More than once over the course of a year, you’ll find me reminding you here about tips that’ll help keep you from being victimized or bringing your attention to a habit you’ve gotten into that you need to change.

It’s one of those habits I want to touch on with this column. Over the past couple of weeks, we’ve had several people come in to tell us they’ve had their guns stolen out of the vehicles where they’d left them or even forgot them. The bottom line is, if you’re going to be a gun owner, you have the responsibility to be careful with them and keep them out of the hands of the criminals in this world.

Gun ownership isn’t something to be taken lightly; guns stolen out of your cars and pickups are now illegal guns out on the streets. That’s not a comforting thought, by any means, but there are just as bad of scenarios, such as what if the neighbor’s kids had been playing hide and seek, got into your unlocked car and found that gun?

Anyone who knows me knows I fully support our Second Amendment and I’m just reminding you, if you’re going to own a gun, to please don’t disrespect our Constitution by taking that gun ownership any less seriously than you should be taking it.

As always, keep our military and service personnel in your thoughts and prayers as we remember that the rights and freedoms we enjoy begin with their service and safekeeping of our great nation. May you have a Blessed Week.

— Johnny Brown has served as Sheriff of Ellis County since Jan. 1, 2009, and is a graduate of the National Sheriff’s Institute. He has been in law enforcement for more than 20 years and holds a Master’s Peace Officer’s Certificate with the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement Officer Standards and Education.