The family-friendly branch of the National Rifle Association (NRA) website, nra-family.org, recently added new content to its site that is aimed at helping children with gun awareness. Conservative blogger Amelia Hamilton put a twist on two famous Grimm’s Fairy Tales. The old classics, Little Red Riding Hood and Hansel and Gretel, have now been remastered to include armed characters, which are supported by the NRA. Hamilton decided these stories needed to have a little more firepower. She stated that she will be recreating more stories in the future.
Hamilton received a Master’s Degree from the University of St. Andrews, Scotland, in English and 18th century history. She pursued her education further, receiving a Ph.D. in fine and decorative Arts at Christie’s London. The series of books she created are targeted at young audiences–the Growing Patriot series. The NRA is also having her continue to write the new revisions.
In the Grimm’s version of Little Red Riding Hood, the little girl sets off to see her grandmother. She traveled through the woods where a wolf stalked her. Using a bit of trickery, the wolf asked her where she was headed. The main character told him and started off again. The wolf conspired to eat her and what she had in her picnic basket, so he ran to the cabin and ate the grandmother first. When the young girl arrived, she was tricked and eaten by the wolf. The two women were saved when a woodcutter uses his ax to cut open the wolf and let the women out.
In January 2016, Hamilton wrote the Growing Patriot version of Little Red Riding Hood. The creative twist came in when Hamilton armed the protagonist and her grandmother. In this version, the wolf is scared off by both women, who were carrying firearms and the story was less gruesome than the original.
The new version of the Grimm Brothers’ story, Hansel and Gretel, follows the same basic principle. Both Hansel and Gretel were carrying guns, as well as the entire village they lived in. The crafty witch stood no chance.
The NRA placed these new fairy tales on their web page with the intent of helping promote gun safety and awareness among children. According to the NRA, they oversee an accident prevention program, which has taught over 28 million children in the U.S. how to stay safe with a firearm.
In Hamilton’s defense, she stated her stories were much less graphic than the originals and guns played a part in deterring the violence. She created these new stories as a way to promote proper firearm use for children.
Some activists against gun violence argue that these fairy tales are not as beneficial as they seem. Ladd Everitt, a spokesman for the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, argued these stories are irrational and do not paint an honest picture of what having a gun looks like.
He stated, “There are no consequences for the children here holding guns, walking out into the woods with guns, thinking about killing the bad guys.” In real life, there is no clear distinction between the good and bad people.
The New York Times interviewed Dan Gross, president of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence. He stated, “[the fairy tales are] a disgusting, morally depraved marketing campaign.”
The NRA has announced they plan to have Hamilton write another revision, which they will post on their website. This time, the writer will be doing an updated version of The Three Little Pigs, which will be available this May.
These revisions to the old classic tales have flared up the controversy between pro and anti-gun organizations. The NRA says it is using these stories to help children with gun awareness and safety. Those who are opposed to these revisions claim it is a marketing campaign and does not show the realities of gun ownership.
By Harrison Baker
Edited by Cathy Milne & Leigh Haugh
ABC News: NRA Rewrites Fairy Tales, Puts Guns in the Hands of Classic Characters
NPR: NRA Rewrites Fairy Tales With More Firearms, Less Bloodshed
NRA-Family: Little Red Riding Hood (Has a Gun)
NRA-Family: Hansel and Gretel (Have Guns)
The New York Times: The N.R.A. Reimagines Classic Fairy Tales, With Guns
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