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Posted by: LateForLunch ® |
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As machines, firearms are a remarkable combination of a fine watch/heavy duty machine. Even though they have but one purpose (punching holes in human beings or other dangerous animals) the elegance of the machining/design is alluring.
That's actually a minus for impressionable people - they are so fascinating that there is a tendency to want to apply them.
A firearm is a tool - like any other. To be properly regarded as such - nothing more or less. As with all tools, there are rules to be followed for their proper use.
Guns are exceptional in that the rules for owning/operating them must be adhered to with absolute, unwavering firmness.
The first three things my instructors taught me were:
1) Follow every instruction given you to the letter, every second. No exceptions.
2) See rule #1
3) See above.
I understood the reason for the emphasis intuitively and that it is a matter of life / death to be disciplined in that regard.
An object lesson was given later by the Universe. A friend owned a .50 caliber Winchester lever-action with a HAIR Trigger. Out in a shooting area, another fellow noticed his big rifle, asked to shoot it.
"No," my friend shook his head, "Absolutely not."
" Aw, come on!! I'll pay for the round (handing him twenty bucks)" said the other guy.
"No," he said again, looking him directly in the eye as he spoke, pushing the money away, "This gun has a hair trigger. Do you know what that means? You absolutely must not put your finger on the trigger until you are ready to fire."
"I understand," he said anxiously, excited by the prospect.
" No," my friend said, "I mean it has a HAIR TRIGGER. You can't put your finger on the trigger until you're ready to fire."
The other guy said, "I understand," convincingly serious.
Reluctantly, my friend demonstrated how to lie prone on the ground with the rifle butt FIRMLY held against the shoulder BEFORE YOU PUT YOUR FINGER ON THE TRIGGER.
The guy somberly said that he understood, took the rifle and brought it to his shoulder. When the butt was still about a quarter of an inch from his shoulder, he impulsively put his finger on the trigger - and the gun went off.
He nearly dislocated/fractured his shoulder. My friend took the weapon from him with disgust, shook his head, said, "Buddy, I TOLD YOU not to put your finger on the trigger until you were ready to fire!!!"
To this day, I'm not sure whether he let the guy fire the gun because he was trying to be a nice person, or as punishment for badgering him.
Modified by LateForLunch at Thu, Apr 12, 2018, 22:09:25
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