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Should Kids Be Allowed at Gun Fairs?

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Eight-year-old Christopher Bizilj accidentally shot himself in the head with an Uzi during a Mass. gun fair. Christopher lost control of the 9mm micro submachine gun as it recoiled while he fired at a pumpkin at the Oct. 26, 2008, event.

christopher bizilj

The Westfield club where the gun fair was held pleaded no contest last week to a charge of involuntary manslaughter and paid a $1,000 fine -- the maximum it faced under state law, reports the AP.

It also will donate $10,000 in Christopher's name to two charities: $5,000 each to the Shriner's Hospital for Children and the Children's Miracle Network through Baystate Children's Hospital.

Christopher's family says they trusted that the event would be fun and safe, and now their family has been ripped apart by Christopher's accidental shooting. They have a $4 million federal lawsuit that's still pending against the club, the event's promoters and those who supplied the weapon and ammunition. But no amount of money could ever bring their son back.

Our heart aches and breaks for Christopher's family.

Do you think children should be allowed at gun fairs or gun shows at all? Comment below.

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105 comments so far | Post a comment now
Dara March 15, 2010, 5:30 AM

I don’t think they should permit kids under sixteen.

Anonymous March 15, 2010, 5:33 AM

i think they should be able to go, but not be able to shoot…..especially a uzi. my 10 year old stepson has been shooting since he was 6 - shot his first deer at 7, but i wouldn’t let him shoot guns at a gun fair. the gun he uses he is familiar with…and locked up at all times.

TwinHappyJen March 15, 2010, 6:29 AM

OMG, what a horrible story! I can’t believe they actually let kids into these things… there are a lot of things that may be perfectly fine for adults, but why would anyone think it’s OK to take a child to something like this? Would you take them to a porn fair, too? Sorry, but I think it’s horribly irresponsible to let a child anywhere near a gun… much less fire it! And an uzi? A 9-year old? What in the world was everybody there thinking?

Mo March 15, 2010, 6:44 AM

If you can’t buy a gun you shouldn’t be at a gun show.

Jenni Williams March 15, 2010, 7:07 AM

I am so sorry for this families loss, but when you allow your kid to pick up a gun and shoot it, you assume responsibility for what happens. I am NOT a fan of guns period. I think that a gun show is NO place for a kid. We have laws that keep kids from guns in our homes, but allow them to walk around a convention full of them and play with loaded ones? This makes no sense.

Raine March 15, 2010, 7:25 AM

I think children should be allowed at gun shows and “fairs” because they are family events in many places, but I don’t think children under 12 should be allowed to handle any loaded weapons in public, even with adult supervision, and that anyone handling a loaded gun at a public event should have to show some proof of firearms safety training.

Rob G March 15, 2010, 1:03 PM

I think it’s safe too say that allowing a nine year old to use a full auto uzi is not a bright idea. That’s a very difficult weapon for even many adults to shoot properly. I don’t have a problem with kids at gun fairs, but I do think they’re should be very strict limits on what they’re allowed to shoot. Weapons like that uzi should not be on that list. Having said that, why did the parents let him shoot the thing? I can understand saying that the person who owned the gun should have said “No you’re too young to shoot this,” but so should his parents. They carry responsibility for this too.

Earl H March 15, 2010, 3:17 PM

I have no problem with kids going to a gun show because certain places treat it as a family event but kids should see and not touch at gun shows.

Anonymous March 15, 2010, 6:21 PM

Wasn’t anybody watching the kid?? I blame the parents.

Jeff Prager March 16, 2010, 3:25 AM

The only people that shouldn’t be allowed at Gun Fairs are STUPID people.

By the way, I don’t own a gun and never will but everyone has a right to own one and they should if they feel they want one and anyone that allows their kid to shoot a machine gun is STUPID.

Jeff Prager March 16, 2010, 3:30 AM

You can’t legislate STUPIDITY.

Lala March 16, 2010, 3:49 AM

Nooooooo kids shouldn’t own a freakin are u stupid. He shouldn’t be touching that thing or even looking at it. I blame the parents ITS YOUR FAULT and u should be put in JAIL!!!!!!!

toy van Nooijen March 16, 2010, 4:08 AM

gunshops should be closed all over america
that’s my opinion madame


J.D March 16, 2010, 4:16 AM

ABSOLUTELY NOT should anyone under 18 be allowed at one of those I dont give a rats butt about some kids being good at hunting young That is a huge mistake the friggin backwoods rednecks need to keep guns outta kids hands not out there teaching them how to shoot than there will never be any accidents like this The parents are as much to blame as the people running fair are if he wouldn’t have been there he would be alive today how horrible this little boy had to die because his parents were irresponsible

Mom March 16, 2010, 4:35 AM

NO! NO! NO! No child needs to shoot a gun period! We do not live in colonial times. Accidents happen with guns period whether the gun is in your child’s hand or in another’s hand. BTW - Jeff P we do need to legislate stupidity. Look at anon who’s child shot his 1st gun at 6 years old. Why would any 6 yo need to handle a gun? Find another hobby to share with your child. Go bowling for crying out loud.

marm..MI March 16, 2010, 4:53 AM

Education is the key. parents that teach their children gun safety and responsibility would never let a 9 yr old shoot an uzi. there is no reason to own one unless ur a collector. if u teach kids whats right and wrong with guns they wont pick one up for violence. education people. not hatred of guns.

anon March 16, 2010, 4:58 AM

This story is a tragedy, but I don’t fault the gun show, nor do I find it wrong for a parent to take their child to a gun show. It is our RIGHT, people. Second Amendment. Where were the parents? Didn’t they tell him before they went in that he wasn’t to touch or handle the guns in any way? It is the parents’ responsibility to keep an eye on their child.

mark MI March 16, 2010, 4:58 AM

did the parent say it was ok for their son to shoot it, or did someone from the show say… pssst hey kid come shoot this pumpkin. who’s fault? i wonder

Kimberly March 16, 2010, 5:06 AM

If you stop kids from attending this function what’s next, they won’t be able to go to Walmart after all that’s a safe place but your children might be kidnapped or step out in the parking lot and get run over, come on. The problem is yes its a tragic outcome and my heart goes out to the family but what’s not mentioned is how many thousands of kids that did not get hurt but learned safety and learned not to touch any guns with out parental supervision. I agree that a young child should not be handling a Uzi but there are safer guns for a child to shoot. I read some of these comments about not allowing any guns in America then maybe you should move to a country that takes away your rights to own a gun and as well as many more rights. U.S.A was founded on many free rights and I believe we should exercise them. We also need to quit blaming others for our own mistakes and stupidity and take on responsibilities as parents and citizens.

jen March 16, 2010, 5:26 AM

Absolutely not…what type of example are we teaching our kids? What’s next?

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