73931049There’s a Diane Sawyer special airing tonight about gun safety and children called “Young Guns: What really happens when parents are not in the room.” I’ll be watching – and you should, too.

Guns scare me. I’ve made no secret of my beliefs that we need stricter gun control and more vigilant gun safety. I’ve talked about how nervous play-dates make me now that I live in a state where so many people are armed. I always get a significant amount of push-back on my views. That’s fair. We all have opinions. When it comes to the topic of guns, people tend to have real strong viewpoints – that can not be swayed. I understand this, because there are several topics I feel that way about – the death penalty and abortion to name a few.

I wrote a piece some months ago about how I intend to ask people if they keep guns in their home before I allow my child to have a play date there. I’m terrified of guns. I’m terrified of people who have an unrelenting confidence that their guns are safe. You can never convince me that every tragic story we hear that involves the accidental deaths of children who stumble upon guns only happens in homes where people pay no mind about securing their guns. That’s just unrealistic. It seems like Sawyer’s special is going to be pretty balanced:

Sawyer goes to a New Jersey neighborhood to talk to families about their attitudes on gun safety in the home. She also finds out whether or not they know if their neighbors have any unsecured guns and if this factor could pose a risk to their child during play dates.

The special includes interviews with parents who have lost their children to unsecured guns in their own home or at their neighbor’s house, and kids who surprise their parents by showing them where guns are “hidden.”

On the other end of the spectrum, Muir travels the country talking to parents who own guns who are convinced that educating a child about the dangers of guns is part of the solution.  Many of those parents believe that teaching their children how to shoot at a young age will diminish curiosity and ensure their children’s safety around firearms.

I’m interested to see what Sawyer uncovers in her documentary tonight. And then, I’m interested in having a conversation about it next week. So everyone tune in to 20/20 tonight at 10pm eastern time and we’ll talk about next week.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J_HooWmuSsw

(photo: Getty Images)