It’s not chilling, PCSO Hall, it is a childhood game to play with a pretend gun

I do not agree with the comments of PCSO Jonathan Hall and his suggestion that a young boy playing with guns is in any way ‘chilling’ (April 30).

In the early 1930s, together with my friends, I shot and killed a large number of imaginary villains with a pretend gun known by us all as a ‘Six Shooter’ because that was what we saw in pictures and at a cinema being used by cowboys.

There was as much chance of seeing a cowboy in rural Gloucestershire as there is of seeing a real policeman in Ely – it was a childhood game.

Later some of us were using real guns in the services and the younger lads used pretend weapons seen in large numbers in the hands of soldiers.

The real reason is that young boys follow events they see and today at least once a week they see photos of policemen carrying machine pistols in public therefore they will pretend to be acting as the officers.

There is no danger that all the youngsters will turn into armed criminals – I only carried a firearm once during my service and it had to be concealed from public view.

I would like to know if PCSO Hall stopped to speak to the lad he mentions and explain why firearms were carried. This would have been the obvious thing for him to do.

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PHILIP GOULD

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