The release of the book “LEGO Heavy Weapons” is causing a bit of controversy over the idea of Lego gun replicas.
Seventeen-year-old Jack Streat made quite a name for himself among Lego enthusiasts by building fully functioning gun replicas entirely out of Legos. Yes, you read that right — they actually shoot. They don’t fire bullets, of course, but they can launch smaller Lego pieces. As you might imagine, a manual that gives step-by-step instruction on how to create functioning Lego handguns and rifles is something that any ten-year-old boy would love to get his hands on.
Well, assuming that his parents would let him. The release of this book has caused quite a bit of debate between parents, Lego hobbyists, and gun rights activists. Jon Trew, a UK father laments, “If adults want to make models of automatic weapons and realistic guns, let them do it, but not using Lego. Using the bricks for this purpose really undermines and subverts a brilliant children’s toy. [...] It’s just wrong, wrong, wrong.”
Trew’s stance is backed up by the Danish manufacturer Lego Group, which has a strict policy against Lego guns — nevermind the fact that their Bionicle line of toys uses weapons.
In the other camp, however, you’ve got a commenter from ThisisLondon.co.uk, who warns, “Kids could make atomic bombs out of Lego, and just think what would happen if some Islamic terrorist get hold of a copy.” Plus, you’ve got to factor in human nature. Give a young boy a bunch of Legos and the first thing he builds will probably either be a fort, a car, a plane, or a gun. Kids have been building Lego weapons ever since the toys were released, with or without the consent of their parents and the manufacturer. All this book does is tell them how to do it better.