Recently, a dad was practicing dry fire drills, drawing his firearm from a holster when his baby daughter decided to join in, her red toy gun holstered in her diaper. The result was this cuteness:
The man in the video made it clear he was practicing "dry" fire drills (meaning his gun was unloaded) and, as you can see, he made sure to teach his little girl gun safety lessons along the way, reminding her never to point her toy gun at another person. Regardless and predictably, the people of the internet took this sweet bonding moment and went bananas, saying hateful things about both father and child.
Jenn Jacques at Bearing Arms had a roundup of some of the comments:
"Give the kid 18 years and he’ll be murdering black folks while wearing a badge and carrying handcuffs"
"Who the fu*k does this, oh wait americans.. no wonder you have gun massacres in elementary"
"Another d*ckless ammosexual who feels the need to introduce an infant A F*CKING INFANT to weapons….."
"Dad would be in so much trouble if this was mine."
"Exhibiting complete stupidity. When we were kids we played cowboys and soldiers and watched cowboys and soldiers in movies and on tv along with detective shows never realizing how it would have an effect on human behavior in the future. Play serves good purposes but safe play should consider mental as well as physical side effects."
"You have a better chance of being killed by an armed toddler, than being killed terrorist in the US."
As Jacques reported, experts say that children who are exposed to these lessons at an early age are at a distinct safety advantage. Melody Lauer, Director of Training for Citizens Defense Research noted that:
“To people who don’t understand firearms, seeing a video of a child seemingly ‘playing’ with a gun can be alarming, and if done negligently or carelessly, it can be devastating. What they are not seeing in this video, however, is the care with which the father is going through to positively educate that child on the tenets of safe firearms handling. Her gun is an inert training aid. He instructs her on where she should and should not point it. He also models this good behavior for her by being consistent in his own handling in the video.”
Lauer went on to say, “Studies have shown us that early education and positive exposure to firearms reduces the risk of firearms-related accidents in children. If this family is going to have a gun in their home — as clearly they do — this father is doing is the most responsible thing for his child by educating her and modeling positive gun handling for her.”
This is exactly what a parent should do with something that is potentially dangerous, a fact of which those on the left are fully aware. This begs the question -- why are liberals so adamantly against abstinence-only education when it comes to everything but guns?
Here's what leftists have to say about abstinence-only education when it comes to sex:
ThinkProgress: “If decreasing sexual activity is the goal, there’s actually a large body of research proving that comprehensive sex ed is an effective tool for accomplishing that. Kids who receive accurate information about sexuality, including information about how to protect themselves from unwanted pregnancies and STDs, are more likely to delay having sex until they’re older.”
ThinkProgress: “Something that’s regularly repeated by critics of abstinence-focused programs: Evidence suggests that they simply don’t work...For years, researchers have concluded that abstinence-only courses are ineffective. ... Moreover, research suggests that abstinence-promoting programs that withhold information about contraceptives can actually increase the risk.”
Salon: “The idea that avoidance and proscription lead to abstinence has been proven a fantasy throughout American history (think Prohibition). The continuance of abstinence-only programming suggests a near-religious adherence on the part of the states that mandate it, a blind faith in the method despite empirical evidence of its ineffectiveness.”
Slate: “If the goal is truly to reduce teenage pregnancies, comprehensive sex education is the way to go. On the other hand, if the goal is to shore-up a religious ideology while ignoring the numbers, states are welcome to continue. Just don’t be upset when MTV’s Teen Mom franchise comes to town.”
Every one of these arguments can be reasonably applied to drugs or alcohol, which also have programs in schools to teach responsible behavior, or to guns. If you don't teach people how to use something that can be potentially harmful from an early age, those risks increase exponentially. Guns are largely used for sport and self-protection, and accidents would be greatly reduced through expanded education, as the quotes above suggest. In fact, such education used to take place in schools and, now, we see a parent being attacked online for teaching such a safety lesson in the privacy of his own home.
About this, those outlets are correct -- one cannot expect people to behave responsibly if they are not taught to do so. Many abstinence-only education programs fail because they do more to cause people fear rather than to educate them. It becomes a taboo subject wherein kids are afraid to ask questions. They then seek to learn by experimentation or, worse, find themselves in a situation with a gun when proper respect for the danger it poses hasn't been instilled. Those are the situations where harm or death ensues. Just like with sex, drugs, or alcohol.
Abstinence-only education is one of the practices most mocked by the left, so it's time for them to remove this one glaring exception in the name of safety. The little gunslinger in the video? She's going to be just fine.