Toddler shoots and kills mother in Hayden Walmart
This is just a horribly tragic story and the reason it's so tragic is because it was so preventable.
I'm the VP of the local chapter of an organization that provides professional education for those in my career field. Every month our board meets to discuss the topics that we'll be covering in our seminars and inevitably we have a lot of interest in new topics and exciting topics and flashy topics. Hey, those topics put asses in the seats and that's part of our job. But there is another part of our job and that's to make sure that those who are member of our organization or attend our events are performing at the highest professional standards they can and in order to achieve that standard we also need to constantly reinforce the basics.
I'm a tax and accounting guy. I can run through your financial data faster than you can run a comb through your hair and can not only spot an anomaly from a mile away but can usually tell you why it's out of whack half an hour before I hit my billing minimum. That being said, I'm also human and when I get too used to doing the same thing the same way all the time that's when I get dangerous. I suspect that's what happened in Hayden and why some 2 year old no longer has a mommy.
Folks, if you're going to carry a firearm then you need to pay attention to the basics. It's how you protect others and yourself from tragedy caused by complacency. I'd like to use this thread to clarify and discuss the basics of daily carry and I'd like to hear, primarily, from those who do carry every day. I'd also like those who don't carry to ask questions so that we can address your concerns.
For starters, when you carry you need to be in control of your weapon. That means you don't hand it to someone else or leave it on the toilet tank. You don't just dump it into your purse or your pocket. You keep that weapon in such a manner that you KNOW it's safe, secure and under your immediate control. The specifics of how you do that are often dependent on exactly what kind of weapon you're carrying but one of the basics is your holster. USE ONE!!
Simply stuffing a pistol in your waistband or purse might look cool in the movies but it's stupid. Even a decent level I holster will provide more security than your waistband. As a minimum it should be enough to cover the trigger guard so that nothing can get stuck in there accidentally. It should also be made for the firearm you're using it with so that everything fits and stays secure.
One other thing, once your weapon is in its holster and under your control DON'T **** WITH IT! There is no need to play pocket pool with your pistol. The pistol doesn't care and isn't going to feel neglected. Leave it alone unless you absolutely need to use it. If you have to take it off for some reason (entering an area where firearms are prohibited, for example) then take it off pistol and holster together. This is a good reason for those who carry IWB to use clip on holsters.
This is just one suggestion. Please feel free to add more.