Wednesday, December 26, 2012
In a tragic commentary on the level of gun violence in America, sales are soaring for armored backpacks for children and assault weapons since the Connecticut school massacre. The backpacks, however, won't stop bullets fired from assault weapons:
The reaction to the deadly Connecticut school shooting can be seen at gun stores and self-defense retailers across the nation, with anxious parents buying armored backpacks for children and firearms enthusiasts stocking up on semi-automatic rifles in anticipation of tighter gun control measures.
While a spike in gun sales is common after a mass shooting, the latest rampage has generated record sales in some states, particularly of assault weapons.
...There was also an unusual increase in sales for armored backpacks designed to shield children caught in shootings, according to three companies that make them.
The armor inserts fit into the back panel of a child’s backpack, and sell for up to $400, depending on the retailer. The armor is designed to stop bullets from handguns, not assault weapons like the one used in the shooting at the Newtown, Conn., school.
Manufacturers and some parents say that while they don’t guarantee children won’t be killed, they could be useful shields.
Some experts, however, say sending children to school in armored backpacks is not a healthy response to fear about mass shootings. Anne Marie Albano, psychiatry director at Columbia University’s Clinic for Anxiety and Related Disorders, said parents should convey calmness, not anxiety.
‘‘This is not serving to keep children safe,’’ she said. ‘‘This is serving to increase their fear and their suspicion of their peers.’’
Image: Think Progress