Safety Issues: Your Kids' Playmates

An old essay by parenting columnist Barbara F. Meltz was passed around the gunblogosphere a few weeks ago. Meltz addresses a specific child safety issue: guns in the homes of your children's playmates.

The nightmare scenario is that your kid goes to play at the home of his friend. The home has unsecured firearms, and kids are curious so...well, you can imagine what happens next. And has happened to some kids and their parents.

Meltz proposes that parents simply ask the parents of playmates if they have firearms. If the answer is yes, ask how they are secured.

As a father and gun owner, I would have absolutely no problem with a parent asking these questions. My rifle is kept unloaded in a locked case, and I don't want my child playing in a home where a firearm is kept in any other condition. Rather than be offended at the query, I'd be impressed at the parent's good sense.

Meltz's question also brings something else to mind. There are safety issues beyond guns whenever a child makes an unsupervised visit to a friend's home.

What questions should a parent ask before letting his or her child visit the home of a friend?

Link | Photo: US Department of Justice

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