Parents find themselves in a dilemma on both sides of the gun issue. No doubt gun owning families know other families who have differing views. Here are some thoughts and even points you can make with your friends to help them communicate the truth about guns to their kids. The sooner they teach their children this truth about guns – the better.
For parents who tell their children if they see a gun to run away and tell an adult – here is a challenge they face:
- When you child is playing with other children, how does one child “make” the other children leave to tell an adult? In essence, whose in charge at that moment?
- If the one child goes to tell an adult but the other children stay behind with the gun, now whose in charge and what could happen next?
For parents who tell their children that all guns are dangerous – here are some challenges they face:
- The child sees a play (or fake) gun at the store
- The child sees a plastic gun at a friends’ home
- The child sees a friend whose hand is formed in the shape of a gun
- The child sees a friend eating his pastry into the shape of a gun
- The child sees a real gun on television
- The child sees guns being worn by police officers
- The child sees guns being carried by firemen and movie characters in a parade
St. Patrick’s Day parade, a group dressed as Star Wars characters marched by carrying weapons that closely resembled real-life assault rifles. In fact, the rifles were actually aimed at spectators as they marched by. This time, I had to convey to my 3-year-old son that while guns in general are dangerous, there’s nothing wrong with people pointing an assault rifle at you while they walk through Old Town. What?
If you hear friends telling their kids that all guns are dangerous but then have to recant their statement in a different situation, here are some communication tips you can help them with . . .
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