SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) A California Republican lawmaker and outspoken gun rights advocate has been cited for trying to bring a loaded handgun onto a Sacramento-bound flight. TSA spokesman Nico Melendez says Assemblyman Tim Donnelly of Twin Peaks had a Colt .45 with four rounds in it inside his carry-on luggage at Ontario International Airport. In a statement released by his office, Donnelly said he forgot to remove the gun from his bag.
A loaded gun can go off. In an airport or a plane.
A loaded gun can be stolen. In an airport or a plane.
Would the Assemblyman care to tell us how he FORGOT that he was carrying a loaded .45? Seriously, he forgot to unload it last time he used it, forgot to make sure it was unloaded before he put it in the bag, then forgot where he put the gun ... or some permutation of these three. If he forgot all three of these once, is it fair to assume it's not the first time? Has he carried this gun, loaded, in a mall? A restaurant? Somewhere else where he could be jostled and the bag could drop and fire the gun?
When I was a kid in Soo MI, before you got to take your new rifle deerhunting with your dad, uncles, and brothers, you took DNR classes on gun safety. And the uncles and brothers and dads didn't want you out there if you didn't know where your gun was, or if it was loaded. This was c.1975. I don't think standards have changed.
Is there anything else Donnelly's forgotten? Like taking gun ownership a little more seriously?
Meantime, here are some excerpts from the NRA's gun safety tips:
ALWAYS keep the gun unloaded until ready to use.
If you do not know how to open the action or inspect the chamber(s), leave the gun alone and get help from someone who does.
Remember, a gun's mechanical safety device is never foolproof. Nothing can ever replace safe gun handling.
Store guns so they are not accessible to unauthorized persons.
Off-Ramp would be happy to attend a gun safety class with Assemblyman Donnelly.
(Photo credit: Office of Assemblyman Tim Donnelly)