From The World Of Parks & Recreation
By Doug Comer
With all the negativity in the world in regards to gun control and all the violence that has surrounded guns in recent months, it was a fresh breath of air seeing Ginny Thrasher collect the first gold medal for the USA in the women’s 10-meter air rifle at the Rio Olympics last week. The 19-year old from Virginia played a vital role in the success of National Champion West Virginia University rifle team and now has some expensive hardware to bring back to the Mountain State.
I do not normally dip into this kind of arena when it comes to gun control, but for me, I have been surrounded by family and friends who have participated in outdoor sports like hunting. In my little world, it normally involved going into the woods, sitting in a tree stand or working your way through the woods looking for different types of game from squirrels to bears.
I know those who think wildlife should not be hunted are totally against hunting, but many families in this area do it strictly to provide food for their families and a couple of my close friends that hunt for the sport donate their deer to the local meat markets, who later process the meat and distribute to the needy in the area. It is no different than going to your local IGA and buying steaks for dinner except you are not pulling the trigger.
Now, beyond our wonderful hills and trees lurk the concrete jungles of the city and all the stories of crime in those areas. People who should not have guns own guns and this probably includes people who protect us. Unfortunately, the news today paints a picture that shows law enforcement using force to some degree that could be construed at unlawful behavior. But, you rarely hear about the heroes who stepped up and prevented a situation from getting out of hand. And those stories happen on a daily basis.
We are so fortunate to not live in an area where the first ten minutes of the news is about someone being murdered. Every time I travel out of the state and get a chance to catch the news, things are never good to hear. From people being murdered over a baseball hat to someone who would not adhere to the proper procedure of a routine police stop – it is a cruel world out there.
And it all stems from parenting. Parents who have knowledge in gun safety should enforce that their children take a gun safety class as well as get in some practice time at the gun range. That way, if the time comes, you will be ready whether hunting for sport or protecting your family from harm. For those who want to bear arms and have every right to, then do it the right way and take a class as well.
In summary, guns are not bad, people are bad. Poor decisions when weapons are in the hands of the wrong people lead to all the problems revolving around gun control. I am a gun owner and I hope that I will never have to be in a situation where I would need it. I hunt for sport and I hope that our little piece of the world is never affected by some of the evil around us.