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    Posted June 11, 2014 by
    Cumming, Georgia
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    Guns and children

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    Education on guns is key, not hiding them

    My sons are 13 and 11. What I did was take my older son (when he was 11) to my local range and got a one on one training session with a firearms trainer. The instructor did about an hour of classroom training, safety training, ensuring that my son knew all of the parts of the gun, memorizing all of the safety rules, how to properly handle a gun, etc. After that, we went out into the range and he taught him how to properly handle, load and shoot a gun. He went through numerous type guns and scenrios. Showed him how to handle a misfeed or problem that may occur with a gun. After that, I took him to the range every couple of weeks and reviewed with him and had him handle and shoot my guns. A year later, I did the same with his younger brother. My oldest has been shooting for 2 years, went from shooting small .22 handguns and rifles to handling a 9mm and even .45. He has competed in monthly Glock matches, scoring well, has trained and volunteered as a Range Officer for matches and has expertise in handling and shooting of firearms. My 11 year old isn't that interested in it, but I still take him every few months to "demystify" guns and to re-enforce safety training. He is in Boy Scouts (Cub scouts since 1st grade, just started Boy Scouts) and already has more training and hands on experience than many of the other scouts.

    To keep my guns away from the kids, I have biometric safes in my house where I store the guns so they don't have access to them when I am not around. Training proper gun safety with monitored handling is important.
    Guns are no different than knives, chainsaws, power saws, etc....they are a tool where kids need to be taught safety and respect, and those lessons need to be re-enforced consistently. I know some people who keep guns away from their kids, never letting them see them or handle them, some of them not even knowing that the parent owns them. To me, this just adds to the allure of them when kids do encounter them. My boys were both taught that if they are ever had a friends house and their friend shows them a gun, that they are to leave and tell an adult. They both know they are never to handle a gun without an adult present. Again, just like they know to never use a chainsaw, a sharp knife, etc without adult supervision.
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