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Doomsday Preppers Week 3: Child Abuse

He's armed everyone... including the kids. Kat is 17, Tommy is 12, and Matthew is 6. He drills them weekly. This is where things get real. Watching and writing about the show this season has been something of a lark for me, but that stopped the second I saw the Perez family teaching a 6-year-old boy to shoot to kill.

Matthew seems like a fine youngster of reasonable intelligence, but a child of that age does not have the mental maturity to understand his actions or their consequences. I'm not sure his brother, who is twice his age at twelve, has the maturity to be trusted with life-or-death consequences. I speak to this from the perspective of once having a friend who, at the age of twelve, was forced to shoot and kill a man to defend his mother. He was never the same.

At best, he forces them to kill or maim at an age where they cannot remotely grasp the consequences of their actions. At worst, he turns them into threats needing neutralization. I understand that Dr. Perez wants his family to prepare to defend themselves, but arming children for combat is child abuse.