Community invited to Madison PTSA presentation about gun safety

February 10, 2014 at 11:43 am | In Safety, West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | 16 Comments

From the Madison Middle School PTSA, an invitation to a presentation tomorrow night:

Madison Middle School has invited Ralph Fascitelli, President of Washington Ceasefire, to present on February 11 at 7:15 pm at our General PTSA Meeting. Ralph will talk about the ASK-Washington Campaign, a public health and safety campaign dedicated to reducing accidental injury and death to children.

Asking Saves Kids (ASK) – Washington is a public safety education campaign aimed at encouraging inquiry by parents and neighbors about guns in homes where their children play. Our goal is to persuade parents that this conversation—to ensure that their kids play in a gun safe environment — is an essential parental responsibility.

The initiative is explained here. Madison is at 45th/Spokane.

16 Comments

  1. This has nothing to do with firearms safety, if it did it would cover access to education. Washington ceasefire is a prohibitionist organization trying stigmatize a legal activity protected by the Constitution. ( Their website compares firearm ownership to drunk driving ) As well as pushing gun control legislation based on the unfounded premise we have a epidemic of crime and or accidents centering around children.

    A more topical subject for the PTSA would be the safe routes to school program to get kids out of cars, walking and riding bicycles. Something that will need a lot of help as long as west seattle is bisected by dangerous routes like 35th.

    http://www.seattle.gov/transportation/saferoutes.htm

    Comment by vincent — 2:24 pm February 10, 2014 #

  2. From the ASK page linked above: “Asking Saves Kids (ASK) – Washington is a public safety education campaign aimed at encouraging inquiry by parents and neighbors about guns in homes where their children play. Our goal is to persuade parents that this conversation—to ensure that their kids play in a gun safe environment—is an essential parental responsibility.

    Despite the very real dangers of guns in proximity to children, pro-active dialogue is necessary due to the often delicate nature of any conversation in this country involving guns. Thus, this effort does not interfere with nor infringe upon anyone’s right to legally possess a gun, but normalizes parent responsibility to ask and make an informed decision that where their children play is safe.

    The conversation is worth the effort given that ten children a day in this country under the age of 18 are killed or injured in the home with a gun. An estimated 40% of homes in the US (and in Washington State) have guns. A recent study by King County Public Health found there are at least 5,000 homes in the county with children and unlocked guns.”
    .
    http://www.kingcounty.gov/healthservices/health/injury/lokitup/FirearmFacts.aspx

    Comment by WSB — 2:44 pm February 10, 2014 #

  3. “ten children a day in this country under the age of 18 are killed or injured in the home with a gun”

    Citation needed.

    The reference for that figure includes “children” as old as 19. And fails to omit gang activity.

    “http://wonder.cdc.gov/ucdicd10.
    html. All child and teen data are for ages 0-19. Gun deaths include homicides, suicides,
    unintentional deaths, and deaths of undetermined intent.”

    Comment by vincent — 3:34 pm February 10, 2014 #

  4. It does seem like this neighborhood should be more concerned with the various pervert/psychos that are hiding in the bushes or driving by in cars, attempting to lure kids or exposing themselves to them. I’m more concerned about that than I am about my kids having an accident with one of my guns.

    At least avoid the appearance of an agenda by having a group like the NRA or 2nd Amendment Foundation also present. Those groups know and care more about gun safety and kids than any other. The best thing I ever did to keep my kids safe around guns (mine, theirs, and other peoples’) was to get them into the NRA and into the range regularly.

    Comment by Jim — 4:13 pm February 10, 2014 #

  5. This is a great idea and a great event, and don’t let Vincent’s NRA-provided soundbites say otherwise.

    In regard to Vincent, I don’t think citations are needed if one can’t understand the plain meaning of a sentence. WA Ceasefire’s website does not compare firearm ownership to drunk driving, it compares firearm ownership to driving a car. Let me paste the relevant text:

    “We don’t get to drive a car if we have a history of drunk driving, so why should somebody with a felony or domestic violence problems or someone involuntarily committed for mental illness be able to buy an unlimited number of firearms at gun shows or online, no questions asked?”

    And their website says nothing about prohibiting guns; they say their goals are “several laws that should be passed to reduce gun violence in Washington State.”

    Citations only matter if you bother to read them, if you take the time to read.

    Comment by Parent — 4:40 pm February 10, 2014 #

  6. This is what’s so frustrating about “discussing” issues these days. An organization that promotes TALKING ABOUT safety is jumped all over on as a “prohibitionist organization trying to stigmatize a legal activity”. I mean, come on, if we can’t even talk about how to create a safe environment, – especially for children – without getting all defensive and shooting other people down (pun intended I guess), then we are in big trouble.

    Comment by add — 5:31 pm February 10, 2014 #

  7. Jim, do you have locks on your guns? Or are they kept in a locked cabinet? If not, statistically your kids are more likely to be injured by them than to encounter a “pervert.” Sure, we’ve had a rash lately, but those stories also get more publicity than gun ‘accidents.’

    Comment by parent — 8:24 pm February 10, 2014 #

  8. Parent, gun accidents get 10x the publicity of legal gun owners, saving life and property using a gun… When there’s trouble who are you going to call!? Someone with a gun! Cut out the middle man… #nogunlocks

    Comment by Paul — 9:07 pm February 10, 2014 #

  9. From the posts in response to this notification, it sounds like Madison’s setting itself up for a lively discussion!

    Comment by M — 10:40 pm February 10, 2014 #

  10. On this topic, as with a few others, I doubt the naysayers will show.

    Comment by WSB — 11:24 pm February 10, 2014 #

  11. I do value firearm education. I also appreciate different views. It is all good and there is no need to bash anybody on either side.
    .
    However, what saddens me is not so much that naysayers or the choir won’t show but that the “parents” that are most likely to have a unsecured loaded gun with children around won’t show up to this meeting.

    Comment by Eric1 — 11:40 pm February 10, 2014 #

  12. Hello,
    Thank you for your comments. This parent education night is not about taking guns away. Or making political statements in that regard. It’s about educating people with small children of the dangers of having children play in other people’s houses. 20/20 just did a show on this. Children are told not to play or touch guns but left in a room with a gun they pick it up and play with it. Everyone has the right to have their gun. Our topic has nothing to do with this right. I have a right to ask you to keep it safely locked for the safety of my child. This was scheduled for this reason. Next Month we will be looking at Drug and Alcohol Safety. Again not targeting parents and their behaviors. Just like when you brought your child home, hide your cords and plugged your outlets.

    Comment by Parent Education — 10:47 am February 11, 2014 #

  13. Ironic that firearms advocates promote firearms education, yet slam an organization attempting to provide exactly that – firearms education.
    According to my Boy Scout manual, asking about the presence of guns, and how they are stored and maintained, is my job as a responsible gun user.
    It’s a simple concept that is actually very difficult in practice. Just like Vincent and others’ overreaction here, I worry that I’ll lose my kid a friend just by asking if the play-date home has guns, and if so how they’re secured.
    It may sound insane that a parent would be uncomfortable asking these questions, but that’s why this event is taking place. It is a weird, uncomfortable, conversation. What if I ask, and they say yes we have a shotgun but it’s in the closet? I shouldn’t let my kid play there, and that is a REALLY uncomfortable conversation – “sorry, your home is unsafe,, my kid can’t play here”. Yes, yes I know it’s better than the horrible outcome of an accident, I probably sound liek an idiot to most of you, it’s just hard to do in “real life”. I welcome this, I encourage every responsible gun person or non-gun person to participate – it’s REALLY important that we find a way to talk about this stuff without THIS (these comments) happening.

    Comment by zark00 — 1:14 pm February 11, 2014 #

  14. Well said Zark00. The comments should end on this note. The meeting is just about information on a topic and how to talk about it.

    Comment by BC — 6:08 pm February 11, 2014 #

  15. I attended the meeting. Mr. Fascitelli gave his presentation, received polite applause, and left behind some pamphlets and buttons. The remainder was a pretty standard PTSA meeting with no further discussion of the ASK program.

    Comment by Chuck Jacobs — 8:38 pm February 11, 2014 #

  16. Any house my kids will be playing at will have a discussion about firearms. Growing up hunting and utilizing firearms to actually kill living creatures, I do understand that power they hold. Any house that has them will need to show me where they are, how they lock them up and prove they keep them unloaded and out of reach of kids. If not, they are part of the problem, they are the problem. Thieves may not buy guns legally, but they do steal them from really dumb gun owners that are too ignorant to keep them locked away and unloaded.

    Comment by Mike — 1:33 am February 12, 2014 #

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