There are some things that can only be learned the hard way. At five years old, I learned some hard-knocks lessons that stick with me to this day with great clarity. Prior to that I am sure there were hot stove moments of education, but 1975 had real impact with easily recalled, vivid imagery.
For instance; when accompanying your dad and older brother to burn out a yellow-jacket nest from the ground, it is vitally important that you don’t forget to zip the fly up on your plaid pants. Angry bees are indiscriminate as to who, where or what they are stinging as they defend their home. I also learned that you don’t – point blank — throw rocks at a rubber tire; the scar on my upper lip is a constant reminder of this fact. Other lessons were not painful, but had real impact none the less. With such simple tools as a block of wood and hatchet I learned firsthand what it really means to “run around like a chicken with your head cut off.” A lasting real life memory to a commonly used verbal illustration.
When we get a little older our parents send us to school where we have the opportunity to further our education and learn other important, and some not so important, lessons to help us along life’s journey.
Our public school system has regularly scheduled fire drills; to teach students where to go, what to do and how to handle a situation in case of a real fire. Fire departments routinely make appearances at schools to teach children how to safely evacuate a burning house; crawl on the floor to avoid the smoke and stop, drop and roll once safely outside in case you are on fire.
Tornado drills, in my part of the country, are common place as well. Instilling safety routines and routes both in school and informing kids where to go for safety if at home or outside. If you’re outside and have little time to run, find a ditch and lay low; in your house, go to the basement. No basement? Go hide in a room, or closet, with no windows; find the bathroom and hug the toilet.
Some schools are teaching sex-ed to elementary students and are certainly teaching it to the higher grades. Safety concerns, of course. How to use a condom and other available methods for birth control are parts of the information disseminated to our students in order to avoid the dangers of sexually transmitted diseases and unwanted pregnancy. Some schools will even assist you in “terminating” a pregnancy.
Some institutions are now teaching the proper way to respond in case some deranged lunatic shows up and starts shooting.
From elementary to high-school our kids are taught the dangers of drugs. School hallways are plastered with anti-drug and alcohol themed posters. Many schools set up mock crashes outside their facility that graphically depict the victims of drunk driving or text related accidents.
Some public school systems have “Safe or Sorry” curriculum detailing information about food safety. We have curriculum that teaches things like “Good for you, good for the planet.” We have school systems that teach classes like; “Avoid that Stranger”, “Safety in the Community”, “Safety in the Home”, “Child Support System” and “Safety Tips for Home and School.”
The list is endless. Some are essential to learning and others are a “curriculum” that would be better left to the parents at home. In today’s world the liberal attempts to save everyone from themself and from everything. They warn of all perceived threats and some real dangers to our well-being. Recently a set of stamps, inspired by Michelle “Let them Eat Cake” Obama, were recalled for “promoting unsafe activities.” One child was depicted riding a skateboard *gasp* without knee pads! Another child was doing a handstand.
Another thing from 1975 that sticks with me to this day; the impact 20 gauge shot had as it smashed into and through an old rusty 55 gallon burn barrel. The recoil I felt, the report I heard, the end result was a lifelong, real world lesson on gun safety.
I’m not certain what happened before that to warrant my firearm lesson. But I remember the warm summer day in 1975 that my father took me, along with a pump action 20 gauge shotgun and shells, outside and instructed me not only on the critical points and absolute importance of gun safety, but also the real impact, the real results of discharging a firearm.
I would suggest yearly field trips to a firing range. Let them see the recoil and hear the report. They should learn and see firsthand the safe handling before and after target shooting. They should see the target before and after it is shot. These are the things that will have lifelong, real world impact on children and allow them to carry this knowledge on to adulthood.
At this point I am sure everyone has heard that some screwball decided to go on a rampage at LAX. Armed with a rifle the person managed to wound a few and kill at least one before being shot, wounded and apprehended by police. It should be noted he was stopped by LAX police who, incidentally, were not armed with rose petals and strong words, but with a firearm.
The left doesn’t ban sex. They demand that we “educate.” Fire and tornadoes are real world dangers, so we educate. Drugs are already illegal but drug use is still a problem — so we educate. Why, in a nation of 300 million firearms, isn’t firearms and firearm safety a mandatory part of our child’s education?
“A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise and independence to the mind. Games played with the ball, and others of that nature, are too violent for the body and stamp no character on the mind. Let your gun therefore be your constant companion of your walks.” – Thomas Jefferson
Image: Courtesy of http://awaitinginspiration.com/2011/11/on-licensing-and-training-guns/