Society

NRA Suggests Kids Create Indoor Shooting Ranges

| by Lauren Schiff

“BB, It’s Cold Outside,” an article which appeared in the January 2013 edition of the NRA’s ‘InSights’ magazine, shows a young-looking boy holding a BB gun next to a fireplace. The ad is “addressed to children who are ‘shooting a real gun now’ but can’t wait to practice until it’s warm enough outside to make firing one fun,” reports ThinkProgress. One must emphasize the odd fact here that the ad actually recommends that in the meantime children build an in-home BB gun range to help pass the time.

“Chilly weather is no reason to neglect your shooting skills!” reads the ad matter-of-factly. 

What follows is a bit disturbing: “Sure, school may be out for a few days at Thanksgiving and Christmas, but we all know what the real drag about this time of year is: it’s harder to get out and shoot.”

The ad implies that keeping up a child’s shooting skills year-round essentially is important for keeping up with the Jones’. Shooting, it seems, is just a natural part of life. “We’ve all been there, friends,” the ad continues, “you have our sympathies.”

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Although it does briefly touch on practicing ‘safe shooting,’ the copy raises alarm for many.  Another ‘InSights’ article even points out potential safety hazards of an indoor BB gun range, mentioning that the “first and most important thing to remember is that with air guns, any projectile that does not hit a proper pellet stop has a very high possibility of a ricochet or bounce back. This is particularly true with a BB gun using round steel projectiles.”

The American Academy of Pediatrics is certainly voicing its concerns. “Nonpowder guns (ball-bearing [BB] guns, pellet guns, air rifles, paintball guns) continue to cause serious injuries to children and adolescents,” reads their write up ‘Injury Risk of Nonpowder Guns.’ ThinkProcess points out that this article has also been released “just on the heels of the fatal shooting of a two year old by her five year old brother.” 

In lieu of the constant gun control debates, we see a whole new side of the story that will surely have both pro-and anti-gun Americans up in arms.

Sources: American Academy of Pediatrics, InSights, ThinkProgress