Should Toy Guns Be Banned?
February 10, 2011
by Kate Goodin
Between the horrifying story of a 5-year-old bringing a loaded gun to school and the tragic shooting in Tucson, AZ, gun safety is a hot topic these days. In the latest news, the state of Hawaii is working to ban the sale of toy guns to any child under 18.
The bill is inspired by two (now suspended) eighth graders at Washington Middle School in Honolulu, HI. One boy brought a toy gun to school, and his friend pretended to point it at people. Journalists from Hawaii News Now went to a store to look at the gun that the boy brought to school, and found that it came with plastic bullets and a detachable magazine—all for $9.50. And while it says "best for 18 and up" on the box, the store can still sell it to an under-18 child. Some Hawaii legislators are aiming to limit the ban to toy guns in schools, rather than limiting the sales altogether.
Even though a toy gun can't cause real physical harm, the act of a child pointing a fake gun—especially one with such realistic features—at other students is disturbing.
Do you agree with banning sales of toy guns to everyone under 18? If you own a gun, how do you keep it safely away from your kids?