Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Food For Thought...... Guns & Tubs.

I could write for miles when it comes to gun control, but for now, I just want to make a quick point about why stricter laws aren't always the answer.

Bob Beckel, a media personality, cited today a statistic reflecting the number of children who have died in the last ten years as a result of accidental shootings by legally owned firearms in the home, and argued that the stat is a reason we should have more and stricter gun laws in America.  I'm not going to quote the number he stated, because I haven't looked it up, but I will say that it is SIGNIFICANTLY less than that of another killer inside the home.

According to the Center for Disease Control, two children under the age of 14 die EVERY DAY in America as a result of accidental drowning, making it the SECOND LEADING CAUSE of accidental death in children.  The highest threat when it comes to drowning, according to the CDC? Bathtubs. And while the number of deaths by accidental drowning increases each year, the number of deaths by accidental shooting decreases; by nearly 60% in 20 years, despite a 40% increase in gun ownership, according to the ATF and National Safety Council.

Soooooo......based on the logic Mr. Beckel gave today, that guns should be made illegal based on accidental deaths of children in the home, should we also ban bathing? Should it be illegal to have a private pool in your backyard?  Should beach, lake, waterpark, and pool vacations be outlawed?

Stupid questions? Yeah... that's my point. Far more children die each year in bathtubs, pools, and other bodies of water than in accidental shootings, and what are we doing about it? Writing laws? Of course not. We depend on informing and educating parents on the safety and responsibilities required to protect their children from death by accidental drowning, so why can't we do the same when it comes to gun ownership?  Making gun ownership illegal isn't the only way to prevent accidental deaths inside the home. To the contrary, it may be the only way to save lives in some situations. A shotgun inside the home of Iowa Congressman Leonard Boswell is the ONLY thing that ended a brutal attack on his daughter by an intruder who broke into the home over the weekend and fled when the Congressman's grandson pointed the gun at him. If laws had prevented that gun from being in the home, who knows what the outcome would have been or to what lengths the intruder would have gone? I mean, sure, bathtubs might be more deadly, but I imagine pointing one at an intruder might be a little harder than it sounds.