I grew up in an anti-gun household. Thankfully, the anti-arms antipathy didn’t include toy guns. Playing with toy guns helped me explore issues central to my personal and social identity: good vs. evil, courage vs. cowardice, machine gun vs. lever gun, seeking cover vs. a full-frontal attack, etc. Dressing as a cowboy, soldier or secret agent for Halloween without a toy gun would have been like eating a hot fudge sundae without the hot fudge. Nowadays . . .
my daughter’s middle school made it a point to remind parents that “no weapons of any kind will be permitted in school for Halloween.” Not even an arched eyebrow? That said, the tragic case of Tamir Rice, the 12-year-old shot playing with a toy gun shot and killed by Cleveland cops, certainly gives pause to worried parents.
That said, it’s Halloween for Christ’s sake (or not). Where’s the harm in skulking around the neighborhood dressed like a soldier, wielding a fake AK, checking out the neighbors’ valuables and security systems, extorting them for free candy?
If you have or had a kid, would you/will you let them carry a fake gun in pursuit of refined sugar and corn-syrup-infused treats?