On average, a toddler age 3 or younger has shot himself or someone else once per week in the United States this year, the Washington Post reports. In January, a 3-year-old in New Mexico wounded both his parents with one gun shot. In June, a 3-year-old in Michigan died after shooting himself in the head with a gun he found in a closet. In August, a 21-month-old in St. Louis died after shooting himself in the torso at his grandma's house. Just this month, a 2-year-old in South Carolina found a gun in the backseat of the car and shot his grandma, who was riding in the passenger seat. Reporter Christopher Ingraham crunched the numbers for the Post and found at least 43 cases of toddlers shooting themselves or others with a firearm in the news this year.
According to Ingraham's stats, 13 toddlers killed themselves, 18 injured themselves, 10 injured someone else, and two killed someone else. He says there are likely many more cases of toddlers firing a gun that didn't make the news. According to one gun safety advocacy group, more than two-thirds of accidental shootings by children could be prevented with responsible gun storage. And 67% of Americans support laws requiring guns to be locked up at home, a measure the NRA opposes. "Depending on where you stand on gun policy, you may feel that 13 dead toddlers in 10 months is too many," Ingraham writes. "Or you might reason that stuff happens, and that this is part of the price we must pay to protect our gun rights." Read the whole story here. (Read more gun control stories.)