Here’s a thing. I don’t really like toy weapons. But play swords, wrestling, even chucking things – that happens. And as long as it’s moderated it is a good learning experience. I don’t think about it too much because kids get crazy sometimes, and you just have to do the best you can. Éowyn could easily get carried away with things but even at one year old she is old enough to understand NO and we are certainly old enough to remove her from situations that get out of control. So… I might not like seeing her play swords with a paper towel tube, or Indiana Jones with a cedar root, but really she could just as easily smack someone with her hand and I think as long as we talk to her and teach her about violence it will turn out ok in the end.
One thing I don’t have any grey area on is guns. My dad gave her a little toy six shooter and holster even before she was born. It’s cute right, and Stephen and I love westerns and gunslinger novels but… I put that thing on her once, and it just made me feel so uneasy. I took it away from her and I’m not going to give it back. I thought for awhile that I was being too sensitive about it, too granola crunchy, too lame, too girly. But I’ve been thinking about it today and even with summer coming up – I’m not going to get her a water gun. Not this summer, not ever. Hey, sure those things use neon colours, but look at this –
You know what? No. That’s not ok. They don’t all look like this – some are worse, some better. But here is what stops me dead on this issue.
This is what guns mean to one kid.
And this is what they mean to another.
No guns. And I’ll be damned if I’ll make any excuses for it.