America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 49

B A N N I N G
imitative play in children. But the
muscle-bound heroes of today
aren't likely to be found in character
promoting responsibility. Nor are
moguls of the entertainment industry
inclined to reduce the violence of their
blood-sport blockbusters to decrease
the odds of schoolyard duplication.
That's not to say that parents
don't have a role in teaching their

gun with the orange safety tip removed
from it.
Predictably, these incidents led to
criticism against "lax" toy gun laws and
calls in some states for clamp-downs
on toy guns. Yet similar tragedies have
resulted from police mistaking other
ordinary objects-including wallets, cell
phones and canes-for weapons. For
the police, adequate training is a part
of the equation. For people interacting
with police, calm, cooperation and
common sense are the key.
Anti-gun advocates often

When used
appropriately, [toy guns]
provide children with
harmless fun and promote
imagination and
exercise.

kids responsibility
in this area, just as
they must when youth
are ready to graduate to
handling real firearms.
It's never too early to
ingrain good habits.
Last year, 12-year-old Tamir Rice
was fatally shot by a Cleveland police
officer responding to a report of
an armed boy in a park. Three
months prior, Dayton, Ohio, officers
opened fire on 22-year-old John
Crawford after receiving a call that he
was carrying a gun and pointing
it at fellow shoppers.
Crawford's gun turned out to be a
pellet rifle he had removed from a sales
shelf inside the store. Rice's was a bb

seize upon rare but tragic
news stories, like they have in
this push against toy guns. In fact, a
2013 document leaked to the public
confirmed that using emotion to
trump facts was literally part of
the playbook. The document, titled
"Preventing Gun Violence Through
Effective Messaging" encourages
aspiring anti-gun advocates to "always
focus on emotional and value-driven
arguments about gun violence, not
the political food fight in Washington
or wonky statistics," and to "Use
statistics to reinforce an emotional

T O Y S

argument, not to replace it" as well
as "emphasizing emotion over
policy prescriptions."
Among those "wonky statistics" is
the cdc's 1995 report that there are
approximately 3.2 million bb and pellet
guns sold each year. Yet according
to Consumer Product and Safety
Commission estimates, the chance of
one of those guns being associated with
a fatality is just over one in a million.
The cdc reports that accidental deaths
or injury are far more likely from
drowning, suffocation, motor vehicle
accidents or falls. One study showed
playground injuries are responsible for
roughly 200,000 emergency room visits
every year; another indicated 110,000
er visits per year from trampoline
injuries. The statistics reflect
what officers themselves often
conclude: There are far bigger
problems to worry about.
Replicas, toys, props,
and bb or Airsoft guns all
have legitimate and useful
functions. Concealed
carry classes, martial
arts, sporting activities
and law enforcement
training all incorporate
them in some form. bb and
pellet guns can introduce safety
and marksmanship. When used
appropriately, they also provide
children with harmless fun and
promote imagination and exercise.
Whether it's a dime-store pop gun or
an opportunely fashioned stick of
wood, children will find a way to
imitate their heroes.
The real solutions lie in responsible
behavior and education, not in fear and
shame. Fireworks, bicycles, amusement
parks, inflatable toys, trees for
climbing-every ingredient of a
child's happy summer contains within
it an element of adventure. The same
is true of youthful play that involves
heroics with pretend arms. Managed
well, all these activities contribute
to a child's healthy growth and
development and the formation of
confident, capable adults.

America's

1

st

Freedom

|

March 2015

49



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of America's First Freedom - March 2015

Contents
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - CT1
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - CT2
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - Cover1
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - Cover2
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 1
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - Contents
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 3
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 4
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 5
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 6
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 7
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 8
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 9
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 10
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 11
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 12
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 13
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 14
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 15
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 16
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 17
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 18
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 19
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 20
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 21
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 22
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 23
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 24
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 25
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 26
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 27
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 28
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 29
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 30
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 31
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 32
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 33
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 34
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 35
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 36
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 37
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 38
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 39
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 40
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 41
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 42
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 43
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 44
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 45
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 46
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 47
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 48
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 49
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 50
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 51
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 52
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 53
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 54
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 55
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 56
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 57
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 58
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 59
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 58b
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 59b
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 58c
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 59c
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 58d
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 59d
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 58e
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 59e
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 58f
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 59f
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 60
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 61
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 62
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 63
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 64
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 65
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - 66
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - Cover3
America's First Freedom - March 2015 - Cover4
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