Be Safe
Gun Safety for
Boys and Girls in Montana
Published by the
MONTANA SHOOTING SPORTS ASSOCIATION
P.O. Box 4924, Missoula, Montana 59806
Permission granted to reprint

 Scott and Anna were born and raised in Montana.  Like many Montana kids, they have parents who own guns.  Guns can be very dangerous if they are misused by anyone.

 When Scott and Anna were very young, too young to understand and follow safety instructions, their parents had to lock up the guns where the couldnít be reached.  Their parents had to kid-proof the guns.

 Finally, the time came for Scott and Anna to learn about safety; not to play with electrical outlets, not to ride their bikes in the street, and not to touch or handle their parentís guns.  Then it was time to gun-proof the kids.  Scott and Annaís parents taught them the first rules of gun safety.

Those are:
>  DONíT TOUCH.  Never handle a real gun without a parentís permission.
>  IF A FRIEND PLAYS WITH A REAL GUN, LEAVE AND TELL AN ADULT.  If you are ever at a friendís house and your friend should touch or handle one of their parentís real guns, you must leave immediately.  Just get up and walk out the door and tell an adult.

These are the most important first two steps to gunproofing a kid.  Scott and Anna learned these rules by heart.  Letís try these rules again.

DONíT TOUCH.
IF A FRIEND PLAYS WITH A REAL GUN, LEAVE AND TELL AN ADULT.

 As they grew older, their parents knew the time would come for Scott and Anna to get their first real guns, BB guns.  So their parents began to teach them the rules for safe gun handling.

Those are:
>  ALL GUNS ARE LOADED.  Always assume that EVERY gun is loaded, even if you have just checked to see if it is unloaded.  Always assume that every gun is loaded.
>  MUZZLE DIRECTION.  Never point a gun at a person, or at anything you donít intend to shoot.  The front end of a gun is called the muzzle, just like the front end of a dog is called its muzzle.  With guns, ALWAYS be careful about muzzle direction.  NEVER point your gunís muzzle toward another person or something you donít intend to shoot.
>  FINGER OFF THE TRIGGER.  If you are shooting, always keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to shoot.

 Scott and Annaís parents made them practice using safe muzzle direction and finger off the trigger with their toy guns to create good habits.  Anna and Scott learned the rules by heart.  They could repeat the rules any time their parents asked them.  What are the rules?  Letís try them again:

ALL GUNS ARE LOADED.
>  MUZZLE DIRECTION.
>  FINGER OFF THE TRIGGER.

 Finally, when their parents thought they were both responsible enough, Scott and Anna got their first BB guns.  Scott named his gun Betsy, just like Davey Crockett did with his favorite rifle.  Anna named hers One Eye, because she squinted one eye shut when she aimed.

 Anna and Scott could only use their BB guns when their parents were home to give permission and to supervise.  Their dad got them both special shooting glasses to wear to protect their eyes.  they always had to remember and follow the rules of gun safety.  If they broke a rule, even a little bit, Betsy and One Eye were put away for some time.

 Because they loved their new BB guns, Scott and Anna were very good about following the basic rules of gun safety, and the safe gun handling rules.  Their mom and dad spent lots of time letting them practice shooting Betsy and One Eye.  Anna and Scott both became very good at shooting and almost always hitting the paper plate targets their mom put up for them.

 Since Scott and Anna are so good about following the rules of gun safety and the safe gun handling rules, they will soon be ready for their first .22 rifles.  And because Anna and Scott obey the rules, their parents let them look at their guns locked in the gun cabinet.  their parents let Scott and Anna spend as much time as they want looking at the guns and talking about gun safety.  the day will come, in a few years, when Scott and Anna will be able to take a hunter safety course and go hunting with their parents.

 It is very important to remember, like Scott and Anna did, that you shouldnít touch any gun without adult to supervise.  Always respect the gun and the person who owns it.

NOTE TO PARENTS:  This brochure does not support or oppose the ownership of firearms.  However, we estimate that approximately 90% of the households in Montana contain firearms.  Our purpose here is the safety of children, should they come into contact with firearms, somewhere, sometime.

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