Kids with guns

When I was but a horrible child, I vaguely recall a visit to a military museum somewhere in the south of England. Not the big London one, that came later. A good deal of this one was outdoors and some of the tanks and armoured vehicles were available for horrible children like myself to play in.

Great fun. We couldn’t fire the guns because in those days adults were not all total morons and our parents were all quite aware that not a single gun was loaded. Most of them probably didn’t work any more anyway.

Oh, and we all had cap-guns, spud-guns and I had a metal double-barrelled shotgun with corks on strings in the ends of the barrels. We were allowed to buy the caps ourselves and we could buy matches too. The consequence of that combination was of course inevitable but no permanent harm was done so nobody minded.

We didn’t need parental permission to buy a new cap-gun either. All we needed was the required number of pennies. Since the only place we could get those pennies was our parents, the shopkeeper took the ‘permission’ part as read.

Nowadays, a child so much as touching a gun is cause for shock and horror. It didn’t take many years to soften the collective mind of the West’s drone population to the point where you could drop it through a sieve without wetting the wires.

Fortunately Thailand still believes children can have a bit of fun and excitement without their parents fainting into a pool of their own bladder and bowel contents at the sight.

One noticeable thing in all the photos – evidently the feeble wailers of the Mail haven’t noticed – is that none of the guns are fitted with magazines. Not even the one on the soldier’s shoulder in the first picture. If you have flown recently you might have noticed that the police guns are most definitely loaded, but the drones don’t seem to mind that at all. None of them question why the airport police need semi-automatic weapons when nobody can get a pair of tweezers through security.

Without bullets, these are harmless metal tubes that kids can pretend to fire. Like the toy ones we all played with throughout the 1960s. With no supervision at all.

Only one of the cohort I grew up with developed any interest in real guns and he was a shooting-range shooter who never fired at anything with a pulse. As I understand it, he packed it in in disgust at the handgun ban.

So now, I don’t know anyone who grew up with me, playing with toy guns and later airguns, who owns a live-round gun of any description. Only one who ever did. I now know farmers who have shotguns but on a farm, that’s a tool, not a weapon.

We all built model tanks and played wargames where the tanks were filled with match heads and the artillery consisted of airguns. The cunning commander didn’t place his tanks too close together. Not one of us has ever driven a real tank or an armoured car because we we not military material so didn’t join up. One did try to join the Navy but bad eyesight scotched his chances. Not one of us has ended up in prison and not a single one of us has become a terrorist.

Playing with guns does not turn children into Raoul Moat. Giving your child a first name that sounds like a kicked dog is far more likely to do that.

These Thai children are being instructed by soldiers who will no doubt tell them the dangers of the things they are handling and show them the proper way to handle those things. Some will grow up to be soldiers as a result of the interest kindled in them at events like this. They are all having a good time in a perfectly safe environment.

Where will our future soldiers come from? Aside from the thugs (which the army does not want), we have a generation growing up in terror of anything remotely gun-shaped.

We will have an army with clipboards, resolved to go over to the bad people and give them a jolly good ticking off. There was a time, you know, when that did actually work.

But then, the man with the clipboard was backed up by lots of other men with lots of guns.

It’s not going to work the other way around.

 

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49 thoughts on “Kids with guns

  1. “Where will our future soldiers come from?” From a school whose Health & Safety Officer outranks the head teacher.

    Whose idea of ‘The Dangerous Sports Club’ is conkers, but only if full PPE is worn.

    Participation in the Assault Course will only be allowed by those who can walk up the stairs to the third floor unaided (to filter out the unfit obese); and, look out of said 3rd floor window to indicate absence of acrophobia. Demonstrating expertise of walking along a narrow roof walkway is simulated by walking along a plank propped 300mm above the grassed area of the playground; but only if a CE-Approved safety harness is worn.

    Self-defence capability consists of correctly completing the Risk Appraisal form; and, submitting it to the right department. [Note, success determined ONLY if both parts are correctly completed]

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    • I think such schools already exist.

      Elfin safety generallisimo, Diversity Bonkers Tsar, Professor of Islamophobiaphobia, Chief Dinkle of the Widgets, and many more now outrank the head teacher who is often a Common Purpose cretin taught to think of themselves as smart anyway.

      There are those who say kids should not see footballers as role models. Considering who is at the top level in schools, kids had better start looking at the homeless as role models.

      They’ll need to learn how to survive.

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  2. Spot on! As a young boy I had spud guns,cap guns,space guns that showered sparks when you pulled the trigger,air rifle,even had a .22 single shot rifle for a short time but seeing as I had buy my own ammunition that was short lived. Traded it in on a .22 high power air rifle as a box of slugs cost next to nothing. At 14 years old discovered motorbikes and girls! Never had a gun since and no inclanation to.Motorbikes and women thats another story.

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  3. I graduated from an ancient but accurate ‘177cal air rifle to a ‘proper’ .22cal rifle (single shot) at the grand old age of 10. When I turned 14, my Dad took the .22 rifle off me, saying that anything I shot with it in the African bush would simply be annoyed. He relaced it with a somewhat battered but very serviceable .375 rifle, a PROPER rifle! My mates at the time also moved up to ‘real’ rifles around the same time. There was lots of banter about which calibre was best, .375, 30-06, .308.
    No-one taught us gun safety. Gun safety simply WAS.
    No rifle had the bolt fitted in town, ever. Bolts were only fitted when we went into the bush, mainly to keep dust and debris from entering the innards of the rifle. No weapon was ever loaded until a hunt was on. One member of the group would be the designated shooter, with one back-up shooter chosen. The designated shooter was the only one who ‘put one up the spout’, the rest of us had loaded magazines but empty chambers. When a shot was to be taken, usually at an impala, the designated shooter and his back-up would concentrate on the target. the rest of us took up an all-round watch. We were not the only creatures in the bush which fancied some fresh meat!
    In all of my years in Africa I never heard of a negligent discharge of a weapon; there were incidents of rifles going off when they’d been loaded with a round in the chamber, usually when placed in the back of a LandRover being driven over broken ground. Such incidents were greeted by a bunch of teenaged lads by derision at the stupidity of the gun owner. Anyone who broke any of the accepted, unspoken rules of gun safety was immediately excluded from our group for being an unsafe idiot.
    No-one taught us any of this, it was just natural to us. We’d grown up with guns; guns had a function and a purpose. We hunted not only for fun but for venison for the table.
    I lived in Northern Rhodesia (now Zambia) from 1958 to 1973. I only ever hunted for the pot. I never took any ‘trophy’ animal, I shot only what a predator would take from a herd, the sick, the lame, the old or the lazy. My friends and I hunted the same herd of impala for 12 years. We knew their range, we could recognise the alpha male and his harem, we could see when the top male had been deposed. We knew our prey.

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    • XX I never heard of a negligent discharge of a weapon; there were incidents of rifles going off when they’d been loaded with a round in the chamber, usually when placed in the back of a LandRover XX

      That IS a negligent discharge!

      You drop a loaded gun, and it goes off, that is ALSO a negligent discharge. Your finger does not have to be on the trigger, and you do not even have to be HOLDING the gun.

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    • I grew up on a council estate in Wales. Hardly anyone had a live-round gun there, and anyone who did was the sort you didn’t really want to hang around with 😉

      My only go at a live-round was a .22 at a shooting club’s open day. Turns out I’m a good shot (but then I used to take out wasps with an air rifle from a safe distance) but the cost of that hobby was prohibitive for me.

      I can see where shooting a large animal with a .22 would be dangerous. You’d just make it very, very cross with you!

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  4. I started with an old “GAT” .177 pistol and went on to; 303 Lee Enfield, mk III, IV and V, 24Pounder and 6 pounder Cannon, Brown Bess musket, 155mm self propelled howitzer, AK47 Kalaschnikow (Finnish made, semi auto That is owned. I have fired the FULLY auto Russian version), PPK, P-38, S&W .357 (Mag) “Highway Patrol”, S&W .44 Magnum M29 (“K” frame) “This is the most powerfull handgun in the world, and it could take your head clean off, punk! Remmington .44 Black powder, (Confedeate army), Ruger mini 14. Sterling automatic “personal protection weapon”, FN .762, SA80, M-16 , AR-180 and GPMG (General purpose light machine gun.). 3″ mortar. Along with “trial shoots” on various Russian U.S, German, and French anti tank, and anti aircraft rocket systems. (“Rapier”, for example).H&K G-36, and G-22 (sniper rifle.)

    But my favourite of ALL of them, is my Dragonow .762 (sniper) rifle, with full “sniper” kit.

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    • The GAT that fired pellets by throwing the barrel forward? I have one somewhere.

      It’s only dangerous if you’re close enough to be hit by the barrel… the pellet will bounce off you.

      Good for slug pellets though. The little buggers can’t get immune to lead ones.

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  5. As a boy, I only ever had toy guns, like the cap guns and those cannon that fired used matchsticks. At no time did I want a real gun until recently. Now I want guns and to be part of a militia. The main purpose of the Second Amendment was to stop a future government getting carried away with itself. It’s the reason there is such immense pressure to make gun ownership illegal there, to give the government free reign to a reign of terror.

    Look at the UK. Because of Dunblane (why the 100 year ‘D Notice’?) Thomas Hamilton was allowed to keep guns because he was part of the in-crowd, but let’s not get carried away into ‘conspiracy theory’ territory, but it was enough to practically ban gun ownership in this country and ever since we have seen our rights disappear and now have absolutely no say in how anything works in this country.

    The ‘drones’ go along with it all because it’s all in the mind control. You were saying the other day, Leggy, about how I reckon that the likes of Icke and Jones are there to give the impression that they will sort everything for us so we don’t have to bother. It’s the same with the constant stream of cop shows. They are reaching the subconscious…”you can trust the police; we are on your side; we are full of idiots, but there’s always a renegade detective inspector you can rely on for justice.”

    Same with the medical ‘dramas’ I imagine. although I rarely watched them. Are they full of nannying cues?

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    • I haven’t watched TV apart from Dr. WHo on iPlayer for years, but comments on Twitter suggest that nannying cues appear in things like Casualty.

      And I’d forgotten about those little cannons with springs to fire matches. The die-cast ones were best.

      They could fire lit ones 😉

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  6. Don’t know if you read this, oh ferrous one. It was in DP’s last ‘Link Tank’ and makes Westboro’s congregation seem restrained and civilised compared to their secularist liberal counterparts.

    ‘Justice for Leelah’: behold the new, PC intolerance.

    Frank wrote a post a few days ago about Tobacco Control being driven by hatred. For all the ‘hate crimes’ being exposed, the hatred out there seems to be more intense than ever; it’s just that the targets are different.

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  7. I was 14 the first time I fired a machine gun… A good old Bren, next day we were allowed to have a go with the GPMG. This was with the school CCF, under full military supervision on an army range, before anyone starts panicking.

    Oddly enough, I didn’t end up as a crazed killer, neither did any of the platoon, though a couple of them went to Sandhurst so I can’t fully vouch for them. 🙂

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      • Sssssh! Don’t tell the Labour Party, but the CCF is alive and well in Britain’s rural public schools, with compulsory weapon maintenance and live firing exercises. Many schools also field clay pigeon shooting teams; alongside the team pictures of the first XI in the man corridor, you will often see photos of beaming 14-year-olds cradling shotguns.

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  8. One of my mates had a slug gun which was used to kill cans. We were all warned not to shoot birds etc. by our Dads. We had sticks for guns and toy pistols, rifles, Ray guns, machine guns etc, on an average day we’d kill each other continuously mostly at best man fall i.e. You ran at one of your mates and he shot you and the most spectacular falling down mate did the shooting next time.

    I’m for licensed real hand gun carrying and especially consealed carrying. The crims and terrorists/murderers would probably think twice about doing anything if their targets or passerbys might start shooting them. It may also help if anyone uses or brandishes a gun gets shot dead by the polis. Makes a statement. Saves money. Done deal.

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    • You could sell it to the “Government” as a saving meeasure.

      The funeral for one dead arsehole, or paying the whole court/legal process, + Prison costs for five or so years.

      “O.K, the scum is dead, but, O’vey, think of the PROFIT!”

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    • My thoughts on the latest round of hostage-in-shops attacks are that the single gunman entering the shop knows for certain that nobody else has a gun.

      If one attacker was shot by a few customers, the next one would think long and hard before copying him.

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  9. Where will our future soldiers come from?

    Currently they are on their xboxes shooting up an assortment of monsters, zombies, bad guys and aliens in graphic detail and with the kind of sound effects we could only dream of back then.

    I had a blue metal pistol , a bow and arrows and I still resent not being allowed a plastic centurion’s breast plate, helmet and sword just because I was a little girl.

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  10. I started off with toy guns and then graduated to air rifles. Shot Brens, SLRs and Sterlings in the TA in the late 70’s. Joined a private gun club in 79 and have owned .22 pistols, S&W .357s (Mod 19, 66, 28 and 686) and a couple of.45 Autos – Colt government Model and a 1944 Remington Rand. Then came Dunblane and the pistol ban. I had won a few trophies at club comps and was a decent shot but everything I shoot now is in the virtual realm- from Doom to COD. Possibly on of the main reasons I despise politicians of all the “major” parties in the UK.

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    • If Anonymous can disrupt the terrorist communications, that would be a good thing. Breaks the organisation without killing anyone.

      But I have to wonder – all those government agencies who claim to be monitoring all the terrorists… do they have nobody who could have done that before now?

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      • They are restricted by laws, Government oversight commissions and warrants and all that crap. Anonymous are not.

        Makes you wonder if they are not really renegade “Chief inspectors, making sure justice is done,” as some one said above.

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  11. I agree with what you say totally.
    It would also seem to me that the more you make something Taboo the more kids (especially ) want to do it.
    My brother was in the army, his wife does not approve and has already stated “HER son will NEVER be allowed to join the army”. It was quite unpopular when I pointed out that actually that wouldn’t be her call to make but the child’s when he grew up. Her response “MY child MY rules” I was completely astonished.
    As a result she banned toy guns for the house and as an end result of that he ended up running around with a stick or any other pointy item to point and go bang with.
    My ex has a criminal record for gun offences, it’s not the gun that kills people it’s people that kill people and if someone is predisposed to be a dangerous moron it makes no difference at what age they handle a gun.
    But it seems to me the powers that be want to make us all terrified of our own shadows, to control our every move and to make us all too dumb to take care of ourselves, and that from a personal perspective is far more scary that a child of any age handling a gun.

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  12. PS my son is now a serving soldier (a medic, but still trained to kill) live in a house where his father had shot guns used for sport shooting and when he was a lad he had a small 4/10 of his own. He went pigeon shooting a few times and then lost interest, but he did at least learn how to respect a firearm and as a result of his fathers conviction for possession of a loaded firearm in a public place he also learnt that the only place you load a gun is just before you discharge it and never at any other time should a gun be carried around loaded.
    (I would add that my ex had a serious mental breakdown and was arrested with his gun in a public place , on his way to commit suicide on a local beach. He had owned a firearm for 10 years and up to that point his gun ownership had been model and extremely law abiding, just so anyone wanting to add any comment about “parenting skills” is aware there were extenuating circumstances to the firearms arrest and the fact that my son was taught the right way to handle gun’s. )

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  13. I’m in Thailand at the moment (and my wife is Thai, so I’m party to more than yer average tourist), and paradoxically the link you provided is blocked here. They are very much into internet censorship, are the Thais, particularly since the latest (of many) military coup. The incumbent generals censor anything and everything that may possibly reflect less than favourably on the monarchy (strictest lese majeste laws in the world, and for reasons I won’t go into while I’m here for fear of a long incarceration. Seriously…), and I think the Mail may have published something approaching the truth about the political reality here, so has been added to the list of sites that Thais may not view. So while they may well have a much more practical and sensible approach to bringing up their kids to deal with real life, at the same time the state keeps them locked down as tightly as it realistically can. Democracy here is but a veneer. They are over-enthusiastic about applying the FCTC, and gold-plate it where they can. They (TPTB) view Australia as a role model where lifestyle restrictions and heavy-handed nannying legislation are to be emulated.

    It’s a great country in many ways, but the political classes leave a lot to be desired.

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    • It’s not really a political piece, it’s just the Mail howling on about how terrible it is that these children are allowed to touch guns.

      If I was Thai, I would be highly offended by it.

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  14. As Kevin B says, the population is heading for stability anyway, especially with the eugenicist Gates’ peddling their vaccines and family planning in the Third World; sorry: developing countries.

    Australopithicines are simply extinct apes. We are no more related to apes than we are to bananas, with which we share 50% of our DNA. Once we get rid of this Theory of Evolution idea, we can value humanity more.

    Evolution theory and the idea that some ‘races’ are more advanced than others has been the cause of massive loss of life.

    Lenin said, “Our programme necessarily includes the propaganda of atheism.” It is this godless vacuum which enables socialist crackpots to appear sane and sucks everyone else into the destructive illusion which makes ‘gods’ of powerful people with their doomsday scenarios.

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  15. Having been one of them (and developed an intense loathing of durable, but itchy, khaki clothing – to say nothing of keeping the brass-work just so) I might mention that many soldiers have been introduced through the Combined Cadet Force.

    Yet I suspect far more have been put off by being forced into attending, even if I did rather enjoy shooting a .22 rifle, because they had an indoor firing range. Not so the .303 because that was outdoors and boy oh boy do they have a recoil!

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Combined_Cadet_Force

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