Greatness lies not in being strong, but in the right use of strength - Henry Ward Beecher
Baby sister, I was born game and I intend to go out that way - Rooster Cogburn
Yes, I am more comfortable shooting next to a properly trained kid under 16 at the gun range than I am being in public with a gang banger with a pistol shoved in his pants. In fact, I have been seeing more and more kids shooting with the parents, often with their moms, at the range than I have ever seen. That's a great thing. I love the sport. I believe if we had more of that then we'd have a lot less of the other. It seems anymore that if you own more than 3 or 4 guns and have more than 500 assorted rounds of ammunition you are gun nut who has "a weapons and ammo cache".
In general terms society at large does NOT encourage anyone to learn about guns and to become competent in their use. Society remains at best quiet or tacitly disapproves. Meanwhile the street encourages the illegal possession and use of guns. It's all backasswards.
As to guns = protection: When severe bodily harm is imminent and seconds matter and escape is not an option you'd prefer not to have a gun? Of course you'd prefer to have a gun. I'm certain you'd also prefer, especially at that moment, to have confidence in your gun, your ammunition and your training. Here is the reality of it - we don't get to pick the scenario or the timing. It happens when it happens. You can be prepared or you can wish you had prepared.
With the proper societal attitude maybe the lady in the OP would have had better training and more respect for the gun she was carrying.
"When Faith preaches Hate, Blessed are the Doubters." - Amin Maalouf
However you must be living on another planet if you think you are safe in the US...in your home or out. The news shows a very different picture. You dont necessarily need a gun to protect yourself but certainly those that choose that have the right to do so and not be crippled by your biases.
Please feel free to post some news items where legally carrying people shot and killed innocent bystanders defending themselves or others. I'm not aware of a single instance.
So....unless you can provide proof....some news links...your biases are unfounded.
Would you EVER leave your toddler at or near the steering wheel?
If you say yes, I would say you didn't just make a mistake, you showed absolute disregard for the safety of others.
I have to wonder, if the toddler shot an innocent bystander - it is clear the toddler would not be charged - what charges would the mother face?
Not just moms, not just regular people. Had a cop here do something similar. Left loaded gun in glove box, a 7 yr old and his sister in the van, and went into store. 7 yr old gets dad's gun and accidentally kills sister.
Stupid and careless is stupid and careless...crosses all boundaries.