Thursday, February 28, 2013

Let's Talk Guns

On Saturday, my husband, my brother, and I took a handgun safety course.  David and I bought a gun last year for home protection and I was very excited to learn more about my gun and basic gun safety.  This class is a requirement for obtaining a concealed carry permit, but I haven't decided if I will in fact apply for one; the purpose of the class was to be a safe and informed gun owner.  

revolver
If I do decide to get a permit, it will be for future use, since I can't figure out how to safely carry a loaded gun without it being a safety hazard for a curious toddler that likes to play in mama's purse.  We have a revolver and revolvers do not have safeties.  If I leave the gun unloaded in my purse, it defeats the purpose of having it on hand for dangerous situations that may arise.  I have to balance protecting my family and keeping my baby safe.

The class was great.  The morning was the "classroom" portion, which consisted of learning about the types of handguns, safety rules, basics of shooting (i.e. stance), laws pertaining to carrying handguns, etc.  I wasn't really looking forward to spending my Saturday in the classroom, but it was fascinating.  The time went by so fast and I wasn't bored for a second.

The afternoon was on the shooting range.  The instructor took us through the basics, from shooting a gun for the first time (there were some people there that had never fired a gun before), reloading, and some basic drills that simulated some situations we may encounter (home invasion, shooting one handed if I were to be hurt or holding a child/flashlight/phone).  Of course, safety was a main focus and the instructor was very adamant about always pointing the gun downrange and keeping your finger on the frame of the gun until ready to fire.  I feel much more confident with my gun now and with my ability to use it in an emergency situation.  I will need to practice often to keep that level of confidence up and get even more familiar with our gun so I can protect my family if need be.  In the event that I ever have to use it, shooting needs to be second nature because it will be an incredibly high stress situation.

Most importantly, I had so much fun!  I grew up in a "gun family", but when I became a teenager, I was too busy to go shooting with my dad anymore.  It's been years since I've been shooting and I forgot just how fun it is.  It's so challenging to push yourself to shoot accurately and to simulate high stress situations in which your accuracy may mean the difference between life and death for yourself and your loved ones. 

My dad is an avid hunter.  He's also a huge advocate of handguns for home safety.  My brother and I grew up with guns and gun safety.  From a young age, we were taught the power of guns and knew that they were serious business.  They were never an object of curiosity or "forbidden fruit".  David and I hope to have the same approach with our children.  We will use the utmost safety measures to keep our little ones away from guns.  But when they are old enough, they will be taught how to use a gun, we will take them shooting, we will teach them gun safety and self defense.  They will learn that guns are not to be feared, but that they are tools that can be used in certain situations and with certain safety measures.
  

**Disclaimer: This post is not an argument for or against gun control, handguns, etc.  I'm not interested in opening that debate, so if you comment to that effect, your comment will be deleted.

5 comments:

  1. Elizabeth @SparkandFlameFebruary 28, 2013 at 1:18 PM

    Interesting post, thanks for sharing your experience. As my husband says, "gun control is good- keep both eyes open, and use both hands!" (lol)

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  2. As a wife of a gunsmith and kung fu instructor we are pretty big on personal safety and protection. I love that you took this class and had a good time. You have the right attitude and reasons towards gun ownership. I feel the same way. I too grew up like you and loved taking the same class as an adult. Shooting is now an enjoyable hobby of ours. Thanks for posting about your experience. Hopefully it encourages others to be responsible and respectable to those who choose to have guns.

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  3. You might be the perfect person to talk to about this. I did not grow up in a gun family. I've never fired one. And up until I met my husband, I had never seen a gun in person. So, it's probably easy to understand why I am frightened of them. I have never been taught about them, and all I can imagine is a horrible accident if we had one in our house.


    My husband on the other hand grew up with guns. He learned safety, respect and all of the other precautions that are needed. He is not afraid, but has the same viewpoint as you.


    With recent events and debates happening in our society, my husband and I have been talking about the possibility of buying a gun. I told him that I was open to the idea; I very much support a person's rights to own and carry a gun. I think that more trained citizens is a pretty good idea, actually.


    But, I cannot get over my fears of these tools/weapons. Do you have any advice for me? Should we not get one because I cannot get over it? Is this something I should overcome? Any other thoughts?

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  4. Jenna, if you've never shot a gun, I would suggest that you and your husband go to a shooting range, rent some and try it out (or take a class like I did, the instructor had guns he rented out for the class). By learning more about guns and the safety measures you can take, you might find yourself much more confident about being a gun owner. The more time you spend with guns and with gun experts, the more you'll realize that guns are as safe as YOU make them. You might actually realize that you think shooting is fun! If you want to talk more, Jenna, email me!

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  5. I think that might be what I would have to do. I was told I need to wait until after I have this baby because the lead exposure at ranges isn't safe for preggos. Do you have any advice about getting over the fear of just being at a range?

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I'd love to hear what you have to say! You can also contact me directly by emailing me at messywifeblessedlife@gmail.com.