Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.
Earlier this week, about 150 sixth graders headed to the firing range to learn about firearms. Floyd Dryden Middle school runs a program that teaches any 6th grader in Juneau who wants to, how to safely handle and shoot rifles, as well as hunting ethics, conservation and management, navigation and other outdoor skills.
But don’t misunderstand, just as the Second Amendment isn’t about hunting, neither is this program. Program Director Ken Coate stresses:
“We aren’t here to create little hunters. We’re here to teach firearm safety, firearm handling, how to treat a firearm with respect, how to keep a kid from getting in trouble with a firearm — and everything else is a side benefit.”
Jesse Kiehl, who has been with the program for six years goes a little more in depth about what the goal of the program is:
“We focus at all times on firearm safety, on safety in the woods, in the field. If the kids take nothing else away from this, every one of them gets a grasp on the basic rules of firearm safety and how to be safe around a firearm. This is Alaska. The vast majority of these kids have a firearm in the home and if they don’t, there’s one in their friend’s house, or more than one. So knowing how to be safe around them is an essential skill for every Alaska kid.”
I have always been a proponent of educational programs such as this so that children realize that guns in real life hold very little in common with the dramatized fiction of the movies.
With this knowledge a couple of things happen. First, the seriousness of the matter sinks in so children understand that guns are not toys. Secondly, the mystery around guns is removed so kids won’t be as tempted to seek them out in a home that has one. Thirdly, if you acclimate a child in their youth with guns there is less of a likelihood that they will grow up with that irrational fear and hatred that spawns gun control zealots.
To the earlier points, the Principal of Floyd Dryden, Tom Milliron, wrote a letter to the parents of the children before the program saying:
“Students who live in homes without firearms are often exposed to firearms in their friends’ homes. They need to understand safe and appropriate behavior in these situations.”
If it seems like I am harping on this point it’s because I am. The only people who enjoy gun tragedies are the gun control ghouls like Mayor Bloomberg who seek to push their agenda. If gun controllers were really about safety then this program would be universally available throughout the lower 48. But it isn’t because without tragedies, gun controllers lose the emotional surge they foster when they exploit them. The cold truth is that gun controllers don’t want schools to be safe, or children to know about and respect firearms or else how will the gun haters profit off the misery of gun free zones and uneducated children?
But back to the program itself, for any parent who vehemently objects, their child does not have to participate, but my question is, why would you want to hurt your child? This is a fantastic program which teaches your child invaluable knowledge and may actually save their life. Are anti gun zealots so conceited that they would sacrifice their children in order to maintain their own misguided self righteousness?
I don’t think any of the Alaskan parents actually objected to the program. The previous paragraph was directed more to the other places in this country where they not only lack this program but hell would literally have to freeze over before it was allowed in their schools. I’m thinking firstly of New York City and other North Eastern dens of gun bias. Bloomberg’s brain would most likely explode if someone would suggest such a program in his fiefdom. When you have as much hate in your heart as Mayor Bloomberg does, then little things like sacrificing children to promote your own agenda is of little consequence.
This is the kind of program that should be everywhere in America. Instead of having a tragedy befall a family because a kid thinks a gun is a toy or doesn’t have the proper respect for a firearm, why don’t we educate them so we avoid a tragedy in the first place?