What is wrong with the above picture? Everything. First, it gives the impression that small children gaining access to firearms is a big problem in this country. It isn't. The number of children under ten that fatally shoot themselves or others in firearm accidents each year is in the single digits. Most of those are shot by an adult. In a country of 313 million people and 347 million firearms, that is a remarkable safety record.
So why the picture of a 4 year old with a revolver? Simple. Shock propaganda value aimed at the non-gun owner, and an attempt to demonize guns more than they already are. If you dig into the campaign further, the attempt is to push gun owners to lock up their guns when "not in use". The ad is couched in terms of in terms of "gun safety", pushing the idea that guns should be "locked up".
This happens to echo the latest push for gun control by the left, the San Francisco ordinance that any handgun in the home, that is not being carried on the person of an adult, *must* be locked up, which is now being echoed in a proposed Los Angeles ordinance.
But there is no evidence that requiring guns to be locked up reduces accidents or crime or suicides. From the study by Lott and Whitley(pdf):
It is frequently assumed that safe-storage gun laws reduce accidental gun deaths and total suicides, while the possible impact on crime rates is ignored. We find no support that safe-storage laws reduce either juvenile accidental gun deaths or suicides. Instead, these storage requirements appear to impair people’s ability to use guns defensively. Because accidental shooters also tend to be the ones most likely to violate the new law, safe-storage laws increase violent and property crimes against law-abiding citizens with no observable offsetting benefit in terms of reduced accidents or suicides.The "National Crime Prevention Council" is a government propaganda effort. It is funded by the Bureau of Justice Assistance. The Ad Council is a propaganda organ of the ruling elite, though it is thinly disguised as a non-profit. It was created to promote war propaganda in 1941. The ability to require radio and TV stations to air your ads for free (as public service announcements (PSA)) is an incredibly powerful, political tool. Ad council PSAs were used to normalize homosexuality, for example.
Some would argue that the campaign only asks people to secure their guns voluntarily. I suggest the idea is to demonize guns and promote the concept that guns are bad and should be locked up.
I will change my mind when the Ad Council starts doing public service announcements that urge responsible people to carry guns to reduce crime. I would even accept a "Do You Carry? Get Trained" campaign. I think I will be waiting a long time.
©2015 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included.
Link to Gun Watch