Do Nerf Guns Lead to Violence in Kids? Here’s My Opinion
My son got some Nerf guns for his birthday and a listener called to tell me that he didn't think that was appropriate. I don't agree.
My son loves Nerf guns. We've had epic Nerf gun battles that have left him rolling in laughter because he was having so much fun. He just turned 9 and got some new Nerf guns for his birthday that he is very excited about.
Some kids and even adults have entire arsenals of Nerf guns and get millions of views on YouTube showing off their collection and showcasing Nerf gun battles. The toy weapons are a multi-million dollar business for Nerf and their biggest seller. This from the company that only made a football when I was a kid.
I talked about his birthday gifts on the Q Morning Show this morning and without even asking about the ethics involved in it, a gentleman called to say in a nutshell that he didn't approve of gun toys for kids.
That's just fine. It's a long standing debate over gun toys. Some parents want nothing to do with anything resembling a gun around their kids. Others, like me, are just fine with it.
Do kids having toy guns lead them to a life of violence? I'm not an expert and I don't have any studies to show you about any relationship between toy guns and violence with kids. What I do know is the kind of parents my son has.
Both his mother and I instill in him the difference between right and wrong, good and bad. I'm confident that my son knows the difference between a toy Nerf gun and a real gun and knows the difference between playing a game and reality. We've taught him from a very early age the skills he needs to make good life choices.
I played with toy guns as a kid too. And our guns were cap guns that looked realistic and made a loud bang with a puff of smoke. We played Cowboys and Indians, Cops and Robbers, and had a great time in our childhood doing so. 35 years later I've never even fired a real gun.
Why am I not a violent person for having played with toy guns as a kid? Because my parents brought me up well, just as I am doing with my son.
What it comes down to is each parent's own feelings about toy guns. If they make you uncomfortable, then you bring up your child to obey your rules regarding their use. If you're like me and enjoy a good Nerf gun battle with your kids, you make sure they understand the difference between play and reality.
Good parenting is what it's all about.
Agree or disagree? How do you feel about toy guns for your children or children in general. I'd love to hear your thoughts. Share them in the comments below or on Facebook and Twitter.