Restricting The Type Of Playing Kids Do With Toy Guns

We don’t let our son point guns – not even toy guns – at people. If he plays with his “rifle” (which looks fairly realistic), it’s with Dad, in a way that will teach him good gun safety habits.  We want to shape his respect for guns in advance of the day when he might learn to handle a real gun.

My gun stance is basically this: I am not anti-gun, I am anti-shooting people.

Full Story – HERE

Parents banning cops & robber, cowboys & Indians, army etc…?!?! Way to ruin your kid’s childhood.

I hate to think what other forms of childhood fun these parents ban.

Myself, and every kid I grew up with used to play with toy guns, and none of us have terrible gun safety habits.  Unless you have a below average mental capacity, you will learn as a part of growing up, that real guns and toy guns can not be treated alike.

Accidents are bound to happen regardless of all the ridiculous restrictions people  put on things.

Hat Tip: ARCCA Blog

18 COMMENTS

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Mike April 11, 2010 at 07:48 pm

This reminds me of the whole, “It’s inhumane to shoot at people with a .50cal machine gun, but it’s just fine to shoot it at a vehicle full of …..people.

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Admin (Mike) April 11, 2010 at 09:53 pm

no kidding… it makes no sense

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Aleksandr Mravinsky April 11, 2010 at 08:03 pm

Mum wanted to keep all toy guns out of the house when I was a kid. Then I chew my grilled cheese into a handgun. She gave up. I have yet to shoot, accidentally or otherwise, anything other than a paper target.

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Admin (Mike) April 12, 2010 at 12:04 pm

haha grilled cheese handgun.

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Zachg56 April 11, 2010 at 09:18 pm

all I can say is…

why?

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Hawk April 11, 2010 at 10:44 pm

Uhh… what’s next? Not letting kids cut their own sandwiches because it teaches kids to be violent towards meat products and therefore human beings?

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Admin (Mike) April 12, 2010 at 12:00 pm

In the UK I wouldn’t be surprised if that rule is already in place. :P In the U.S. most kids can hang onto their freedom for a bit longer I hope.

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JP April 12, 2010 at 11:01 am

I had hundreds of toy guns as a child. If it was not a real toy, it was something I made out of a stick, or some pipe, or whatever else I could get my hands on that I could pretend was a gun. I “shot” at everything. To this day I’ve still never shot at anything I did not intend to.

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Admin (Mike) April 12, 2010 at 12:04 pm

You, me, and hundreds of millions of other kids JP… Those parents are nuts.

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snoopycomputer April 12, 2010 at 03:51 pm

This may get interesting. I agree with the general message of the article. First, some data points:
-I have a 4yr old daughter
-she has some toy guns and i want her to (within the realms of childhood) treat them with the 4 Rules
-shes has a Cricket 22 waiting for her when her arms are long enough :)
-she has yet to memorize the 4 rules, but she understands “don’t point guns at people”
-there are real firearms in my home, stored either locked up or out of reach
-mom is a stay-at home, homeschool mom

I have every intention to bring my daughter into the world of guns as she get older. I don’t want to push her in, but I will encourage her as best I can. I would also like to bring her into the world of paintball when she’s old enough (where the point IS to shoot other people)
This is how I see it: at 4 yrs old, I do not want her HABIT to be: 1)see gun, 2)pick up gun, 3)point it at nearest person, 4)pull trigger. That’s a recipe for disaster. I know some little ones who are like that, and I pray their folks keep the real stuff locked up tight.
Sure, there’s the all-plastic, hollow, blaze orange squirt gun that kids play with, and they know its not real. But I want my girl to develop good safe habits NOW, we can open those up as she gets older. My favorite story is when she and a friend were “shooting monsters” in the house: my girl had her squirt gun pointed downward when talking to mommy. Her friend was muzzling mommy. My girl reaches over and pushes the other girl’s gun to point down. THAT’S the kind of habit I want my girl to have! :D

Now I picture she’s older: at a friend’s house, her friend has daddy’s old gun he doesn’t know is missing. My girl may or may not know the 4 rules, but just a couple keeps her safer than: 1)see gun, 2)pick up gun, 3)point it at nearest person, 4)pull trigger.
As she gets older, she will know the 4 rules. She will be able to differentiate an airsoft from the real steel. She’ll be capable of understanding the complexities of self defense. As she ages, my approach will HAVE to change as well. As she grows in age and capability, her freedom will follow suit: BB guns, airsoft, paintball, competitive shooting.

There’s no one policy that works for all children all the time until they move out. Each child is different, and has to be handled individually, and the approach has to change as the child ages.

Currently, at 4 yrs old, my technique is “We don’t shoot people, we shoot targets. And monsters.”

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Admin (Mike) April 13, 2010 at 01:36 am

You raise some excellent points.

This is how I see it: at 4 yrs old, I do not want her HABIT to be: 1)see gun, 2)pick up gun, 3)point it at nearest person, 4)pull trigger. That’s a recipe for disaster. I know some little ones who are like that, and I pray their folks keep the real stuff locked up tight.

Yea I could definitely see that happening.. and that wouldn’t be good.

Although I don’t have kids of my own, I think your’re right about not one policy working for all children.

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Ian Argent April 12, 2010 at 08:37 pm

Hey – 4 rules and toy guns work together just fine. Everyone I shot with a toy gun I meant to shoot :) And, having learned to shoot lead before shooting nerf/water, I *always* followed (and still do of course) Rule 1. Hell, I index the trigger finger when I’m handling a power drill (though I don’t ALWAY index my finger when toting Windex, only sometimes)

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Admin (Mike) April 13, 2010 at 01:38 am

LOL I have great powder drill trigger control as well. I don’t use windex much, but cologne bottles and other nozzle based sprayers are treated with the same fear and respect.

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snoopycomputer April 13, 2010 at 09:17 am

Ian, excellent point. When playing, all the kids “intend” to shoot at their fully identified targets. Lest they be the team-killing noob, and noone wants that :D
A couple more points that skews my perception on the matter:
– I have a girl, not a boy
– I have a well-behaved girl (asks “may I be excused” from the table)
– There has yet to be a plethora of toy weapons and a group of kids she can play with in the same place

I suppose if I was saddled with a boy who had a tendency to 1)see gun, 2)pick up gun, 3)point it at nearest person, 4)pull trigger [we need a short/sweet nickname for that, like we have for “The 4 Rules” … maybe to “Hollywood a Gun”? or “Go Brady”? since they think that’s how they work?] … Anyway, back on point: I suppose if I was saddled with a boy who had a tendency to Go Brady with a gun all the time, I would talk to him- explain to him that there are toy guns, and there are real guns. Can he tell the difference? Take him along target shooting, print up a paper of his favorite character, tape it to a pumpkin, and let him see the mess that can be made when you’re careless. Inform him of the consequences, teach him responsibility.
Not just let him go hog wild with a toy spritzer and expect him to just magically “turn out alright, because I did”.

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Ian Argent April 13, 2010 at 09:18 pm

Like I said, I learned to shoot (.22) before I got (or about the time I got – memory is a little dim) toy guns. That may not always be practical.

I am very much in favor of teaching kids to shoot as soon as they’re tall enough to hold the gun – instill the proper habits at an early age and they STICK

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rusgunnut1 April 15, 2010 at 09:40 am

I’m an example the anti-self-defense types would hate: I grew up with no influence other than the internet and TV and, not to blow my own trumpet, but I’m still safer than by brother who supposedly “would never touch a gun so wouldn’t be unsafe”, but regularly muzzles me when fiddling with firing airsoft guns that he himself is scared “could kill”. It’s not wether one watches action films, surf the net or gets taught by a father to handle guns, It’s being a sensible, intelligent and respectful of dangerous things.

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Admin (Mike) April 15, 2010 at 02:23 pm

but regularly muzzles me when fiddling with firing airsoft guns that he himself is scared “could kill”.

hahaha

It’s not wether one watches action films, surf the net or gets taught by a father to handle guns, It’s being a sensible, intelligent and respectful of dangerous things.

I agree.

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Zahra 7 September 5, 2011 at 03:52 pm

عجب

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