And gun safety.
I mentioned my love of old manuals before. This partly stems from reading old stuff of my father's, including his Boy Scout Fieldbook, copyright 1948. Well I found a copy to bring back my childhood memories of my father's childhood memories.
In it there is a section on gun safety. Let me crib from part of it now:
Always keep a gun unloaded when not in use, but treat it as you KNOW it is loaded (emphasis in original)
Be sure that you see the target clearly before you fire. Make certain there is nothing between you and the target or behind it that may be accidentally hit.
Of course you would never think of pointing the muzzle at anyone or of letting anyone point it at you - not even when you are positive the gun is unloaded. "Only fools are positive," Most firearms accidents are caused by people handling guns that were supposedly "not loaded."
So they hit 3 of the four rules, only omitting keeping your finger off the trigger until the sights are on the target (#3). They do recommend leaving the action open and never loading until ready to fire. Remember 1948 is before the invention of a compact set of the Four Rules that we know today. They also have an proto Eddie The Eagle recommendation for all youngins (remember, this book is for 11-18 year olds):
Before picking up a rifle or other firearm, have someone who knows teach you the proper way of handling and using it.
And there is a gruesome looking photo in the first aid section, hopefully simulated. It's a rendering of first aid to a hunter that took a load of buckshot to the left knee from what looks like point blank range. 9 holes weeping blood (or chocolate syrup, as it IS a black and white photo and syrup was a fine stand in for the red stuff) Ouch!
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