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This is purely hypothetical and is being posted for the sake of discussion and curiosity.  

I've often seen posts asking if parent's ask the parents of their children's friends if there are guns in the home before they let their children go over to the home.  

My question is to those that do own a gun, would you tell the parents of your children's friends if they were to ask you if you had guns in the home?  Would the question put you off and prevent you from having their child over to your home to play?   How far would you be willing to go to alleviate the concerns of the child's parents?  

by on Jan. 7, 2013 at 3:28 PM
Replies (71-80):
by Silver Member on Jan. 8, 2013 at 4:40 AM
5 moms liked this

Quoting Healthystart30:

Quoting Farmlady09:

safety classes have not lessened the likelihood of children shooting themselves or someone else accidentally! That gun in your house is much more likely to shoot one of your family members then an intruder! My dad is a hunter, he taught us to never ever touch his hunting gear, especially his rifles, but he also kept all ammo far away and never brought a loaded rifle in the house! That's the smart thing to do, teach your children responsibility but take all precautions when it comes to something like weapons in the house. As a parent I do this all the Time in my house, for example when I cook, I always make sure the handle of the pan is never sticking out over the stove, I tell my kids not to touch, I tell my kids to stay away but there is nothing wrong with taking extra precaution.

We are not talking about adults in this post, we are talking about keeping children safe, children are not idiots.

First of all ~ my 'baby' is 28. All three of my boys are marksmen, and my grandchildren have all/are being taught not just gun safety, but gun control (which means hitting what you aim at, not accidental random shots).

My dad was a hunter too, but he didn't keep his hunting gear as some secret prize that we would have had to sneak around to figure out what it was all about. He taught us to hunt (we were in the woods with him from a very young age, and handling gun parts as well). Guns were not mysterious or taboo (and therefore something to find and play with), they were tools. Locking something away is not smart. It's the best incentive in the world to a child ~ about the same as putting a cookie jar on top of the frig.

When my children were toddlers, they were taught safety ~ and I took a lot of extra care. They were also taught not to do stupid human tricks and expect sympathy when they hurt themselves. Kids today, especially those growing up in cities live in a fantasy world. Their 'experience' is all via the boob tube, and their play is centered around electronic things. Like it or not, that makes them idiots the first time they walk out the front door and head out of that city. It's why so many children get lost while camping and hiking, why so many drown in rivers, etc. It's an artificial bubble with it's own set of rules and dangers ... but they don't apply everywhere, nor should such an artificial existence be forced on people outside of that bubble.

You teach your children not to touch the stove ~ and that's fine. I taught my children to hunt, to be as at home in nature as they were in front of a boob tube ~ and that's also fine. My boys grew up with only one fairly common injury (a broken arm ~ and it absolutely was from a stupid human trick), I can count the number of times they were ill on one set of fingers, and they are now raising their own families. Mine didn't just live, they thrived. Two were military, one made it a career.

My guns are not a danger to anyone except a criminal, or dangerous animals. We're not drinkers or addicts. We don't do stupid human tricks, and we don't ever 'play' with guns. We don't play with the chainsaw or the other tools we have. We use them, we are careful, and our family members are the same. I've been around guns for all of my 51 years. My father was around them for 82 years. The town I grew up in was full of hunters, most of whom actually filled their freezers with enough meat for their families for a year. Guns weren't toys, and they weren't locked up and useless. Even in eastern PA there are still bears that wander around, bobcats, poisonous snakes, and occasional rabid animals.

Owning and/or using a gun is not a strange thing when you grow up knowing what they are and using them. If you don't want one, that's fine with me ~ but I use mine. I've had to shoot feral dogs. I have several pigs that weigh over 600 pounds. If one of my dairy goats is injured (God forbid), or any other animal, I have no wish to drive 45 miles (provided I can even get the animal into a truck) listening to them scream in agony just to get to a vet (or wait that long, possibly longer for a vet to get to me). When I walk into my chicken coop and there is a 35 pound possum hissing and growling at me from the carcasses of my hens, I not only want my gun, I need it. I have a lot more to deal with than some overly warm food on a burner ... and I prefer it that way (one of the reasons Alaska appeals so much).

By the way, when I say kids are idiots, it's not derogatory. They are idiots until they learn, and they don't learn unless parents teach them. It doesn't matter if you live in an apartment in a city or on a 500 acre ranch ... or a cabin on the side of a mountain ~ kids need to be taught NOT to be idiots. A lot of parents can't even be bothered with feeding their children these days, let alone teaching them anything but how to screw up. I don't mind kids being idiots ... but I worry about the ones that are being raised by idiots (and I do think adults that are idiots are worthy of derogatory comments).

If you don't know anything about guns except to stay far away from them, you aren't qualified to teach a child anything but to stay away from them. The fact that 'you' *anyone, not you specifically* doesn't know anything beyond what you read in the news means that you obviously have an opinion, but it's hardly an informed opinion. I can deal with that. It's a (sort of) free country and you are absolutely free to have your own opinions and live your own life. That doesn't mean that saying someone is doing something terrible or wrong, based only on your own lack of knowledge, makes them terrible or wrong ~ OR that they should agree with you just to keep the conversation all happy and fuzzy.

Life is full of dangers that are far worse than guns, and as it was pointed out early on in this thread, most people think nothing of them. Responsible parents don't teach their children to stay away from household things, they teach them how to use them safely when they reach the right age. That age depends on each child, according to their abilities and previous lessons.

by Gold Member on Jan. 8, 2013 at 6:02 AM
Quoting Farmlady09:

First of all, I would have never picked this group to reply in if I wanted everyone to agree with me and be warm and fuzzy. I have never said that guns should be locked away and never used! In this particular post we were talking about playdates and guns. I wasn't saying what you personally should or shouldn't do, I was saying that responsible gun owners will teach their children but they will also take extra steps to ensure their safety, I hope that if someone has children at their house they don't really know that well, that they will make sure those children will not be able to get to a gun. I don't even know what you are arguing about! You are saying that you are a responsible gun owner, and thats the only thing I want to see with every gun owner. If you disagree with me about what a responsible gun owner is then that's fine. And I will disagree with you about calling children idiots because that's a word I personally have only heard used in a derogatory way about people.
by Member on Jan. 8, 2013 at 9:38 AM

Yes I would be honest and tell them, and no I would not be put off, I feel perfectly fine having our guns, they are all locked and unable to shoot with no amo in them and they are locked in a safe I our room that requires a PIN number that only mommy and daddy have, it is not written down for them to find.

by on Jan. 8, 2013 at 9:43 AM

we have guns, we don't advertise that we have them, but if a parent asks, we will say yes, probably not to the extent because we are collectors, but they are locked up so i would assure the parents of that, although my dd doesn't know about them until we feel she's old enough to learn to respect them

by on Jan. 8, 2013 at 9:44 AM

I don't ask but when on a play-date the kids are supervised by the other parent and myself. 

by on Jan. 8, 2013 at 9:49 AM
1 mom liked this
I kinda think its none o my business if someone has a gun in their home! I mean it is a right we all have! I would be more concerned on knowing the person and having general knowledge of their past before having my children around them
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by on Jan. 8, 2013 at 9:49 AM
If they asked I would answer. I know my sons friends parents have guns and which don't. The ones that are cops have them. We live in NYC. It's hard to get a gun permit. DS knows that guns are not toys and that we don't play with them. SO is a cop, so gun safety is big.
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by on Jan. 8, 2013 at 9:50 AM
1 mom liked this
That is a really good point. Our kids don't go over to peoples houses to play. They are still young and we are very cautios. Before they will ever go to a house without us we will know and trust the other family. What they have or don't have will not matter because we know and trust THEM.

To the OP, we would be honest if asked.

Quoting Ziva65:

We have guns, but they aren't in our home.

I was asked that question once, about 13 years ago, when a mom dropped her son off for a birthday party. While we had no guns, I was surprised and somewhat offended. Honestly, if they find it necessary to ask that- it just shows we really don't even know each other well enough and I don't really need the kid at my house for a playdate. If  the parent had any concerns, about anything at our home- I wouldn't bother to alleviate them- I don't want a kid in my house who's parent would question anything- same in reverse. It's not the guns that would concern me, it's the people. We have a lot of friends with guns, some in law enforcement, some hunters... even we have them- we just keep them at a different location which is where we go to shoot targets.

It's not been a question I've asked before a playdate, but honestly I know the parents VERY well before I'd ever drop my kid off anyway  who is that young in which the question would even come to mind. I know up front what their family is like, what they do for a living, if they are married or not, living with a boyfriend, ages of all the children, who lives in the home... what their hobbies are, their cell numbers, everything. If I don't know the basics about the people, thier character, integrity, family structure, etc.... my kid wouldn't be there.

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by on Jan. 8, 2013 at 9:51 AM
For example I would be more concerned over whether or not they have a panther in the back yard as a pet!
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by Member on Jan. 8, 2013 at 9:52 AM

I would not ask. If they do have them I believe they would have the common sense to store them in a safe place. If I can not trust a person then I wouldn't even go over there.

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