When you look at gun statistics in America, one can not help but connect the number of guns in society directly with the number of gun related deaths and injuries. While guns are responsible for some 30,000 deaths in the US per year, countless others are left maimed at the hands of careless gun owners. Such is the case of a preschool aged child in Troy, Michigan, who reportedly shot himself while his parents gun while his mother was loading groceries outside of a supermarket. It would appear that not only does the US have too many guns floating around, it has too many people who do not take the time to use proper gun safety.
The incident occurred at a Kroger Grocery Store in Troy, Michigan at around 1:18 pm on November 6. Troy Police Captain Robert Redmond reported to the press that the mother of the injured child did in fact have a legal conceal carry permit, however the firearm was left unsecured in the vehicle’s center console. The unnamed child was rushed to a nearby hospital when he was admitted for a gunshot wound to the rear of his leg. The child will survive but due to the nature of the injury, will most likely require surgery. According to police, it is unclear who left the firearm in the vehicle as both parents are pointing the finger at each other.
People have been talking about gun control for years with no resolution, however rarely do you hear about gun responsibility. While the number of guns on the street has a direct impact on the number of gun related deaths and injuries, the other half of the equation is responsible decision making. The latter is something we seem to lack in significant quantities here in the US. According tohttp://www.gunviolencearchive.org, the US has had over 45, 198 incidents of gun violence including 11,385 deaths and 23,170 injuries. The number of children and teens killed or injured totals 2,869.
In 2014, gun deaths among young people were projected to surpass motor vehicle deaths for the first time since 1994. The reason for this is simple. For the last few decades, large amounts of money and effort have been spent on research into vehicle safety, education, and legislation. Campaigns on television to deter DUI, seat belt violations and texting while driving have paid off resulting in lower vehicle related deaths in this demographic. Politicians have no problem coming together when it comes to important issues such as vehicle safety, but due to the overwhelming gun lobby, any attempt to negotiate similar safety and education legislation, goes nowhere.
Many out there call for more gun control and stricter standards for purchasing a firearm. I myself am not sure. Common sense measures like background checks should not even be a debate but alas, we will continue to hear about it in the news. Regardless of what laws are put in place to curb gun violence, you just can’t legislate good decision making. That is the common theme you will find throughout the many incidents like this one in Troy. When you have rational people making sound decisions, guns can be safe. The rational decision here would have been to not leave the gun within the reach of a helpless child. The problem here is not the gun itself, but the failure to use due care by its owner. If we want to stop situations like this from plaguing our society, there needs to be a balance between legislation and education resulting in rational decision making. Only then will we be able to look at these incidents as distant reminders of our once savage history.