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Old September 22, 2012, 02:32 PM   #1
Junior member
Join Date: July 24, 2011
Location: Saint Louis, Missouri
Posts: 849
Moment of Sadness Today

So, I'm out in my backyard working on one of my Garands. Yes, of course, it is unloaded, double safety checked, on safe, perfectly safe, etc.

We have no fence in our backyard and two of the neighborhood boys are peeking at what I'm doing, they were apparently standing there for a while and I did not see them. One is around ten, the other eight.

Finally I did and I said, "Hey guys! How you doing."

They said, "Is that a real gun?"

I say, "It sure is."

Of course, boys being boys, they come over and are absolutely fascinated by it. All kinds of questions. I tell them all about WWII and about the Garand and so forth.

Then, the question I was dreading came, "Can we hold it?"

Now, back when I was growing up, in the sixties, if I had found my neighbor working on a rifle in his backyard, of course I would have asked the same thing and he would have let me hold it, probably even showed me how to hold it correctly and fire it, etc. etc.

But, of course, this being the age of the nanny state and overprotective/helicopter parents I sadly had to say, "Guys, I'd love to let you hold it, but you need to ask your mom and dad first. I'm not sure if they would want you to hold a real gun."

One little boy just looked at the ground and said, sadly, "I don't think my mom would."

Now, in their defense:

(1) Safety first -- yes, good idea not to encourage kids to hold guns of neighbors no matter how sure everyone is, it is not loaded.

(2) I'm not their mom or dad and I can't make decisions for their parents.

(3) I know I, and they, did the right thing.

But....left me feeling rather sad and hollow, at the thought that these guys may never get that close to a real piece of history like this again and may well never have a chance to learn proper gun safety and handling.

Just kind of a bummer!!!
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