We headlined our piece focused on a campaign video by Dale Peterson, a candidate for the Republican nomination for Alabama Ag Commissioner, Watch the Winchester: Ad For Dale Peterson, Candidate For Alabama Ag Commissioner Goes Viral, and at least one sharp-eyed Pundit reader did, in fact, “Watch the Winchester”:
Did the Marines teach him to carry his rifle with his finger inside the trigger guard? I doubt it.
— Art Davis
Eden Prairie, Minnesota
I don’t live in Alabama and I’m not a registered Republican. But if I were, this ad would convince me not to vote in the primary for Dale Peterson for Agriculture Commissioner.
Somebody who’s been a Marine, a cop, and a farmer ought to know elementary gun safety. Yet when Peterson takes out a rifle near the end of the video, he puts his trigger finger inside the trigger guard. I realize that the gun in the commercial is just a prop, and was almost certainly unloaded. However, the Agriculture Commissioner should model good behavior, and the viral ad itself, with over a million views, is a model of unsafe and irresponsible gun handling.
Perhaps most of the viewers know better than to handle a gun in the dangerous manner that Peterson does, but at least some viewers won’t know that what Peterson is doing is a violation of gun safety rules; some of them may think that he’s showing the normal way to carry a gun, and some of those viewers might one day attempt to carry a gun the way Peterson does. Accordingly, Peterson’s ad itself increases the possibility of accidents from unsafe handling of firearms.
Well, we said Dale Peterson was a long-shot and, indeed, he lost.
As testimony to his eagle eyes, we are sending Art Davis a lovely gift pack of fresh carrots! Many thanks for catching the safety slip.