That’s gun safety rule one. Cooper said that it’s not a guide to behavior but rather a statement of condition. (For those unfamiliar, “condition” in this sense refers to the status of the gun, whether it’s loaded, or cocked, whether the safety catch is on, etc.)
That’s the problem with weapon “safety” isn’t it? If you keep a gun for self defense, and you treat all guns as though they’re always loaded, and it turns put that the one you need to defend your life is unloaded, you’re not at all safe. A gun is supposed to be dangerous! but only to your chosen target.
As a matter of personal taste I prefer the NRA rule “Always keep the gun unloaded until ready to use”. The guns I keep for defense are “in use” all the time and so they are loaded, whether on my hip or leaning in the corner.
I showed a couple how to load a percussion revolver the other day, by “loading” it with powder and bullets, but since we never applied caps to the cones, it still isn’t “loaded” because I won’t fire without caps. I’ll twirl it if I want to, and you can’t stop me, but I generally won’t twirl a loaded gun even it is single action with the hammer down and nothing you do to the trigger alone can ever make it fire.
We’ve come to a point where we’re making too big a deal out of “safety” and admit it– That’s because of lawyers and politicians (two of the more dangerous kinds of people on Earth if we take them too seriously).
Ultimately, “safety”, to the extent that it exists at all, is between your ears. You’re certainly going to die no matter what though, so cheer up! When people, perfectly well-intended, tell me to “stay safe” as an alternative to “goodbye” or “see you later” it sort of disappoints me. “Have fun” or even “be cool” would be better advice. None of the really fun and memorable, or productive, things I’ve done in life were particularly safe, but they always came off better in a state of coolness.
Here’s another important “safety” rule;
“All lawyers and all politicians are always loaded”
I do like that one. As Cooper said; “It is not a guide of behavior, but rather a statement of condition”, and furthermore it would explain a lot.