Children are always being told what to do in life. War play gives them a sense of power and control that they don’t have as a child. (But) war toys are a problem because they do not exist in a vacuum. War toys have become imitations of 30-minute cartoons that are actually commercials.
Studies show that kids who observed a role model that punches and kicks and hits a figure on TV . . . eventually kicked, punched and were violent as well. And we know that kids who watch TV perceive the world as less safe.
But grabbing (war) toys from children is even more damaging than TV and war toys, because that act sends a child a message that “what I want is bad” and children don’t know the difference between “what I want is bad” and “I am bad.”
What we must do as adults and parents is simply observe and respect (their playtime) and try to understand what they are struggling to deal with in life.