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article imageNRA speaker Rob Pincus advises parents to keep guns in kids room

By JohnThomas Didymus     May 5, 2013 in Lifestyle
A seminar on "Home Defense Concepts" at the National Rifle Association's Annual Meeting, taught by firearms instructor Rob Pincus, has stirred a controversy after the advice that parents should keep guns in their children's bedroom for home defense.
According to Think Progress, Pincus, who owns the popular firearm instruction company I.C.E Training, argued that because parents run instinctively to their children's bedroom when they fear a home invasion, they might as well store a gun in their children's bedroom.
The Huffington Post reports that Pincus has in the past recommended that gun owners must be prepared and willing to use lethal force when provoked. He said his training focuses on preparing gun owners for emergency situations in which they have to make split-second decisions. He said: "If someone presents that firearm, but they're not really willing to use it, they don't need to use it, it can actually cause more of a problem."
The video clip uploaded by Think Progress shows Pincus quizzing attendees at the seminar where a gun is best located in the home for the purpose of self-defense. He suggests with what many consider flawed logic that it makes sense to store a gun in the kids' bedroom:
How about putting a quick-access safe in your kids’ room?... Good idea or bad idea? We have an emotional pushback to that. Here’s my position on this. If you’re worried that your kid is going to try to break into the safe that is in their bedroom with a gun in it, you have bigger problems than home defense. [Laughter] If you think that the kid who’s going to try to break into the safe because it’s in their room isn’t sneaking into your room to try to break into stuff, you’re naive and you have bigger problems than this. So let’s settle that issue and think about it. In the middle of the night, if I’m in the bathroom or getting a glass of water or in the bedroom or watching TV in the living room, if that alarm goes off and the glass breaks and the dog starts barking, what’s the instinct that most people are going to have, in regards to, “am I going to run across the house to get the gun, or am I going to run over here to help the screaming kid?” And if I’m going to go to the kid anyway, and I have an extra gun and an extra safe, why not put it in their closet?
The Houston Chronicle noted that the audience appeared to have reservations about Pincus' suggestion, most people being naturally aware of the need to balance the risk that firearms pose in domestic situations with the threat of invasion. According to some experts, the conflict actually reveals the real-life limitations of keeping a gun for self-defense. The trade-off between the risk firearms pose to family members and the potential opportunities for self-defense in emergency situations may not favor gun owners.
According to the Ashbury Park Press, the Children's Defense Fund reports high incidence of accidental firearm injuries to children:
In 2010, 15,576 children and teenagers were injured by firearms — three times more than the number of U.S. soldiers injured in the war in Afghanistan... Guns still kill twice as many children and young people than cancer, five times as many than heart disease and 15 times more than infection, according to the New England Journal of Medicine.
Dr. Judith S. Palfrey, past president of the American Academy of Pediatrics, said: "We see guns as much of a threat in their [children] life as we used to see bacteria and viruses. If you look at what's actually killing children and disabling children, guns is one of the major things."
Think Progress writes:
Defensive gun use against home invasions are extremely rare. Many of the statistics commonly cited by the NRA and its allies are based on mathematically impossible calculations... children are wounded and killed by accidental gunshots with horrifying frequency. Roughly 900 kids were killed in gun suicides or accidents in 2010. A Center for Disease Control study of 30,000 incidents of children killed by accidental firearm discharge found kids 0-4 were 17 times more likely to be killed in a gun accident in the states with the four highest levels of gun ownership than those with the four lowest (the figure was 13 times for kids aged 5-14).
According to statistics quoted by Ashbury Parks Press: "A gun in the home is 22 times more likely to be used in a completed or attempted suicide (11 times more likely), a criminal assault or homicide (seven times more likely), or unintentional shooting death or injury (four times more likely) than in a self-defense shooting."
Ironically, Pincus' advice comes soon after a tragic incident in which a 5-year-old boy shot and killed his 2-year-old sister. According to Digital Journal, police in Cumberland County, Ohio, said the five-year-old boy shot and killed his two-year-old sister while playing with a .22 caliber rifle he received as a birthday gift a year ago.
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