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Thread: OC and children

  1. #1
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    I recently acquired my first gun, and was wondering what the rest of you that have toddlers do to keep your kids safe around it. My kid really, really wants to play with it. A month or so ago he got ahold of one of my airsoft pistols, and I had to chase him around the house to get it back. What do you do with kids who want guns but are too young to understand that they are dangerous?

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    Regular Member eBratt's Avatar
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    First of all, if your kid got a hold of your airsoft gun, you aren't securing your firearms/airsoft arms properly. The first step is to do that. I'm not talking about a gun safe, although that is the best option if you can afford it. There are numerous locking cases made of metal or plastic that you can get fairly cheaply.

    Second, teach them the Eddie Eagle program. My four year old has been well versed in all the steps for a year now. We do drills with her every few months where I take an unloaded firearm and leave it on the bed and watch my daughter as she practices the steps. She loves it and asks to practice occasionally. In fact, on my most recent return from the range, I had dumped my stuff on my bed (everything unloaded with ammo cased and in a bag) and stepped into the other room for something. I had only been out of the room for about a minute and a half when my daughter came running up to me to let me know tha she had found a gun on my and my wife's bed. She knew the steps and followed them.

    Third, I let them play with my guns...ok, well not play with them, but if I have them out after getting back from the range or if my daughter sees my XD on my belt and asks to touch it, I let her. We sit down and I safely unload the firearm and then I let her pick it up, hold it, touch it, etc. This gives me a great opportunity to teach her about the importance of muzzle control as well. I also show her my plinking targets when I get back (well ventilated cans) and talk about how powerful guns are and how dangerous they can be if you don't use them properly. She gets the hint.

    I plan on taking her out with my little single shot .22 bolt action rifle here soon. She can easily handle that and it will help her understand more about guns and demistify them for her. I think that is one of the most important things about gun safety and kids.
    "The very atmosphere of firearms anywhere and everywhere restrains evil interference - they deserve a place of honor with all that's good" - George Washington
    "Among the many misdeeds of the British rule in India, history will look upon the act of depriving a whole nation of arms, as the blackest." - Mahatma Gandhi

    As always, insert standard IANAL disclaimer here.

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    All our firearms are in a safe except for the one that is on me in a holster. If it's not on my person it's back in the safe. I guess I was lucky when my son was small he didn't care too much- I think because I didn't make a big deal about it. Now that he is older (7) I just tell him he can look at any of the guns at any time as long as I'm there with him. Since I took the mystique away he doesn't really bother to ask. When I am cleaning them he likes to help and will hold one of the pistols and work the action a few times but that's about it. He likes to clean his own rifle and loves to go shooting.











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    Check out the Cornered Cat website. It is aimed at women, but there is a fantastic section about kids and guns.

    http://corneredcat.com/TOC.aspx

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    I took my boy out (of course he wasn't a toddler anymore age 7 or 8) for a VERY LONG day of shooting. I explained safety, explained that he was to never touch them without permission AND supervision and then demonstrated their destructive power on water melons and milk jugs full of water. Being on the "range" for over 6 hours and with the 3 hours of driving round trip, he quickly lost his fascination with guns. In fact at the range he gets bored, unless he's actually shooting. Once in a blue moon now he asks to shoot the BB gun in the back yard. Other than that, he's very chill about them.

    As for a toddler, I'd make sure all firearms are secure at all times. But do take him to the range and let him see the destructive power and the noise. You may be able to scare him out of wanting to play with them.

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    When I was stationed at NavSta San Diego I used to go out to the desert to practice. I took both of my children with me when I did. That gave mom a break and gave us some together time.

    Occasionally I would fill a 2 liter bottle about 3/4 of water and drop in some red food coloring. Then I'd set it about 15 yards out and hold my .357 while they pulled the trigger. The explosion of the bottle was spectacular! THEN I'd remind them that that's exactly what would happen if they played with the gun and accidentally shot someone. I know it was a lie, but it was effective. It kept them from playing with a loaded gun. I also kept my firearms out of the reach of the kids.

    Still, I taught my children about safe handling of firearms. They respected them, but they weren't scared of them. It got spo that when they were older they would ask to go shooting with me. It was heartwarming to have my daughter ask, "Daddy, can we go shoot today?"
    "All that is required for evil to prevail is for good men to do nothing." - Edmund Burke


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    I had a house guest who had a 5yo. He was into everything so I had to keep my pistol locked away. Like I said he got into everything so one day I took out a novelty pistol lighter I had and left it on my desk. Its the kind that when you pull the trigger it will shock the $&#@ out of you (thanks Jarhead!). Well he found it and he pulled the trigger, there was this scream and the grown-ups came running. Mommy saw him with a pistol and freaked. I roared laughing and went over and picked it up and had mommy give it a try. Needless to say, I did not have an issue anymore with them and my things left out when they visit.


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    I introduced my 4 year old to firearms when he was 2. I took one out of the safe with him sitting there, showed it to him. explained a couple things.

    Then I let him hold it.

    I took the mystery out of it. He knows to keep his finger off the trigger.

    He knows to point it at the ground.

    Even when he hands it back to me, he hands it back butt first with the muzzle pointed at the ground.

    Now, I have to keep this up. Anytime he asks to "hold daddy's pistol", I let him unless I am on duty or in public.

    He will also come and let me know if I leave a pistol out (unloaded of course) to test him.

    Best advise I would give is to take the mystery out of it and show it to them in a controlled environment.

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    I have a little onewho gets around the house with the quickness. I keep my guns out of reach for him, and now i have my guns i am not using put up so he can not get to them. when he gets older I will lock the guns and hide them.

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    Education

    Education

    Education!!!!



    Edited.....if you missed the pic, tought titty!



    :celebrate


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    Regular Member just_a_car's Avatar
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    Alwayspacking wrote:
    I have a little onewho gets around the house with the quickness. I keep my guns out of reach for him, and now i have my guns i am not using put up so he can not get to them. when he gets older I will lock the guns and hide them.
    I'm sure you're hiding them well, but kids have a knack of getting to places you wouldn't expect them to be able to get to. You've probably seen your little one start climbing something and get much higher than you expected... now just think if there were something available to help them that they could carry near to where you put your firearm.

    I know this because my father put his pistol WAY up 6 feet above his bed, but I (at around 4 or 5 years old) was able to climb up and saw it sitting there. Due to my parents instilling into me that I should never touch it and always go to them or another adult if I found a gun, I told my father that I found it and he moved the pistol somewhere else (I have no idea where, as I never found it again).

    Just something to think about and perhaps incorporate into your "safety measures" with your kids.

    In addition, there's a lot of good advice and information from everyone else here. Glad to see we could come together to put such a good thread up.
    B.S. Chemistry UofWA '09
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    I believe they will eventually find them if even by accident. I always knew where my dads pistols were hidden only because I was curious and um...sometimes looking for hidden Christmas presents. One of his pistols was hidden in a row of shoeboxes on the very tippy top shelf in his bedroom closet.

    I never messed with it as I knew all I had to do was ask and he would show it to me. My dad took me shooting and hunting (even though I didn't carrya gun) at a very young age. I just liked to hang out with my dad and uncles doing cool guy stuff.









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    Alwayspacking wrote:
    and hide them.
    I'm not a big fan of this solution. I know that as kids we rooted through everywhere in the house. I knew where my parents hid all the stuff they didn't want us to see and it became a big deal. They wouldn't hide it unless it was something interesting. Hiding the guns is just as likely to pique his interest as it is to keep him away. I strongly recommend the teaching and familiarity with guns and safety rules if you really want an effective program.

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    From her birth until my daughter went off to college there was a Luger with full magazine inserted but no round chambered (Condition three), depending on the physical (hand grip) strength required to toggle a round for security in addition to parenting. Its location was only discreet, it was not hidden even from her.

    Two personal anecdotes do not data make.

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    I disagree. I'm not in the least bit worried about my son and any firearm. He knows all the rules, follows them and has very good gun disapline. I would be concerned about his little buddies that come over and play. One of them in particular is a bit of a wild hair and even though he knows the rules in his mind the rules are made to be broken. He is good while I am around but it doesn't take much for him to get carried away. When someone else is watching the kids I don't want to have the risk that the guns are somewhere hidden in the house. Firearms arein the safe, end of story.

    I also think down the road when these kids are older. I don't want it to be known that so and so's dad has guns hidden in the house...and we know where they are.





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    Alwayspacking wrote:
    I have a little onewho gets around the house with the quickness. I keep my guns out of reach for him, and now i have my guns i am not using put up so he can not get to them. when he gets older I will lock the guns and hide them.
    I would think about a lock box or at least gun locks for the time being. If you need gun locks I've got a few new ones that you can have.

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    Regular Member Mainsail's Avatar
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    cynicist wrote:
    A month or so ago he got ahold of one of my airsoft pistols, and I had to chase him around the house to get it back.
    Chase? All children should react immediately to a firm "NO!" Please tell me you're not one of those counters.

    "I'm counting! One....two..."

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    You don't even need to get a super duper expensive safe to keep people out... A locking wooden cabinet is great. Stack On has some really nice locking "gun cabinets" that are all metal. They have a pistol + ammo one that is routinely right around $75 bucks.



    And that can actually bolt right on top of this :



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    Mainsail wrote:
    cynicist wrote:
    A month or so ago he got ahold of one of my airsoft pistols, and I had to chase him around the house to get it back.
    Chase? All children should react immediately to a firm "NO!" Please tell me you're not one of those counters.

    "I'm counting! One....two..."
    I have the count to one rule in my house....not 3 reminders not 10, no pleading or nagging. I don't have time for that crap. You get one reminder and if you blow it you go home, yes, even if it's a planned sleepover. Even the wildest kid is on his best behavior because we have more fun at our house even following the rules than the boring time he has at homefront of the TV with his parents ignoring him.

    The common themes I see is either theparents want to be the kids best friend and don't parentor they ignore the kids bad behavior (usually looking for attention that they aren't getting).











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    I don't hide mine. My kids know how and when to use them, of course they are all older now, and what they are capable of doing to the human body. When I was growing up my dad had his service revolver hanging with his belt in the closet and 3 or 4 others around the house so he could get to one if needed. We knew not to touch them under any circumstances.
    "A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity."

    "though I walk through the valley in the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for I know that you are by my side" Glock 23:40

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    I have a Stack On. It doesn't do well with rifles with pistol grips like the AK and AR. I ended up getting a large safe for the guns and I built shelving for the Stack On and that's where I store my powder and chemicals. Works great for that.

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    Mainsail wrote:
    Chase? All children should react immediately to a firm "NO!" Please tell me you're not one of those counters.

    "I'm counting! One....two..."
    It was his first time getting it, and I used to count (and then smack him on three) but he's just learning to count, so he'll stop whatever he's doing and count with me. Kinda defeats the purpose.
    He's not even two yet.

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    Regular Member John Hardin's Avatar
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    cynicist wrote:
    ... he's just learning to count, so he'll stop whatever he's doing ...
    Isn't that the goal?

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    No, because he's not stopping because I say so, he's stopping because he hears counting and wants to count too. If it's a safety thing, then it's good that he stops no matter why, but for teaching discipline, he thinks he stopping so we can play counting.

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