Young boys seem to have an endless fascination with weapons.  It seems to almost be an innate part of growing up for them.

In the past decade or two, there’s an increasing number of well-meaning parents who think they can overcome Mother Nature by banning “violent” play and “violent” toys in their boys and forbidding them to touch real ones.

So, are you one of those parents?

There’s a website for that:

Or do you teach respect and understanding of tools that can be used as weapons and allow your kids to play with toys and allow them to touch the real McCoy under careful supervision?

Mom and son receiving instruction in how to safely and effectively throw a knife at the Wisconsin Highland Games over Labor Day weekend 2014, as part of a healthy and fun family outing.

Experts in child development and psychology note that playing with toy weapons isn’t so much about pretend violence as it is about what the objects – in this case weapons – symbolize.   “Toy gun play isn’t about violence as much as it is about symbols. Toy weapons symbolize power, leadership, authority, strength and control,” says child-led play advocate Jeff A. Johnson.  Who is he?  He owns Explorations Early Learning and has written a host of books including Let Them Play: An Early Learning (Un)Curriculum.

As for those who would ban toy guns for their kids?

Forbidding toy guns and playing with toy guns, experts agree, simply gives the pretend guns even more power and mystique.  Even a Barbie doll folded in two to make a pretend gun will still symbolize power, leadership, authority, strength and control – just as real guns do to the good guys who own them.   “Everything is a gun to a three-year-old boy,” one parent was quoted as saying.  So true.

It’s part of boys growing up.

You can embrace it and direct it positively, or you can make it the forbidden fruit which will simply increase the allure to children.

By positively directing your children’s fascination with weapons, you can help them develop a healthy respect for these tools.

So, do you (or did you) let your kids grow up to be cowboys, allowing them to play with toy guns at a young age and then later allow them to explore real weapons once they were mature enough?





4 thoughts on “LEARNING ABOUT WEAPONS: You can’t fight biology, but you can embrace nature and direct it positively”
  1. I know when i meet people who dont let thejr kids play with guns, i know i am dealing with fruits and nuts.

  2. I agree Paul. I remember throwing dads hunting knife and his hatchet at the tree in the back yard. I also remember you did not touch the his guns unless he was there, that point was put across at a very young age. And he had ways of making you understand that. Of course I’m sure they call that verbal threating assault now days.

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