When A “Toy” Isn’t A Toy

We have seen their faces, heard their names, another senseless loss of life. Gone before their time and all for holding a “toy”. As you will see I use “s” when referring to these “toys”. What I’m talking about are air soft and BB guns/rifles. This is the story of 3:

o-ANDY-LOPEZ-SHOT-DEAD-facebook

Andy Lopez

1. October 2013; Andy Lopez, 13, of Santa Rosa CA was walking to a friend’s home and was carrying a look-a-like AR air soft “toy” and an air soft pistol “toy”. The pistol was tucked into his waist band and while this one had an orange tip, it was not visible due to being tucked into his waistband. The officers approached from a safe distance from behind and used their vehicle as a shield. They instructed Andy to put down the weapon but instead Andy turned toward the officers and, according to the officers, started to raise the “toy”. 8 shots rang out with 7 of them striking Andy. Most were non-fatal injuries except for the shot to the chest.

john-crawford

John Crawford

2. August 5, 2014; John Crawford III, 22, Fairfield, Ohio. John was out with a friend and was in a Wal-Mart store when he picked up a look-alike assault air rifle “toy” from one of the sporting good aisles of the store. The “toy” had been removed from the box by an unknown person and was not loaded. While he carried the “toy” around a Ronald Ritchie approached store management and then called 911 with a story, in fact it is filled with outright lies. He claimed that Crawford was waving the rifle around and pointing it at children and several times told the 911 dispatcher that he was loading ammunition into the rifle. You can listen to the 911 call and the store’s video which have been timed together.

You can see from the video that Crawford isn’t doing anything he was accused of.  In fact he was on the phone with his children’s mother at the time. Police in the meantime had been told he was loading ammo into the rifle and I can imagine that they thought they were about to encounter an attempted mass shooting. Police entered the store and with Crawford’s back to them, they ordered him to drop the rifle, not knowing he was the object of their attention he turned and was shot.

Tamir-Rice

Tamir Rice

 

3. November 23, 2014; Tamir Rice, 12, Cleveland, Ohio. Tamir was outside a city recreation center and had a look-alike “toy” pistol. He was pointing it in a shooting stance at times and other times putting it in his waistband. A person sitting in a gazebo called 911 to report it and twice told the dispatcher that he thought it was a toy and at least once said Tamir looked like a juvenile, but Tamir’s actions were scaring him. The dispatcher did not relay this information to the police officers. As the officers approached they observed Tamir put the gun inside his waistband and after ordering him to raise his hands, he reached for his “toy”. It was over in less than 2 seconds and Tamir died of a gunshot wound to his stomach.

I wish to now focus on Andy and Tamir. First a little history, from Title 15 of the Code of Federal Regulations which states:

§272.2 Prohibitions.
No person shall manufacture, enter into commerce, ship, transport, or receive any toy, look-alike, or imitation firearm (“device”) covered by this part as set forth in §272.1 unless such device contains, or has affixed to it, one of the markings set forth in §272.3, or unless this prohibition has been waived by §272.4.
§272.3 Approved markings.
The following markings are approved by the Secretary of Commerce:
(a) A blaze orange (Fed-Std-595B 12199) or orange color brighter than that specified by the federal standard color number, solid plug permanently affixed to the muzzle end of the barrel as an integral part of the entire device and recessed no more than 6 millimeters from the muzzle end of the barrel.
(b) A blaze orange (Fed-Std-595B 12199) or orange color brighter than that specified by the Federal Standard color number, marking permanently affixed to the exterior surface of the barrel, covering the circumference of the barrel from the muzzle end for a depth of at least 6 millimeters.

(c) Construction of the device entirely of transparent or translucent materials which permits unmistakable observation of the device’s complete contents.

(d) Coloration of the entire exterior surface of the device in white, bright red, bright orange, bright yellow, bright green, bright blue, bright pink, or bright purple, either singly or as the predominant color in combination with other colors in any pattern.

(e) This incorporation by reference was approved by the Director of the Federal Register in accordance with 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51. Copies of Federal Standard 595B, December 1989, color number 12199 (Fed-Std-595B 12199), may be obtained from the General Services Administration at General Services Administration, Federal Acquisition Service, FAS Office of General Supplies and Services, Engineering and Cataloging Division (QSDEC) Arlington, VA 22202 or at the General Services Administration Web site . A copy may be inspected in the Office of the Chief Counsel for NIST, National Institute of Standards and Technology, Telephone: (301) 975-2803 or at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of this material at NARA, call 202-741-6030, or go to: http://www.archives.gov/federal_register/code_of_federal_regulations/ibr_locations.html

It is against the law to remove the orange tip or marking from these “toys”.

Now with some California laws….

Penal Code Section 12551. Every person who sells to a minor any BB device is guilty of a misdemeanor.

12556. (a) No person may openly display or expose any imitation firearm, as defined in Section 12550, in a public place.

California has some of the toughest gun laws. As an example, they also have a ban on assault weapons and limits on Magazine capacity. Open carry of rifles are only legal in rural areas that also permit it by local ordinance. They are also tough on look-a-like “toys”.

Cleveland, Ohio Ordnance:

§ 627.23 Facsimile Firearms
(a) (1) “Firearm” shall have the same meaning as used in Section 627.01(b) of this chapter.
(2) “Replica or facsimile of a firearm” shall mean any device or object made of plastic, wood, metal or any other material which is a replica, facsimile or toy version of, or is otherwise recognizable as, a pistol, revolver, shotgun, sawed-off shotgun, rifle, machine gun, rocket launcher or any other firearm. As used in this section, “replica or facsimile of a firearm” shall include, but is not limited to, toy guns, movie props, hobby models (either in kit form or fully assembled), starter pistols, air guns, inoperative firearms or any other device which might reasonably be perceived to be a real firearm.
(b) No person shall display, market for sale or sell any replica or facsimile of a firearm in the City. The provisions of this subsection shall not apply to any replica or facsimile firearm which, because of its distinct color, exaggerated size, or other design feature, cannot reasonably be perceived to be a real firearm.
(c) Except in self-defense, no person shall draw, exhibit or brandish a replica or facsimile of a firearm or simulate a firearm in a rude, angry or threatening manner, with the intent to frighten, vex, harass or annoy or with the intent to commit an act which is a crime under the laws of the City, State or Federal government against any other person.
(d) No person shall draw, exhibit or brandish a replica or facsimile of a firearm or simulate a firearm in the presence of a law enforcement officer, fire fighter, emergency medical technician or paramedic engaged in the performance of his or her duties, when the person committing such brandishing knows or has reason to know that such law enforcement officer, fire fighter, emergency medical technician or paramedic is engaged in the performance of his or her duties.

Ohio has some of the most lax laws dealing with real firearms and you can open carry both rifles and pistol. In all states you must be at least 18 yrs old to purchase an air soft gun/rifle from online or over the counter stores.

Now I will get down to the nitty gritty. I feel for the friends and family of these boys who were lost, who were not the first and sadly most likely won’t be the last until laws are changed with these “toys,” but where is the parental responsibility? Andy and Tamir weren’t old enough to purchase these “toys” but yet their parents had no problem buying a look-a-like “toy” for their children. For what? For play? Where was the parental responsibility to learn the laws dealing with these “toys”?

Andy’s father was somewhat responsible saying he would supervise his son when he played with his “toy” with his friends but didn’t see the need to when he left the house carrying not one but two of these “toys” to walk down a public street with them. The parents of Andy and Tamir also didn’t see the need to destroy the “toy” when they had been altered, having the orange tip removed or broken off.

Why would a child or an adult alter the “toy”? Well, plain and simple; they want it to look like the real thing and they do except for that orange tip. The orange tip was mandated for a reason and that was so Law Enforcement could quickly identify it as a “toy”. To assume that no one under the age of 18 would ever have access to or point a real firearm at Law Enforcement is only kidding themselves as it has happened in the past.

We are quick to blame the parents of a child who goes on a mass shooting spree when they get their hands on a real firearm, but have nothing to say to the parents of children who are killed when their own parents put these “toys” into their hands and do not supervise or control the “toys”. Yes the loss of any child is tragic and I’m not minimizing their pain but they also need to look at their own actions or inaction when these situations happen.  I also understand, being a parent myself, that a child will do things behind their parent’s back.  This is why they need to control items like these “toys”.

This is Tamir’s air soft look-a-like
Tamir-Rice-BB-gun-1024x691

Here is a photo of Andy Lopez’s rifle next to a real AR-15.

lopez-guns
Both Ohio and California have introduced legislation to change the rules on Replica Air Soft and BB Guns which basically, in both states, would require that the “toy” be brightly colored or have prominent fluorescent strips. California’s bill is sitting with their Senate while Ohio only recently introduced the bill after Tamir’s death.
I highly support this, frankly I think that they should all come in bright neon orange. Opponents feel that it won’t serve anything and people will just paint them another color to make them look real again…..like in breaking off or painting over the orange tip now. Once again I ask why? If you want to learn the sport of shooting it doesn’t matter what color your “toy” is so why would you alter it? It appears that when it is done it is for reasons other than what I mentioned; some could be sinister and unlawful. Yes, the tips on Andy’s and Tamir’s “toys” may have been broken off in play but once again, where was the Parental Responsibility?

Would you let your child drive in a car that you know has no brakes? Of course not! You know they could be killed. Then why would you let your child play with a look-a-like toy with the missing orange tip knowing that it could be mistaken for the real thing and result in your child’s death?

Why would you let your child go outside unsupervised with a look-a-like “toy”? If you want to buy these “toys” for your children then have them undergo a gun safety course. Education is a must, a must for the child and a must for the parent. After all, when you drive a car you have undergone education of the rules of the road so why not when you purchase a look-a-like “toy”?

Learn the Federal, State and Local laws dealing with them. If it’s too much for parents to do, then they shouldn’t buy toy guns for their child. This may sound harsh and beating up on the parents of the fallen children, but I’m not trying to do that, and it was avoidable and it needed to start at home.

I deal with gun safety and I do instruct children of various ages.  I use these stories as a way to drive home a point……..that even a “toy” can cause a loss of life including your own.  I drive home the point that there are two questions a cop doesn’t have to ask you, 1. How old are you? 2. Is that real?  You can see that both Andy’s and Tamir’s “toys” looked like the real thing, so how do you expect a cop to know the difference?

With John Crawford, even though Ohio is an open carry state, you had a caller who told 911 that he was pointing it at children, waving it around, and trying to load ammunition into a rifle. Police reacted to what they were told, they thought a shooting was about to happen. Crawford didn’t have a chance. In my opinion, Ronald Ritchie, the man who started it all should be held legally responsible for his proven lies. If not for his call then John be alive today.

In fact, as police looked at the tapes of that day it showed 2 hours earlier that other people also handled the “toy” and no one took any action. While I’m not familiar with the “toy” that John Crawford held that day, I have bought others and some are zipped tied to cardboard or hard sealed in plastic. Most aren’t easy to remove from the packaging and we know that John did not remove it from it’s box. Regardless it was the actions of Ronald Ritchie and his lies that led to John’s death

With Tamir’s death, I wonder if the dispatcher heard the repeated statements that the caller thought it was a fake gun and he was minor due to the multiple tasks taking place or if they dismissed it. I also wonder why the cops would drive right up to a “potential” shooter like they did., Sheer stupidity. In fact the Police said in a statement that it was less than 10 feet away. What were they thinking? Maybe if they had stopped at a safer distance they might have had a longer response time or Tamir might have complied with their instructions. But we know from their call that they thought Tamir was 20 years old and in possession of a real pistol.

I take this to heart; my own son had a look-a-like pointed at him and a friend by a car load of teens.  It was also missing the orange tip and my son, who has been educated and been around various types of firearms, thought it was real.  He was able to get their tag number and I pressed charges against the teens…..both the driver and the pointer of the “toy”.

I encountered two types of parents that day.  The mother of the driver was apologizing and understand what I told her how I feel about gun safety and that included look-a-like “toy” guns.  The father of the pointer was the exact opposite, blaming me for the trouble that his son was in. “Can’t he take a joke? It was only a “toy”.  I taught my son never to point a gun at anyone”…….(yeah, right, he didn’t learn that one did he). The teen who pointed the “toy” equally thought it was all a joke right up to the point when the cop, who arrested him, told him if he had been there he would be dead….meaning he would have fired on him. Only then did reality start to sink in and he started to shake.

What are the answers? I don’t have the answers, but we as parents need to take responsibility of the things we buy our children and supervise and control those items that could lead to injury or death. We could change the laws dealing with these “toys” nationwide so that another Andy, Tamir, or John never happens again. Paint them all neon orange. Prosecute those who lie on 911 calls when those lies led to injury or death of another. That’s a start.

Towerflower

Posted on 11/29/2014, in Potpourri, research, Trials & Cases and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 89 Comments.

  1. When a man and a child of of color are killed by police for having toy guns in Ohio, when white men walk around with real ARs and aren’t killed, in this Open Carry State, we know what the real issue is.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Excellent article Tower Flower. The NRA fights against legislation that would make sure toy guns are easily discernible.

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  3. An excellent article and some great ideas you chose to share, I was taught as a child to never point a gun toy or otherwise at another human being or anything that I wouldn’t want to shoot. I agree with you as far as perhaps it would be best to paint all toy weapons a neon color for a young person it is all about an imaginary situation anyway. The parents and their responsibilities I would agree for the most part yet I have to say that we are talking about a toy that in the end is just that a toy and quite harmless… The callers of 911 who outright lie I am in favor of them being prosecuted if the cause the death or harm of another, sounds like involuntary manslaughter charges would be appropriate in the case you mentioned.

    I don’t think this should be about “Color” it is about us as human beings and our children who are dying because they are children. Toy guns? Perhaps you are correct, we may need to stop looking at guns as toys. It is obvious even a toy gun is representative of the violence that guns were created for in the first place.

    Nice article Tower Flower! Thank you for sharing it!

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    • “Toy guns? Perhaps you are correct, we may need to stop looking at guns as toys.”

      I can’t agree with you more. In fact, I’m in the “stop making toy guns” altogether category.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Joe,

      I don’t think this should be about “Color” it is about us as human beings and our children who are dying because they are children

      Although we must be concerned for everyone regardless of color, racial bigotry and prejudices are a major part of it. By comparison, law enforcement has taken shooters into custody without firing one shot, (James Holmes, Jared Laughner for example), but killed others who were unarmed. When I hear that the cop who killed Tamir said that Tamir was about 20 years old, that speaks of stereotypical prejudice. It can be interpreted to say that the cop feared Tamir more than he feared what he thought was a gun. Taxpayers should recall all funds for bullet proof vests since some cops fear people more than they fear being shot.

      Each case has to be considered without drawing lines, but unfortunately, when a pattern develops, the lines are already drawn.

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      • Xena, I appreciate and respect your point of view, I also however have had this discussion before with a number of people. I think that there is an interesting exchange of perspectives happening in many forums right now.

        I watched a rather interesting interview about the racial divide and the wedge being driven deeper every time we choose to highlight these issues as “People of color are victims” It segregates us further. We are all people, human beings, it is the segregation that causes the issues in the first place. It causes the fear, it causes the hate, it causes the death and destruction.

        The lines were drawn many years ago, much like a small child colors out side the lines we as human beings need to start coloring outside of the lines or even erasing the lines. Our youth watching this are being taught some terrible lessons, it is like pouring gas on an already burning fire. The gas is not going to put the fire out….

        Perhaps we should sit down at the table as human beings and do some old school work, take a sharp knife cut our palms see that we all bleed the same, and shake hands becoming blood brothers!

        Those who inspire these divisive actions and add gas to the fire victimizing “People of color” have perhaps the best intentions at heart yet it is my opinion they are not furthering a better society or a solution. I don’t know the answers,or have a solution other than to recognize it isn’t a race thing as far as the way people feel about what is happening in America we are all quite disturbed and upset about it no matter what “Color” we are.

        Education? Or do we just need to humanize humanity. Those that put gas on the fire perhaps have another motive, power? To become leaders in their communities and insight more segregation and violence? To make money? They are not sitting down at the table with solutions as far as I can tell…

        I am just a simple man call me what you will yet I have a love of humanity and choose to see not color rather a fellow human being, beautiful and loving that deserves love just like I do.

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        • yahtzeebutterfly

          Hi Joe. Hope you are having a nice weekend.

          I need clarification about your comment:

          I watched a rather interesting interview about the racial divide and the wedge being driven deeper every time we choose to highlight these issues as “People of color are victims” It segregates us further.”

          Why does this segregate us further?

          Are you saying that discussing and “highlighting” these issues is like putting “gas on the fire” ?

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          • yahtzeebutterfly

            My words should not have appeared in italics, Joe.

            Here are my words after quoting you:

            Why does this segregate us further?

            Are you saying that discussing and “highlighting” these issues is like putting “gas on the fire” ?

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            • I would say in my opinion and from my perspective to answer your question

              “Why does this segregate us further?” I feel that by labeling any human being by color, religion, group we are choosing a form of segregation. We are separating ourselves from the rest of humanity in a sense. Rather than say I am a “white man” I would prefer to say I am a human being. When I say I am a white man am I putting myself on a pedestal? Am I making myself different? We are all different in perspective, thought, likes and dislikes no matter what color we are, yet we are all human beings. When we say we are of color, white is a color too by the way, we are in a sense devaluing the fact that we are human beings. I am a writer, I am a cook, I am a firefighter, I am a father, I am a mother, I am a citizen, I am a human being, when I voice that without saying I am a man of color we all know I am a human being that writes, cooks, etc.
              It segregates us further by not acknowledging that we are all human beings and all individual no matter what color.. There are many ways to look at this issue, it won’t be resolved until we all look at it from a human perspective rather than a race perspective. I am a victim because I was born a different color? What does that mean? Why is that even an issue? Because we make it one.

              The second question “Are you saying that discussing and “highlighting” these issues is like putting “gas on the fire” ?

              Discussing the issues is a wonderful start, I don’t really see much discussion, it seems to be just one side making demands and the other side saying yes there is an issue. “We want Justice” we all want justice! What will it take to actually resolve the issue? When all we do is demand justice it isn’t going to bring back the lives taken, It isn’t going to fix the problem. When a person has been taught by example that “The colored man is a victim, the white man hates him, we are teaching hate. When the white man is taught the black man is a criminal, they don’t value their children, they all are violent and even kill each other, we are teaching hate.

              When we say it is unfortunate that any human being has their lives taken for any reason, The neighborhoods on that side of town need help there are poor living conditions and we need some jobs and education systems to help empower them and lift them up. We are teaching love. When we see a human being and stop judging, we can start teaching love of our fellow human beings.

              The gas is the continuous segregation by highlighting one side of the story “The people of color are victims” The truth is that we are all victims even the police that have committed the acts of violence and killed the innocent. They are victims of ignorance. All of us are guilty in that we can’t seem to recognize the one truth that we are all human beings.

              I am a white man and I am a victim… Does that make you mad? If it does then you see how I am throwing gas on the fire.. “You are a white man with white privilege, you don’t know a thing about the black mans issues.” Now more gas on the fire.

              I am a man of color and I am a victim… does that make you mad or does that fill you with compassion and empathy? Can you smell the gas?

              I am from a poor family of farmers for the most part, I have gone hungry, been homeless, and spent time in the darkest parts of our country, I have friends in Newark, I have friends in Camden, I have friends, in Patterson, the Bronx, Harlem, and Charlotte I can go on with the list of places I have friends and I have been in bars that no “white man ” had ever gone in. You know what, I had a great time with my friends in them.

              We are human beings! Any act of violence is a crime against humanity including the labels we place on each other. That is just my perspective however.

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            • yahtzeebutterfly

              Thank you so much for taking the time to respond to my questions, Joe. I really appreciate it.

              For now, I would like to quote one of your paragraphs:

              
It segregates us further by not acknowledging that we are all human beings and all individual no matter what color.. There are many ways to look at this issue, it won’t be resolved until we all look at it from a human perspective rather than a race perspective. I am a victim because I was born a different color? What does that mean? Why is that even an issue? Because we make it one.

              Yes, in an ideal world, we should all be one family…the human race.

              Without talking about color for a moment, I would like to present some examples where members of our human race need advocates and/or people to intervene to help/rescue them. Examples: people who are bullied, people who are hungry, people who are cold, people who are homeless, jobless people who want paying work, etc.

              Is it wrong to see these people in a separate category to say that they are in need of help? Of course not. However, some people might come up with terms like “the haves and the have nots”, “the bullies and the bullied”, “the workers and those on welfare”, etc.

              What about instances where race/ethnicity DOES play a role in physical health? For instance, Tay-Sachs disease is often found in the Ashkenazi Jewish population and sickle-cell anemia in the Black population. Is it wrong to test and help these groups so that doctors can aid them? Of course not.

              In the same way, when we become aware that members of our human family who happen to be Black have experiences which you and I as Whites do not have, AND that these experiences put them in harms way, should we not address these issues and seek to remedy them?

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        • Joe,
          I really don’t know where ““People of color are victims” comes from, other than those who maybe — just maybe, don’t understand what people of color are saying. Actually, it may be a projection because whenever law is violated against a person, that person is a victim.

          When people with disabilities asked for ramps, and blind people asked for elevator numbers to be in Braille, did others interpret it to mean that disabled people are victims? Or, would it be correct to say that disabled people want to be free in movement?

          We now have the Americans with Disabilities Act and when that law is violated, for sure the disabled are victims. However, there are times when law is not violated but rather, the disabled are simply treated like they are invisible or second-class citizens. For example, there is a case of a man in a wheelchair who was a passenger on a plane. They made him check-in his wheelchair and when the plane landed, came with a airport provided wheelchair; took him off the plane; and sat him on the ramp to wait until some other staff person would take him to where his own wheelchair was when taken off with the luggage. The man sat on that ramp for hours. It was not until the next flight was scheduled that a pilot discovered him.

          Victim? Yes — of the stupidity of others. Victim because of a violation of law? No.

          By analogy, it’s the same type of combination that we now read and hear about as it concerns race — violations of human decency because of rules and procedures made by people who do not live with the physical reality of those they make decisions for.

          As one who is from a diverse, multi-racial family, I see color just like a see gender. As Jane Elliot taught in one of her seminars, would we say when looking at a man that we don’t see his gender?

          All human, yet all unique, just like a garden of roses that are pink, white, red, black, yellow.

          If I don’t recognize race, then how can I have compassion and help heal those who are sunburned because of their pale skin? If I don’t recognize race, then how can I understand that inviting my Black friends to go swimming means that they must take extra steps to protect their hair?

          I must be comfortable and firm in my own belief that all men are created equal so I’m comfortable, appreciative, and respectful of diversity.

          Our nation is founded on a document that recognizes gender and race when establishing the rights of its citizens. The issue with gender and race equality will be with us until the rights of citizens that are provided in that document apply 100 percent, 100 percent of the time. It says that all men are created equal. It’s time that this nation began believing and living in that belief.

          Like

          • I rebloged a post I wrote last year where I used the flower as my example in response to this same basic discussion. I bow my head in the greatest of respect for you and your opinion. I like the ending of your response and will say that it hits the nail on the head…

            ” Our nation is founded on a document that recognizes gender and race when establishing the rights of its citizens. The issue with gender and race equality will be with us until the rights of citizens that are provided in that document apply 100 percent, 100 percent of the time. It says that all men are created equal. It’s time that this nation began believing and living in that belief.”

            We are already provided for yet it seems that the accountability and enforcement is lacking. There is no one supervising the police, the government, the courts, we as citizens have chosen to let them supervise themselves… All the crap going on and 96% of the current representatives to Washington, Congress, were re elected. Change is not going to come about like that. We as a nation are apparently happy with the way things are or we would elect some representatives that would make changes.

            I really don’t want to argue we are on the same side you and I we just express ourselves differently. Thank you for being awesome and beautiful you, you are helping and indeed making our world a better place for all we share it with.

            It wouldn’t let me respond to Yahtzeebutterfly in the same thread so I would like to say thank you to her as well… You are quite awesome and beautiful in your heart of hearts for being a loving caring compassionate human being, Thank you for your efforts and you contributions as you are making our world a better place as you do so!

            Namaste.. 🙂

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            • Joe,
              I thank you for your kind words and understanding. (I didn’t get the impression that we were arguing.) 🙂

              We are already provided for yet it seems that the accountability and enforcement is lacking. There is no one supervising the police, the government, the courts, we as citizens have chosen to let them supervise themselves…

              Right. I refer to is as having a blank piece of paper. But, why is it that citizens have chosen to let authorities supervise themselves? Because those same authorities tell citizens that they are too uneducated or unintelligent to understand rules, policies, procedures, and laws.

              The nation decided to amend the constitution to give citizenship to those born in America, even those descended from slavery. It gave them, and women the right to vote. However, there is a segment of people in this country who believe those amendments after the Civil War are illegal. Some are people of no consequence while others are teachers, cops, lawyers, and other professions who work in the public sector, making decisions for others. I know of one who was a nurse. Thankfully, she’s retired now. While working, she spread rumors to her friends and family that even bi-racial infants are born with a spot on their tail-bone where their tails used to grow.

              As far as politics, I admit to being a person that does not follow closely on a regular basis in terms of being familiar with most politicians other than those locally. What I have experienced as a voter is that are choices are mostly in casting our votes for the lesser of two evils.

              I don’t have an answer, much less THE answer, which is probably why many, including myself, address the wrongs because we can only effect what is right by our own beliefs and actions.

              Namaste.

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  4. Thank you for your sane reporting!!

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  5. kindheart101

    Great article Towerflower.

    Sigh. I guess I’m just too old to understand so many things today. When my children were growing up, had they ever asked me to buy them a toy gun, my answer would have been: Definitely NOT!

    40+ years ago there may have been little plastic guns, but nothing like these toy guns in the pictures! What are these companies thinking making these replicas of real firearms! If I saw anyone carrying one of those, I would be frightened too.

    When I was growing up, (in the ice age, lol) my father would get a permit and go deer hunting every year. His rifles were never loaded in the house, and they were kept locked in a gun case, in the attic. The ammunition for them was kept at a relatives home that did not hunt, as an extra precaution. We were taught to NEVER touch a gun, of any kind. We were taught if we even saw a gun, we were to tell our parents where we saw it, when, and who had it.

    What the heck ever happened to playing hide and seek, hopscotch and tag?

    Personally, I wish all fake guns, of every single kind were banned, and all companies were fined severely if they ever produced another one.

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  6. Reblogged this on "OUR WORLD".

    Like

  7. Jackie Saulmon Ramirez

    How is it that so many states have open-carry and a child is killed over a dang toy. 😦

    Like

    • One thing to remember with open carry, you still have to abide by the legal age limit for that firearm……so a 12 yr old cannot open carry. With John Crawford he would be legal but it was the actions of another that caused his death.

      Like

      • Jackie Saulmon Ramirez

        The open carry age limit is not the same all over. That is one of the worst things about our gun laws in the U.S.

        Like

      • I have held out on replying to this article because I wanted to give it some serious thought here before posting. Some may be offended by this article but to those who are I suggest if the brutal honesty in this blog post bothers you then perhaps you are here for another agenda.

        You are correct Tower, why would any parents allow their child to play with a BB gun that looks like a real gun? well we could suggest that right? but often times kids come across stuff like this from their friends parents dont know about it I know I have come across pellet guns from friends my mom never knew because my mom would have put it on me. anyhow I am not going to focus on that or speculate about that stuff that is irrelevant to me.

        Cleveland police have stated they didnt see the orange tip we know that there was no way they would because Tamir never pulled that gun out, notice on the video Tamir had the gun tucked in his pants, when LE arrives they order him to put his hands up and drop the weapon well with the “weapon” tucked in his pants like that, this means he had to reach for it which is what lead him to being shot.

        Now here is the kicker out of all of this we knew the person who called 911 stated that the gun was likely fake. They knew this even with out the Orange tip yet the trained officer did not? anyhow lets take this one step further had the gun actually had an orange tip do you think maybe that 911 caller would have still called 911?

        Like

  8. Reblogged this on It Is What It Is and commented:
    When a “toy” isn’t a toy indeed … SMH!!

    Like

  9. My Umarex XBG Air Pistol that I bought to “can” practice on in my huge back yard didn’t come with an orange tip. I had to paint one on. I do live in a very bad neighborhood. Meth house next door. Cops know them and are friends with them. I have security camera’s around my house too. I’ll be moving in the summer but until then. My toys have orange tips. It’s a must.

    I so agree with you – Towerflower – on all that you have written.

    Like

  10. Some of these imitation pistols have been banned in New Zealand. General police don’t carry guns. We have specialist units that are called in for any armed incidences. It takes away the instantaneous reflexes that kill. It means that police generally have time to think before shooting. Of course we have incidences to, but nothing like these ridiculous incidences.

    Like

    • Raewyn,
      I wish we could say the same for the United States. However, when you have a country that allows citizens to own and carry guns, I suspect that it would place law enforcement in danger not to carry guns. Things have to be balanced like an old-fashion, wild, wild west shoot-out.

      Liked by 1 person

      • The constitution was based on the old-fashioned, wild, wild west when it granted the right to carry arms. They would never have envisaged how that right was to be abused in the future.

        Like

  11. yahtzeebutterfly

    Towerflower,

    Thank you so much for your outstanding article. You covered the subject of toy guns from all angles in a very fair and comprehensive way!

    And now, with a much better understanding, I believe REALISTIC toy guns should not be allowed on the market. Parents should use common sense and supervise their children regarding toy guns. Police should not shoot when there are alternatives and when they can have time to better assess the situation.

    I mourn the tragic and needless loss of innocent lives.

    Like

  12. butterflydreamer2

    Towerflower,

    I agree with you, the parents need to be held responsible. I say do away with the toy guns.

    Like

    • butterflydreamer2, just for the record when I say parents need to held responsible, I don’t mean arresting them. They have suffered a great loss. In the case of Andy, which I followed on various news agencies, the parents, friends, family and others blamed the police. I don’t blame the police for this but instead find fault with the parents for not accepting their role in their loss.

      Sometimes, in society today, people are just wanting someone else to blame instead of accepting some personal responsibility.

      Like

      • butterflydreamer2

        towerflower,

        I agree, they have suffered a great loss, and at some point they understand their roll in their loss.

        Like

      • roderick2012

        I don’t blame the police for this but instead find fault with the parents for not accepting their role in their loss.

        How can you say that?

        The kid had the gun tucked into his pants and the cop went from 0 to 60 in less than 4 secs and decided that the gun was real and then decided to confront Andy although he wasn’t doing anything besides walking.

        Exactly what was Andy doing that was so threatening to the cop that he went into nutjob mode?

        Did the cop have PTSD?

        Like

        • roderick2012……Andy had two look-a-likes on him that day, a pistol which did have the orange tip on it and was tucked into his pants and he was carrying the look-a-like AR 15 that did not have the orange tip on it.

          I posted the laws above, in CA where Andy lived, it is against the law to expose an imitation firearm in a public place…..that includes walking down a public street. The orange tip had been removed from the look a like AR, that is also a violation of law. This is why I say that parents need to educate themselves as to the various Federal, Local, and State laws that deal with the “toys” that parents buy their children.

          The Cops that day stopped at a distance from Andy and used their vehicle as a shield but an AR, if it had been real, would not offer much shielding. The cop in this case had no prior shootings except one time when he shot himself putting his gun back into it’s holster. The cop in this case had ordered him to drop the AR and instead he turned and started to raise the “toy”, this is the most critical time for a cop. Hesitate too long and it might result in their own death.

          AR’s are banned in CA so having one in itself was threatening. Did you see the picture above that shows the real one next to the “toy” that Andy was carrying? These “toys” are made to look just like the real thing and like others have said I think another solution would to be to ban the making of look-a-likes. They never displayed the look-a-like pistol that he carried that day because that isn’t the one that got him into trouble that day.

          If the parents had taken the time to known the laws and educate Andy as to the laws, this might never have happened.

          It was with Tamir that the look-a-like was still tucked into his pants. That is the one I would agree that the cops went from zero to 60 in no time. Tamir was shot in less than 2 seconds after the cops arrived on the scene. In that time frame the cops said that instead of raising his hands he reached for the look-a-like.

          Like

          • Towerflower, ok, so in some situations the kids, parents, the lying 911 callers, the inept 911 dispatchers, the laws, the NRA, the gun manufacturers, the GOP, someone anyone not just the cops will have some responsibility for some part in their unique circumstances.

            But to me the gun laws prohibiting kids from open carrying, parents letting kids play w/toy guns without orange tips, unsupervised, and cops feeling especially threatened seeing ARs when they’re supposed to be banned doesn’t excuse the cops that killed these ppl, because all that stuff are just ‘laws & rules.’

            Because if all those ppl above are dead because they or someone else said they broke laws or did something wrong- anything wrong, then cops would shoot and kill every single criminal w/a gun on sight too.

            because obviously committing a crime w/a gun is illegal and irresponsible and especially reasonable cause for cops to have concern for their lives AND, because it’s their job when ppl brake the law or scare them.
            So instead of taking a theater shooter into custody, cops show up and just kill him on sight.

            I mean that’s what i’m thinking when I hear the laws and the parents are doing something wrong so lets give the cops the benefit of doubt. If the cops can get an actual killer to jail w/out being shot down immediately, why can’t they get a fake gun out of a kids hands w/o killing him?

            I just can’t help but think there’s something else going on here.

            Like

            • Shannon, I agree that there are quite a few situations in which we question the actions of the police. I’m not excusing the police actions with Tamir, this is still very new and more comes out but right now I believe that the police handled Tamir poorly and there are still many questions out there.

              Liked by 1 person

          • That’s taking the words of the police again.
            The police are bound to know that there are REAL look alikes and I’ve seen grownups walking around where you can see their guns, real buns, asked why, they say because we can.

            Like

      • I do blame the police Tower Flower. We live in a society that seems to want more guns, more real guns. Yet we’re allowing the police to kill children and young men who have toy guns.

        Like

        • I agree mindy.
          They can’t seem to have enough guns and STILL worry they’re going to be taken away.
          I wish that they worried more about the children
          The police get by with it ALL of the time.
          I’m so damn sick of it.
          Also what IF someone picked up a real one thinking it was a toy.
          That already happens all of the time.
          Last week a 6 year old shot his 4 year old brother and he died.
          What’s it going to take anyway?
          The boy in Walmart was never pointing it at anyone.
          Had he purchased it at Walmart?

          Like

        • I do blame the police in some of the situations and not in others. Just remember that children and young men do and have killed cops, we just don’t hear about it on the national news like when a child is killed by cops. These toys look so much like the real thing a cop can’t determine whether or not it is real. It was past shootings that caused the Federal law to come about putting the orange tip on them, to give the police something to determine that it was a toy. Remove that tip and they have no way to know.

          Like

          • tower,
            I would say we hear about it quiet often, but whoever kills the police pay for ir, just like the police should. When a police officer is killed there’s quiet a different action from people than when a kid is killed for no reason.

            Like

  13. Thank you Towerflower, you’ve brought up some important issues – and perhaps I could add, at school, given the incidences there and with some schools that may have adopted the gun safety program, it should be a part of the teachings.

    Manufacturers, I feel, have just as much responsibility in marketing replicas, neon marker or not, it should not be allowed, period. It’s marketing strategy to entice the children, just as video games depict weapons, it appeals to the fantasy world that children, especially boys, live in nowadays, while play acting. Just watching the video, it appeared that Tamir was doing just that, play acting as the 911 caller ‘sat there’ scared and watched and then the cops rolled up right in front of him and gunned him down. No matter how the “toys” are designed, they can be covered in black tape or painted. The type Tamir had – no, he shouldn’t have taken it outside of his residence…and his parents should have made that a standard for their home. Yet still, I do not blame the parent(s) – the officers hold the responsibility of murdering that child. IMHO

    Boys we grew up with in my day played cops and robbers and cowboys – not one time were those weapons considered potentially real and children were allowed to be children. It was all about the good guys and the bad guys and Indians and the sheriff of the town. Not anymore. Children are not allowed to be children. They’re not even growing up to be adults. Maybe that’s an all too real stigma today, the bad guy and the good guy.

    Children are forced into this seemingly ‘adult’ world of the boogie man behind every corner – better arm yourselves, send your kid(s) off to their academic institution with the Eddy Eagle Program to learn gun safety and how you too can kill safely before you’re killed. One plus one is…one. And hey girls, we have this new hot pink gun just for you and you little boys, we now have camouflage guns for all your needs but if you like bright blue, don’t worry, we have those now for you too! No, they’re not play guns, they’re REAL guns for children. I have a bitter taste in my mouth right now because I think some “adults” are idiots. Suffer the children. Their school yards are war zones. And so are their streets. Welcome to adulthood, kiddies.

    And I do think “color” has a lot to do with the continuous war on black youth – gun them down before an assessment of a situation, gun them down because “he reached for something in his waste band” which is really getting to be the verse of the day each black child or teen is murdered with impunity…lest we forget “stop resisting” as the life bleeds out of their bodies. Gun them down because they are black.

    Nothing will change until state laws are clear cut across all state lines, manufacturers can no longer produce replicas, the NRA is halted from politically buying the deaths of the innocent while the mentally ill can own guns and purchasers can get away without background checks. All police departments are FAILING in psychological profiles of candidates, training needs to change – they’re creating war zones – racist cops need to be fired, immediately. Good cops? Why are they not exposing the “Bad”:cops?

    I’ll leave it at this – last night I listened to extremely intelligent youth, black youth, and one of the questions posed was why they thought there weren’t enough black officers – the answer; because they wouldn’t be accepted…and that’s just in Ferguson. I’m feeling a wee bit crabby.

    Like

    • pilcherje….Yes, gone are the days where kids played with 6 shooter cap guns. Now we have look-a-like AR’s and pistols. Parents buy or let their children play with their M rated video games….Call of Duty, Grand Theft Auto, etc., ……in which children are being exposed to an adult world in a “game”. Gone are the oldie TV shows of Father Knows Best, I love Lucy and instead we get CSI and Criminal Minds. Today we live in fear of many things because society has itself changed. We are becoming more and more cynical and distrust everyone and their intentions.

      We don’t see everything going on with Tamir but the caller did say he would pull it out of his waistband and point it at people. He wasn’t with a group of kids playing cops and robbers he was by himself and most likely playing in his mind but what was the game? Could the cops handle it differently, yes. Like I said above what cop pulls right up to a “potential” shooter to order them raise their hands? They didn’t give themselves any other options to bring it to another end.

      I teach the Eddie Eagle program and for the record it does not teach children how to shoot. Instead it teaches children what to do when they see a firearm:
      1. STOP.
      2. Don’t touch.
      3. Leave the room/area.
      4. Tell an adult.
      This program, run by the NRA, teaches children to get away from firearms not go to them. When I start to teach it I will ask the kids what would you do if you went into a friend’s kitchen to get some water and you saw a gun on the counter? It is scary to hear some of the replies……ranging from pick it up, check to see if it’s loaded, etc……the exact situation when a child could kill another. I have to remind them that they can’t assume that one is a “toy”, that too many now the “toys” look like the real thing and they should always assume that it is real.
      The age as to when a child should learn to shoot is a decision left up to a parent. I have turned away some when teaching .22 target shooting because the child hasn’t grown enough to safely handle the rifle. Yes some gun manufactures developed designer firearms; you can now get them in a variety of colors and camouflage. Yes, some are designed for children like the Cricket .22 rifle which has a shorter stock and barrel for a smaller child. Most of the colors were designed for one target area and that was for women. I personally would never buy a pink handgun, they aren’t designer accessories. Camo has been around for awhile and favored with hunters more than anything. I also feel that coming out with colors and such, take away from the reality of what you are buying. You are buying a firearm that has a great potential of causing a death, they aren’t accessories to show off and display.

      Like

  14. (Administrator’s note)

    2dogsonly,
    Below is a screenshot of your advancing the lies of V. Pate and other cyber-extortionists.

    I do not defend myself against the lies of the cyber-extortionists. They, neither you, define me. There is no need for me to give, and have you or anyone else approve my resume in order for me to blog. Therefore, there’s no need for me to lie about my work experience. Why do you lie about it?

    Additionally, you lied saying you don’t follow this blog. Yes you do.

    You have posted condescending comments here previously and totally ignored those who responded to you. That shows an intent to only commit drive-by insults. I used the option to have your comments await moderation because of that.

    Your most recent comment in response to towerflower’s post was rude, condescending, and mean-spirited. I will not allow you to continue using this blog as your personal attack litter-box. Particularly, now that I know you have waddled in the pig-sty with cyber-extortionists and attempt to disparage me on another blog by spreading their/your lies, you are no longer welcomed here. Have a good day.

    Like

  15. All I can think of is Ralphie with his red rider BB gun. A blue eyed blonde who never would have been mowed down the way Tamir was. I agree with Roderick2012, Tamir was killed within 30 seconds of police arriving on the scene

    Like

    • mindyme62 –

      In “It’s a Wonderful Lie,” the main character in House M.D., jokes about purchasing that Red Rider BB gun. You’re right, Ralphie never would have experienced what Tamir did because back in the day, “black youth and adults were to be in by sundown.”

      Like

    • Actually Tamir was shot in less than 2 seconds, this is why I question the police actions also when they pulled up alongside of Tamir they did not give themselves any other options to try and diffuse and access the situation.

      Like

  16. yahtzeebutterfly

    Like

  17. Thank you everyone, I know this is not a pleasant topic. I know that people will have different opinions. I tried to present 3 scenarios that had the same tragic outcome but different stories behind them, they are not the same by any means. I have tried to show that sometimes it begins at home and the decisions we make as parents could also lead to a tragic outcome.

    Like

  18. IMO, I do believe that it’s just another excuse for the cop to kill a kid.
    The cops know there are toy guns like that out there,
    The parents and the kids aren’t at fault.
    I think that the toy company should recall all of them.
    I remember when they had pill candy. It looked like real meds, they recalled all of them.
    We always want the things that look real, but if they are a danger, then recall them.
    That’s better than one more child killed because of it.
    This officer and the one in Walmart, WTH????
    Had he just bought it in Walmart??
    Does Walmart sell them?.

    How many innocent ones have been mudered in just the last few years.
    2 for the “toy guns” 1 loud music 1 just walking home from the store, and now they’re all told by some “don’t wear hoodies”. Really????
    I’ve received many catalogs and everyone of them sell jackets or sweatshirts with hoodies.
    There’s no excuse for them being murdered , NONE!
    I guess since Trayvon, parents are supposed to be blamed now for the kids wearing a hoodie, or buying them a toy gun.
    My kids never wanted a toy gun, but, I’m sure my brother did and he would have been thrilled to have one.
    The companys need to pull them. It’s worth it.
    And the cops need to be charged for mudering an innocent person just like all of the rest of us.

    Like

  19. Did the 911 caller work at Walmart?
    Then he should be charged for lying especially
    he knew that Walmart sold that gun.
    The guy on the 911 call knew he wasn’t waving it at anyone.
    Also, more than a 12 have been murdered because of tese guns??

    Like

  20. roderick2012

    Michigan Cop Stops Black Man for Walking With Hands in His Pockets in Freezing Weather

    http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_slatest/2014/11/30/brandon_mckean_michigan_cop_stops_black_man_for_walking_with_hands_in_his.html

    Like

  21. roderrick,
    did someone actually call the damn police.
    IF the policeman had any sense he would have asked the CALLER, he’s got his hands in his pockets??? Well, no shit sherlock. Give me a break!!!!!
    What if it wasn’t cold???
    They are just harrassing them now.
    I just wanted to check, DUH!!!! What a dumbass, asking is he OK. Condesending!!!!!
    Then wants to high five????
    Like oh, yeah, I’m being fine and you’re all upset!!!
    He KNEW he was harrassing him, SEE IF YOU’RE OK, my ass!!!!!
    That wasn’t true!!!
    The police are really out of control.

    Like

  22. Question,
    I was over reading more about John Crawford in Walmart.
    He had been over playing video games and then went to the toy dept in Walmart.
    Couldn’t someone simply tell by cameras that the gun wasn’t even loaded.
    I honestly don’t know about toy or real guns, but don’t you have to put some kind of ammunition in them.
    He had just picked it up.
    I believe Walmart should be a little responsible, especially if the guy worked at Walmart that called 911.
    This is really upsetting.
    Were the cops that stupid to think it wasn’t a toy?

    Like

  23. Lolypol, I’ll try to answer some of your questions.

    Ronald Ritchie was not employed by Wal-Mart and was only a customer in the store.

    Store video also showed others handling the “toy” hours before John came by. At one time Wal-Mart used to do department checks where employees would scan their areas looking for things that might harm a customer, ie water on the floor or loose items. I don’t know why anyone would not remove this unpackaged “toy” from the aisle and maybe Wal-Mart should accept some responsibility in all of this.

    The video shown in the story starts when John picks up the air rifle which was in the Sporting Goods area of the store, you can tell that from the rifle/shotgun cases in the front part of the video. These “toys” are sold in the sporting goods area and not the toy section.

    The air rifle he was holding was unloaded and it’s impossible to tell if a firearm is loaded or unloaded from a video or photo.

    Air soft guns take a small plastic round pellet that typically come in a yellow or orange color. Air guns/BB guns take either a small round metal pellet (BBs) or a pellet that is made of metal and it’s shape is best described as a small mushroom.

    John Crawford III was hold a Crossman MK-177 air rifle this is what it looked like: http://www.walmart.com/ip/Crosman-MK-177-Tactical-Air-Rifle-Black/27254978 (Xena has tried to explain to me how to directly post photos but I haven’t caught on yet). This “toy” is a look-a-like of the Magpul Masada aka Bushmaster ACR. It even is made in the two colors that the Bushmaster comes in black and tan.

    Ronald Ritchie had told 911 several times that Crawford was loading BULLETS into the rifle which is impossible to do. Plain and simple it was his lies that led the police to believe they were about to encounter a mass shooting scenario. Ritchies lies also led to the death of Angela Williams, 37, who died of a heart condition following the panic of evacuating the store. In fact Angela Williams is seen in the Crawford video as the woman with 2 children, these are the children that Ritchie claimed he was pointing the rifle at. Williams older son later said on social media “I hope that he’s happy with himself” when talking about Ritchie.

    Ritchie has admitted to lying and I don’t understand why he hasn’t been charged with the deaths of two people.

    Look-a-likes are a problem, they are so realistic looking you just can’t tell the difference.

    Like

    • Thanks towerflower,
      You answered them well. I agree Ronald Ritchie , I didn’t know whether worked there are not, but knew that the caller was way off. Yes, this is as serious as calling 911 for a joke or yelling fire in a crowd. He sholud be charged with the two lives, but shouldn’t the police have acted a little more responsible.
      If the gun was out of package and someone else took it out, do you think that someone else removed the orange part? IF they have the camera on in the store and can see the person before taking it out of the package, maybe they can see him/her removing the orange part.
      IF so and they can find that person, they should be at least charged with theft, but why would they take just that part?
      Ritchie sounds so crazy, maybe he did it, then called 911.
      Could that have been a possibility?

      Again, thank you and I don’t want to seem like I just don’t want to understand and the fact that this looks real, couldn’t the officers assume the guy was looking at one,and in the store it wasn’t loaded. Maybe get on the speaker and ask questions from there or something?
      Personally I hate guns, period. To think, like the NRA, the more guns the safer and everyone should have one is not only rediculios, it disgusting.
      How we’ve allowed someone like the NRA to run this country is sad and shocking.
      I believe that people who want them should have them, but I don’t see why it’s legal to have one in public.
      We have so many trigger happy people ready to shoot for any reason is insane.
      It can only get worse.
      Also I do believe these guns shouldn’t be called guns and they should be recalled.
      I really do.
      I don’t believe there is a reasonable answer for having them.
      There will be others killed because of it and the sooner that they recall them if it saves one life our place will be safer to live in.

      I also REALLY do appreciate you bringing this to everyone’s attention.
      If they aren’t brought to our attention, now can we even think about a change?
      You know, just thinking and throwing this out, as I was saying the NRA does run this country. We are the people and all together, much bigger, why can’t we do something?
      Crazy, you can’t even talk about how disgusted you are with them in the media OR you lose your job.
      This just isn’t right.
      WOW!!! sorry so long, but I feel like I owe that to you, you were kind enough to answer my questions. THANKS AGAIN. : )

      Like

      • Lolypop…..here is where it gets crazy. A BB gun is not considered a “toy” where the air soft rifle/pistol is. The law I quoted above has an exemption to it…..BB guns, the reason is they are not considered a toy. John Crawford III held a BB gun.

        The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms have said BB guns are not firearms and the Consumer Product Safety Commission says they are not toys. They fall into a no man’s land. They are neither a toy nor a firearm but they should be considered a weapon since a BB gun can cause serious injury or even death (if the person is hit in the right place). So plain and simple the rifle that John picked up was not required by law to have an orange tip on it.

        I found this on another news site, it found the warning that is included in the owner’s manual of the Crossman MK-177. “Warning: “do not brandish or display this air rifle in public–it may confuse people and may be a crime. Police and others may think it’s a firearm.”

        Personally, while I support the 2nd Amendment, I do not support Open Carry in public areas. I feel that it creates more problems and does nothing to help in maintaining the 2nd Amendment. If you live out in the middle of nowhere or have a fear of encountering dangerous animals while out and about then fine but going into a Starbucks in the middle of a city to have a cup of coffee with your AR-15 slung across your back I don’t see a need for it.

        Plain and simple companies make these look-a-likes because they are good sellers….more $’s for the company. Something needs to change, I don’t care about the company’s bottom line when someone’s child is needlessly shot because LE can’t tell the difference. The laws need to change with these look-a-likes plain and simple. A person just can’t tell the difference between the real ones and the fake ones and that makes them dangerous, dangerous to the hands that they are put in.

        Like

  24. crustyolemothman

    towerflower, As you are well aware, our opinions differ greatly in the use and possession of guns, however you have written an excellent article outlining a subject that is often ignored. This subject needed to be discussed, but unfortunately as long as the political operatives that function in our nation as members of government are adverse to taking on the NRA then no real change will occur… The other area you touched briefly on was personal responsibility, IMO if we had more people in this nation that were willing to accept that they make mistakes (not just the other person), then many of the prominent problems we suffer from at this time would lessen if not disappear…

    O/T but it does show that the problem in Ferguson, Mo. was actually good for some sectors of the economy, however not so good for many other people…

    http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/us-sees-highest-black-friday-gun-sales-in-recorded-history/ar-BBgcQj7

    Like

  25. That 911 call in Walmart is so hard to listen to and after the police arrived its less than 4 seconds that he shot and killed John Crawford. To hear him crying is so painful.
    You can see he’s on the ground when the paranoid idiot said he was running.
    Where was Ritchie when he said that? He couldn’t see his leg? But, yet he describes everything else. There were others shopping around and the didn’t get all paranoid.
    It just makes a person sick to see this time and time again.
    I am so very sorry for his family and girlfriend.

    Like

    • Lolypop, from what I have read, Ritchie stayed about 100 feet away from Crawford. In the tape the woman with the two children with her was the woman who later died from a heart issue. You can see she wasn’t afraid of Crawford but the resulting panic from Ritchie’s lies caused her death.

      Like

      • http://www.whio.com/videos/news/man-who-called-911-in-walmart-shooting-talks-to/vCmptw/

        towerflower,
        listen to this guy. the more I hear him talk he couldhave very well been the one that took the gun out of the package.
        WOW!!!! the lies are all over the place. He tried to come at the officer??? No way!!!
        You’re right, listen to the panic call. He wanted everyone to panic.
        Sorry, but 2nd degree murder is what I believe he should be charged with.
        He KNEW what he was doing and thanks again for all of the information.
        I’m not against anyone having guns, like they used to, but now they’ve gone crazy.
        My husband thought when he saw RR that he looked like GZ, brother. : )
        They just have the same mentality.
        Look how he’s talking to the one interviewing, he KNOWS that Crawford died because of him and doesn’t even care.
        What a jerk!

        Like

  26. I’m sorry, but in Aug. I never heard aout Crawford. Been very busy.
    So I’ve read some about this Ritchie guy. It’s hard to get a lot of info, but his case, like Browns was taken to the same court and of course the officers were in their rights, THEY SAID! No charges. When is enough enough??

    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/sep/26/walmart-ohio-shooting-charges-911-calller-john-crawford#comments

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    • Lolypop, while some what the police held responsible for John’s death, I put the blame on Ritchie. The police were responding to his call and based their actions on his words…….his waving it at people and pointing it at children, 3 times he says he sees him trying to load bullets into his rifle. That call would put any officer on high alert, thinking they were about to encounter a mass shooting already in progress or about to begin.

      This is why I said John Crawford didn’t stand a chance that day. It wouldn’t have taken much at all for the police to have shot him based on the information they were given. I don’t believe John even realized that the police were talking to him or about him, his back was to the police and he was on the phone, if all they said was to “drop it” who were they talking to? If you are a mad gunman you would assume that you would know the comment was for you, but if you are a regular shopper who had no ill will you wouldn’t assume the comments were for you. Make a slight move and bang. IF, JUST IF, for a moment that this was a mad gunman about to go crazy in the store would everyone not hail the LE officers as heroes? That is a very fine balancing act.

      So who put the police on high alert? Ritchie and his lies. This is why he should be responsible for their deaths.

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      • I watched the you tube where ritchie and his wife were just in the store for about an hour then all caos broke out from his 911 call.
        He is a liar and love to talk just like GZ.
        He caused it but the police acted too swiftly.
        How sad!
        I guess I’m just reading about this case and can’t believe I didn’t hear anything about it.
        John Crawford and his family deserve justice, but like the rest, it won’t happen.
        Him and his wife were just looking for something and they got it.
        She didn’t have a broken ankle as was stated.

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        • I do’t want to sound like I’m beating a dead horse over John Crawford, But I’ve heard about Tamir, Brown and Garner. Will there be justice in anyway for Crawford?
          Not much said about him.
          But, his senseless death over nothing has brothered me a lot.
          He never pointed the gun at anyone?
          Is it that they don’t mention it much to protect Walmart?

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          • Lolypop,
            I think that Walmart paid a settlement to the estate of the woman who died of a heart attack in the store when Crawford was killed. I try keeping up but there’s too much to keep up with lately. Too many victims. Too much injustice.

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            • Walmart must see some responsibility in this since they now have the “toys” behind the counter and not out for anyone to pick up or remove from their boxes.

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            • I should clarify that only the Ohio Walmart moved the “toys” from customer access and not all Walmarts.

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            • I’m sorry Xena,
              It isn’t your job. I haven’t heard anything in the media about Crawford.
              You go far and beyond, I realize that.
              Some times I miss a lot and only come to get answers. I’m sure a lot of anwers we’ll never know.
              You have a place to come and vent and I rwally do appreciate EVERYTHING you do.
              You are very special to me and others.
              If I sounded short or just wrong, I really am sorry.
              You’re a treasure!!!!

              Like

            • Lolypop! You didn’t sound short or wrong. No need to apologize. It is me who owe you an apology if I sounded accusatory. Please forgive me. I am overwhelmed right now and might have unintentionally sounded short.

              Sorry Apology

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  27. video of ronald ritchie!
    I hope it’s ok to put this on here.
    WOW@!!!! the asshole just lied like he was a pro at lying, but pictures don’t lie.
    This was right before Michael Brown.
    I am angry, but more frustrated and disappointed in our justice system.
    I can’t imagine how it is for their families. It’s more than anyone can take.

    http://www.dailykos.com/story/2014/09/10/1328519/-So-why-isn-t-Ronald-Ritchie-being-charged-with-Manslaughter-in-Police-Killing-of-John-Crawford

    Like

  28. http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2014/dec/03/officer-who-fatally-shot-tamir-rice-had-been-judged-unfit?CMP=share_btn_tw

    The officer who shot and killed Tamir was going to be fired from the Independence Police Dept for lacking the emotional ability to be a cop, lying to superiors and other items. He resigned before being fired.

    Like

  29. Xena,
    I can’t reply back for some reason on our apologies. LOL
    No mam, you sure don’t owe me an apology.
    For all of your hard work????
    My husband and I were talking about you. YES!!!!!
    He know’s you because I’m always talking about you. ALL GOOD!!! : )
    He say’s he doesn’t know how anyone can keep up and run a blog like you do. Plus it’s almost like a 24/7 job. You put a lot of your time and effort in it and it shows.
    You do this for us and you don’t need a headache from me.
    You said forgive you, Of course I would if you had done anything, but you didn’t.
    I love your little expressions. lol
    They say so much and are so darn cute!! : )
    Your friends,
    Lolypop and her hubby!!!!

    Like

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