No, this isn’t a story from the Onion, although I wish it were.
A Tennessee man who was promoting open carry laws as a solution to mass shootings in churches accidentally shot himself and his wife on Thursday… while they were in church.
The elder members of First United Methodist Church in Tellico Plains were reportedly discussing the recent church shootings in Sutherland Springs, Texas and Fresno, California when the man pulled out his gun and bragged about carrying it “everywhere.” He and his wife, both in their 80s, were accidentally shot when he pulled the trigger to demonstrate how a safety works.
He put the magazine back in, apparently loaded a round in the chamber, and returned the gun to its holster, [Tellico Plains Police Chief Russ] Parks said.
“Somebody else walked up and said, ‘Can I see it?'” Parks said. “He pulled it back out and said, ‘With this loaded indicator, I can tell that it’s not loaded.'”
He pulled the trigger.
“Evidently he just forgot that he re-chambered the weapon,” Parks said.
I guess the man didn’t realize that people like him carrying handguns “everywhere” is part of the problem. It certainly didn’t help in this case.
According to the police, the bullet went through the palm of the man’s hand, and into his wife’s abdomen. They were flown to the University of Tennessee Medical Center and are expected to survive, according to reports.
These two people are fortunate enough that they will likely live through this shooting, but many others aren’t. In fact, hundreds of children die each year due to accidental injuries caused by guns. That’s something worth remembering, especially when you’re committed to the idea that arming everyone will actually make the country safer.
This man may have been trying to convince others that guns could prevent mass shootings in churches, but instead he ended up proving a different point: guns are inherently dangerous and, without proper precautions, they can cause devastation regardless of who wields them. Even when you know what you’re doing, accidents can happen.
(Image via Shutterstock)