Your firearm is a tool that requires considerable training to master. The only thing that makes you a skilled shooter is hundreds of hours of practice where you put thousands of rounds downrange. A firearm is an inanimate object. It cannot load its own magazines or cylinder, it cannot rack the slide to chamber a round or cock its own hammer, and it certainly cannot pull its own trigger. The fact you have a firearm on you, or in your home will do nothing to guarantee your safety unless you know how to use it. The fact you have one does not make you bulletproof.
Just because you joined the military or become a police officer does not make you a good shooter. Only hours of practice will do that, and only after hundreds of hours can you take a deep breath and feel more confident, feel safer, and above all else you know you have the skills needed to handle a firearm safely and effectively when needed. You do not fear your firearm.
There is no legal requirement that you know how to use a handgun before you buy one, nor any requirement that you even know which end the rounds come out of, but in our society, you have the right to buy one if you can legally possess one. There is a responsibility that comes with owning one, however, a responsibility that you must take seriously.
There are people that have purchased handguns, went through the effort to get a concealed carry permit, and then regretted the purchase. They became paranoid when out in public, “everyone knows I have a handgun”, even though it was in a purse or in a concealed holster. Some even went so far as to say that people will start trouble with me because I am carrying.
Eyes are on me and it makes me paranoid. Then there are others who once they get their gun home, they fear their child will find it, or a neighbor will find it or it will get stolen and used in a robbery or murder, or even used against them in their own home. Fear guided their purchase and now fear causes them to get rid of their handgun or to hide it somewhere. Fear stops them from getting the training so they can protect themselves and their family.
There is nothing to fear from a handgun, only fear the person holding it, and when you are not trained then you are to be feared. Accidental discharges are a fallacy. They are negligent discharges and not accidental. They are caused by a lack of responsibility and poor training or no training at all. It requires action on your part to discharge a firearm.
If your finger is not on the trigger it will not fire, if the gun is not loaded and a child finds it the gun will not fire. If you leave it loaded and unattended then you are negligent and certainly not a responsible gun owner and you are to be feared.
Some get rid of the firearm and others lock it up in a safe and forget about it. This is one of the problems today. People are scared and they run out and buy a gun, get it home and become even more scared, scared because they do not know anything about firearms. They have no training and no experience because dad, mom, nor the grandparents ever owned a firearm they have no history, no experience and yet they buy one because they became scared and thought just having one means I am safer.
Then there are those people who fixate on their firearms, and every sound they hear at night causes them to draw their weapon. They sleep with it, carry it to the shower with them, and have one hidden in a seat cushion, and taped under a desk or table. They may be paranoid, as well, but not scared of their firearm and yet are not trained very well either, but they think they are. They think a handgun is like a camera where you point and shoot and anyone can do it.
You will never see a trained shooter pull his sidearm unless he plans to shoot someone or something. You will never see them practicing unless on a firing range. Poorly trained owners like to show their guns off, let others handle their guns. They like the quick draw and will show off in front of their friends. They pass their guns around when they get together with friends, so everyone can make cooing noises and tell them how cool they are for owning one, and so they can say they have never seen anyone draw faster.
A firearm is a tool and for most people, for the vast majority of people, they will never have to use it against another human being. Like insurance, you buy it and hope you never need to use it, but when you need it, you really need it.
If you follow the very simple, very basic handgun rules then there will never be any “accidents”, no one is ever “unintentionally” injured or killed on your watch. It takes time and hours of training, however, and it is harder than most people think, and that is why people get scared and frustrated after they buy a firearm. That is why it ends up in the closet and forgotten about, and quite possibly ends up in the wrong hands at some point and you may not know about it until it’s too late.