It is interesting; I had a great lunch on Monday with a bunch of my girlfriends back in Taipei. The topic of simplicity, survival and self sufficiency came up. Marcia (Hi Marcia!) talked about how she wants every member in her family to be able to learn to shoot a gun.
After long and hard thoughts about this (not at the table mind you, but before) I think I agree. Let me explain. First, I want never to have a hand gun in my house. Why, in my opinion, hand guns are for the sole purpose of killing another human. You can justify it by saying they are for defense, but again, it is defense against another person. I am a pacifist; I hate any thought of killing another human. I would rather teach my family defenses not using handguns, but that is not the purpose of this post.
When I think about using Guns, to me, the purpose should be for hunting or for use on a farm. I would like very much to learn to shoot a rifle. God forbid I hope to never use it, but should Jeff and I succeed in our goal to get a farm some day, if a sheep ever breaks a leg, or a horse gets itself into a position were it has to be put down, I want the ability to do it. I don't want to see the animal suffer until I can call on a neighbor or friend, or vet, to do it.
Plus, I want my family to be able to hunt. I don't know that they will ever NEED to hunt for food. But, these skills are important and are being lost in today's modern computer based society. I don't want to think of a situation so bad that my family has to hunt, but what happens if we are subject to a terrorist attack and the attack caused all food supply to be compromised. Likely? Perhaps not, but who could have ever imagined a plane flying into the World Trade Center?
However, all of this being said, I am strongly in favor of gun safety. If a gun is in my house, it will be in a gun safe. The gun safe combination will only be known to me and my spouse. We do not use "play guns" in the house. If the kids make believe with sticks, there is little I can do, other than to remind them that guns are not toys. We will teach our children about proper gun care. We will teach the children that guns are tools-not toys.
All of this is rather moot now, as it is illegal to have any guns in Singapore. But we will revisit the issue when we move back to Oregon on our "family farm" (right next door to B&P's house!)