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Be careful with gifts that go bang

December 28, 2011
Salem News

Substantial number of firearms probably were among Christmas gifts received by area residents. That was to be expected, given the large number of outdoors recreation enthusiasts in our area.

No doubt those who received new rifles, shotguns or pistols for Christmas are itching to try them out.

For heaven's sake, be careful.

Scores, perhaps hundreds of times down through the years, we have carried editorials urging gun owners to exercise extreme caution with their firearms. The vast majority of gun owners don't need to be told that. It is just common sense to them.

But a few don't seem to have that sort of intelligence - and the consequences of failing to use it can be awful.

Last week, just days before Christmas, a 15-year-old Amish girl traveling in a buggy in Wayne County, Ohio, was shot in the head and killed.

The bullet came from about one and one-half miles away. It was fired by a man who, either before or after cleaning his muzzle-loading rifle, shot into the air. Yeah, go figure the odds on that bullet coming down and hitting that unsuspecting child. Then try and figure - you know, considering the whole gravity thing - why someone would shoot a gun into the air. Bullets that go up, come down somewhere. God bless that poor girl's family

The tragedy was a reminder of how a single lapse in judgment can take a life. Again, if you are trying out that new firearm during the next few weeks, be careful.



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