Out of the 50 states that the U.S. is comprised of, two of them do not agree with empowering our youth with not only gun safety but also showing them the fun and benefits of shooting sports. Those two states are Massachusetts and Rhode Island. Nation-wide all other states offer 4-H firearm programs for youth ranging from 8 to 18 years old. These programs are not cheap to operate but in the case of Massachusetts, the funding was in place already for the next three years. Jim Wallace, the Gun Owners’ Action League, commented on the decision “The only reason to avoid implementing this program is because UMass has a social bias against gun-owning families and their children” (Boston Globe). UMass oversees the 4-H program for the state, and many gun owners and their families are upset with the decision.
Since we live in a country that is accepting of guns (well most of us anyways) doesn’t it make sense to encourage our kids to be familiar with firearms? With not exposing our kids to firearms, safe handling, and the enjoyment you can have from safe shooting, we are setting them up for failure, or danger. Switch the gun for say something like a car. With pretty much every household having at least one car, there is a good chance that your child will be around that car and eventually be operating the car. Cars can be very dangerous and we as parents would never want our children to be either misinformed by the wrong people or not informed at all before they get behind the wheel. We have them go through proper channels to get proper driver education to keep them safe. Why would you not do the same with firearms? Unique-ARs commends the 4-H firearms programs that are conducted, and hope that they continue in the states that still have them and hopefully, Massachusetts and Rhode Island can change their minds and begin offering these great programs again to our youth. If you would like more information on the programs you can contact your state’s 4-H Shooting Sports coordinator at their website here- http://w3.4-hshootingsports.org/state_contacts.php
Kids participating in the 4-H shooting program (http://w3.4-hshootingsports.org/invite07/thursday.php)