Hawaii Legislators Propose Ban on Toy Gun Sales to Minors
FOX ON THE RECORD WITH GRETA VAN SUSTEREN February 8, 2011
VAN SUSTEREN: Well, kids may no longer be allowed to play cowboys and Indians in Hawaii. That's because proposed legislation in the state would ban the sale of toy guns. Companion bills were submitted to both the house and the senate. The bills would make it a crime to sell or offer to sell a toy gun to a minor. And the penalty could hefty fine and even 90 days in jail or both.Tucker Carlson, editor of The Daily Caller, joins us live. Tucker! Nice to see you.
TUCKER CARLSON, DAILYCALLER.COM: Greta, thank you.
VAN SUSTEREN: How about Hawaii?
CARLSON: Oh, well! There are a number of things wrong with this, some obvious, some not. First, it usurps rights that belong to parents, not the state. Parents get to choose what kind of toys their play with -- A. B, there's no evidence at all that the sale or use of toy guns by children leads to gun violence in later life. There's no study that affirms this. There's no longitudinal effort to look into this at all. This is clearly legislators acting out of their own unproved neuroses.
Three, the law completely overreaches. The Hawaii statute specifically calls for jail time for people who violate it. And four, and maybe not so obviously, this undermines people's confidence in government. When you attempt to pass laws this frivolous, especially at a time when a lot of states, including Hawaii, have serious structural fiscal problems -- they're going broke -- you send the message that you're not -- you're not serious about the process of governing.
VAN SUSTEREN: You know, you are so much nicer about this tonight than I am because my first thought is, like...
VAN SUSTEREN: You know, like, I thought, you know, like, I think -- you know, if I were -- if I were a guessing person, I'd think that in terms of what's more likely provoke someone for future violence, future (INAUDIBLE) toy guns or parents that are beating each other up, chances are, parents who are beating each other up!
CARLSON: Exactly. Exactly.
VAN SUSTEREN: So (INAUDIBLE) learn that. Or how about this one, the way we glamorize violence on television or movies. That's more likely to say it's OK to do that than, I think, than a toy gun. And if we're going to take away toy guns from kids, what about the -- what about the knives in the kitchen? I mean, those are real weapons! Those might hurt (INAUDIBLE) Should we just take all the knives out of all the kitchens? And what about the -- what about the plugs in the walls where kids might stick their fingers in the plugs? Should we close the plugs? I don't know. I mean, you know, it's, like, it's so -- it's -- I'm surprised that the legislators have so much free time on their -- on their hands that they can sit and worry about toy guns.
CARLSON: Well, of course, because the truth -- and few people want to say this out loud, but it's obvious to anybody who pays attention, which is thoughtful, loving parents are far more likely to produce law-abiding children who don't resort to violence out of frustration. And parents who are poor at the job of parenting are much more likely to produce kids who act out in violent ways. That's the truth. It has nothing to do with toys.
And let me just say, as the father of four, if you take away Nerf guns, I don't have anything to do on Sunday afternoons because there is nothing more fun than chasing your kids around the living room with a Nerf gun, I can tell you with years of experience behind it. It's a great thing to do.
VAN SUSTEREN: Well, I...
CARLSON: And my kids aren't prone to violence. I mean, come on!
VAN SUSTEREN: And you know, I think the problem -- I mean, when I was a child, there were more toy guns than the more sophisticated toys you see now, like video games and everything. I think...
VAN SUSTEREN: And I don't see -- I don't see that our crime is going down with taking toy guns away from children. I mean, like, you know, it's -- you know, the -- our -- our crime was probably a lot less, you know, 30, 40 years ago than it is now. You know, it's, like, I'm just trying to think, like, what in the world would possess some legislator to sit around and think, you know, we've got people who don't have -- who have serious health problems, who can get health insurance...
VAN SUSTEREN: ... we have people who's getting foreclosed on in their houses, we've got people, you know, all -- people who were wrongfully convicted, we've got crime that isn't -- isn't prosecuted. We've got -- we've got Goldman Sachs people who are making bloody fortunes and maybe -- I know -- and what are they doing to the market? And they're worried about toy guns. Go figure.
CARLSON: Well, I'll tell you why, because it's a lot easier. Rather than funding a professional police department that might actually do something about crime, protect law-abiding citizens from criminals, that's time-consuming and really expensive. How much easier just to draft a law saying, People who do something I find unattractive ought to be put in jail. That's the -- that is the message of this law! It annoys me, what you're doing, therefore, you ought to be in prison. I mean, that is a pretty answer. But of course, it's not an answer, and that's the problem with it.
VAN SUSTEREN: And I don't mean to pick on Goldman Sachs. What I meant by my reference simply is that Wall Street has gravely disappointed us over the years. And so I was more concerned with trying to clean up that than I would be about toy guns in Hawaii.
CARLSON: In contrast to Nerf guns, which have never let me down once, not a single time.
VAN SUSTEREN: Indeed. Tucker, it's always nice to see you. I'm anxious to see what Hawaii does. I'm glad to see that they have so much free time on their hands….
RELATED: Toy gun sales would be banned under proposed Hawaii legislation
The bills would make it a crime to sell or offer to sell a toy gun to a minor in Hawaii: "Penalty, any person who violates this section shall be subject to a fine of not more than $2,000, imprisonment of not more than ninety days, or both," the legislation says. HB432 and SB749 were submitted to the House and Senate by Rep. Scott Saiki and Sen. Carol Fukunaga, respectively.