What is a good rifle for a child

US arms industry: Guns for children


Read on one side

"Who knows?" Asked a US magazine article Junior Shooters, "Maybe you too can find a Bushmaster AR-15 under your tree on a frosty Christmas day." The text concerned the assault rifle with which several massacres were committed, including those in Newtown and Aurora. Such incidents were not an issue. Junior Shooters is supported by the arms industry. The magazine is aimed at children and features a 15-year-old woman proudly presenting a semi-automatic weapon on the front page.

The Newtown Elementary School murders, in which 20 children and six adults died, alarmed many people in the United States. Now the administration of President Barack Obama wants to tighten the laws: Assault rifles like the AR-15 are to be banned and arms buyers are to be more strictly controlled.

But in the debate about the handling of weapons, one point has hardly played a role like that New York Times in a long text writes: The industry is doing everything to ensure that children and young people get used to guns and learn to shoot at an early age. Tens of millions of dollars are invested in advertising and lobbying.

Ammunition for boy scouts

Scout groups were given rifles and ammunition. Competitions in which children compete in shooting with guns would be sponsored. In addition, the gun lobby is fighting laws in individual states that stipulate a minimum age for hunting.

Reason for the effort: The gun supporters fear that they will run out of offspring. It is true that arms sales have increased in recent years. Shooting is also very popular again in the USA. However, urbanization and the aging of society lead to fear of worse business with guns and pistols in the long term.

Leisure behavior is also changing: Today, people prefer to play at home with the video console instead of crawling through the mud with a shotgun. The number of registered hunters fell from seven percent of the population in 1975 to five percent in 2005. For this reason, the industry has doubled its efforts to attract underage offspring over the past five years.