(December 03, 201)
The ABC News profile of ten-year-old Shyanne Roberts, a young firearms enthusiast, seemingly raised the blood pressure of the reporter covering the story.I teach people how to compete in "Run and Gun" competition: IPSC/USPSA.
I'll teach anyone. If they can handle the gun safely and responsibility, I'll encourage them to try competition. If they can't ..
My oldest class member was in his late seventies; my youngest student was ten. People in their seventies are often not quite as competent as they would like to think, so they typically never actually come out for matches. They're not willing to learn.
The youngest members ... with the close supervision and encouragement of their parents ... typically stick around until they (a) kick my ass in a match, or (b) discover that the members of their opposite sex are more interesting than gun.
In the meantime, they learn. They build confidence in their abilities. They develop responsibility. They have a HUGE advantage over their classmates, because they know that their parents both love and trust them.
Trust is an issue. If you do not trust your child, they grow up knowing that they have not earned your trust, and they will be forever stunted.
On the other hand, if they know that they not only HAVE your trust, but they have EARNED your trust, they will be strong, confident, COMPETENT adults. Not every child has the maturity to accomplish this for themselves; it's good when they learn what kind of people they are at an early age.
It's the responsibility of the parents to teach their children.
If the parents have done their job, then child will grow to become as responsible as the parents.
If the parents have failed at their job, then their children will grow to become members of a riotous mob; burning and looting stores, killing other children, and otherwise undermining their society.
Children who have been loved, and (although not coddelled) encouraged to grow to the limits of their ability, will become useful, productive, confident members of their society.
I can teach the child of good parents that they have a responsibility. I can do this because their parents have already prepared them for excellence.
And when I see a family with everyone doing their job, it does not 'raise (my) blood temperature' when I see their children using 'lethal weapons' on the playing fields.
I just smile, and nod my head. I'm well satisfied. I trust them.
And I'm a little bit envious because my father taught me The Art of the Rifle, rather than The Art of the Pistol, when I was very small. And so these children will soon be kicking my ass in competition.