Alec Baldwin’s Accidental Shooting Demonstrates a Desperate Need for Education On Firearms – Opinion

If you’re a Hollywood actor, there’s a solid chance that firing a gun is something you’ve done many a time in your career. If you haven’t yet, then that time is coming. But, other than a few actors like Brad Pitt and Keanu Reeves who are pro-gun celebrities, Hollywood’s mainstream view is that guns should be eliminated from this planet. You’ll hear some of them tell you that guns are one of the biggest problems in America and advocate for the elimination of the 2nd Amendment, mandatory buybacks, or at the very least, gun laws so strict that you might as well not even have a gun.

Alec Baldwin was one of these celebrities. This 63-year old actor supported anti-gun causes and attached his support to anti-NRA movies.

My colleague Nick Arama has reported that Alec Baldwin shot 2 people accidentally on set after firing a prop-gun, which, judging by reports, had actual rounds.

I’m not here to jeer at or mock Baldwin. While he’s insulted my friends by name and relentlessly mocked conservatives unfairly, this is not an incident with which we should do any sort of victory dance. As a result, one innocent person was killed and another injured. They would mock you if they mocked him.

Instead, I want to take this moment to highlight a very important fact about how this incident was born of Baldwin’s approach towards firearms.

Hollywood actors would like to tell you that what they’re trying to push is “common sense.” You’ll often see that phrase attached to everything the left does pertaining to guns. “Common sense gun control,” or “common sense gun laws” are phrases used frequently and that’s by design. They’re attempting to generate a narrative where they seem like the sensible and wise people in the room.

What they’re actually pushing is blind fear of firearms. Their PSA’s are often laced with misrepresented or manipulated numbers, making gun rights advocates into evil boogie men operating in the shadows, and in some cases, even dramatizing horrific scenarios. Their goal is to have people fear firearms and also see gun rights advocates as either stupid, evil or both. The hope is this will make America less inclined to own firearms, as well as making eliminating the 2nd Amendment an issue that the majority of Americans support.

It is important to understand that America cannot be rid of firearms. Many millions of Americans have firearms, and many more buy them every year. So saturated is America with firearms that it’s estimated some 40 percent of Americans own a gun, and that’s on the conservative end since Americans aren’t required to report their ownership, and many don’t want to. Gun sales also soared to new heights during the pandemic.

America has a strong gun culture. Even if the government mandated the handing over and destruction of all firearms tomorrow, the numbers wouldn’t change too drastically in reality. It may even lead to a civil war, which the government might lose.

Facts and statistics also point to the fact that much of the firearm violence we see in this nation isn’t caused by law-abiding, gun-owning Americans. The vast majority of firearm violence in the United States is caused by suicides or gang violence, though this fact often gets overlooked. Talking about mental illness and crimes involving persons of color can be dismissed quickly.

(READ: Gun Control Advocates and Flat Earthers — What’s the Difference?)

It is clear that Hollywood celebrities, who promote blind fear of firearms, are frequently pushing ignorance and setting unrealistic expectations for a country that holds a culture attachment to guns. This nation was built on blood and sweat, tears, gunpowder, and guns.

Baldwin’s pushing of the anti-gun narrative and the embrace of fear and hatred was foolish, and this made him lack something the very important bit of education necessary to avoid the situation he now finds himself in.

Education about firearms isn’t just about learning how to load and fire them. It’s about knowing how to safely store and use firearms once they are in your hands. A lot of firearm education is focused on safety.

It’s that safety training that goes by the wayside whenever fear is pushed over education. Baldwin had no education. He was the victim of his own ignorance. Many people were also ignorant of the dangers of own guns.

Anyone even a little trained with firearms would have known that you treat every gun as if it’s loaded with real bullets, even if you know it’s empty. No one should ever be shot at, not even as a joke.

Prop guns can be just as dangerous as real ones in the hands of those who don’t take them seriously. Brandon Lee famously died on the set of “The Crow” in 1993 after a prop gun fired a real bullet that had been lodged in the barrel. John-Eric Hexum died in 1984 on the set of “Cover Up: Golden Opportunity” after putting a prop gun to his head and firing it as a joke, resulting in his death. Prop guns can still fire gunpowder, and even a close encounter with it can cause serious injury or death.

Education would not have prevented people from pursuing their dreams.

One thing agreed upon by pro-gun and anti-gun advocates is that guns are dangerous, but it’s the pro-gun advocates that seem to know how dangerous they actually are. They are more aware and cautious because of their education. If only more people were given this education, then perhaps Baldwin would have known better and we wouldn’t have the death of an innocent on our hands.

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