I remember ‘playing army’ as a kid. One kid’s dad had a huge collection of b-b guns and rifles (sadly some would probably be collectable by now, and we really beat them up) and even some old flint lock pistols.
We’d open up his closet, pick out the gun we wanted to use that day, and run around in teams shouting ‘bang bang’ when we wanted to ‘shoot’.
We were probably around 6 years old...and actually were living on the campus of of liberal utopia learning institution...but nobody thought twice about it.
Kids playing with guns used to be considered quite normal.
A co-worker of mine is a liberal; and, his 8 y/o kid goes to a very liberal elementary school....I call it the Tower of Babble, because its where all the English as a second language kids of foreign university professors go. He is beside himself - his kid wants toy guns (but can’t have them), his kid got in school suspension for the ole’ point and bang with his finger, and he had to go to a special ‘hearing’ when his kid drew a gun. More than anything, he is embarassed, being a good liberal, that he can’t ‘control’ his kid’s urge to play with guns.
What he cannot seem to understand is the ‘forbidden fruit’ manner in which guns are looked at in his world is feeding his kid’s curiosity about them. I don’t understand what the harm would be, to get the kid a nerf gun or something, but he won’t even consider it.
I can trust that if my kids want to shoot, they can come and ask me and we’ll go out and bust a few caps. There is no forbidden fruit, guns are a practical part of their life, the know how to safely handle a weapon and understand the destruction that exits the muzzle.