S. HOUSEHOLDS. THE PARENTS RESPONSIBILITY; In a home where guns are kept, the degree of safety a child has rests squarely on the child’s parents. Parents who accept the responsibility to learn, practice and teach gun safety rules will ensure their child’s safety to a much greater extent than those who do not. Parental responsibility however does not end when the child leaves the home. Even if no one in your family owns a gun, chances are that someone you know does. Your child could come into contact with a gun at a neighbor’s house while playing with friends, or under other circumstances outside your home. It is critical for your child to know what to do if he or she encounters a firearm anywhere, and it is the parents responsibility to provide that training.

  TALKING WITH YOUR CHILD ABOUT GUN SAFETY; There is no particular age to talk with your child about gun safety. A good time to introduce the subject is the first time he or she shows an interest in firearms, even toy pistols or rifles. Talking openly and honestly about gun safety with your child is usually more effective than just ordering him or her to “stay out of the closet”, and leaving it at that. Such statements may well stimulate a child’s natural curiosity to investigate further, when your not around. As with any safety lesson, explaining the rules and answering a child’s questions help to remove the mystery surrounding guns for them. Any rules set for your child will also apply to friends who visit your home. This will help keep your child from being pressured into showing a gun to a friend.

  TOY GUNS vs. REAL GUNS; It is advisable, particularly with very young children, to discuss gun use on TV as opposed to gun use in real life. Firearms are often handled carelessly in movies and on TV. Additionally, children see TV and movie characters shot and “killed” with well documented frequency. When a young child sees that same actor appear in another movie or TV show, confusion between entertainment and real life may result. It may be a mistake to assume that your child knows the difference between being “killed” on TV and in reality. If your child has toy guns, you may want to use them to demonstrate safe gun handling and explain how they differ from real firearms. There should be no chance that he or she could mistake a real gun for a toy. (Continued on page 2) Mark Shean- www.mafirearmsafety.com  written 12-25-09

Your comments/insight are welcomed.

      This next little segment will illustrate the confusion that is out there in the law enforcement community, and in general, on weather you can carry handguns out in the open or not. I do not blame law enforcement for this confusion, I blame the legislature for drafting archaic laws that could confuse Einstein! I was talking to Kevin Traver, he is a firearm instructor. So in his words, as he relayed them to me;

 I was in Plimouth Bay Outfitters in downtown Plymouth, and I could not help but overhear a conversation between a patron and one of the store keepers. They were discussing the purchase of a new pistol and the patron asked about weather it was required in this Commonwealth to carry concealed when in public? The storekeeper emphatically announced that if one was to carry in the open without a badge, that it was a felony and they would go to jail. The statement struck me as odd, as I had recently been on one of the interactive maps through www.usacarry.com , and had read that Massachusetts was an open carry state.

   Now I am not generally an advocate of open carry; I have always felt that it should be a surprise to those around me and especially my attacker that I am usually armed. Nonetheless, I have never found the statute that requires me to carry concealed. So I challenged the storekeeper for the source of their declaration. And although he was absolute in his resolve, he could not produce the Ma. General Law (MGL). I made a quick phone call to my local police station and queried the on duty detective. He had no answer (although he was certain as well that it was an arrestable offense to carry open). So, I called a few more police departments all with the same result.

   By this point I decided to bump the issue up to the State Police and phoned the Bourne barracks. The Trooper at the other end of my cell was pretty sure that open carry was prohibited and said he would arrest an individual carrying in the open, but could not find the specific MGL that supported the statement. He recommended that I call the State Police Headquarters. The nice woman at the State Police Headquarters did not have a clue what I was talking about, but kindly referred me to the Firearms Record Bureau in Boston. After playing a few rounds of phone tag with an attorney name of Jason Guida, he answered the long and sought query. There is no specific written statute or law that prohibits open carry in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. That technically makes us live in an open carry state. HOWEVER, as the local authority has the power to grant and revoke a license to carry, the wise gun toter would check with their local police chief before waltzing down Main Street with a .45 strapped to their thigh……just to avoid unnecessary harassment and trips to the court house.  Source, -Kevin Traver-

  {Note from Mark} I concur with Kevin. Law enforcement ‘perceptions/misconceptions’ are a funny thing, not in a laughing sort of way. In my class I tell people that it is a good practice to carry concealed because of the liberal culture here in Massachusetts, which for the most part is very much anti-gun, anti Second Amendment. Even though you would ultimately win in court because no one would be able to dig up the law against open carry, it would surely put you through headaches and monetary burdens that you could live without. Err on the side of caution, conceal that handgun.

Mark Shean -Ma. Firearm Safety- www.mafirearmsafety.com  written 12-8-2009