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Get your Gun

The Boy’s Book of Gun Handling

This topic is a slam dunk for my library.  Deer hunting is practically a requirement in my area.   As I flipped through some of the pages, I noticed the caption on this one:

If this isn’t a dangerous mistake, what kind of mistake is it?  Especially if we are talking about guns…


0 Responses to Get your Gun

  • Safe gun handling never becomes obsolete. Other than up to date pictures, I doubt any modern book would improve much on this.

  • Any mistake involving a gun can be considered dangerous.

  • you’ll shoot your eye out!

  • Was it “not a dangerous mistake” because his gun wasn’t loaded or something?

    • It wasn’t dangerous because he was pointed downrange, toward the targets. Anyone on a range knows better than to be there unless the range master stops all shooting so people can retrieve and change their targets. (I wasn;t qallowed to get my bow untl I passed my NRA safety courses…27 years ago)

  • It’s probably not dangerous simply because there’s no people in the path that will get shot, it’s aimed at a targeting area.

  • It’s not a dangerous mistake because the muzzle is pointed downrange in a safe direction, presumably one where he is about to fire after he finishes loading. It is badly worded, though.

    I’m willing to bet that all the information in that book, while dated, is 100% accurate and relevant today. It should stay on the shelf until it disintegrates.

  • I think they mean that if someone were standing to the right of the picture, they’d be in danger, but since there’s no one over there, Glen’s mistake won’t kill anyone.

  • Best guess would be because they are on a pavement/tarmac/etc of some kind, and the richochet would be dangerous.

    I would have to see more to know, but that would be my guess.

  • It is a highly subjective statement and one not open to the intepretation of the reader.

    We are not shown, for instance, the childrens school playground a mere 80 yards away directly in line of his pointed barrel – or not as the case may be.

    • I don’t know about anywhere else, but in New York, it is illegal to hunt or practice shoot within 500 feet of any habitation. The only exceptions are self defense shootings and hunting on your own property

  • It’s not dangerous because he’s obviously on a shooting range, and therefore there are no people on the other end of the gun. When out hunting, though, it would be dangerous.

  • I would tend to keep this one. Even though a current book would probably be titled “The Boy’s and Girl’s Book of Gun Handling,” it might also be filled with all kinds of politically charged statements that actually have nothing to do with guns and gun safety.

  • That’s like saying its not dangerous to shoot a gun into the air because there is no one currently up there.

  • Love the vintage farah slacks and penny loafers our shooter from the grassy knoll is wearing on front cover.
    Book may still contain useful information but may wish to replace it with something more current:


  • It was not a dangerous mistake “in this case”, as in, wherever he may be, there was no one at the other end of the gun. The book looks waaay outdated (who goes hunting or shooting anywhere dressed like that??!), but you can find something better to pick on than the caption…

  • Handing kids guns = dangerous mistake

    • Actually, teaching kids about guns is a much safer thing that prohibiting them from knowing anything about them. Maybe we should shelter kids from all facts about sex and drugs too, since that works!

    • I was taught never to try getting into my dad’s (incredibly secure) gun case almost before could speak. I received my first Daisy air rifle when I was five. First .22 rifle at seven. By thirteen I’d handled everything from your standard shotgun to a Remington-700. Not only did no one come close to getting hurt (I was heavily supervised), I didn’t have the same fantasies of shooting up people that my non-marksmen classmates often did. I knew that if I even joked about such a thing my father would make sure I didn’t come out of my room until I was in my late 30s.

      Children and guns are not the problem. Poorly supervised and untrained children with guns are.

      • Well put, sir. Well put.

      • You and me both! My dad kept a loaded rifle in his room for home defense. I was raised with an in tense conviction that if I touched it without permission my birth certificate would be revoked! he never said it, but when I was ready to handle a weapon, he taught me.

  • This goes back the debate about “boy’s” and “girl’s” books. Why, even in 1964, was there a need for this to be a “Boy’s Book”? Because girls would never, ever, have an interest in handling a gun? Or is there something inherrently different in the way a boy would handle a gun vs. how a girl would do it?

  • I think I will add to the discussion: the book itself was in terrible condition. Content was fine and from what I could tell, appropriate. A book aimed at young people though should still look current especially in my area where girls do plenty of hunting!

  • Them blind kids has as much Constitutional right to bear arms as any red-blooded ‘Merican, yes Siree.

  • Ultimately, after all the years and books, there are three rules to gun safety:

    1. ALWAYS keep the rifle pointed in a safe direction.
    This is the primary rule of rifle safety. A safe direction means that the rifle is pointed so that even if it were to go off it would not cause injury or damage. The key to this rule is to control where the muzzle or front end of the barrel is pointed at all times. Common sense dictates the safest direction, depending on different circumstances.

    2. ALWAYS keep your finger off the trigger until ready to shoot.
    When holding a rifle, rest your finger on the trigger guard or along the side of the rifle. Until you are actually ready to fire, do not touch the trigger.

    3. ALWAYS keep the rifle unloaded until ready to use.
    Whenever you pick up a rifle, immediately engage the safety device if possible before opening the action and looking into the chamber which should be clear of ammunition.

    Do this and you are pretty much not going to have an accident.