If you don’t practice gun safety…don’t teach gun safety

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Earlier this week an instructor for a gun safety class in Lancaster Ohio shot one of his students by “accident”.  I quoted accident because while 73 year old instructor Terry Dunlop Sr. didn’t intend to shoot 26 yr old Michael Piemonte, yet it wasn’t an accident…it was negligence.

If you are teaching a class on gun safety you should adhere to what you teach and first and foremost in that is this: Treat all guns as if they are loaded. While Dunlop has not commented on his negligence Piemonte states that it appeared that Dunlap did not know that the gun was loaded.

These are how tragedies happen. For any gun owner, such an oversight must not be taken lightly but for those who are given the responsibility to TEACH others how to be safe it is down right intolerable.   Fortunately Piemonte took the round in the arm after it ricocheted and should make a full recovery. Fate happened to be with him that day as a large number of his class were nurses who stabilized the wound before making it to Columbus Hospital.

This isn’t the only case of someone being shot by a person teaching about gun safety and thanks to the wonders of technology you can actually SEE someone with a negligent discharge while teaching a class

I especially like the part where this agent states that he…the police officer…is the only one professional enough to carry a glock 40.  I could write an entire article on that thought alone.

And if you are in a class and the instructor is teaching and hasn’t shot himself in the leg (or anyone else) don’t feel that you are obligated to do so.  Last spring, in Virginia, Michael Deel should have paid better attention to the instructor before he shot himself in the hand with the bullet then traveling and striking his wife in the leg. Michael Deel is quoted as calling it a “stupid accident”.

He’s wrong, it was stupid negligence. Accidents happen beyond our control and we usually have little control to prevent them. Negligence is completely in our hands and absolutely avoidable.

I’ll end with a friendly reminder of the 4 rules of Colonel Jeff Cooper:

  • All guns are always loaded. (even if they’re not, treat them as if they are)
  • Never let the muzzle cover anything you are not willing to destroy.
  • Keep your finger off the trigger until your sights are on the target.
  • Be sure of your target and what is beyond it.