A New York based lobby group called “Empire State Consumer Project” have launched a campaign on the Toy manufacturer Hasbro over their Nerf gun products.

The group has been triggered by what appears to be some form of anti firearm hysteria due to some toys having drum fed mags for their soft darts or having an “assault rifle” appearance, and an advertisement that has family out doing each other with Nerf gifts for a little boy.

Empire State Consumer Project Director Carol Chittenden thinks that parents that purchase these toy guns are bad examples for their kids.

“It’s a matter of this being a very vulnerable consumer group. Children buy what they see, and we’re not sure this is driven by market demand for assault weapon toys by children or the industry creating the demand.”

In fact, as you have complained and targeted a toy my own boys love I will be purchasing them both a brand new Nerf gun for Christmas simply to spite you, with extra mags and vest.

The group then went on to try to tie play with Nerf guns to mass shootings. According to the Empire State Consumer Project, children do not want Nerf guns because they are afraid of school shootings.

“How does promoting play with huge automatic weapons create joy, creativity and connection around the world, and across generations, and make the world a better place for children? ” (said the group in a letter to Hasbro)

Playing with toy guns was a very happy part of my own childhood, I remember playing “army” or the “A-Team” with my friends running around with black plastic guns, and this was the height of the conflict in Northern Ireland. It didn’t make any of us more violent or prone to violence – it was simply boys pretending and role playing a game.

My own sons now also love playing with toy guns be they Nerf, cap guns or even pre ban RIFs I have lying around here.

What they are really trying to do is engineer a fear of firearms in kids or to pass on their own misconceptions and insecurities through indoctrination and bans that suit their own agenda. It’s the same strategy that has been employed in the UK for decades.

When will these groups learn that simply banning things they don’t like doesn’t make the issue go away, or that telling boys not to play with toy guns won’t make it happen as long as they have an index finger, can point and go “pew”.