Firearm safety are of the utmost importance. We sometime forget that firearms, although enjoyable for recreation, are weapons. In order to avoid tragedy various rulesets regarding firearm safety have been created, the most prevalent of which would be Jeff Cooper’s four rules:
- All guns are always loaded.
- 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.
Failure to abide by rule four lead to a tragedy in Rochester, Minnesota when a grandfather shot his granddaughter after mistaking her for an intruder:
A 61-year-old Rochester man shot his granddaughter at the patio door of his home late Monday night, telling police he had armed himself with a pistol to investigate a suspected intruder, police said.
Authorities are still investigating the incident involving the 16-year-old girl, who lives at the house with her grandparents. Shot in the upper torso, she was taken to the hospital in critical condition but was expected to survive, Police Capt. Brian Winters said.
When the couple went to bed Monday night, the girl was at home, Winters said. When they woke to a noise outside around 11 p.m., the man got a 9 mm pistol and went to investigate while the grandmother called police.
The man saw a figure at the patio door and fired two rounds, striking his granddaughter once, Winters said. He declined to give the family’s name.
Luckily the granddaughter is expected to live but this story should remind us all that it is our responsibility to be safe with firearms. Firearms are mere mechanical devices that are incapable of discerning friend from foe. We must make that decision and making it incorrectly could cost an innocent person their life.