NATIONAL (BTSNews) Jan. 15, 2013 -- Earlier today in Cleveland, Ohio, a 17-year-old boy shot himself in the chest while mishandling a gun in the home of a 19 year-old friend. The victim was taken to a local hospital for medical treatment and is expected to recover. The 19 year-old was arrested and is being questioned. This avoidable shooting is not alleged to have involved assault weapons, high capacity magazine or background check issues, which are now targeted by the Obama Administration for national regulation. Stupidity and recklessness, however, continue to pass under the radar.
BEHIND THE SCENES, their is hyperbole from both the left and the right on gun issues. The plain fact, however, is that accidental shootings stemming from irresponsible, careless and/or reckless activities continue to take the lives of Americans every year. On December 12, 2012, two Ohio students in a concealed carry class were shot and injured when one of the students improperly cleared his jammed weapon. In December 2012, a 19 year-old Ohio ATV driver shot himself in the chest and abdomen with a shotgun while hunting when the gun fell to the ground and discharged. In May 2012, an Ohio three year-old shot himself in the head after accessing his family's unlocked, loaded handgun laying on a couch or bedroom dresser. And in December 2011, a man clearing his muzzle loading rifle accidentally shot and killed an 15 year-old Amish girl driving a horse and buggy carriage over a mile away. The man's method to clear his weapon: firing the gun into the air.
Over 5,000 deaths are caused every year by reckless driving activities such as texting and other driver distraction issues. On a national scale, more people -- particularly small children -- continue to die each year from accidental poisonings than from accidental shootings. By way of contrast -- as reported previously by BTSNews -- 606 people died from unintentional shootings in 2010. Many other gun related deaths could have been avoided but for the reckless failure to lock and secure a gun, as in the case of Nancy and Adam Lanza. Recklessness, carelessness and/or outright stupidity are the ultimate cause for all of these deaths, not cars, household bleach or guns.
Regardless of your political viewpoint on gun control issues, the NRA offers numerous education and training courses for male and female adults, youths, and hunters. Moreover, gun manufacturers such as Sig Sauer sponsor comprehensive firearms training, tactics and self-defense courses. Gun experts recommend -- and many federal and state laws require -- that guns be unloaded and locked when not in use, particularly when children are in the vicinity.
Whether guns should -- or can -- be removed from our households and streets is a matter for our nation to debate. It would help, however, if we could get the stupidity off the streets in the meantime.
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