Child Gun Safety

By Vanessa Rasmussen, © 2004, All rights reserved.

There are over 200 million firearms in the United States, with guns present in roughly 50% of US households (the percentage is higher in rural areas, lower in cities). No matter how we feel about firearms, it is imperative that we teach our children the basics of firearms safety. Even if you do not own firearms, chances are you and your children have been in houses where firearms are kept.

Here are a few alarming facts:

Children are curious and impulsive by nature. They would always want to explore something new. Just as you teach your children about safety with respect to other hazardous materials they are likely to encounter, you should also teach them the basics of firearms safety. There is no right age to talk about the dangers of firearms. Lots of television shows meant for children have firearms involved, even something apparently harmless like a cartoon show features hunting, warfare, etc. Explain to your children that firearms are not toys and it is not possible to miraculously recover from injuries as shown in television shows.

The following are some of the measures that you can take as a parent to ensure your child's safety against firearms:

Remember, it is our right to keep and carry firearms, but it also our responsibility to do so safely. It only takes one little mistake to cause a tragedy.

Copyright 2001, 2004. All rights reserved. Any reproduction of this article in whole or in part without written or verbal permission is strictly prohibited. For information about reprinting this article, contact the copyright owner: Vanessa Rasmussen, Ph.D, Starting a Day Care Center,