The incidents above seem like the stuff of fiction. I have just finished reading Chris Bohjalian's book, Before You Knew Kindness. From this link:
For ten summers, the Seton family --- all three generations --- met at their country home in New England to spend a week together playing tennis, badminton, and golf, and savoring gin and tonics on the wraparound porch to celebrate the end of the season. In the eleventh summer, everything changed. A hunting rifle with a single cartridge left in the chamber wound up in exactly the wrong hands at exactly the wrong time, and led to a nightmarish accident that put to the test the values that unite the family --- and the convictions that just may pull it apart.An accidental shooting of a father by his young teen-aged daughter tears this family apart. In a series of fateful decisions, a man who has just begun to hunt can't dislodge one bullet from the chamber after a hunting trip. Because his life is so busy, he leaves the gun in this state until the following summer when he intends to have someone fix it. But his daughter and her cousin find the gun in the trunk of the car and though the cousin knows she shouldn't, she picks up the gun and accidentally shoots it into the garden in the dark and shoots her own father in the arm, leaving him permanently disabled. There is much much more to this story. But the novel touched on children and guns, safety features of guns, hunting, animal rights, liability of gun manufacturers, family values and relationships, etc. Though it is fiction, it could be real life.
In real life, accidents with guns happen. They are unfortunate and sometimes tragic. They shouldn't happen but we all know that accidents happen every day- car accidents, falls, bicycle accidents, sports accidents, and so many others. So why did I write this post? Because when we have so many guns in common use in our country and guns in homes or in public places, accidental shootings happen with a fairly regular occurrence. Common sense with guns means being responsible. Guns are designed as weapons which injure or kill animals and people. They need to be stored safely and kept away from children and others who should not have them. Guns are not meant to use in a celebratory manner. Guns should not be shot into the air. I have written before about guns discharging when their owners are cleaning them. One could make a mistake while cleaning other things but a mistake while cleaning a gun can be deadly. Let's hope that no guns will be shot into the air this holiday season. Some people won't be celebrating because of carelessness.