You might have read about how there are many new gun owners during this COVID-19 situation.
On the one hand, that is a good thing. After all, more gun owners typically means more people voting for gun rights.
On the other hand, these new gun owners are usually going to be people who don’t have any clue about gun safety or a real-life understanding of how to protect their family with a firearm.
There is no criticism about that ignorance. We all start some place, but we don’t want new gun owners to stay ignorant. We want them to be safe and responsible gun owners like the majority of people who already own guns.
If you’re a new gun owner (or if you know a new gun owner, you can point them to this article), then Rob Morse has some advise for you about how to protect your family. Morse writes,
Millions of new gun owners brought their gun home. That gun in its box in the bedroom closet won’t keep you safe until it is part of your security plan. Becoming a gunfighter takes months of practice and makes you seconds faster. In contrast, having a security plan takes only a few hours and gives you minutes of advantage. Spend your time where it does the most good. This is what you should do first.
Violent crime happens suddenly so you won’t have time to tease out a plan during the event. Please plan and practice now because, during an emergency, you’ll only have the options you rehearsed. Physically walking through a safety drill makes all the difference in the world! Your mind falls back on your habits when you’re half asleep and stressed.
Another reason to build and practice your security plan is to change the world around you. If your doors are locked, then criminals often move on to try someplace else that is easier to enter. Lock your windows too. Now you can call the police and tell them that someone is moving through the neighborhood trying the doors. If you have a few dollars saved up, then add motion-activated porch lights and a video doorbell. Those simple steps have made your family much safer.
There is another safety item that you can put in place for free. Talk with your family about what to do in an emergency.
Morse also says that you should never hunt down someone that has broken into your house. Defend your family from a safe, locked room in your home. “[L]et the police be the ones who confront the robber.”
This is important both from a safety and a legal standpoint. If you don’t have to discharge your firearm to protect your family, then you shouldn’t discharge it. Period (Of course, we’re talking about in a self-protection situation; not putting in time at the gun range.).
Morse also advises to get gun training and put in time at your local gun range. Become proficient with your firearm so that your shots are accurate and so that you handle your firearm safely.
Morse’s suggestions are on-point and need to be shared with all new gun owners, and, to be fair, a number of seasoned gun owners could use to review this list of suggestions, too.