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Properly Using Firearms

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Due to the near infinite types of weapons now available, both historic and modern, there is no way to cover all the details of every firearm.  Instead, this is meant as more of a guide to help understand a few basic concepts in dealing with firearms.  You are ultimately responsible for your own actions, so by taking some steps to make sure everyone is safe, you ensure that everyone has an enjoyable experience, and most importantly stays unharmed

With deer season fast approaching in my home state, I thought I would take a bit of time to document a few ways to help stay safe while dealing with firearms. This is by no means a complete list of things you should know, so take the time to get to know as many details as possible in regards to the operation of any firearm you are going to use.  Firearms are to be treated with respect, but don't need to be feared to the point of total avoidance.  If you are looking to own your first, have someone train you on how to handle it before you purchase it.

One final thing before I get started- Instructables member NachoMahma has pointed out an excellent instructable by Skunkbait which is much along the same lines as this instructable.  I'm not sure how I missed it before starting my own instructable, but it's nice to see we have a lot of the same information, and each has a few things the other doesn't mention.  If you are interested in learning more, I suggest you read both.  Skunkbait also has an instructable dedicated entirely to the storage of firearms and goes much more in-depth on that section.

 
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danamos6663 years ago
this appears to be a remington pump .22, possibly a fieldmaster? i have one myself, very good lil rifle
yokozuna (author)  danamos6663 years ago
It was a pump .22, but that's all I can tell you offhand. I do believe it was also a Remington. It had been loaned out and roughed up a bit, but was still quite accurate.
JesusGeek1 year ago
I would like to give a warning to all of you out there. The government has been watching and recording every phone call, text, email, or anything sent on the Internet or mobile networks. Our government has been violating our fourth amendment that gives us privacy in our own possessions and thoughts, unless a warrant or probable cause. If they come knocking on your door, state your fifth amendment "THE RIGHT TO BE SILENT". If they come for your guns, just know that our government has gone rouge and taken your rights away.
LiftAndLove2 years ago
I'm not sure but aren'tyou supposed to have all guns on a rack without a concealed weapons permit?
_Logos_3 years ago
"A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed." Isn't that technically nullified because of the National Guard? I lol'd at this possibility.

Thanks for posting this instructable. Even though I'm qualified and trained, it's ALWAYS useful to have a refresher.
...

The 2nd amendment *arms* the National Guard (which is effectively the militia, which it evolved from).

You are, however, correct that the US's military might effectively rules out the possibility of armed citizens banding together and overthrowing the government (it wouldn't nullify anything, that's a legal term).
You seemed confused. Especially in this day and age (post Heller and Mcdonald)

Both of those court cases recognize and individual right which the government cannot infringe.  

Why would the phrase "the people" mean something different in the 2nd amendment that what it means in the 1st, 4th, 9th, and 10th amendments?
I'm quite aware of Heller and Mcdonald, thank you. I didn't say the second amendment doesn't apply to individuals, I said it *also* arms the militia (today, the National Guard). Read the full text; it specifically mentions the militia. I'm making the point that the second amendment can't be "nullified" because of the National Guard as the Guard is *part of it*. Individual rights under the 2nd could quite conceivably be infringed upon by the Guard, but the second amendment is applicable to both groups, not just one or the other.

Also, the founders philosophy of government was a *very* exclusionary one - though fortunately the Consitution has since been made less so by the amendments - (and the Articles of Confederation more so); in your "freedom to read books" example, actually, yes, many of the founders would have said only the well educated/elite individuals should be able to "read and compose books" (to use your example, not a real one), and in fact had mechanisms in place to ensure just such an outcome at the state level. So, if we're going by original intent, your argument kind of doesn't work, particularly if you apply it to voting, holding office, etc.

> The "militia" is everybody able to bear arms for the common defense. The first thirteen words merely explain why it is good that everyone should be proficient in arms.

I'd certainly like a citation for that. While the Supreme Court has recently incorporated the 2nd, I haven't heard anything about them defining the militia as a theoretical collective of unorganized citizens (which isn't actually a militia at all); if I'm wrong, please show me the opinion defining it as such. The entire point of McDonald was that there exists an individual right *separate from* that of the right to arm a militia; the first words aren't just "merely explaining why it is good that everyone should be proficient in arms". There's the individual right _to ensure that the right to arm a militia_ exists.
If the framers of The Constitution did not want us to be educated, why would Jefferson write this? "To all of which is added a selection from the elementary schools of subjects of the most promising genius, whose parents are too poor to give them further education, to be carried at the public expense through the college and university. The object is to bring into action that mass of talents which lies buried in poverty in every country, for want of the means of development, and thus give activity to a mass of mind, which, in proportion to our population, shall be double or treble of what it is in most countries." --Thomas Jefferson, letter to Jose Correa de Serra, 1817
>Also, the founders philosophy of government was a *very* exclusionary one...

It may have been exclusionary, (only male landowners could vote...), but we've since extended those rights to women, and the non-landed class. You're not seriously saying that this one individual right which the government cannot infringe upon does not apply to some people, but the rest of the Bill of Rights does.  Had a "freedom to read and write books" amendment existed, no way would you deny this right to anyone, regardless of age. What is your point here?

>I said it *also* arms the militia (today, the National Guard)...

The National Guard is not the militia. You can't deny rights just because you decide to redefine "militia" as "the National Guard". The National Guard is "armed" by congress the exact way the Army and Navy are.  Cite:

     "The militia, when properly formed, are in fact the people themselves, ... all men capable of bearing arms;..." -- Richard Henry Lee writing in "Letters from the Federal Farmer to the Republic", 1788, page 169.

>...The entire point of McDonald was that there exists an individual right...

While Heller defined an individual right that applies to the Federal enclave called the District of Columbia , McDonald incorporated that right through the fourteenth amendment to the states. (i.e. Chicago and/or Illinois is forced to honor your right to keep and bear arms as well as your right to free speech)

>I'd certainly like a citation for that. While the Supreme Court has recently incorporated the 2nd, I haven't heard anything about them defining the militia as a theoretical collective of unorganized citizens

Held:
...
(b) The prefatory clause comports with the Court’s interpretation of the operative clause. The “militia” comprised all males physically capable of acting in concert for the common defense. The Anti-federalists feared that the Federal Government would disarm the people in order to disable this citizens’ militia, enabling a politicized standing army or a select militia to rule. The response was to deny Congress power to abridge the ancient right of individuals to keep and bear arms, so that the ideal of a citizens’ militia would be preserved.


(above is from the first two pages of the Heller decision.)
>You're not seriously saying that this one individual right which the government cannot infringe upon does not apply to some people, but the rest of the Bill of Rights does.Had a "freedom to read and write books" amendment existed, no way would you deny this right to anyone, regardless of age. What is your point here?

My point is that your analogy as continued here:

>Obviously this does not mean that only well-educated voters have the right to read or write books. Nor does it mean that the right to read books of one's choosing can be restricted to only those subjects which lead to a well-educated electorate.

doesn't hold, because provisions of the bill of rights HAVE been interpreted in such clearly wrong-headed ways (Plessy v. Ferguson, anyone?). We've corrected many such errors (thank goodness). But when the "equal books right" amendment was (would have been? What's the right tense to use for a past event that never happened?) written, it appears eminently likely that yes, that is what it would have meant to those who wrote it - the court would have interpreted it in just such a restrictive way, only being corrected by later generations. I'm not arguing it *should* be that way, just that it probably *would* have been. 

>The National Guard is not the militia. You can't deny rights just because you decide to redefine "militia" as "the National Guard". The National Guard is "armed" by congress the exact way the Army and Navy are. Cite:

I'm not trying to redefine the militia, simply say it comprises more than everybody who has a gun.

Why do you keep trying to explain McDonald and Heller to me? I'm not disagreeing with you on them, and I understand the difference between the two cases quite well, thank you. I mean, I had just *said* that the court had recently incorporated the second. It's as if we were discussing cheeseburgers, and I said "They have pickles on them", and you said "NO, they have CHEESE on them." They have both!

It's pretty well accepted that the Guard is directly descended from the militia. I guess you haven't heard of the Militia Act of 1903 (which "organized the various state militias into the present National Guard system")? However, according to the same link:

"Title 10 of the US Code states:
(a) The militia of the United States consists of all able-bodied males at least 17 years of age and, except as provided in section 313 of title 32, under 45 years of age who are, or who have made a declaration of intention to become, citizens of the United States and of female citizens of the United States who are members of the National Guard.
(b) The classes of the militia are—
(1) the organized militia, which consists of the National Guard and the Naval Militia; and
(2) the unorganized militia, which consists of the members of the militia who are not members of the National Guard or the Naval Militia."

So there's organized and unorganized militia - and my original point (that simply because the organized could take arms away from the unorganized does not mean the second amendment would be "nullified") stands.

>The “militia” comprised all males physically capable of acting in concert for the common defense.

OK, thanks.

>I'm not trying to redefine the militia, simply say it comprises more than everybody who has a gun.

Sorry, that's sure what it sounded like on first reading. There is a pretty common argument from rights-stealing bigots that you can take the word "militia", twist it around any way you want, and change the underlying meaning of the amendment. They usually feel that "well-regulated" = "there ought to be plenty of laws" too.

This would be like calling the "Voice of America" the "free press", and then saying because we have a "free press", it would be OK to put a seven day waiting period on anyone else's exercise of free speech.

>here is a pretty common argument from rights-stealing bigots that you can take the word "militia", twist it around any way you want, and change the underlying meaning of the amendment. They usually feel that "well-regulated" = "there ought to be plenty of laws" too.

Okay, I'm done. I've both assumed and written in good faith up till now, but I simply do not have the patience to sit here and have it implied that I am not; nor will I be called names.

Good day, Sir.
Hmmm, I think we're both guilty of speed reading here. But if you care to look at the first word I typed in my last reply (not including the quote), I believe I said "Sorry".

It looks like I misread some of your earlier posts and jumped to a wrong conclusion.
Sounds about right. :) (This type of discussion *does* seem to be prone to get rather heated...)
Do you truly think the Army must have an ammedment to allow them to be armed? What Army is effective un-armed against an army that is armed? The militia is the people, trained and armed, lead by officers the people choose, supplied by themselves, to protect themselves against invaders and a tyrantical government. Looking back at April 19 1775 we see why. The government was trying to disarm the militia.
Then our founders were able to see over one hundred years into the future. The militia was never controled by the state, and was never ment to be. It was only controlled by the citizens who choose their own officers, supplied their own weapons, ammo, training, clothing, food and so on. No, the National Guard is controlled by the heads of state and federal government. The millita is the people. All of the citizens armed and trained to fight. Why? Because the British subjects, our founders, knew very well the need. Read "Paul Revere's Ride" by David Hackett Fisher. We should be remembering April 19, 1775 with greater reverence than July 4, 1776. The founders knew that the greatest threat to liberty was our own government. They made this Republic, now can we keep it!!!???
(from http://www.guncite.com/gc2ndana.html)

looking at the sentence: "A well-educated electorate being necessary to the preservation of a free society, the right of the people to read and compose books shall not be infringed."

Obviously this does not mean that only well-educated voters have the right to read or write books. Nor does it mean that the right to read books of one's choosing can be restricted to only those subjects which lead to a well-educated electorate.

The purpose of this provision is: although not everyone may end up being well-educated, enough people will become well-educated to preserve a free society.

Nor can it be construed to deny one's pre-existing right to read books if there are not enough well-educated people to be found...

(More at the link cited)

"well-regulated" is used here in a way that is not commonly used nowadays. It means "well-discipled". The "militia" is everybody able to bear arms for the common defense. The first thirteen words merely explain why it is good that everyone should be proficient in arms. The second part of the amendment make it clear that the government cannot infringe on a pre-existing right.

ahumanright.com
yokozuna (author)  _Logos_3 years ago
The National Guard, being under the direction of the US Army, is technically under the direction of the Commander in Chief. Thus, the original reason for the right to bear arms (to pull some amount of power away from the central government) is quite valid. If you liked mine, be sure to also check out skunkbaits, linked at the beginning, it is very well done and touches on a couple of things I didn't think of.
You're making the British users jealous.
dent2443 years ago
ummm here there is a lot of controversy upon the concept of storage vs. accessibility especially her in texas where i live. so this is not the total correct way to go but it still has good info
I would highly suggest following state and local laws on storage!!!
Regardless how feel on the subject there are laws on how and where to store firearms.
If ever LE enters your place of domicile and you have not followed the law your going to have problems.
So check your state and local laws.
Dr.Bill3 years ago
WE NEED GUNS !
AND WHISKEY !
AND ACTION !
TEAM WHISKEY ALWAYS WINS! ALWAYS!
especially with guns
yokozuna (author)  Dr.Bill3 years ago
Lions, and Tigers, and Bears, oh my!
mcaliber.503 years ago
respect. also, never kill something unless it has a purpose (i.e food, or unless it's been eating your food)
yokozuna (author)  mcaliber.503 years ago
Excellent point.
lemonie3 years ago

(step 5 - you want "wandered into the area")
Generally useful stuff, it might be good to summarise the main points as "bullet-points" (no pun intended)?
Where I live you must separate guns & ammo in police-approved strong-boxes, bolted to the wall / floor etc...

L
yokozuna (author)  lemonie3 years ago
Yes, I did intend to use wandering, dumb mistake, thanks. Also, regulations are different everywhere, and in many places firearms are illegal entirely. I don't believe we're required by law to store them in any certain way here, but we can be charged with crimes after the fact for negligence if something happens, especially if children are involved. Whether the local laws say you're required to do it or not, it's still the proper thing to do.

You're right in regulations being different everywhere, but - still the proper thing to do.

L
rimar20003 years ago
Thanks for sharing!