Tragic Shooting Of GA 12-Year-Old Illustrates Need For Gun Education

In the course of my day, I read a lot of news stories. I see tons of them each and every day. A lot aren’t worth going into, though. I mean, yes, a homicide in Corpus Christi, TX is tragic, but so is the one in Chicago, IL and the one in New Orleans, LA and the one is Sacramento, CA. They’re all tragic and we can’t cover all of them. Frankly, I wouldn’t want to. We’re a Second Amendment site, not a crime site.

My wife, however, tries to help me out. She sometimes sees stories before I do and forwards them to me. Sometimes, they’re in the above category and I can’t really use them for anything, but it’s still good to see how violent the world is and how important our Second Amendment rights actually are.

Unfortunately, she sent me this one today, and it just illustrates a need I’ve been hoping we would address for some time now. In particularly, gun safety training for every child in this country. If we had that, then maybe this story wouldn’t have happened.

Police in a Georgia city say a 12-year-old boy is dead after his 5-year-old brother shot him with an abandoned gun in the bushes.

Authorities in Griffin say the two boys and their 7-year-old sister were playing outside Saturday evening when the deadly shooting happened. The gun used in the shooting may have been discarded Saturday afternoon during a police pursuit when three men got away from the scene, leaving behind drugs.

The 5-year-old told police he thought the gun was a toy when he found it and shot his older brother in the chest. The gun was found near where the drugs were recovered.

A statement from the Griffin Police Department:

Posted by City of Griffin Police Department on Sunday, May 10, 2020

In other words, it looks like the kids found a dumped firearm and, thinking it was a toy, the five-year-old picked up the weapon and fired it.

Five years old is school age. Since Georgia has a pre-kindergarten program, the boy would have been in school for two years. Imagine if he’d been taught how to identify a toy gun and what to do if he saw one? What if he’d learned that without an orange tip, it wasn’t a toy and that he should tell an adult?

There’s absolutely no reason why gun safety education shouldn’t be provided to each and every child in this country.

Right now, most gun-owning parents do this on their own, as they should. However, there are millions of other households where this kind of thing isn’t being talked about. Many, if not most, non-gun owning parents don’t even think about educating their kids on gun safety. After all, they don’t have a gun. Why should it matter? The problem is, as illustrated by this case is that sometimes criminals dump firearms. They don’t care if kids find it, they just don’t want to be caught with the gun themselves.

If a child finds it, they need to have the tools to know how to deal with that. They need to know what to do and what not to do.

That didn’t happen in this case, with tragic consequences.

I’ve written before about a potential curriculum for this kind of thing, and while I’m quite sure others can do better, it’s a place to start. We need to begin working on it before any of us have to read more about these kinds of cases.