I posted this, but don't know if it's in the right thread.
As a certified firearm safety instructor, I can tell you that firearm safety should be taught to EVERY child in EVERY home in America, because whether you have toy or real firearms in your home or not, you can't be there every minute of every day, and if your child happens upon a cast-off gun on a playground, or a firearm carelessly left out at someone else's home, they should know, without a doubt, EXACTLY what to do.
Parents that think they are protecting their children by burying their heads in the sand are raising children with latent curiosity. Making it taboo is going to make it exciting. Of course they are going to want to play with guns. Why do you suppose children are the victims of gun accidents? BECAUSE THEIR PARENTS DIDN'T DRILL SAFETY INTO THEIR HEADS FROM A VERY YOUNG AGE!!!
My kids have been shooting at targets since they were 4 years old. They have their own rifle, and at ages 6 and 7, they can operate it safely, clear it, field strip it and clean it. They know that they are NOT TO TOUCH any firearm without adult supervision, but when they want to go target shooting, all they have to do is ask, and we go out and shoot. If I can't right then, well, then, we schedule some time to do it in the near future.
What I have to worry about is their friends with over protective, paranoid, and, quite frankly, ignorant parents, who have turned a blind eye to firearm safety, coming to my house and doing something stupid and inappropriate. Our firearms are locked up and out of sight, but it is so ridiculous and so sad that these kids wouldn't know how to handle it if they found one.
Guns are a part of our culture and our heritage, and pretending that they don't exist isn't going to change the facts. I am looking forward to the time when my kids are old enough to handle a shotgun because I am looking forward to taking them trap shooting, and getting them involved in sporting. Whether or not they choose to pursue a hobby, I want to make sure that they are exposed to all of the fun and SAFE things that there are to do at the range and beyond.
In closing, I would like to say that you are doing your children a huge disservice by not allowing them to play with toys, and you are potentially putting them in harm's way by not drilling firearm safety into their heads. There was a time when it was taught in the schools, and I firmly believe that those practical lessons should be brought back!