Sunday, May 26, 2013

Armed kids

Some weeks ago, mass media reported a sad piece of news from Kentucky, in the USA. Once again, a kid (this time a two-year-old girl) was shot and killed by her five-year-old brother with a rifle. The news stated that it was an "accident". But how can we consider it an accident when parents give a rifle to a kid? In this case, this is literally what happened: it was not an adult’s rifle left on a table unattended, but it was a child-size rifle given to him as a gift, specifically marketed to children as 'My First Rifle'
by the company Cricket, specialised in weapons for kids. Just like that: weapons for kids.
When we started writing this post, on the day after the fatal accident, we checked the company’s catalogue on its website: http://www.crickett.com/crickett_kidscorner.php. However, as you can see if you click on the link, this website is not found any more. But here you have some pictures:





This tragedy is one among many others and it will be used by those who advocate for a better control of firearms in households. But in the US, owning a gun is a constitutional right and most US citizens agree with it, so it won’t be easy to change. A good example of the lack of control over firearms, which is considered to be usual in US households, is the campaign of some mothers who denounce that there is a national schizophrenia about this issue: there are laws overprotecting kids (like the law banning the Little Red Riding Hood tale at school because the little girl on the story carries a wine bottle on her basket) while kids are allowed to own and use firearms.

 
Last week, while newspapers were busy talking about the Kentucky tragedy, a group of parents from Michigan claimed that Anna Frank’s Diary should be also banned from school. Their reason: this book is too pornographic because the female protagonist discovers her own body, and children should not have access to such dangerous material.

Sources:
  1. The news about the toddler shot dead by her brother: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2317512/Kentucky-boy-5-shoots-sister-Caroline-Starks-2-child-size-22-caliber-rifle-given-GIFT.html
  2. The claim to ban Anna Frank’s Diary for being too pornographic: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/29/anne-frank-diary-pornographic-7th-grade-michigan-parent_n_3180134.html
    
   
    
    

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