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Scoot Blog: Should 'real' guns look like toys?

There has been a growing controversy about ‘realistic’ toy guns for kids – now the debate is over whether ‘real’ guns should be made to look like toys for kids.

Recently, there has been a series of shootings involving young children using real guns. Tuesday, a 5-year-old boy shot and killed his 2-year-old sister with a .22 rifle he was given as a birthday present. The gun was left in the corner and the mother left the boy’s sight for a few minutes when he shot and killed his little sister. He used a .22 rifle called a “Crickett,” which is marketed to young children as “My first rifle.”

The Crickett comes in a variety of colors, including hot pink, blue and orange.  Here are a collection of photos of the Crickett compiled by Mother Jones Magazine.  (Note: Mother Jones says these images are from the Crickett company’s own website, but their website is apparently now offline following the shooting tragedy: )

Last night, in Auburn, WA (Suburb of Seattle), a 7-year-old boy accidently shot his 9-year-old sister in the leg. He used a .22 rifle that he got from another brother’s closet.

Last month, a 4-year-old was shot by his 6-year-old friend in New Jersey while they were playing a game of ‘pretend shooting’- the ‘pretend’ gun was a .22 rifle. The following day in Tennessee, a 4-year-old boy fired a gun that killed the wife of a sheriff’s deputy who was also in the room showing his gun collection to friends.

There are now at least two websites/blogs that track kids shooting other kids and adults: Kid Shootings (kidshootings.blogspot.com/‎ ) and Oh Shoot ( http://ohhshoot.blogspot.com/).

Is it wrong for gun manufacturers to design and produce guns for kids?  With all the criticism of beer and cigarette companies allegedly marketing their products to a young market, why not ask the same question of gun makers.
No gun is a toy and any attempt to make a real gun more appealing to a child should be considered reckless and dangerous. While making real guns look like toys is reckless on the part of the gun manufacturers, it is ultimately the responsibility of the parent who purchases that kind of gun for a child.

In spite of what appears to be the recent spike in gun sales, the traditional gun market of white males is aging and the gun industry, like the cigarette industry, could be looking to make their product more appealing to children in hopes of attracting the attention of a new young generation.

There are many Americans who worship the Second Amendment who would argue that producing guns that are more physically and visually appealing to young children is appropriate. But there are also many Americans, like myself, who support the Second Amendment, but understand that blurring the line between a toy and a gun is reckless and dangerous. And any adult who buys such a gun can be described the same way – reckless and dangerous.

Pointing out the inherit faults in toy-like ‘real’ guns are not an infringement on anyone’s Second Amendment rights, nor it is part of any gun control debate. Guns are not toys and any attempt to confuse the two is a mistake.

Gun manufacturers have a right to produce guns that appeal to children, but parents have the definite responsibility to make certain that no child in their care confuses a gun with a toy. Any parent who allows a child to misuse a gun should be held legally responsible for the fate of any victim.

The 2-year-old girl who was shot and killed by her 5-year-old brother needs someone to speak for her. Every child requires a parent to protect and take care of them and parents who fail to do that should be punished. The shooting death of the 2-year-old was originally reported as an accidental shooting, but now authorities in Cumberland County Kentucky are awaiting results from the coroner’s examination before determining if charges should be filed against the mother.

To those who argue that the mother and father must be suffering unbearable grief and should not be punished further, remember that grief should not always replace punishment. What about the 2-year-old girl who is dead because of reckless parenting? I’m not sure those parents should be trusted with raising their 5-year-old.

Children need parents and parents that allow children to die as a result of negligence, whether it’s from a gun or a child left to bake in a hot car during the summer, should be punished as a way of establishing a consequence for failing to protect a child.

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Locations : AuburnNew JerseySeattleTennessee

05/02/2013 7:51PM
Scoot Blog: Should ‘real’ guns look like toys?
Please Enter Your Comments Below
09/12/2013 11:57AM
Toy gun
Toy gun is very popular toy for children. Most of them like this very much. They always like to play with it. I have a wab site. Anybody can find deferent kind of toy gun here. Everybody welcome to my Toy gun site.
09/12/2013 12:09PM
Toy guns
Toy gun is very popular toy for children. Most of them like this very much. They always like to play with it. I have a wab site. Anybody can find deferent kind of toy gun here. Everybody welcome to my Toy guns site.
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