This week’s #12 lesson in gun safety

For this week’s [from two years ago, but go with it] twelfth lesson in how obviously safe guns are and how clearly responsible gun owners can be we travel to Yakima County, Washington. Where we defer to firearms safety officer Birthday Boy.

SELAH, Wash. — It was at a home on South Wenas Road that a young mother was shot and killed by her own son. But, it wasn’t on purpose. The Sheriff’s office says he fired accidentally.

The 17-year-old Selah boy got the nine-millimeter handgun as a gift. It fired while he was handling the weapon. After passing through a wall, the bullet hit his mom, Vonda Willis-Jean, in the head. She died shortly after in the hospital.

He opened the box, then he was orphaned. Try doing that with a Hula Hoop sports fans. If that isn’t a great birthday present – finding your mom’s brains scattered on the kitchen floor. Sorry, Ma. My bad. I’m not an expert in handling weapons like the one you just gave me, you know? I’m not exactly Sergeant Rock, I’m more like a high schooler. And I was gonna see my first R-rated movie tonight but I suppose I could spend the evening with the coroner instead. Aah memories.

In the Seattle area, there were three other accidental shootings in the last three weeks. Two of those killed two children under eight years old. Now, some state lawmakers are questioning current gun laws.

Now the numbers:

In 2012, more people were seriously hurt by accidental gunshots in Washington state than in any previous year in nearly a generation.

Hospitals here admitted 122 people with “unintentional firearm” injuries that year, the latest for which data is available. Hundreds more were treated in emergency rooms but not admitted. More still were wounded in accidents that were not classified as such.

It was the highest injury tally since 1995 and 30 percent higher than the average over that period, according to a Seattle Times analysis of state Health Department records. The state’s population grew about half that much over that time.

State officials and local law-enforcement authorities say the surge may correspond to a soaring rise in gun ownership.

In 2012, licensed firearm dealers in Washington conducted 519,209 background checks for gun sales — three times the number a decade earlier, according to a federal database.

This is the point I’ve been trying to make. After January 2009, when the Black Guy became president, firearm sales went through the roof. But we didn’t respond properly or sanely with any matching gun safety laws. Now we have an epidemic of guns being cleared, or being cleaned, or being looked at, or being sneezed at, and unsuspecting Americans getting their brains blown out. Probably 1/4 of these victims are children. We should do something about this right?

Yeah well here’s one thing you can do. If there’s an accidental discharge of a firearm, the owner gets locked in jail for two weeks. This is what the penal-ly obsessed call a ‘Mandatory Minimum.” The idiot does 14 days in the county lockup, no excuses. Your two year old fires your Sig Sauer, you go to jail. Period. If you fail to report an accidental shooting, you go for two months. If someone gets injured because of an accidental shooting, you go for one year. No bargaining, no whining, no pleading, you go to jail you stay in jail you fester in jail because you have sinned. It’s right and it’s fair and just.

And what will happen? Well let’s start by talking about the way it’s been for two centuries. Men, women and children every year have been mauled and murdered by the hundreds, more likely thousands, in America with virtually nobody suffering any consequences. No other crime in this country gets this sort of deference. We’re nice people, we wouldn’t want to hurt anyone’s tender feelings, would we? Right. But with mandatory sentencing everything changes. You’ll see all the local stalwarts being thrown in jail – the clueless police chief, the careless pastor, the rickety gun safety expert. They’ll have dead children, they’ll have wounded friends, exactly as before, but now they’ll have to rot in jail because of it. Their mug shots will be plastered on the local paper’s front page, as they should. Because these people have done permanent damage to society. They pay the price just like any other criminal.

This isn’t post-modern polemics, it’s only the way it’s supposed to be. It’s time the law caught up with reality. You can’t “accidentally” shoot anybody, or kill anybody, or sever their spinal chords, or blow their hands off, without being handcuffed, photographed and thrown in the clink. And you can’t leave your Glock on the kitchen table any more than you can leave a hand grenade. If you want a gun, then you want the responsibility as well. Take heed America…

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