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Shooting, continued

Continued from yesterday. Our guns for this day were: two 9mm semi-automatics, a .22 semi, a .22 revolver, a .357 revolver, a .38 revolver, and a 7.62mm SKS rifle. Since we couldn’t set up a proper target for tracking our shooting, there was no competition for this outing. We were just shooting for the fun of it.

We used proper safety — we all wore earplugs, the only loaded weapon was the one on the line, and those not shooting were behind the shooter. Since my 7-year old son was with us this time, I made sure he knew and understood all the rules we were following.

Rifle Shooting

I grew up with guns around me. My dad owned a few guns, but they were usually just for owning and/or target shooting. They were always unloaded and put away up in a closet. My step-dad owned several guns mostly for hunting. Although they were usually stored in various closets, sometimes one was loaded (especially the one he took hunting daily).

My exposure to guns at an early age — being used to having them around, and occasionally actually shooting them on a range — gave me a healthy respect for the things. I didn’t have the urge to show them off to a friend or to sneak peeks at them when my parents weren’t around. All the kids in my family understood guns — their use and their danger. I believe this respect kept me and my siblings safe from accidental death that too many kids were and are vulnerable to.

I want to instill this understanding and respect in my boys. I don’t want them afraid of guns; I want them to respect them. I want my sons to understand what they are, know how they work, and understand that they are very dangerous. I don’t want them to be a forbidden secret that becomes a siren’s call to experiment with them without adult supervision.

If either of my boys are at a friend’s house and the friend says, “Want to see my dad’s gun?” At best, I want them to say, “No,” and then tell me. At worst, if they do look at the gun, I want them to know better than to play with it — to know it’s not a toy.

So I exposed Calfgrit7 to guns for the first time during this outing. He was interested and willing to learn. He watched the adults shoot some first, and then I took him to the firing line and helped him shoot for the first time.

I instructed him on how a gun works, how to hold it, and how to aim (and when, where, and why to point a gun). I stood behind him, with my arms around him helping him hold the gun. He shot several rounds from the .22 revolver. He handled the gun calmly and comfortably, describing the gun as “bouncy” (referring to the kick/recoil).

A few minutes later I let him take a shot with the .357. That sucker has a kick, and it’s really loud compared to a .22. He handled the gun and himself well enough, but he didn’t want to shoot it anymore.

Boy Shooting Gun

During everyone else’s turn on the shooting line, Calfgrit7 spent more time playing and drawing in the dirt behind us, than watching our sport. I take that as a good thing — it shows that he’s not afraid of guns, and he doesn’t have a potentially dangerous fascination with them. Even though I don’t have any firearms out in our home (there’re stored away in the attic, without any ammunition) I want him aware and smart about guns.

It’s just like he can play in the kitchen while we cut with sharp knives, and cook with a hot stove. And like he can play in the front yard while cars may pass on the street. He’s not afraid of knives, stoves, or cars, but he understands their danger, and so he’s less likely to be harmed by them — because of someone else or through a dangerous curiosity about the “forbidden fruit.”


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14 Responses to Shooting, continued

  1. brogrit says:

    i was facinated by his “disinterest”, i was kind of like…”ok, i did it, now i’ll go play”…whch is pretty cool. but i do think he’ll go the next time we go. maybe we can go to the range out on the highway or the farm with some milk jugs or the like, and targets….

  2. Telly says:

    You should skip posting over weekend and holidays. I can not catch up on reading on Monday morning. Especially when your posts are so long.

  3. Sandra McMyer says:

    If you don’t have guns in your home you should never have to worry about your child getting a hold of your guns. I have no problem with people owning guns but you should wait until a child is older to put a gun in their hands.

  4. brogrit says:

    well, bullgrit and i were introduced to guns at an early age, i went hunting with our stepdad quite a lot, and our dad took us out to shoot a lot as well, and it all started young. it taught us how to respect guns and to not to “play” with them. so, bullgrit taking him out with us is a good thing, because if he is ever at someone elses home and their parents have a gun he will know whats up and how to NOT mess around with it. our mom still still has guns in her house and he knows to respect them.

  5. Bullgrit says:

    I don’t mean to double-team you Sandra, but like brogrit mentioned, teaching my son to respect guns “at home” means he’ll probably be safer if he should ever encounter one at someone else’s home. And CG7 is at the age now that he visits his friends’ homes without my or Cowgrit’s supervision, so I want him to understand guns before one of his friends introduces one to his world.

    Telly: I’ve considered taking the weekends off from posting.

  6. Shravan says:

    That is soo damn sexy!! I’ve never had anyone teach me guns and I never knew about the point caliber guns! :) Nice one!

  7. teguh says:

    i think about this case, we should prepare for
    this, ok.


  8. Garg Unzola says:

    Here it is inevitable to teach children how to shoot at a very young age, because of our crime problem. You read in the news how a toddler saved his family with a gun from time to time. You hardly ever read stories about firearm accidents, because we’re taught how to respect guns from an early age.

    I remember the first time I shot my dad’s .38 Special. Didn’t want to shoot immediately after that either… was more at home with the .22 shooting Indian Minah.

  9. Bullgrit says:

    Garg Unzola, where are you (in the world)? I think I found the answer on your blog, but I’m not sure.

  10. gadiza12 says:

    that is hot stuff. where u get the gun?
    in my country, is very hard to get.. nice blog
    keep the good work..

  11. Dar says:

    Well now, I very much appreciate this post, and I wish that other people could be so sensible. I, too, live in the South, though I am Canadian. I did more of my growing up here than there, though I still call there home. My father was a competitive shooter in his younger years and he drilled respect for firearms into my siblings and I from a young age. I have never fired a gun of any kind in my life, and have only ever had passing interest in it, but I have always valued what I have learned about them. You have put it so well that so many other things in life are a danger and yet we live with them and respect them for what they are. I wish other people could realize this and try to deal with it in such a calm manner.

    Kudos to you sir, and I think that I will definitely be enjoying reading your blog.

  12. Will Snidey says:

    Holy shit man! That gun is as big as the boy. I would love to shoot a gun like that.

    • Bullgrit says:

      Will Snidey: Yeah, that’s the .357 Calfgrit is shooting. It’s the kind of gun that once you shoot it, you realize just how powerful and dangerous guns can be. You know you don’t ever want it pointed at you or anyone else.

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