I wake up this morning to read an anti NRA post about how giving a 16 year-old kid a gun is highly dangerous.
Yesterday, in conversation about the Nintendo Wii, someone asked me, "Didn't they ban that in Canada because of people breaking their wrists and throwing the controllers through TV's and windows?"
A girl I know is forbidden to walk from her friends house 4 blocks through small-town residences back to her house. She's 12.
This same girl has a trampoline in her backyard (given to the family by grandparents). Her parents are trying to find netting to put around it, she's forbidden to jump on it with other kids because they might "double bounce" her, she's also forbidden from doing flips and somersaults.
It's a different world from when I grew up. When I was 10 I can remember tromping around on my aunt's farm with my cousins with their BB gun. We would shoot bottles, cans, throw frisbees in the air and shoot them… we'd hunt squirrels and bunnies with it, and we were safe. We were taught to never take the gun off safety when someone was in front of us, and that we had to be behind the person shooting. No one got shot, and when we got old enough to use the .22 we were safe with that too.
700 years ago children were given sticks to use as swords. It was considered a harmless past time and in fact the children were learning valuable skills. The sword was how you defended your land and protected your family. 70 years ago, children were given guns to shoot gophers and rabbits with, it was considered essential that they learn the skills needed to hunt and get food for their family later in life.
Now we are an advanced society. We have no need for swords and guns. Children should never ever fight because fighting never solved anything, we can't let them walk to their friends house because between here and there there's a dozen child-molestors waiting for the opportunity to snatch them, the trampoline is a death trap, the computer is filled with online stalkers, and videogames are making our kids obese!
I don't have any kids, but I hope to someday, and I can understand the urge to protect them. But according to the media when it comes to child-rearing I'm damned if I do, and damned if I don't; everything active is dangerous, and everything inactive is unhealthy. Maybe I should start looking into a solution… perhaps a large hamster wheel equipped with a television on an educational feed will be the answer.