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by
Rick Moran

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June 8, 2013 - 1:50 pm

I don’t know exactly why the idea that a school is promoting a “toy gun exchange” bothers me. Perhaps it’s because it plays into the false meme that guns are bad, bad, bad and that children shouldn’t be playing with toy guns. Perhaps it’s the insufferable moralists who actually think that a kid trading in a toy gun is going to curb violence, or make the kid a better human being.

How many generations of boys grew up fighting outlaws or indians, or played “soldier” in the backyard?? Were they any more or less violent than this generation? How did it happen all of a sudden that toy guns promote violence, or are somehow bad for kids?

A school in Hayward, CA thinks it’s a grand idea:

Strobridge Elementary Principal Charles Hill maintains that children who play with toy guns may not take real guns seriously.

“Playing with toys guns, saying ‘I’m going to shoot you,’ desensitizes them, so as they get older, it’s easier for them to use a real gun,” Hill said.

Huh? This horse’s ass is a principal? That statement brings to mind the song “Little Known Facts” that Lucy sings to her little brother Linus in the musical You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown:

D’you see this tree?
It is a fir tree.
It’s called a fir tree
Because it gives us fur
For coats
And it also gives us wool
In the winter time

This is an elm tree
It’s very little
But it will grow up
Into a giant tree
an oak!
You can tell how old it is
By counting its leaves

Where’s old Lucy when we need her.

Enter Schroeder, the rationalist. Or, in this case, a gun rights advocate:

A gun rights advocate questioned the idea that playing with toy guns desensitizes children to real weapons.

“Having a group of children playing cops and robbers or cowboys and Indians is a normal part of growing up,” said Yih-Chau Chang, spokesman for Responsible Citizens of California, a group whose goal is to educate the public about the facts behind gun rights.

“While the intentions are obviously good on the part of the school administration, this doesn’t really educate children about guns or gun safety,” he said. “Guns are used in crimes, but they are more often used in defensive ways which prevent violent crime from occurring in the first place.”

Chang also questioned whether toys can look like real weapons.

“Toy manufacturers are forced to paint guns in bright colors, usually orange or yellow, that make it virtually impossible for an officer to mistake it for a real gun,” Chang said.

Not half as sexy as guns “desensitizing” kids so that when they grow up they want to shoot policemen, but it has the virtue of at least being rational.

I suppose I shouldn’t be so hard on the school administration. They’re going to have a gun safety lesson as well as a fire safety lesson in conjunction with the toy gun exchange which is information most kids could use. But it’s attitudes like the one held by that principal — glorying in their own ignorance and being so smug in their supposed moral superiority — that really gets to me.

Rick Moran is PJ Media's Chicago editor and Blog editor at The American Thinker. He is also host of the"RINO Hour of Power" on Blog Talk Radio. His own blog is Right Wing Nut House.

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Top Rated Comments   
By Hill's logic I should be either a serial killer or a mass murderer. Or maybe I'm both, it's hard to tell with all the bodies.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
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All Comments   (11)
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Exchange toy guns for real ones-and learn how to use them responsibly in gym class.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
While I agree with the gist of the comments here, let me make one point on the other side of the argument.

A few years back, I was watching one of those newsmagazine programs and they had a story about a female ER doctor in a major city. She had treated many, many gunshot wounds and wanted to do something about it. The thing that finally got her to act was a young man who came in with a gunshot wound who was astonished that it hurt so much. Although he had grown up in an inner city and had heard and seen guns used on (or by) his neighbors time and again, it had apparently never occurred to him that it actually HURT to be shot. Only when he had taken his own bullet did the truth dawn on him.

Personally, I found that unsettling. The skeptical part of me even questioned if this incident was invented by the journalist to get our attention. If it is true though, it would seem to call for more realism in the violence shown on TV. Not only show people getting injured but show them in great pain.

Given that most of us will experience much more violence on TV than we will see in real life, there's an argument for showing the consequences of violence as accurately as possible so that no one is very surprised when violence actually causes bodily harm.

Ironically, certain conservative groups will be in the forefront of those who object to showing the consequences of violence on TV. They prefer that children be "protected" from the ugliness....

By the way, the doctor in the story obtained photographs of the consequences of gun injuries - I still recall the hugely swollen and discolored stomach of one individual who had been shot in the stomach - and put them into slide shows that she showed in the local high schools. They showed footage of one such presentation and I recall how some of the students were crying in horror at what they were seeing.

It's hard to assess the long term effectiveness of such measures but it seems to me that she may well have been on to something....


44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
One would have to be really, really stupid, at least as stupid as School principal Hill, to not understand that gunshot wounds are painful. And you can't fix stupid. It's not rocket science, and if someone can't figure it out, the most graphic and gruesome movie in the world isn't going to help. I strongly suspect that your skepticism was correct; the story was made up.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
Eh, I'm not so sure kids can wrap their brain around how much something will hurt until it happens to them. And teens especially will say something to a doctor or their mother that they'd never say to their buddies, so buddies with bullet wounds light be telling each other it's no big deal.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
Take this from someone who works in Social Services: this person has serious mental issues.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
I guess boys are now expected to play with dolls and little girl's tea sets. No, on second thought that might encourage them to be irresponsible parents and......GASP! TEA PARTIERS!

44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
Let's do the same with Hollywood films. I would say violent Hollywood films but they are more or less the same thing. For every film I turn in, I get a chance to win a giant blimp-home that sails among the clouds, powered only by my own love, hugs, arrogance and solar powered propellers in the shape of peace symbols.

Sad, sad Hollywood: I think they have some rough times ahead with the monsters they've created from their own ids.

Gwyneth Paltrow do your stuff. Yer career's over anyway except for 12 more violent Iron Man films.

"And the Oscar for the Year's Least Violent Film (with the fewest white people) goes to.... 'Sitting By the Ganges', directed by Goofdan Goofenhammer," the first Sikh to ever blah-blah-blah..."
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
When I was a kid I had a toy Tommy gun, a Winchester 73, a whole lot of cap guns and even a toy M-14 that "fired" full auto. I have since graduated to a safe full of real guns and yet I have never shot anyone. Perhaps the lefties who are pushing this ought to look at the inner cities where their social policies have created social chaos for an answer to what cause violent behavior.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
why not? look how abortion desensitizes us to the value of life....look how taxes desensitizes us to the value of a dollar.....look how being a pompous a**hole desensitizes us to the dignity of the presidency...list goes on, maybe they are on to sumpin'
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
Little boys don't need a toy gun to 'play' guns. All they need is a pop tart.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
By Hill's logic I should be either a serial killer or a mass murderer. Or maybe I'm both, it's hard to tell with all the bodies.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
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