Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Spare the Rod, Give the Kid a Gun

Last week we heard the story of a 5 year old Kentucky boy accidentally killing his baby sister with a rifle that his parents bought him for his birthday.  Just yesterday the story came out about a 13 year old boy in Florida accidentally shooting his 6 year old sister playing Hide-and-Seek.  All of this comes on the heels of the Senate's failure to pass a Background Check bill, and emboldened efforts by the NRA to arm every man, woman, child, cat, dog, and goldfish with an AK-47.
 

In the wake of the Kentucky shooting, "Gun Guys" author Dan Baum goes on the air to defend this new effort to create some kind of "kid-militia" by explaining how training kids to shoot guns is a "good thing".

"Teaching young children to shoot can be disciplining," said Baum, who started shooting at age five. "It can be mind-calming. There's hand-eye there, there's family tradition. Teaching young children to shoot, I think, is a good thing."
 
 A sentiment with which the NRA apparently agrees.  This weekend they capped off their annual convention by inviting children as young as 3 to fire REAL weapons, and offering them (yes, "them" being THE KIDS) FREE 6-month memberships.  Keystone Sporting Arms even manufactures a gun just for kids called the Cricket.  Incidentally, this is the same type of gun that the 5 year old in Kentucky shot his sister with.

In the aftermath of the Sandy Hook shootings, the NRA immediately went out of their way to cite violent video games, violent movies, violent music, violent television, and our kids' constant exposure to it as a catalyst to school shootings and violence by young people.  They go on about how such exposure desensitizes children to violence all around them, and teaches them to devalue life.  Yet in a display of cognitive-dissonance that would make Freud go "what the f---", they believe that our nation's "freedom" lies not only arming adults, but arming children as well.  And the useful idiots who eat up this rhetoric wholly believe that the answer to all of this, and the secret to bringing families together, is to give and teach their children to shoot lethal weapons at targets that are supposed to represent people.

To all of you gun-nut parents out there, allow me to serve up a little food for thought.  You've all been convinced that purchasing guns for your children is a wonderful way to bring your family together because, after all, the family that slays together, stays together.  So you give little Jimmy or little Jenny their first gun, and teach them how to shoot targets, cans, small animals, large animals, etc.  What fun, right?  Now what happens days, or weeks, or even years from now when your kids go out and do something stupid?  It may be acting out at school, bullying kids at the playground, or mouthing off at the dinner table.  Naturally, you're going to want to discipline the little darlings, won't you?

Your pride and joy.

Your children...

...for whom you've bought a device whose sole purpose is to KILL...

...and taught them how to use it.

Can you say, "Adam Lanza"?

When you teach kids to devalue life, the first life they start to devalue is often their parents'. 

Good luck with that whole "spare the rod, spoil the child" thing.