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I'm Going to Ask You This Question Before Every Playdate #SorryNotSorry

Photograph by Twenty20

I suppose I should start off by offending a good percentage of the readers. Perhaps you won’t even continue reading after I say what I have to say. I’m a left-wing, liberal, bleeding heart wimp and I feel strongly about my convictions. And I Hate Guns!

I have yet to find a really good answer as to why people should have the right to carry or own many guns. I think those who have many guns simply like to have toys and don’t want anyone to take their toys.

I’ll now say something to offend the rest of the people that weren’t already offended.

I think you should have the right to own a gun. It's in the Constitution, and I don’t believe the government should go and take away the guns of law-abiding citizens.

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I hate that you feel the need to have your guns, but I understand that you have the right to own it.

As a parent, I've been thinking about this a lot lately, and I have a problem. I'm not a confrontational person, but now that my kid is old enough to start having play dates at other peoples’ homes, I want to make sure of one thing. I want to make sure that he's never playing in a house where a gun is present.

I brought this up to my wife, and she’s in complete agreement. We're also in agreement that there are exceptions to this rule. For instance, we have friends who are police officers. We know and trust that these police officers store their guns in safe locked places.

The problem, however, is that I don’t know how to ask people if they have a gun in the house. I know this riles people up. I know it’s a sore topic, and I find myself too nervous to even ask.

But then I had an epiphany.

And then a thought occurred to me: What if, God forbid, the unthinkable happened?

We brought our son to his Kindergarten orientation a few weeks ago and walked him through the hallway towards his classroom The halls felt so peaceful, so silent, so quaint. And then a thought occurred to me: What if, God forbid, the unthinkable happened? What if some insane piece of garbage thought it was a good idea to bring a gun into this school and do what I can’t even bring myself to write?

For Christ’s sake, our children have lockdown drills at school now. It’s part of the procedures, which means it’s actually conceivable that this could happen. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not delusional. I know it’s improbable, but it's conceivable—and that’s what scares the living hell out of me.

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My first thought was, “Is my baby’s classroom far enough away that if anything were to happen, his teachers would have a chance to hide them in time?” Yup, I actually had that thought, and I'm disgusted that it even entered my head. For us to live in a world where I even entertain such a thought makes me want to vomit.

In that same train of thought, I think it’s also completely legitimate to think “When my kid goes to play at his friend’s house, is there a chance—even a hair of a chance—that he might find himself in front of a gun with his friend?”

I feel confident that the schools don’t have guns, so I don’t need to ask them. I don’t, however, feel confident that my son’s friends' parents don’t have guns. So that'll be a question we ask before playdates.

And if you feel offended, oh well, my son's life is way more important than your feelings.

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