Protecting Your Family From Violence

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It may seem surprising to some but an excellent way to protect yourself and your family from violence may be to watch more movies and TV. Here’s why:

A key media organization is helping various TV shows and movies to depict the realities of such issues as health, drugs, mental illness, diabetes, sun safety, crime and guns.

For example, among the safety suggestions urged for gun owners are:

• Learn the characteristics of your firearm.

• Treat every firearm as if it is loaded.

• Always point the muzzle in a safe direction.

• Keep your finger off the trigger.

• Never rely on a mechanical safety.

• Keep the gun unloaded and the action open until you’re ready to shoot.

• Know your target and what’s behind it.

• Use only the correct ammunition for your firearm.

• Know what to do in case of a misfire.

• Wear protective ear and eye equipment.

• Keep the firearm free of obstructions.

• Don’t modify your firearm.

• Do not mix guns with alcohol, over-the-counter, prescription or illegal drugs; or fatigue.

The organization points out that most people have an impression of gun violence that is not always accurate. In fact, research suggests the presence of a gun in the home increases the risk of a homicide by three times and a suicide by five times. Studies suggest a gun in the home is more likely to be used against the owner or owner’s family, than as self-defense against an intruder.

The group encourages script-writers to show gun violence realistically and to challenge the popular myths and misconceptions, perhaps with real life examples, current events, statistics and examples of gun safety and injury prevention measures. The next time you turn on the TV or go to the movies, watch for whether this advice has been followed.

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