OSD 37: Talk to your kids about guns

“‘Mr. BJ, are those guns?’ Referring to the display case. They were obviously guns. This wasn’t an honest question. Somewhere in the back of his mind, the actual question was very likely ‘This is the first time in my life I’ve been near a gun, may I see it?’”

We've got a new blog post up from BJ Campbell this week: Talk to Your Kids About Guns. This is important stuff for two reasons:

  • At the object level: gun safety is good. Fatal accidents are fortunately extremely rare (here we are on Twitter giving the stats — 1 death per 355,000 kids — to the mayor of San Jose), but being diligent about this stuff can take your personal risk from "extremely low" down to "just about zero". That's a good thing.

  • At the meta level: good ambassadors are safe ambassadors. Every time you have a conversation about guns, if the other person (a kid, their parents, the people they tell later, et al) comes away thinking, "That was better than I expected", then you just made gun rights stronger. When you talk to people, and especially kids, about gun safety, you are normalizing postiive gun ownership. And that's the name of the game.

As Prof. David Yamane says, we know that "guns are normal, and normal people use guns". For someone who may not have ever seen a gun in real life, they honestly have no idea that that's the case. They don't know that guns are normal, and they certainly don't know that normal people use guns. The gun safety talk is your most frequent chance to show them. Big opportunity. Grab it.


This week's links

A kids' 1911 toy that comes with a Sidecar-style holster and a weapon light
On the subject of normalizing positive gun ownership: T.Rex Arms had a fan send this picture in, and they put it up on their Instagram. What kids grow up with today is what's normal tomorrow. We're winning on this stuff a lot more than people realize.


Ammoland interview with the former president of the Brady Campaign, about common ground
We certainly don't agree about everything, but he's had an awakening since he left the group and is impressively open-minded.


Congressman introduces bill to create a red flag system around renting "terror trucks"
Nobody needs an assault truck /s. We normally wouldn't signal-boost this kind of knee-jerk authoritarianism, but it's a great lesson in how the psychology of this stuff works. The reasoning is indistinguishable from that behind gun control laws. Red flags. Background checks. Appeals to emotion. Mathematically illiterate base rate neglect. The point, as everyone in this community knows, is that when people are scared, reasoning goes out the window. So remember that our job is always to make people less scared.


Whoa, Vertx is owned by Warren Buffett!
We spotted this while doing some backpack shopping: Vertx is owned by Feccheimer, a 175-year-old textile company. And Feccheimer is owned by Berkshire Hathaway. You thought ol' Uncle Warren was just sitting in Omaha drinking Cherry Cokes all day, and meanwhile the guy's setting you up to EDC a Kriss Vector.


New Jersey bans carry insurance via executive order from Gov. Phil Murphy
Using bank and insurance regulators to harass companies out of doing business with the gun industry is a well-worn tactic at the federal level (somewhat famously with Operation Choke Point), and state governments are discovering the same trick. Something to keep a close eye on.