Friday, March 12, 2010

Where Was Dad?

A Massachusetts gun club recently pleaded guilty in the case where an eight-year-old boy fatally shot himself with a Uzi machine gun last October. His father had brought him to the gun club as a special treat. He was assured that a qualified assistant would supervise the boy as he enjoyed the pleasure of machine-gunning a target. The father stood nearby and watched in horror as the boy shot himself in the head when he couldn’t handle the recoil from the high-powered weapon.

It’s an interesting commentary on contemporary life in America that everybody involved has been charged with liability in the case except the father. From my perspective, he bears a majority of the blame for the tragic accident. Where was he when this took place? While he was standing a few feet away you’ve got to wonder where his head was.

I make this comment not from an opposition to children learning how to use guns, but from a matter of just plain common sense. My father taught me how to use a gun shortly after my 12th birthday. But he certainly didn’t place a machine gun in my hand. Rather he gave me a single shot bolt action 22 caliber rifle and then carefully instructed and guided me in its use. Too bad the boy in Massachusetts didn’t have a father as sensible as mine.

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