Right now we’re seeing a lot of new people who’ve never owned a gun before realizing a need or an importance in gun ownership. Problem is purchasing a gun is just the first step. Gun safety and marksmanship goes along with responsible ownership. We also still have the people out there that own guns that never really use them but feel that just having it makes them safer or more secure. Tonight I was in Academy looking the optics in the glass case and overheard a man, 2 young boys and his wife discussing handgun options for the wife as he said to his wife, “I want you to have the biggest pistol you feel comfortable with!” That made perfect sense, but comfortable was being judged by the way the pistol felt in the hand, not by the ability to work the slide or the felt recoil not to mention the advice being given by the salesperson wasn’t exactly what I’d consider to be up to par.
Then as I watched the 2 young boys picking out guns for mom to try I couldn’t help but to smile seeing that getting mom a new pistol had become a family adventure but then I found myself wondering if these parents was going to give good firearm education to these 2 antsy kids who was doing nothing but talking about how cool this and that pistol looks. I don’t know what the future for that family will be and isn’t right to make assumptions but the whole thing did have me putting a lot of thought into my own ideas of a responsible gun owner.
So what is a responsible gun owner?
Without putting much thought into I’d imagine that most people would answer along the lines of a non-violent level headed law abiding citizen capable of using sound judgement and utilizing safe gun practices. Perhaps that really is all that is required to be a responsible gun owner but if it is I don’t think it’s enough. I think gun owners have an obligation to work towards improving their knowledge and marksmanship through training or practicing.
Some may say that ammo is just too expensive to practice for marksmanship and well right now that’s very understandable but to all those that say they just can’t afford to practice I must ask, in the event you need that firearm can you afford to miss your intended target or even worse hit a target you didn’t intend to. What’s worse is for most it has nothing to do with affordability its more of a sense of entitlement that just having a gun is good enough and those that think like this concern me.
So if you know people that fall into any of these categories do what you can to help them out with encouragement to go out and practice. As firearm enthusiast we can’t just work on getting new people involved with the gun culture while ignoring the participation of some of those already involved.