February 4, 2009 by The Constant Complainer
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I am the first to admit that I am capable of getting rattled just like anyone else. It doesn’t happen as much anymore, because as they say, I’m “seasoned” – I work in the stressful and litigious field of Risk Management. But in all seriousness, there are certain stories I read, things I hear or things I see that can cause even me, The Constant Complainer, to be speechless, angry beyond belief or upset. This is one of those examples…
An 8-year-old girl’s life is gone. She died yesterday. Why? Because police officers say her brother brought home a gun from a relative’s house. Facts are sketchy, but apparently the girl “struggled” with her 10-year-old brother over the gun and she was accidentally shot in the head. You can read the initial news story here and the updated news story of her death here.
So many things run through my mind when things like this happen. It’s such a shame. And it doesn’t make me feel any better that this happened in my own city.
My first issue is why a 10-year-old boy had a .22-caliber handgun. Apparently he took it from a relative’s house. That leads to my second issue, which is why the relative had a gun near a 10-year-old in the first place. Or why the relative left the gun out. Or why the gun wasn’t locked up. I’m just speculating of course on how the young boy got the gun. But he clearly had access to it, took it and left the relative’s house without anyone knowing about it. I think that’s a pretty big problem.
I suppose I could make this into a big gun control argument, but I’m not going to. Frankly I really don’t care if people want to own guns or not. But if you’re going to own a gun – keep it discretely hidden, put it away, have a lock-box, have a fire safe, keep the ammunition separate from the gun, lock the room it’s in, etc. I could toss out about 100 ideas that could have helped avoid a situation like what happened with this little girl. It’s not about gun control; it’s about gun safety for those people who currently own them.
We don’t have any guns in our house, but I’ve had discussions about this with my wife, because at one point many years ago I was considering a job in law enforcement. Some members of my family own guns and they are appalled by this story. They feel it could have been avoided. I’m sure many of you agree.
A senseless death! An innocent life lost! That’s all this is to me. I don’t know why the little girl was trying to get the gun from her brother or what took place at their house, but I think the relative who is the owner of the gun should face criminal charges for negligence. Here’s a question – what if this little boy had taken the gun to school? Then we’d be talking about a whole different, and probably worse, problem today. Lives have been ruined and I, for one, think it could have been avoided…