The Gun LifePosted on August 16, 2023
As of 2022, there were an estimated 436 million firearms in America. With only an estimated 334 million people in America, it begs the question, “What’s the appeal of guns?” The options available are almost as plentiful as the total number of guns owned. There are handguns, rifles, and shotguns. Semi-auto and single action. Pump and break-action. Then all the calibers and gauges available for those. There are numerous 308 rifle calibers, a multitude of 223 handgun calibers It’s all so overwhelming! So where do you start? Short answer: find what’s right for your needs and wants. Whether it’s self-defense, hunting, or maybe just plinking; figuring this out is step one to buying any gun.
So, what was your first? Mine was a 1976 Marlin 336 lever action chambered in .30/30. Great for hunting anything from pigs all the way up to elk(with the right shot placement). I gave my son his first 12-gauge shotgun for Christmas a few years ago. He and I have since added several others. But we could always use one more. My first foray into shooting came on a camping trip when I was in the Boy Scouts. One of our scout masters pulled up in his minivan, slid open the side door, and revealed a veritable arsenal of firearms. The weekend was an exercise in seeing which would give out first: the ammo, or our shoulders. As a city kid being raised by a city kid, it was the coolest thing I had ever seen.
If you are new to guns; maybe you’ve never held a gun, or maybe just once or twice, let me be the first to welcome you to the life. I would strongly suggest taking a class from a reputable source. Especially if you plan on carrying your firearm. And there are certain rules that must ALWAYS be followed when handling guns of any and all types.
Rule #1: TREAT ALL GUNS AS IF THEY’RE LOADED. This means that no matter what you think you know, when you pick up a gun, you don’t play with it, point it at other people or pull the trigger until it is pointed in a safe direction.
Rule #2: NEVER POINT THE GUN AT ANYTHING YOU DON’T INTEND TO DESTROY. Whether it’s a paper, clay, or steel target or that game animal you’ve been tracking, your gun WILL destroy it.
Rule #3: KEEP YOUR FINGER OFF THE TRIGGER UNTIL YOU’RE READY TO FIRE. Even experienced hunters and competitive shooters will tell you that the slightest misplaced pressure can set off a firearm.
Rule #4: KNOW YOUR TARGET AND WHAT’S BEHIND IT. Some rounds are designed to enter a target, dump all their energy, and stop. Other rounds are designed to enter a target, and just keep going. Refer to Rule #2 for why this is important.
Firearms and shooting can be a great pastime and bonding experience for parents and children. But safety must always be at the forefront. Visit your local FFL to find the right fit for your needs and wants. Happy shooting!
By: Jared Wise
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