Do you remember the good old days when men were allowed to be men? Yeah, I don’t either. And frankly, I don’t even know what that means. But I do remember playing with Super Soakers when I was younger, and they were a lot of fun.
However, the Boy Scouts of America don’t seem to share my fond memories of squirt guns. The organization has banned its members from playing with the cherished childhood toys.
“Pointing any type of firearm or simulated firearm at any individual is unauthorized,” according to the 2015 Boy Scouts of America National Shooting Sports Manual.
“Water guns and rubber band guns must only be used to shoot at targets, and eye protection must be worn,” the manual states, adding that any targets must not be “living” or “human representations.”
Aside from the minimal risk of eye damage, why would the Boy Scouts enact such a ban? Scouting expert Bryan Wendell offers the following explanation.
A Scouter once told me this explanation I liked quite a bit: “A Scout is kind. What part of pointing a firearm [simulated or otherwise] at someone is kind?”
False point. While squirting water at someone isn’t necessarily “kind,” the same can be said for throwing a basketball at the back of someone’s head. But the Boy Scouts aren’t going to ban basketballs. And there’s nothing unkind about two kids willingly participating in a squirt gun fight. It’s as harmless as a game of tag.
To put it another way, squirt guns don’t squirt people. People squirt people. If you don’t believe me, just watch this squirt-gun ad.
On second thought, just go ahead and ban squirt guns.
Jason Mathews is Internetting way too hard. Follow him at @jasonmathews316.