Indian film director and screenwriter Rejina Sincic released a staggeringly dangerous and foolish public-service-announcement video that advises kids to steal their parents’ guns, take the guns to school, and attempt to turn the firearms in.
Not only does advocating and glamorizing such actions break nearly every meaningful gun-safety rule, but such efforts by a youngster would also almost certainly expose him or her to probable criminal sanctions, starting with felony theft of a firearm.
Sincic released the anti-gun PSA under the title of “Stop Gun Violence.” The description of the YouTube video says, “Violent crimes have been committed by children who wrongfully had access to firearms. Society as a whole should take stricter measure to keep guns out of hands of children.” The response to the video has apparently been so negative that Sincic closed comments on her YouTube production:
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Alan Gottlieb, Chairman of the Citizens Committee for the Right to Bear Arms, called the video a “public disservice announcement” in a press release on 23 December 2014: “The series of crimes depicted in this video is simply astonishing. We’re talking about felony theft of a firearm, illegal possession of a handgun by a minor, having a gun in a school, illegal concealed carry by a minor, brandishing and maybe one or two other crimes, depending upon the jurisdiction.” But Sincic is apparently immune to criticism: In an interview with Vocativ, Sincic says she was caught off guard by the reaction. “I’m not telling kids to commit felonies,” she says. “My message is that kids should not have access to guns in their house. Kids should feel safe and their schools should be safe zones. I made this video for that purpose.” In The Washington Post, Eugene Volokh explains that the PSA’s creators probably wouldn’t be held liable for any copycat mischief: “I’ve gotten several e-mails about this ad, and one reader asked: If a child does what the protagonist did—would the filmmakers be criminally punishable or subject to civil liability?… The answer is likely no.”