Friday, February 4, 2011

Keep your booger hook off the bang switch!

I happened to be walking through the local Barnes and Noble bookstore lately with my 13 year old son (he received a gift card from some relatives for Christmas). While browsing through the store, I happened to spy Roger Moore's autobiography My Word is My Bond, and I immediately noticed a problem.

I called over my son. "Hey, look at this book."
"That looks stupid, I don't want to buy that one."
"No, I don't want you to buy it." I pointed at the cover and asked, "what's wrong with this picture?"
My son immediately said, "he's got his finger on the trigger."

I'm so proud of my boy, I have taught him well. I ought to reward him by taking him out shooting more often :)

Just on a whim, I decided to do a Google search of Roger Moore, and am surprised to find that in every damn picture of him holding a gun, he's got his finger on the trigger. Actually, it seems to be a common infliction for most all of the Bonds.

On further research, I find it occurs far too much in Hollywood. After an extensive search of Google images, every single movie poster I could find where someone's holding a gun and not actively involved in firing it, their finger is definitely inside the trigger guard and resting on the trigger.

Rule number three of Jeff Cooper's rules of Firearms Safety is "Keep your finger off the trigger until your sights are on the target." Or, my favorite translation of that rule: "Keep your booger hook off the bang switch!"

Allow my son to demonstrate:

Finger straight, along the frame of the firearm, until the sights are on the target and you are ready to shoot. Pretty simple rule, huh? Yet I constantly see action movie stars with their fingers on the trigger for no good reason far more frequently than I should. Unfortunately, some people I see handling firearms in real life also have the same bad habit.

No wonder we still have too many firearm-related accidents when we see these kind of slopppy gun handling examples in the media all the time:

How ironic that he's breaking Rule #3, no?

More discussion of the rest of the 4 rules for firearms safety coming soon.



  1. Well, Moore does look like he is about to perforate the cameraman, so he might be about to use it after all... ;)

    Unfortunately, all of this comes back to basic instincts - we, being monkeys with opposable thumbs, like to grasp the crap out of things, and when we pick up something with a natural grip, we go all-out on it. However, this dovetails perfectly with your previous post - in order to get people out of that instictive habit, we need to train them in safe habits early!

  2. I agree. Except I think the reason movie posters always have the actor with his finger in the guard is to show that they are a "loose cannon". Probably an attempt at bringing in more movie veiwers.

    And as for more training at a young age, again, agreed. Like my cousin(above), we have put some hours with my uncle in learning how to safely handle a weapon, and to shoot it.

    Most "rules" for more safe gun use, are common sense. You know it is Funk. EX: "Keep your booger hook off the bang switch!" [funny, but] common sense. Unless I wanted to shoot your offspring. :)

  3. Its funny - in movies I always laugh when the action hero has his finger indexed along the trigger during a time of action.

    That, the infinite shooting revolver, and the shotgun that blows a bad guy into the next county are things that make me shake my head in the movies.

  4. @Pat, Yeah, in movies and video games, the almighty shotgun usually packs an unrealistic amount of punch.

    I watched a video (can't find it now) where a manufacturer of ballistic vests was demonstrating their heavy duty model that stops rifle bullets (which go right through regular body armor police wear). He was shot at about point blank range with a 308 and barely rocked back on his heels.


  5. Yes movies are unrealistic but there just movies. Wouldent you rather see a guy going flying than to see him just fall over from a shot i mean seriously movies would be no fun. I just think in movies its ok to over use.

    But there are the movies that go way to far with it.

  6. Movie posters are simply that... movie posters. They don't have to advocate gun safety tips. And if someone is dumb enough to emulate a movie poster while brandishing a deadly weapon, that person deserves what he gets. A nice, shiny Darwin Award.


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