Responsible Teen Gun Ownership


Dave Conway

Me with my grandfather’s shotgun given to me, and my dog Murphy

Me with my grandfather's shotgun given to me, and my dog Murphy
Me with my grandfather’s shotgun given to me, and my dog Murphy

Owning a gun is a great American tradition that thousands of people take advantage of all over the country. Our second amendment says that Americans have the right to bear arms and that right shall not be infringed upon, but many people are skeptical about going out and trying to get a gun, especially teenagers who have many misconceptions about gun ownership.

Almost anybody can own a gun excluding felons; they are just afraid to try because they have been misinformed by so many people. In each state these laws vary, but in Massachusetts a person can own a gun at the age of fifteen with parental consent and the application for a Firearms Identification card of FID card. At eighteen a person can get an FID card and now go out to a licensed gun shop and buy a gun from a vendor without any trouble at all.

Getting and FID card is actually a very simple task. I took the home firearm safety class at the Ipswich Fish & Amp, Game, which was a one day class that took about five hours and was very informative. If you choose to take this class you will hear this information again. Once the class is completed, a certificate of completion is granted by the National Rifle Association and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts which will now allow you to apply for and FID card. This class also allows you to apply for class “b” and class “a” licenses if you are of age. Once an application is filled out at your local police station and is turned in an interview is set up for printing and other questions, then in a month in a half to two months you receive your FID card.

An FID card allows a person to buy and own a low capacity rifle that can hold no more than ten rounds at anytime, like a Henry Big Boy or a Mosin Nagant, unless it is of .22 caliber in a fixed tubular magazine, like a Marlin Model 60 or a Henry Golden Boy, then the capacity rule does not apply. A person with an FID can also possess a low capacity shotgun that holds no more than 5 shells at a time. When you turn 21 you can receive a Class “B” which allows you to own high capacity rifle that could hold more than ten rounds, like an AR-15, and a high capacity shotgun that can hold more than five rounds and low capacity handguns. A Class “A” allows a person to own all large capacity firearms and allows for concealed carry.

Once you own a gun you must remain responsible with it to ensure that you and everyone else is safe and nobody gets in trouble. When storing a gun make sure it has some sort of lock that prevents the firearm from functioning weather it prevents the bolt from sliding or from some one being able to access the trigger. Guns should always be stored in a locked hard sided container, a fireproof safe is the best thing, to ensure safety from others who are not qualified to handle the firearm and from thiefs. Be sure the firearm is always unloaded when not being fired and keep ammo in a separate location as the firearm to ensure children do not load a firearm by mistake or you have an accidental discharge. Only qualified individuals in a household should be able to access the firearms. In my house I am the only one with the keys to the locks and only I know where they are kept. Locked rooms do not count as an area for safe storage.

When handling a firearm it is very important to remember to be safe. Check the chamber to ensure the firearm is unloaded and the safety is on. Never put your finger on the trigger unless absolutely necessary. Always keep the firearm pointed in a safe direction when it is out of the case, remember walls and floors do not stop bullets. Finally never aim a gun at something that you do not intend to shoot.

Owning a gun can bring a lot of fun to people. Families can spend a day at the shooting range, skeet field, or out hunting. Owning a gun is also very important for Americans as a country. It is a symbol of our past, present, and future. Though teen gun ownership may be a touchy subject many people who chose to get educated in the subject learn how innocent gun ownership really is. Staff Sergeant Rowe of the United States Marine Corps said, “I have no problem with teens owning guns as long as they are responsible.” It is important to own a gun in today’s society because guns rights are getting more and more infringed upon every year and if people are not getting educated and not taking advantage of their rights then the government will have no problem continuing to regulate gun ownership.