It seems it is pretty easy to forgive-and-forget because the young child shot his own mother dead but what if he had shot someone else's mother in Wal-mart? Would we see a lot more anger then directed at Veronica Rutledge for failure to control her firearm.
There is a simple rule of owning a firearm; you must be in control of it at all times. It should either be in a safe or on or nearby your person in such a way that NO ONE else can access the firearm. A firearm in a purse is okay IF and ONLY IF you are in control of the purse that is housing the firearm. Ms. Rutledge was clearly not in control of her firearm and, worse, she left the firearm within reach of her two-year-old son. This is not only being irresponsible, it is being criminally irresponsible. If the boy had shot someone's else's mother, I would want Veronica Rutledge to be charged as an accessory to murder.
I have always been a proponent of the right to own a handgun and the right to carry. But, I also believe that if we want that right, we also must accept the responsibility that whatever happens with that gun is our fault. If any human being dies by being shot with that gun, then unless self-defense can be proven, we should be charged with a crime whether or not our own finger was on the trigger. The only time this should not be true is if the gun was stolen from us due to a break-in of our home or vehicle or purse (and this does not included "theft" of such a weapon by a relative who has legal access to our home. If our son or nephew knows where we keep our weapons in some unlocked location, we should be responsible for that person taking the weapon and we should be responsible for what he does with it).
Owning a weapon is a huge responsibility. We have no excuse for our gun killing people unless they are trying to kill us.
Criminal Profiler Pat Brown
December 31, 2014