It wasn’t just sons who got taught to hunt by their fathers. My dad got me my first .22 when I was 13. My mother in law took me deer hunting every season.
I’m a damn good shot.
But as you said — when we grew up — guns were tools in a culture, just like a tractor or any other piece of equipment. You cared for them and respected them and you used them as you were taught to. If you didn’t — you suffered the consequences. When I handle a gun today — decades later — muscle memory takes over and I find myself acutely aware of the barrel and where it is pointing at all times.
Every kid in my class took the hunter safety course. We had guns on school property every day during deer season because all the losers who didn’t get their deer opening day were going out before & after class. Their rifles hung in racks in their pickups. Ammo under the seat — keys in the visor.
I’m not sure at what point in time we went from that to this. But — it might behove us to look at other places where the access to military grade weapons is confined to the military and law enforcement.
Because what we got sure doesn’t seem to really be working out for us. Just sayin’. And I’m pretty sure there’s no going back to 1972.