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How to Keep Your Kids Safe From Guns

Have guns...have kids? Find out how to talk to your kids about guns and firearm safety. Plus tips on choosing a gun safe and if you should keep your gun.

Have you noticed you can’t turn on the news without a story about how guns are evil?

And how a lot of the stories revolve around schools and children to tug at the heartstrings of the viewers, but don’t talk about how to make the situation better?

As adults, we (should) know how dangerous it is to be misinformed.  

Sheltering children from potentially lifesaving information is not helping anyone.  Schools regularly talk about other life changing topics like sex, bullying, strangers, and racism.

Child Learning
Child Learning

Don’t rely on their school to teach them about guns and gun safety.  

It’s not going to end up well.

This isn’t a politically charged rant.  

Instead, we’ll be talking about common sense and proven ways to keep your kids safe from your guns.

Talking to Your Kids About Guns

Talking to your kids about guns is a little tricky.

They need to be at an age where they can grasp the meaning and severity of the conversation, but also young enough so they don’t stumble upon one and think it’s a toy.

A lot of people in rural areas of the country grow up around guns, hunting, and the lifestyle that goes with it.

Because guns are commonplace, these are not usually the kids that are sneaking your handgun and bringing it to school.  They learn responsibility and the respect for firearms at an early age and know the damage they inflict.

Kids who don’t grow up in a lifestyle that teaches them to respect and how to safely handle guns can lead to so many bad scenarios it’s scary.

The time-tested “talk” is “Stop, Don’t Touch It, Leave, and Tell an Adult.”  The NRA talks about this in their video Eddie The Eagle as a way to teach kids how to treat guns when you find them.

Since guns are usually discovered in the house, not laying on the sidewalk somewhere, there is a level of safety the kids feel.

Make sure they know that any gun, even the one at home, should not be touched.  

Around the age of 11, kids start to be more curious and lie more to cover up their exploring and snooping.

It happens.

This is the time they will start to snoop around and get into things they shouldn’t be getting into.  Introducing them to guns and how to handle them safely is imperative.

Many like to start with the 4 Rules of Firearm Safety.

Most cities also have a shooting range or trap shooting clubs.  These are a great way to introduce your children to firearm safety. Also, hunter safety classes are great for educating kids as young as 12 because safety is the main focus.

Trap Shooting
Trap Shooting

You can find the one closest range to you with wheretoshoot.org that also has ratings of the top ranges in the country.

Remember, kids want to be treated as adults and they can rebel when they catch wind of you putting the “kid gloves” on when talking to them.

If guns are part of your family, involve your family.  Stress the importance of safety above all else.

Safety with a Safe

Keep your guns locked up.

Period.

No excuses.

A safe with a door you can’t pry open and a lock that you can’t break.

You are responsible for your weapons and you will go to jail if any minor gets a hold of your gun, gets hurt, or hurts anyone with it.

When you’re starting your search for a gun locker, keep in mind there is a big difference between a cabinet and a safe.

A gun cabinet has thinner walls and a less secure locking mechanism.  

A safe, however, has thicker walls, a heavier door, a secure lock, and is typically fireproof.

It’s recommended to go with a safe instead of a cabinet because of the added protection and peace of mind you’ll get with a safe.

Many hardware stores and chain stores have safes.  If you love ordering online…Amazon has a 4-star rated 14-gun safe for $400.

Stack-On 14 Gun Safe
Stack-On 14 Gun Safe

Alternatively, if the $400 dollars is more than you want to spend, you can buy an 8 gun cabinet for around $85. A safe for rifles and shotguns require a larger area, for obvious reasons.  

Stack-On 8 Gun Cabinet
Stack-On 8 Gun Cabinet

Handguns are a little easier to secure, though.

Our favorite one for keeping by your bedside is the Fort Knox FTK-PB Simplex Handgun Safe ($230).  Full review here.

Fort Knox FTK-PB Simplex Handgun Safe
Fort Knox FTK-PB Simplex Handgun Safe

Should You Get Rid Of Your Guns?

Did you ask yourself whether or not you should get rid of your guns when you found out you were going to be a parent?

Many people do.

They might even go through with it and sell their home defense pistol or tactical shotgun.

But you should really be asking yourself if you can keep your family safe without your gun.

Home Defense, Mesa Tactical
Home Defense, Mesa Tactical

Being able to protect your family and yourself is of the utmost importance.  You help give them food, shelter, clothing, and protection.  It all goes hand in hand.

Overall, It’s Common Sense

When you have gone so far as to buy a gun to hunt or for your protection, you have accepted the responsibility of the outcome when the gun is used.

While you can’t predict what other people may do with the gun, you can keep it in your possession, be it on your person or under your lock and key.

Talking to your children about safety, what to do if they come across a gun, and how to handle a weapon makes them less likely to injure or be injured by a gun when there isn’t a responsible adult supervising.

How did you talk to your kids about guns and gun safety?

Learning Resources

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2 Leave a Reply

  • Commenter Avatar
    Jesse Canfield

    My Son, whom is 4 and a half, knows the 4 Basic Rules and knows not to touch guns and to report them to an adult if he finds one. He sees me strap mine on every day before leaving the house and knows it's for taking care of bad guys only.

    We started talking to him very young because the more he knows, the less he's going to be curious about.

    We're even getting him his own Pellet Rifle this Christmas so he can start practicing proper arms handling. I never grew up around guns but, my boy will, and he will know what is right about them and what is wrong.

    He also knows to NEVER tell anyone that we have guns, or to talk about them when we're in public... unless it's at the Gun Show.

    November 23, 2016 10:38 am
    • Commenter Avatar
      ehung

      Awesome Jesse!

      November 24, 2016 10:32 am
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