Skip to comments.How Guns Are Like Nukes (The Last Sentence Says It All)
Posted on 02/05/2013 5:56:38 AM PST by Kaslin
I stand out among my conservative friends in disliking guns. I favor reasonable restrictions on the Second Amendment, such as bans on fully automatic weapons, background checks for purchases and forbidding the sale of guns to those with histories of mental illness or criminality.
Yet I cannot agree with liberals that more gun control will lead to fewer gun crimes.
President Obama's choice for defense secretary, Chuck Hagel, actually illuminated one of the weaknesses of the gun control case. Hagel had been closely associated with Global Zero (though he's since repudiated it), a movement dedicated to "the elimination of all nuclear weapons." Hagel isn't alone in endorsing this cause. President Obama supports the concept, as well.
Liberals like Hagel and Obama think nuclear weapons are a problem in themselves. Call it the instrumental view. It's the weapon, rather than the person wielding it, that presents the danger. But American possession of nuclear weapons didn't threaten world peace. On the contrary, our nuclear arsenal arguably kept the peace for the whole second half of the 20th century. On the other hand, a nuclear weapon in Iran's hands would be a profound threat to the world.
By the same instrumental logic, many ask how we can tacitly tolerate Israel's possession of nuclear weapons while declaring that Iran must not be permitted to obtain them. The answer is the same. No matter how awful the weapon, the relevant question is about the weapon's owner. Israel is a peace-seeking democracy whose nuclear weapons are clearly intended purely for defense. Iran is ruled by a terrorist gang that managed to gain control of a country.
To propose, as Hagel did, that the existing nuclear powers completely divest themselves of nuclear weapons wouldn't make the world safer. It would make it profoundly less safe because the U.S. would be powerless to prevent smaller powers that acquired nuclear weapons after we had destroyed our own from bullying the world -- or worse.
Wouldn't it be a better world if nuclear bombs had never been invented? That's hard to say. History isn't over. The U.S. military projected casualties from an invasion of the Japanese mainland between 500,000 and 1 million American dead and between 5 and 10 million Japanese dead. Dropping two atomic bombs, as terrible as that was, cost about 200,000 lives.
Similar arguments animate the gun control debate. The ready availability of guns, we're told, is responsible for America's extremely high rates of gun crime and for the horrific mass shootings we've experienced in recent years. Possibly, but there are other nations with high rates of gun ownership, such as Switzerland and Israel, that have low rates of gun crime. In our own recent history, we know that many high schools hosted rifle teams and many had ranges in their buildings. Yet school shootings were exceedingly rare and mass shootings unheard of.
We are told that studies have shown that gun ownership does not make home owners safer, but that, on the contrary, having a gun in the home makes it much more likely that the homeowner will be shot by a family member. This claim rests chiefly on a study by Arthur Kellerman that compared 420 homicide victims with others living in the same neighborhood. As Prof. Gary Kleck observed, the subjects of the study lived in a crime-ridden neighborhood, and Kellerman did not control for membership in gangs or participation in the drug trade. Additionally, only 4.7 percent of the homicide victims were killed by spouses, lovers, other relatives or roommates using the gun that was kept at home. The overwhelming majority of the deaths were the result of guns brought into the home from elsewhere.
It's doubtless true that more guns in homes are correlated with more gun accidents, gun suicides and gun homicides. It's hard to find gun deaths in homes without guns. But there are no swimming pool deaths in homes without pools either. There is also no doubt that Americans defend themselves and others with guns quite frequently. Data are difficult to come by for complex reasons including reporting errors, varying state laws and even lying by gun owners. But when the CATO Institute studied news reports of defensive gun uses over an eight-year period ending in 2011, they found more than 5,000 documented instances of gun owners preventing mayhem (murder, rape, robbery and assault) with guns. Interestingly, they found only 11 cases in which the criminal was able to disarm the gun owner, but 227 cases in which the criminal was disarmed.
We can no more make guns disappear than we can uninvent nuclear weapons. The key in both cases is whose finger is on the trigger.
I once saw Jerry Falwell debate some British anti nuke activist, at some English University, I think it was Oxford, in the 1980’s during the cold war. He concluded with the following:
Ther is an empire that has thousands of nuclear weapons, and yet, nobody stays awake night worrying about that empire starting a nuclear war.” at that point the crowd was yelling and protesting that Falwell must be crazy.
He continued, “I didn’t say which empire. I meant the British Empire.”
I favor reasonable restrictions on the Second Amendment, such as bans on fully automatic weapons, background checks for purchases and forbidding the sale of guns to those with histories of mental illness
So Mona, what government bureaucrat will decide "reasonable?" And do you trust government bureaucrats to monitor "backgrounds" properly? As we know, there are never any mistakes made by government bureaucrats. Oh, you don't suppose there will be delays in "authorizations" for conservatives while their "backgrounds" are "checked" do you? And will everyone who ever took ritalin be forbidden under your "mental illness" rule?
Mona wake up. You're better than this.
IOW, Mona favors elimination of Second Amendment rights via incrementalism, the favored tactic when the direct approach doesn’t work.
Basically, you shouldn't and can't trust anyone that doesn't trust you with the lethal means to defend yourself.
> .. having a gun in the home makes it much more likely that the homeowner will be shot by a family member .. <
That lie keeps being repeated over and over despite the facts, and is treated as a fact by the left/gun-grabbers.
There is a study on violence that was recently released that has not gotten much attention despite the recent gun ban debates.
I don’t own a gun...yet, but I may some day...don’t know. However, I am against the gov’t saying I can’t have one. It seems to me that any gun ban, be it on automatic rifles or clip size, is going to have the same result that Prohibition had...the bad guys still had all they wanted. Pile on top of that a new cadre of Federal employees to enforce the law and you get Big Brother times two. Gun control is just a bad idea on a Constitutional level, let alone the argument that it would actually work.
A gun is for protection. The Constitution says nothing about hunting; hunting is an ancillary use for a gun.
The Constitution is supposed to guarantee the right to possess and use and arms needed to confront a militia or military force being used to support a tyrannical government. It is not limited to small arms, but guarantees arms equivalent or better than those expected to be used by the tyranical force imposing its will.
Anyone who tells you that the police will protect you is an idiot who probably does not own a gun or a fire extinguisher. I own a fire extinguisher, because if I have a fire in my home, it will take too long for government or volunteer fire fighters to get there to prevent a major damage. Owning a fire extinguisher to put out a small fire is identical to owning a gun to confront an intruder. You can’t wait for a cop anymore than you can wait for a fireman.
This is something that we must address head on.
She doesn’t favor incremental elimination of the 2nd amendment, she favors outright immediate elimination but knows that that approach won’t work. And if their end goal were exposed and known by all, the incremental approach wouldn’t work either.
And here we are, arguing about what we’ll allow them to ban in THIS increment.
I say NO! Nothing! You’re restricting NOTHING! In fact, we’re going to fight to roll back some restrictions you’ve already put in place.
I have always loved the work of Mona Charen. However, I wish she’d chosen to sit this one out!
If so, then we might as well shrug our shoulders if something like Aurora, the Newtown shooting, etc happens again. Perhaps you think the victims shouldn't have been there.
I just got a revolver a few months ago. I’m hoping I never need it, but, I’d rather have it and not need it, than need it and not have it.
Until recently, I didn’t think I would need it, although I thought that someday the fabric of society would disintigrate to the point that I might need one. That’s happening now. Violent crime seems to be on the rise in my community, and getting ever closer to our seemingly safe suburban neighborhood. The police are not stopping it, and probably cannot, at least with the current crop of politicians giving them their marching orders.
I took the NRA training, and practice at the range from time to time. I clean it and maintain it, and keep it locked up, but handy.
I’ve had my office garage broken into three times, and I’ve had to escape from would be muggers in downtown. I’m not eager to shoot anyone, but I’m even less eager to be a victim.
We are fortunate that our Constitution affirms our right to bear arms, but less fortunate that some do not trust us with liberty, and quite unfortunate that some of those are in positions to take those liberties away.
Show me someone who does not trust us with the right to bear arms, and I will show you someone who does not trust us with any of our Constitutional liberties.
I favor reasonable restrictions on the Second Amendment
Regardless of what the nutcase was carrying or intending.
What scares me most about this are irresponsible gun owners who leave their loaded guns laying around where toddlers can get a hold of it and kill themselves or or their siblings or little friends.
How would she react to this position: "I stand out among my conservative friends in disliking freedom of the press. I favor reasonable restrictions on the First Amendment, such as bans on reckless articles such as this one, background checks for journalists and forbidding the sale of computer printers and blog sites to those with histories of mental illness or criminality"?
While books, movies, and blogs don't kill people, and the extremists on the left would argue that makes guns different, we are 100% certain that the reckless and irresponsible reporting of mass shootings motivates copycat criminals. The case for restricting and licensing freedom of speech and of the press is just as strong as the case for restricting and licensing firearms. Guns in the hands of law-abiding citizens pose no threat to other law-abiding citizens. Sensible people, those without a phobia, feel MUCH safer at a gun show, NRA convention, or conservative political rally than at a location where people are known to be disarmed.
Guns are tools, and they are often very good tools (in the sense of making the world better and not just in the sense of functioning well). As for infringements on the constitutional protections of our fundamental human rights, those are always harmful. Weakening our legal protections today makes it easier for a petty tyrant to go even further tomorrow. No, thank you. I'll continue to support the honest position that "shall not be infringed" means exactly what it says and should be followed as written.
All three of her restrictions are already law, and have been for decades.
It should scare you more that even more people don’t properly secure their scissors and kitchen knives, swimming pools, and stairways in the home. All of which kill as many, if not more, than carelessly store firearms...
What is it with the lib-tard/gun grabber talking points? Did someone hijack your account?
More kids die from eating their parents medication than from guns.
More kids die in car accidents because of poorly installed car seats.
First tell me who gets to define mental illness, then I'll answer that question. Do not tell me your definition of mental illness because it most certainly will not be you, providing the official definition.
If they are a danger then they should be in an institution not out on the street if they are not a danger then they should have no restriction, period. The 2nd amendment does not say shall not infringe except in case of. It is a God given right.
The same logic could and should be applied to felons.
The Second Amendment is in fact infringed by restricting firearms. Having said that, the factor that is missing is there is nothing wrong with requiring responsible security of those arms. It is for that reason that a private citizen could not responsibly possess a nuclear weapon. He could not afford the manpower necessary to have secure storage and he could not be financially responsible for the consequences of its use. These are both factors that only a sovereign government can address.
To cast this in a different light, the only reason that private citizens can own and operate a nuclear reactor is that government changes the liability laws to limit liability and to socialize any amount exceeding certain limits. Without this subsidy, no corporation would operate a nuclear power plant.
Yeah, I was wondering the same thing.
Today's PhotoMeme by yours truly. Took Charen's quote and ran with it. Spread it far and wide.
Absolutely correct but it is sad that it was not mentioned until 18 posts into the thread...FReepers have lost a step.
Yeah... she started out stupid, but did finish off with something quotable.
10 Differences between Conservatives And Liberals
Conservatives and liberals approach almost every issue with completely different philosophies, underlying assumptions, and methods. That's why it's so hard to find genuine compromise between conservatism and liberalism -- because not only are liberals almost always wrong, their solutions almost always make things worse.
With that in mind, let me take a few moments to explain some of the key differences between liberals and conservative to you.
Bonus) Conservatives believe that judges should act like umpires instead of legislating from the bench. That means that judges should determine whether laws are permissible under the Constitution and settle debates about the meaning of laws, not impose their will based on their ideological leanings. Liberals view judges as a backdoor method of getting unpopular left-leaning legislation passed. They don't want umpires, they want political partisans in black robes who will side with them first and then come up with a rationale to explain it.
10) Conservatives believe that individual Americans have a right to defend themselves and their families with guns and that right cannot be taken away by any method short of a Constitutional Amendment, which conservatives would oppose. Liberals believe by taking arms away from law abiding citizens, they can prevent criminals, who aren't going to abide by gun control laws, from using guns in the commission of crimes.
9) Conservatives believe that we should live in a color blind society where every individual is judged on the content of his character and the merits of his actions. On the other hand, liberals believe that it's ok to discriminate based on race as long as it primarily benefits minority groups.
8) Conservatives are capitalists and believe that entrepreneurs who amass great wealth through their own efforts are good for the country and shouldn't be punished for being successful. Liberals are socialists who view successful business owners as people who cheated the system somehow or got lucky. That's why they don't respect high achievers and see them as little more than piggy banks for their programs.
7) Conservatives believe that abortion ends the life of an innocent child and since we believe that infanticide is wrong, we oppose abortion. Most liberals, despite what they'll tell you, believe that abortion ends the life of an innocent child, but they prefer killing the baby to inconveniencing the mother.
6) Conservatives believe in confronting and defeating enemies of the United States before they can harm American citizens. Liberals believe in using law enforcement measures to deal with terrorism, which means that they feel we should allow terrorists to train, plan, and actually attempt to kill Americans before we try to arrest them -- as if you can just send the police around to pick up a terrorist mastermind hiding in Iran or the wilds of Pakistan.
5) Conservatives, but not necessarily Republicans (which is unfortunate), believe it's vitally important to the future of the country to reduce the size of government, keep taxes low, balance the budget, and get this country out of debt. Liberals, and Democrats for that matter, believe in big government, high taxes, and they have never met a new spending program they didn't like, whether we will have to go into debt to pay for it or not.
4) Conservatives believe that government, by its very nature, tends to be inefficient, incompetent, wasteful, and power hungry. That's why we believe that the government that governs least, governs best. Liberals think that the solution to every problem is another government program. Even when those new programs create new problems, often worse than the ones that were being fixed in the first place, the solution is always....you guessed it, another government program.
3) Conservatives are patriotic, believe that America is a great nation, and are primarily interested in looking out for the good of the country. That's why we believe in "American exceptionalism" and "America first." Liberals are internationalists who are more concerned about what Europeans think of us and staying in the good graces of the corrupt bureaucrats who control the UN than looking out for the best interests of this nation.
2) Conservatives, most of them anyway, believe in God and think that the Constitution has been twisted by liberal judges to illegitimately try to purge Christianity from the public square. We also believe, most of us anyway, that this country has been successful in large part because it is a good, Christian nation and if our country ever turns away from the Lord, it will cease to prosper. Liberals, most of them anyway, are hostile to Christianity. That's why, whether you're talking about a school play at Christmas time, a judge putting the Ten Commandments on the wall of his court, or a store employee saying "Merry Christmas" instead of "Happy Holidays," liberals are dedicated to driving reminders of Christianity from polite society.
1) Conservatives believe in pursuing policies because they're pragmatic and because they work. Liberals believe in pursuing policies because they're "nice" and make them feel good. Whether the policies they're advocating actually work or not is of secondary importance to them.
While I personally do not like guns, I respect the right of law abiding citizens to have and carry guns. Plus criminals are not law abiding citizens.
Use what we can; discard the rest.
Yes, We went almost 150 years before the feds started with gun control. It is all about control not guns.
If the ex-con is not on parole or work release and he has served his time then his sentence is over and he should be allowed his right to defend himself. Otherwise we are making different classes of citizens and that will be used by government to control us all. For many years the government followed the Constitution now that they choose to ignore it (since 1934 on guns) they keep take more and more from us.
I'm on the various newspapers' comments section lately, fighting these know-nothings. For the line above, I reply "Residences of meth heads and gang bangers usually have that problem."
I rarely get a response.
Agree to all...
Just don't carry water for the Socialist gun grabbers and think your conservative bone fides will stand up. They are using EVERY lame-assed excuse to further restrict our Rights.
And they are lame. For every perceived ill, it isn't the firearms that are at fault. In most cases, more law abiding people carrying arms would directly mitigate the ill in question rather than more restrictions.
Thanks Laz. Posted on Twitter @TXchilinobeans
So basically Mona is for gun control.
If so, then we might as well shrug our shoulders if something like Aurora, the Newtown shooting, etc happens again. Perhaps you think the victims shouldn't have been there.
You are making a straw argument, that we must accept either more Newtowns OR Charen's faith in government bureaucrats not to abuse their restrictive powers over private citizens. So to answer your question, flawed as it is, NO I am no okay with those with a history of mental illness having guns. BUT BUT BUT I am even LESS OKAY with giving the government the power to decide this.
Once we do that, we open the door to government officials deciding that being in the Tea Party, or posting on Free Republic, is showing anger and hate and therefore is a "mental illness." I guess I'm saying that you and Charen are guilty of the liberal mistake of thinking we can use law to make the world perfect. Ain't gonna happen. And your statement about the "victims shouldn't have been there" is just asinine.
The part where you apparently want us all to jump through more unConstitutional hoops to exercise said Right.
Wow. That post is rife with problems, and problematic assumptions, and double-think.
Wrong assumption #1: The second amendment was a right created by government, and which it can limit to whatever is currently deemed by some legislating power as reasonable.
Truth #1: The right to protect yourself, family, community, nation, or other nations is God-given, inalienable, and existed BEFORE the constitution, and is only acknowledged in the constitution to prevent the government from doing exactly what you propose, that is infringing upon that right in the name of reasonableness. You are denying basic rights, and in direct opposition to the supreme law of the land and clearly stated founding fathers opinions.
“Congress have no power to disarm the militia. Their swords, and EVERY other terrible implement of the soldier, are the birthright of an American... The unlimited power of the sword is not in the hands of either the federal or state government, but, where I trust in God it will ever remain, in the hands of the people” (Tench Coxe, Pennsylvania Gazette, Feb. 20, 1788)
Double Thinking #1 The problem isnt the weapon, it is the user, vs. fully automatic weapons are a problem and need to be banned regardless of the user. The double-minded man is unstable in all his ways James 1:8
Double Thinking #2 Iran is a naughty(ruled by a terrorist gang) country( because we disagree with their beliefs, and they have attacked one other country in the last 30 years?) and we are the righteous nation. Vs. Israel the peace-seeking democracy who decided to get nation to recognize a populated land as theirs, and then move there, and as immigrants forcibly by war, take that land from its inhabitants and deny basic freedoms. Or the righteous U.S. who has engaged in numerous wars in the last 30 years, and is currently run by a usurper elected to office by the crime capital districts in the nation, so they can have the government steal more tax dollars from the workers to give to them.
Double Thinking #3 The people of America deserve to have the right to protect the country using weapons like nukes. Vs. The people of Iran are subhuman and dont deserve the right to protect their nation with weapons like nukes. The right to self protection by whatever means is not yours to decide it is a right.
Double Thinking #4 Preventing Iran from getting nukes is good, because they are bad. Vs. the unspoken Allowing the USSR to have them in the cold war was ok, and China to have them was ok, and North Korea to have them is OK. Lets hear your call for the immediate destruction of the North Korean regime by force. They are worse than a terrorist gang.
Ultimately all of these go back to the same thing. You simply do not believe in rights or liberty at all. You believe YOU get to decide who bad or dangerous guys are, and you or government [collective you], being God, get to determine their right. For you, God, have decided that the following people do not have rights:
Anyone with a fully automatic weapon is a criminal, unless of course they are with the government, because we know the government and everyone in it is trustworthy.
Anyone with a mental illness is dangerous and you, God decide what mental illness is. Current things discussed as mental illness are homeschoolers, opposition to homosexuality etc.
Anyone who fails a background check, i.e. a convicted felon guilty of any law who you, God, decide is a crime worthy of stripping all rights to vote, and defend oneself. Felony Examples:
The nineteen year old who drove home from a party drunk and cause serious property damage, got a felony dui, and hasnt had a drink again in the last ten years.
The guy who carried a handgun on a New York City street at night for protection without a permit, and someone saw it in his coat and turned him in.
Forgery, counterfitting, drug abuse, liquor law violation, fraud, curfew violation etc. etc.
A whole host of non-violent crimes can get you permanently stripped of rights, no matter what your life is currently like.
No! You, and no 300 million more of you, have a right to take away my right to defend myself with the weapon of my choice. You are NOT God! Neither is the government. This is why our founding fathers warned against democracy. It is mob rule. We are supposed to have a republic, which has representatives ruling by law. The law is natural, supreme, from God and unchanging.
I have to disagree with some of the listed differences between conservatives and liberals.
#10 A constitutional amendment cannot take away a right the constitution did not give. The second amendment only acknowledged a pre-existing God given right. Man cannot take it away, period.
#8 Capitalism and free-enterprise are not the same. True conservatives believe in free-enterprise. Search for capitalism vs. free enterprise. Good reading.
#6 confronting and defeating enemies before they can harm This sounds like the very kind of thought crime, Id guess you would oppose if it were our government implementing it, and you were on the receiving end. What makes you the international thought control police attacking people before they harm?
So, are you assuming that "mental illness" is incurable? That somebody with a "history" can never again own a gun?
Liberals like to pretend that good intentions are all that is required before legislation is justified. I'm glad that your intentions are good.
But you must realize that there are degrees of mental illness, don't you? You must realize that "mental illness", however measured, is unlikely to be a constant with any given individual, but rather is likely to be quite variable?
What is it about "a history of mental illness" that is compatible with being at liberty with respect to all freedoms except that of keeping and bearing arms?
As to whether we "shrug our shoulders", the NRA suggested that every school and every teacher should consider being able to protect our loved ones with arms. That is what virtually every person with the resources to do so has done, whether using their own wealth or that of the government.
I guess there might be a question about whether we should allow teachers who have "a history of mental illness" to be armed in the classroom; or even in the classroom at all.
Several liberals that I have talked to don't trust themselves with arms. They wish to allow themselves the luxury of uncontrolled anger and they suspect that, if armed, they would kill others over trifling matters. How very sad.
If a conservative doesn't like guns, he doesn't buy one.
If a liberal doesn't like guns, he wants all guns outlawed.
And of course this goes for the entire list
Nope, I'm not. But let's remember, those people are insane, not stupid. They often don't purchase the guns they use, although some have while managing to appear sane while they did so. I might note the seeming ubiquity of SSRI medications may contribute to their seeming normal. In other instances, the signs and signals which in retrospect seem clear indicators of psychological problems were ignored by family, friends, and even authorities--all people who should have known the potential for trouble.
But, aside from those we all might not be comfortable around, by imposing psychological criteria you open the door to who defines what as "mentally ill". Few enough people have the paperwork to prove they are "sane".
We frequently, on this very site, describe Liberalism as a "mental illness".
When you open the door to defining people as insane based on certain beliefs, you open the door to refusing the RKBA to people who believe such things as:
Humans make no significant contribution to climate change...
More guns equal less crime...
Or even that a child was born to a virgin over 2000 years ago, lived a flawless life, and was crucified for the sins of all mankind, that humanity could be forgiven for their sins and spend eternity in paradise in spiritual union with their creator.
It depends on who gets to define what is "mental illness".
I'm a Christian, a scientist and signatory to The Petition Project, and a firearm owner, but hopefully you see what I mean... Anything at all could be defined by someone (usually a professor or group of such from the Liberal/Communist education/research establishment) as a "mental illness" and cause to prohibit firearm ownership.
After all, "normal" is a statistical parameter, based on the behaviour of a population, not a set group of behaviours exhibited by any one individual regardless of contest.
If everyone walks around talking to themselves, that becomes "normal", If everyone believes water runs uphill (in defiance of fact), that belief is "normal", and only the heretics who believe based on fact will be considered "insane".
So, that slippery slope awaits and we must tread carefully lest we go cartwheeling down it.
If so, then we might as well shrug our shoulders if something like Aurora, the Newtown shooting, etc happens again.
Culturally, we feel sad for the victims, express horror at the crime (with some fascination at the anomalous behaviour involved), and move on, thanking The Creator it did not happen in our town to our children, and reaffirming our willingness to personally do what we can to prevent it from happening "here", to defend our offspring from the horror of such an incident.
Only the incessant barrage of media hype (at this point) keeps the wound open, and that is clearly for political purposes--namely, removing the population's Right to be able to pose a significant threat to the abuse of power by our own government, defend ourselves and our community, and keep property we own which has never been used in any crime.
The level of exploitation, especially when the results of the official investigation are not supposed to be out for some six months, is unconscionable. The rush to discard a tradition of the Right to be armed going back to the Magna Carta without waiting for even the results of the investigation is "insane".
Perhaps you think the victims shouldn't have been there.
Behind a glass entry door in an enclave which was by law and definition an area where none could defend them against any violent threat, and which was advertised as such?
You tell me if that's nuts.
Statistically insignificant. Of course, it is bad WHEN it happens (and it will ALWAYS happen at some very low level...see the story of the cop who took off his service weapon at home....kid/kids got it and one dead).
The news media blows these incidents WAY out of proportion BECAUSE they are rare. And then the GG's use the hoopla to push ever more onerous and draconian laws.
Personal note, I grew up in farm country. NOBODY had "gun cabinets/safes". There was almost always a loaded rifle stuck in the corner closest to the exit door both at my home and pretty much every other home I had occasion to visit. Number of kid-related incidents......ZERO over at least a forty year time span. On this topic, the NRA is once again correct.....TRAINING WORKS. ALL of us kids were taught from earliest understanding the difference between "toy" and "real" and NEVER to touch "real" unless an adult was present. If we could pick it up, we knew the differnce and how to handle it.
Of course, the anti-gun/scared of guns crowd DOESN'T train their children, so those poor kids are disproportionately likely to mis-handle one. But is that the fault of the gun owner, or the fault of the parent. IMO, the latter applies.