Baltimore OKs ban of replica guns

By Luke Broadwater and Yvonne Wenger. November 15th, 2016

The Baltimore City Council gave preliminary approval Monday to a citywide ban on toy guns that look like working handguns and rifles.

Council members introduced the legislation after a 14-year-old East Baltimore boy holding a BB gun was shot by a city police detective in April.

City Council President Bernard C. "Jack" Young said replica guns are contributing to violence on Baltimore's streets. He said people are using the fake weapons in robberies, and children who carry them are put in harm's way.

There have been more than 800 shootings this year in Baltimore, which is on pace to pass 300 homicides for a second consecutive year.

"It's something that we should do for the safety of our children," Young said. "We're getting stores robbed with replicas. We've got people running around with these things and they almost look real. ... I don't think we should be allowing replica guns in the city of Baltimore, especially with the murder rate we have." ......

No ban is ever welcome but there are facets to this which bare analysis, with probably varying opinions. One thing which is certain is that a 'toy' gun in anyone's hands will not be checked first (If any orange tip removed) - it will be regarded by law enforcement as a firearm and very likely be acted upon, with possible fatal results. Responsible parents should instill on kids this very risk of course. The other main point to note is that an 'armed' robbery may just as easily be committed with a 'toy' gun - few potential victims will know the difference. The question remains, are these factors enough to promote a ban on these 'weapons'? Bans of course usually only work within the law abiding community!
As for Baltimore murder rates, that is another matter entirely!
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