Its been a long time since I posted on gun safety... so I think its about time we have a refresher. And as usual... this is actually inspired by a tragedy. I'm not going into a great deal of details here... I'm just gonna say someone I know was cleaning a handgun and shot himself.
When I first heard about it, I'm not going to lie, my mind went straight to Glock. For one thing it is always a handgun in this situation. Its really hard to shoot yourself with a rifle. You can do it. but its not nearly as easy as with a handgun. Second... cleaning means disassembling and to do that on a Glock you actually have to pull the trigger. That just seems wrong to me. No... not wrong... stupid. So stupid as to be borderline insane. Yet there it is.
Turns out it wasn't a Glock. It was a cheap Raven 25 caliber pocket pistol. These pistols are known to have a problem where they accidently discharge when you release the safety. At this point its unclear if the weapon actually did malfunction... but I am deeply skeptical of these junk handguns (George Jennings is a useless piece of trash) and I am assuming that's what happened until proven otherwise.
That said... as always these things are preventable. The rules exist not just to keep you from shooting yourself... but to keep you from getting hurt in the case of weapon failure as well. So... one more time...
1) Treat all firearms as if they are loaded. all of them. The only time you should consider a firearm unloaded is you see the slide/bolt locked back. If you can look as see the chamber is empty... only then is the weapon unloaded. Dropping the magazine does not unload a firearm. Always remember that. Dropping the mag still leaves the round in the chamber... and that's the round that is going to kill you... or someone else. Always check safe. Always lock the slide back. Always remember to drop the mag AND rack the slide just in case.
2) Never point the muzzle at anything you don't want to destroy. When we are familiar with a firearm it often starts to feel like part of our hand. It isn't. Its a deadly weapon meant for killing people and breaking things. Respect it. Always make sure it is pointed in a safe direction when you are handling it.
3) Never put your finger on the trigger until you have your sights on your target. We call this trigger discipline. I cannot tell you how many people have a habit of keeping their finger on the trigger at all times when handling a firearm. Go to any gun show and you will see some dumbass carrying around an AR with his finger on the trigger. If you know someone like this... you should slap them every time you see them do it. The term "Glock leg" exists to describe all the men limping around out there from shooting themselves while they were trying to draw their Glocks with their fingers on the trigger. Don't do it.
There are more rules.. but those three rules right there will prevent every bad outcome. If there is a bad outcome... someone didn't follow one of those three rules.
Today... if I was going to mention another one... it would be this...
Don't ever buy a cheap handgun designed by George Jennings.