We cannot be trusted with guns

 

In Brian Calvert’s Oct. 26 essay, “Growing up with guns,” the accompanying photo and the context that it suggested led me to expect a far different conclusion. Yet, as I read on, I found that we largely agreed. His experiences, and his resulting observations, were much like mine. I long ago concluded that “we are not responsible enough to be trusted with guns.”


My conclusion was born from my role as a light and heavy weapons trainer in the U.S. military, and my subsequent experiences with licensed and unlicensed civilian handgun owners. Ironically, my accuracy with my M-16 was the direct result of my childhood experiences target shooting with my father.


It is true, however, that “guns have become something terrible.” After the military, I gave up hunting, target shooting and weapons in general. I draw a firm distinction between assault weapons (I know what they are, and I used them) and hunting weapons. There is no turning back with a gun, and there are few, if any second chances. I would also agree that we, as a society, have reached a threshold. My son has not grown up with a gun.


Erick Miller
Salida, Colorado