Cordele Dispatch, Cordele, GA

Opinion

January 14, 2013

Let's teach safety

Abbeville — Dear Editor:

As I listen to the politicans on both sides of the aisle talk about strict gun control, I have heard everything from triple the price of ammunition to banning all guns.

How about cars? They kill people, and how about 4 wheelers, dirt bikes, knives, tractors, crossbows, horses, swimming pools?

Looking back through history, all these things at one time or another has been used to commit a crime. You can't ban everything that causes harm. We would have to move into a feather factory.

I have yet to hear a single politician bring up the idea of programs to teach our children about the safety of firearms. We have drivers education, swimming instructors, 4 wheeler instructors, people who teach you how to ride a horse, but when firearms come up, we close down all the shooting programs and hide the guns in a closet.

Our 4-H shooting program here in Georgia has about 700 kids in the bb program, 900 in shotgun, over 100 in 22 rifle.

The first thing they must do is be tested on the safety of these guns. It’s called “project safe,” and that’s what it teaches — safety and respect first. Shooting is the last thing.

I have coached shooting sports in Wilcox County 4-H for nine years, and I am proud to say all our kids who came through the program have gone on to be outstanding young people.

I try to keep up with most of them, and it makes me proud to hear some of them say, “you taught me that as my bb coach.”

We teach more than just gun safety. We teach them how to be a good role model for our younger kids.

I hope we can let God out of the closet and bring him back to the head of the class in our schools, and teach our little children while they are still too young to know the meaning of the word hate.

Let’s open back up the safety courses on guns. Several states have shut down their safety shooting programs in 4-H, and they have the some of the highest crime rates in the country.

Bubba Weldon

Abbeville

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