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Toy guns aren't as bad as guns that look like toys

To the editor: Although it is great that The Times supports ensuring that toy guns do in fact look like toy guns, we must not forget that real guns must look like real guns. ("Toy guns should look like toys," Editorial, Jan. 28)

Currently, you can legally buy real handguns, rifles and shotguns in virtually any color. You can even get them with cartoon character designs.

It does little good to make toy guns look like toys if real guns can look like toys. After all, they shoot real bullets and are a real threat to citizens and law enforcement.

Gary Charlton, Sylmar

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To the editor: The idea to make toy guns easily identifiable, although well-meaning, will not work.

Kids want toy guns to look just like the ones they see in movies, on TV shows and in news reports. I dare say that when we were kids, we enjoyed the "real thing" more than something that was contrived and not the right color, size and weight.

This idea further removes the onus of raising responsible, thinking children from parents. It brings to mind the way schools evaluate students for behavioral traits that are, frankly, none of their business and not related to the curriculum, and the way parents shrug off their responsibilities and participation in parenthood onto the schools.

Tragedies like officers mistakenly shooting kids with toy guns will continue until parents take a more active role in raising their kids.

Lincoln Gable Riley, Culver City

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To the editor: Your editorial on toy guns was sensible. However, since guns are made to kill living organisms, perhaps guns are not appropriate to be simulated as toys.

The solution is to eliminate toy guns altogether. If a child wants to act out a shootout, he can imagine a stick to be his "gun." Police will not mistake the stick for the real thing.

Gary Colboth, Long Beach

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