View Full Version : Toys N Violence

October 19th, 2004, 12:22 AM
Do you think its wrong for a parent to buy toy guns and weapons for their child?? :ack:

October 19th, 2004, 12:26 AM
My brothers had guns--the toy kind--growing up. They played GI Joes and Star Wars all the time. They did not grow up to be violent criminals.

However, being married to a pediatrician, I'm very aware of the danger of domestic violence and gun violence in general. My sons have water guns and ball guns, but no uzies or anything like that. Oh, and wooden swords, lol.

Kids need to be taught to respect weapons of all kinds. Some kids' personalities and backgrounds warrant a tighter control on what they play with. Just like anything else, the ramifications of certain tools and toys can be bad for certain kids and certain people when they get older. *shrug* I think the parents should ultimately decide if it's right for their home, their environment and their child's upbringing.

October 19th, 2004, 02:09 AM
I voted maybe. I don't think it's the toys that's the problem I think it's the parents who refuse to teach their children about real guns. I don't think it's the toys fault that kids wind up playing with real guns and shooting their brains out - I think it's because they don't understand the dangers of playing with a real gun. My grandfather was a hunter and had his shotguns hangin in the hall on a gun rack. We KNEW they would kill us/someone if we played with them. We were taught about them. I think that's the most important thing.

October 19th, 2004, 02:10 AM
I say nope. I played with guns when i was younger... then paintball guns. Now i run around with rifes to kill things... well I never did get to kill an iraqi.

October 19th, 2004, 03:34 AM
As long as the parents teach the child that weapons are tools used to hurt others and must be treated with respect and used ONLY when needed to defend themselves. My uncle taught me how to shoot when I was 7 but the year previous, it was nothing but gun safety. I couldn't even touch a gun till I understood how to respect it and be safe.

October 19th, 2004, 04:06 AM
I voted maybe, i've never thought about that before, so im not quite sure. Although, i've always seen children with toy guns, and i doubt they all turned out to be violent criminals, i think its to do with the psychological side of things, and it depends on the child.

Raven Reed
October 19th, 2004, 04:21 AM
I don't think it is toys, I think it is more the media... Young kids watch way to much violence on tv and in movies.

October 19th, 2004, 05:38 AM
I disagree. I don't like it when people blame the media for things because in all honesty, it's just a way of escaping responsibility for our own actions. In this case, the actions (or lack thereof) of the parents. I grew up watching violent movies...heck, I grew up in a violent atmosphere altogether...I now believe in gun control and alternative methods to spanking. While I admit I have a temper at times (must be the red hair), I'm pretty much a tree-hugging, hippy pacifist.:fpeace: In response to the original question, I don't know that I'd encourage my children to play with toy weapons, but I don't see the harm in a water gun or a plastic sword. I'm not sure if I'd buy 'em a regular ol' toy gun though.

October 19th, 2004, 11:21 AM
I voted yes, but after reading some of the arguments here, I think I'll go back to maybe. Toy knives and guns really aren't so bad, it would seem that the child left uneducated in regards to the very real dangers of a real gun, or knife... on one hand I wouldn't hand them a toy because I wouldn't hand them a real one. I don't want them having the desire or curiosity to find out what they really do. On the other, I imagine that the proper harmless toys might curb those tendencies.
However, there are squirt toys without being squirt guns (the long pump tubes for water).
I suppose if I were to explain to my child the possible hazards of a real gun and knife vs. the age-safety of a fantasy toy it may be different. Or not, cuz "But moooom, why can I have this little plastic one and not a real one"
They might stay satisfied with it until their 10.
Im going to chase myself dizzy on this one...

October 19th, 2004, 04:21 PM
my boys arent banned from all toy guns, but i wont buy cap guns because they can permanently damage hearing and i wont buy anything too realistic. purple and green water guns are alot different from a scale model of a machine gun.
i also have a strict rule that we dont point any toy guns at ppl - they are for targets only. ppl arent for shooting - no matter what. which leads me to a point i feel i need to make...er...i hope i am not taking this out of context but i have a hard time hearing someone imply they are dissappointed they didnt get to kill a person, even during a war. i am referring to the earlier comment about not "getting"to kill an iraqi.

October 19th, 2004, 04:37 PM
I don't think it's wrong to buy a child any type of toy. The problem (may) arise when the parents don't educate thier child on how to properly play with the toy, do not provide proper supervision, etc.

My children can do more damage with set of jacks than they could with a toy gun! :lol:

It's not the toys, it's not TV, it's not video games, it's not society....it's the parents. 100% of the time.

Ben Trismegistus
October 19th, 2004, 04:39 PM
Not wrong, but I don't intend to buy my kids guns or violent toys. Action figures are one thing, but full-size toy handguns are different, in my opinion.

That's just my own personal parenting style.

October 19th, 2004, 04:41 PM
Depends on the age I guess... they have to understand what violence is and that it's wrong before I'd let my kid have a toy weapon

October 19th, 2004, 05:23 PM
jacks are an invention of an evil mind, designed to booby trap unsuspecting parents in the middle of the night.

October 19th, 2004, 07:34 PM
Ok i had guns, GI joes, Army men, Ninja turtles, Fake swords, then i moved up to Violent video games, and paint ball guns and real guns,ie hunting. Now i am in the Army and thru it all i remain non-homicidal and i hate confrontation. Its not the toys themselves that screw up kids, its useless parents these days.

Phoenix Snowrose
October 19th, 2004, 07:36 PM
I think it really all depends on the kind of child you have and the kind of parent you are. If you have a voilent and out of control kid...or if the parent doesn't know how to parent and doesn't care what the kid does...the NO...however..if the the parents know what they're doing and can properly teach their children respect for weapons...I see no reason as to why they cannot have one. Hence why I put Maybe....I hope this post makes sence, it did in my head but now I'm not sure...lol.

October 19th, 2004, 07:47 PM
My 2 cents....

Guns are not toys, and to make them into toys gives kids the wrong idea about them. I'm totaly against bebe guns because they are dangerous. Now that said, I have guns in my home, and I have used guns at a range, and we plan on giving our son one when he demonstrates the responsibility to use one correctly and safely. It will be locked up and my son will NOT have a key. Dad will have the Key and it will only be used under adult supervision.

I'm not against water guns as long at they don't look like a real gun.
I'm not against pain ball guns when used by a responsible teen in a paint ball gun facility.
I think lazer tag is lots of fun.


October 19th, 2004, 08:15 PM
I feel every arguement about "Video games are bad, movies are bad, toys are bad" whatever it is... are all total crap...

It is not up to the makers of such things to worry about what effect it might have on your child...that's your job. If you have something against toy guns, violent games/movies/cartoons, then don't let your child play with such things.

October 19th, 2004, 08:22 PM
I dont know, i see kids getting more and more sheltered and restricted, anfd yet school violence is rising. My fathers generation hand bb gun fights, fire work wars, army men toys, and a school shooting was unheard of. My Generation grew up slightly more sheltered and more stuff began happening at schools, now we see these kids who are not allowed to do the stupid things kids do and violence among them is escalating. Whats the real problem here?

October 19th, 2004, 09:41 PM
I dont know, i see kids getting more and more sheltered and restricted, anfd yet school violence is rising. My fathers generation hand bb gun fights, fire work wars, army men toys, and a school shooting was unheard of. My Generation grew up slightly more sheltered and more stuff began happening at schools, now we see these kids who are not allowed to do the stupid things kids do and violence among them is escalating. Whats the real problem here?

The real problem is that people are having kids and don't want to raise them. And you could also blame our two income society, where both parents are working so much they are less able to know what their kids are up to.


October 19th, 2004, 09:47 PM
Yet the kids today dont get to go out and do those stupid things we all did, you know running around the woods in their "uniform" hunting the bad guys, playing with fireworks(sure they are dangerous, but alot better than the stuff they end up making themselves), getting bruyises from mock sword fights, Parents now simply either dont let them do anything at all, ie overparenting, or they dont parent at all, leaving the TV and others to do it for them.

October 20th, 2004, 01:42 AM
No not really. I remember I used to get these plastic swords when I was a kid. I've since upgraded to collecting real swords. ;)

October 27th, 2004, 07:12 AM
No because a toy is a toy. That's like taking away War Films because they are violent! (Personal thaught)

October 27th, 2004, 08:23 AM
No because a toy is a toy. That's like taking away War Films because they are violent! (Personal thaught)

Well, I don't think that Saving Private Ryan is good for young kids to watch......


July 27th, 2007, 09:58 AM
When I was young, my mom never bought me violent toys, so my brother and I built them out of legos and hit each other with them. We would hit each other with stuffed animals. Eventually, we graduated to making violent toys out of wood and hitting each other with them. We found plenty of ways to be violent without violent toys (violent TV was also banned, but we were still violent).

July 27th, 2007, 10:27 AM
I don't allow my children to have toy guns that look like a real gun. My son though got a race track for his birthday from my brother, one of the types like when we were kids with the hand control..well it didn't take long for him to break the race track and took even less time for him to figure out that the controller was gun shaped and therefore is now his toy gun. It is bright blue and still has the cord attached to it, lol..but so long as he does not point it at people or the animals I am ok with it.
I think it is a natural thing for boys (and some girls) to pretend. Perhaps it is a psychological aspect that is hard wired in the brain to hunt and protect. I don't know and not sure if any studies have been done on that or what any results are if it has been.
He is allowed toy swords and we all get sucked into having sword fights with him at least once a day. If he hits people with the sword then it gets taken away (unless it is during playing and is an accident). He pretends to go to battle on a horse..sometimes a toy one, sometimes an imaginary one, and shoots his imaginary bow and sword fights. He is immortal and while you may be "shot" and must pretend to die, he never does. He will also use things as a shield and thinks it is funny if you suddenly have one too. It keeps the game going for him.
But then he also goes around shooting spider web at people pretending to be Spider-Man. Imagination is a wonderful thing and should be encouraged in my opinion. And children will make anything a gun/sword, and in my experience with my kids, it seems to be more so in boys. The whole nature vs. nurture debate has been settled in my home..it is nature. lol I don't know about others homes.

All my children know how to shoot a bow and know the rules of safety when it comes to them. They have been shown my pistol and know that they are to never touch it, until we deem them responsible enough to learn to shoot. They have been taught the dangers of real guns and swords (which we also have and they do not touch) and the things that can go wrong if you don't treat them with respect. They know we have the gun for protection and about hunting. Although their father is the only one that hunts and he prefers to use his bow.

The only time that I think a toy gun is inappropriate is if it looks like a real gun. I think it then becomes confusing for children to differate between a toy and a real one. This probably isn't the case with older children but with young ones they would, imo, have a natural curiousity and be used to picking up their toy one and playing around and wouldn't realize until too late that they had something different in their hands.

As a child though I played with pop guns and other toy guns. My brother had a bebe gun (which I hate and have no use for personally and we have come to a parental decision to never allow those or pellet guns) but we are resonably sane people. We played cops and robbers, cowboys and indians and never went out and actually tried to steal or arrest people..nor did we ever try to shoot someone or scalp them. We understood the difference between imagination and reality. And I have used that realization with teaching my children. And my husband has shared stories of when his brother was shot with a bebe gun and what happened afterwards.
As well of stories of when they thought it would be fun to act out Kung Fu Theater and ended up in the E.R. Being one of five boys they spent a lot of time at the E.R. lol
But, we both grew up with guns in gun cabinets and never tried to shoot anyone and never played with them. We were both taught and learned respect early on.

In the end I think this comes down to a personal parental decision. There are too many factors involved for me personally to give a yes or no answer, cut and dry like that. So I guess my vote would have to be maybe.

July 27th, 2007, 01:11 PM
Well I wouldn't buy my kid anything resembling an Uzi or a handgun, but I might by them toy weapons you'd find in stories or films of fantasy like swords (pirates) or laser guns (space aliens). I think a lot of factors contribute to violence and I don't think kids with toy guns is a big one, I think the problem is lack of stability in the home, and lack of parenting in general. I can only blame the media for so much, but I think a parent is more powerful and more of an influence over a child, than a television show.

I grew up in a dysfunctional home, and none of the problems I ever had, had anything to do with the fact that that I saw movies like "Die Hard" or "Evil Dead" as a kid, trust me, I wish it'd been that simple.

July 27th, 2007, 11:45 PM
I think there should be a line. If a toy looks like a toy, then okay. But if a toy looks like a real gun (which I've seen around) then I don't like them.

July 28th, 2007, 12:00 AM
My favorite game was war growing up. We made "bombs" out of empty pill bottles that we put springs and stuff in then dropped them out the attic window with accompanying sound effects. LMAO Me and my cousins "shot" at each other with our "guns" and tackle football, smashed up our toy cars and whacked the heck out of each other with our swords or just about anything else we could whack each other with. LOL

I grew up fine and hate confrontaions in any form. I also grew up with guns and knives. My dad had a rack in his room with 4 rifles hanging in it and 2 pistols resting on the bottom part in holsters. He taught me and my sister to shoot them. We learned to respect all weapons, taught how to use them properly and when they were to be used, like hunting or going fishing out on canals my dad always had his pistol on his hip in case of big nasty snakes and stuff.

I have never had a gun in my house but I have taught my children about weapons and their uses. All the things dad taught me I taught them, just without the props. LOL They all had their toy swords, guns etc and are fine. I feel that as a parent it was my responsibility to make sure my child knew the difference between fantasy and reality and that violence towards other people was just unacceptable. It is a parent's responsibility to teach their kids values, of knowing right from wrong and all the other stuff.

My sister on the other hand, when she had her son, refused to let him watch tv. He was not allowed to play with any toy guns, swords or anything else that remotely was from something she considered "violent". My nephew when he was about 3 years old, began to "play rough", doing "karate" moves and generally behaving in what she saw as a "violent" way. Why did he do that? Where was he getting this from? His preschool friends who watched Power Rangers were teaching it to him. My sister wasn't all that happy about it but it brought home the fact you can't stop kids from being kids! He did get a toy sword and learned to play appropriately with it. If he so much as pointed it at someone it was taken away from him. He's growing up to be a fine young man now that she learned that she needs to just teach him the right way of things. For his last birthday he got a toy from the Power Rangers. :D

July 28th, 2007, 07:21 AM
In the past, my son has had toy guns. I got really tired of him pointing them at me and going 'pow-pow'. Between that and his penchant for leaving them out in the yard to get run over by the lawn mower or chewed on by the neighborhood dogs, we just stopped buying them (and started discouraging others, like grandparents to do so , as well). Now, though, he and his friends (one of whom's mother absolutely FORBIDS violent toys in her home) pick up sticks and play like they are guns in the yard.

My son and daughter actually HAVE real guns, including a small guage shotgun, a small caliber rifle, and a pellet gun. They also have an archery set. I will say, though, that these are NOT treated as 'toys'...They are kept locked up--just like the other weapons we have in the house, unless they are in use, and supervised by an adult.

My husband has had guns all his life. He also played with toy guns when he was young. He is NOT a violent person.

July 28th, 2007, 07:27 AM
Everyone needs an outlet for their frustrations, and it had better be in game or sports, otherwise it will get executed for real.

Kids need to play, and be taught the difference between what is and what is not acceptable behaviour.

July 28th, 2007, 09:32 AM
I think video games and tv violence are worse than letting a child use a toy gun ( squirt gun,etc)

July 28th, 2007, 06:07 PM
Water guns are fun (especially inPhoenix in the summer). They do not look like real guns are are easily distinguishable. Those toy guns that look real, I would discourage, because they look real, in the dark a police officer or other individual may mistake it for real and thus the child dies because of a toy.

My son played with sticks, rubber band guns, and also played video games (he and I used to play Mortal Kombat with each other), and every summer out came the water baloons. We have even done the "paint ball" thing. He is grown now and owns guns, and was taught gun safety at an early age. He is also western zen buddhist and is one of the most non-violent people I know, although he can certainly be stern and at 6' and 200+ pounds can be intimidating.

I agree with the general consensus here, it is all about parenting and teaching your children right from wrong. Use life lessons to show your children the way.

July 29th, 2007, 01:13 PM
well I mean you can use anything for a weapon, I mean my kid tried to whack her cousin over the head with one of those track ball scoopy-catcher things. I voted that I have no problem with it, what they do as adults/teens is their choice, no matter how they were raised for good or bad or inbetwen as little children, something society needs to realize. Ifb they become violent criminals, hot dog salepeople, or doctors it's their choice to some degree or another.

August 3rd, 2007, 12:06 AM
Everyone needs an outlet for their frustrations, and it had better be in game or sports, otherwise it will get executed for real.

Kids need to play, and be taught the difference between what is and what is not acceptable behaviour.

I agree completely!