Make these gun safety rules a part of your character.
Never compromise them.
Here’s why: Treat every gun like it is loaded all the time. If someone hands you a gun and says, “it’s unloaded” you say, “it’s not unloaded until I have physically and visually inspected the chamber and magazine well.”
Here’s why: If the muzzle of the gun is ONLY pointed in a SAFE direction all the time (NOT at oneself or anyone else) then in the case of an accidental or negligent discharge, there is less chance of injury or death.
Here’s why: If your finger is NOT on the trigger, the gun will not fire. Guns do not "just go off". You might hear someone say, “I don't know what happened, it just went off.” NO, it didn’t! The reason the gun fired was because someone pulled the trigger!!!
Some semi-auto pistols must be “snapped” in order to disassemble for cleaning. This should be done ONLY after you have performed an administrative unload: drop magazine, rack slide several times, physically & visually inspect chamber & magazine well.
Here’s why: A bullet can travel well in excess of one mile or more so you should NEVER shoot into the air or at a target without a backstop intended for shooting. “Ball ammo” – target ammo that come in 50 count boxes – go until they hit something solid. A round could penetrate several layers of sheetrock before stopping. “Carry ammo” or critical defense rounds are hollow point rounds that expand when fired and don't have the pass-thru potential that ball ammo does.