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Don’t Give Kids Toy Guns This Christmas

This December we should take time to think about Philando Castile, Alton Sterling, Christina Grimmie, and the 49 people at Pulse. What do they all have in common? They were all shot and killed. Gun control will always be a difficult topic to discuss, but for some reason people tend to think that it only applies to situations where people are killed. By the time people start talking, it’s too late to save those people.

What if we look at it from a different perspective?

As Christmas quickly approaches, parents are sure to buy their children things they have wanted all year. In many cases, these gifts include Nerf and other toy guns in addition to violent video games such as Call of Duty or Battlefield. The last thing we need is a new trigger-happy generation thinking it is acceptable to shoot for fun.

Of course, people will argue that a toy gun is better than the real thing, but is it really? The only difference I see is that one is capable of killing. What kinds of morals are these toy guns really teaching kids? Yes, they are toys, but it’s more of the ideas that come with it.

Parents pride themselves in having well-behaved kids with good beliefs then let them roam around with giant toy guns. The argument will always be that since they are toys, there is no harm being done. This might be true on a superficial level, but there is a mentality being formed without much thought. Kids are growing up in a paradoxical society where gun control is discussed on the news but video games centered around guns are promoted during commercials.

First person shooter games like these allow children to step into a world where they are free to shoot whatever and whoever they want. Who’s to say they won’t want to try doing something like that in real life? Rather than being left wondering what could happen, maybe parents should steer their children in different directions in terms of their interests. After what happened to Tamir Rice, it might be best to take as many precautions possible. Instead of buying Call of Duty or Nerf guns, find an alternative that will not promote the same bad-natured values.

As someone who has an 11-year-old gun-fanatic as a brother, I sure don’t want to hear any more gunshots in my household, whether they be toy guns or shooting games. So no, he won’t be getting anything from his wishlist this year.

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Andrew Diaz
Written By

Andrew is just your (more than?) average 17-year-old junior in high school. Editor in Chief for his school yearbook.

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