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Why Did The NRA Just Create A New “Shooting Range” App For Kids?

Submitted by on January 16, 2013 – 11:01 am5 Comments
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Do you have or know any kids who are at least four years old? If so, then the NRA has quite a treat for you! They just released a new “Shooting Range” app that’s designed to teach kids who are four years of age or older how to shoot a whole range of guns. The app is free and allows kids to choose from a bunch of different guns and also gives them the chance to pay for additional guns if they so choose. The app is…

Wait, what’s that? You don’t want your 4-year-old letting off shots on your iPhone?! You don’t say! Well, then you’re not alone. That seems to be the most common response to the news that the NRA just put up a new gun-related app in The App Store. It does seem a little bit ridiculous to have it there, right? And, it seems even more ridiculous that the NRA has actually made it available for download for kids. While it does give tips about gun safety during the course of the game, “Shooting Range” is, more or less, designed to allow you to practice taking your best shot from the comfort of your home. And, while it doesn’t openly advocate using guns, buying guns, or shooting guns in person, the fact that it puts fictional guns into the hands of children is really disturbing.

We fully understand that the NRA is well within their rights to promote guns and gun safety as they see fit. But, a game like “Shooting Range” isn’t going to do anything to further the gun conversation in America. Rather, all that it’s going to do is make those who are against guns even more against them and draw a line in the sand between gun owners and gun haters. If the NRA cares at all, they’ll take “Shooting Range” off the market and revamp it to make it more kid-friendly (or, at least, as “kid-friendly” as a game about guns can be!). Instead of making it a “Shooting Range,” how about making the game more about gun safety and the dangers that guns can pose if not handled properly? That way, the NRA can still promote guns but do so in a way that’s not giving young kids the idea that guns are fun or the best way to solve problems. Hey, if games like this have to exist, it’s worth a shot, right? Otherwise, it’s not going to do anyone out there any good.

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5 Comments »

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  • John Doe says:

    You do realize that there are many other applications available for download for children that are much worse than just shooting targets right? You’re over-reacting incredibly here; games do not create violent impulses.

  • Steve says:

    Considering the lack of parental controls on far worse apps that have been on the market for a while I think any app that actually addresses proper gun safety in any way is an improvement and a demonstration of how video games might actually prevent gun accidents. Which advances the conversation about gun safety in this country beyond throwing blame everywhere.
    Please stick to writing about shoes.

  • Eric says:

    I fired my first .22 rifle when I was 5 years old at a soda can. I’m an adult now and own several firearms which I had background checks performed for before I could buy them. I’m a responsible gun owner that supports an app that teaches children how to safely fire guns.

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