The Virtuous Vituperator

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Blogging Ain't Easy!

You know blogging isn't as easy as it seems. It is NOT that I have nothing to say, nor that I am shy on topics to expound my wisdom upon- no. It's time.

The time it takes to commit to a blog (aka: A Journal) is hard to come by. I'm impressed by daily bloggers who tear through the news and keep up with it all in order to formulate opinions and ideas on all matters relating to our world.

It's more than a hobby. You have to actually commit to your blog. You have to love and nourish it for it to grow. Then when the unexpected happens- someone you don't know reads it- you delve a little deeper.

Kudos to all of you regular bloggers. Whether I agree with your views of the world we share, I admire your dedication to keeping up with it all.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Air Soft, My ASS

Yes well.
I can start with I am DEFINITELY for gun control. I always was, but my feelings about it changed this week when my daughter was accidentally shot in the eye by an air soft gun.

I can wholeheartedly say there is nothing soft about this gun. My daughter got to keep her eye (barely!). Had it hit her 1-2mm (yes, MILLIMETERS) higher on her eye, she would have lost it. The gun was fired from the ground up to the window on the second story of our home, went through the screen and hit her eye. I do not consider that "safe". The distance was EASILY 25-30ft and through a screen window.

For those not in the know-

These air guns in the past were imported under the Air Soft name... This is a colloquial term in reference to BB guns that use plastic or ceramic BBs larger than the common BBs guns used for sporting purposes. It is a bit of a misnomer as there is nothing "soft" about being hit by a plastic bb at 15 feet. Standard BBs are copper or steel with a diameter of 0.177 caliber or (4.5mm). Air Soft BBs are generally 6mm or near 0.24 caliber. Most of the air guns we sell are technically not "Air Soft" as these are all EXPORT MODELS that make use of slightly higher compression springs, motors and gears that would be illegal in most countries where air soft guns are sold. Additionally our particular air guns have been re-designed to accommodate the use of metallic ammunition.
Air Soft was originally designed as a toy. It later gained popularity as a training tool for Law Enforcement Live Fire Training. This low velocity (compared to a regular bb gun) adds in that it takes away the danger of misdirected fire that with a live round would kill. The advantage is that officers can safely train with weapons that appear to be identical to those they normally use and can train against a live, moving and like armed hostile without the fear or serious injury. In the past few years as the number of air soft guns in the USA increases so has the interest from the general public for general propose shooting and gaming.

Isn't it nice that this dealer has modified his toys to accomodate REAL metal ammunition.
AKA... bullets.

Dear daughter (dd) is not all roses and fine.
No. She sustained a severe hyphaema (hi-fee-mah) Essentially a huge blood clot on the eye. She is at immediate risk of requiring a major surgery to "clean out her eye of the blood and clots" if it starts to bleed again, cataracts, glaucoma and even blindness in that eye. Even if all goes well, we will not know the full extent of any vision loss for a few months.

She has to stay 100% stationary for approximately 7 days and had to be blinded by a sleeping mask for 100% of the time. She is only allowed to remove it to go to the bathroom, go up and down the stairs safely (once per day) and to get one of her 6 rounds of medications. Other than that she can lay on her good side, or on her back, propped up and listen to the world go by during what's left of her summer vacation. She is currently on round the clock pain medication as well. Yes, the pain is THAT bad.

Air soft guns are NOT toys. Sorry folks. My son is devastated to have done this to his sister. He absolutely was not intending to hit her. Forgiveness is all around and for that I am proud and thankful for their love of each other. He had already been educated about gun safety and the serious attitude we have about them. He took the gun as a toy, which too many people make the mistake of doing, he took it even though we forbade it- played with it anyway and there have been SERIOUS consequences. His words now- "I will never touch another gun as long as I live."

The parents in the neighborhood (all but one) have taken away their kid's air soft toy guns. No one thought they were truly, truly dangerous. The boy that owns the gun is 10. He plays with it openly and around his younger 5 and 6 year old brothers. Most of the boys wear safety goggles when they play with them out in the street. Wellllllllll.... what about all of the other people out there? The other kids? They aren't wearing safety goggles. Something we noted when our 8 year old daughter took a stray pellet in the leg a month ago.

"Oh they sting, but the kids are safe" was the response we received.

For anyone who reads this who has a child (especially a young one) who wants one of these popular toys. My advice is to just say no. They hurt when they hit pretty much anywhere on the body. It's NOT a toy, and even with gun safety taught- accidents happen. Gun safety is taught at home... blah, blah, blah.

When it's your child- that accident may not seem so random.