NRA launches iPhone gun-app for 4 year olds, only 3 weeks after Sandy Hook

In a somewhat creepy, and certainly tone-deaf, move, the NRA recently launched an iPhone game app that kids can use to shoot coffin-like targets.

And the game is rated for kids aged “4+” – meaning, 4 year olds and up. Four year olds? Seriously?

And for any who might think that’s simply the game’s rating, as in “how many stars did reviewers give it,” look at this other shooting game and its rating of “9+”:

IMG_9347

You can read more about the age ratings here at TechCrunch:

When you go to submit your app through iTunes Connect, one of the steps takes you to a ratings matrix that you must fill out. This contains 10 questions listed under “Apple Content Descriptions.” For each of the 10 questions you must say “None”, “Infrequent/Mild”, or “Frequent/Intense.” Depending on what answer you give for each of these, the rating of your app in the upper right corner will change. These ratings go from “4+” to “9+” to “12+” to “17+” to “No Rating.”

The game, called “NRA: Practice Range,” was released on January 9, a little more than three weeks since the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre in Newtown, Connecticut, where 20 six- and seven- year-old children were murdered in a spray of gunfire from a legally-bought weapon.

Three weeks later, and the NRA is back is back in the business of peddling guns to kids.  But it’s actually worse than that…

kids iphone app - main screen

NRA kids iphone app – main screen

One of the options in the “game” is indoor target practice that has kids shooting at things that look like coffins.

NRA kids iphone app  - coffin like targets

NRA kids iphone app – coffin like targets.

Just as troubling is the fact that this isn’t just a kid’s game – it’s part of the NRA propaganda machine, helping to push political criticism of the White House and Democratic members of Congress to impressionable children.  The NRA admits up front that this is more than just a “game.”

NRA kids iphone app  game

At the opening screen that I printed above, one of the options is “NRA INFO.”  If a child selects that, he/she then get to choose among other topics, including Gun Safety, NRA News, Hunting Season, Gun Laws, and Legislation.  The NRA News and Legislation sections are pure NRA propaganda, intended to criticize the Democratic White House and Democrats in Congress.

Most if not all of the top stories on those page critical of Democrats, only. Of the four top stories on the “NRA NEWS” page, one story criticizes VP Bideen, another President Obama, a third Democratic Senator Feinstein, and a fourth, anti-gun House members (and guess who they list in the article, only Democrats).  See four screen shots below.

nra-bias

A larger question is why Apple is permitting NRA “kids” games at all, let alone ones that seem to be attempting to subtly (or not so subtly) propagandize impressionable young iPhone users.  And for four year olds?

Some of the reviewers for the “game” were understandably upset – and one raised an excellent point: If the NRA is so upset about violent games, why is it creating a game based on violence?

nra-bad-review
nra-bad-review-2

If Apple is against porn on the iPhone, shouldn’t it be against gun-porn as well?


Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Google+. John Aravosis is the editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown (1989); and worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, and as a stringer for the Economist. Frequent TV pundit: O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline & Reliable Sources. Bio, .

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  • sumit kher

    I am comparatively new to Iphone apps however I can make some of the apps but I also wanna advance and learn iphone gaming programmes/ how to make games also, I only need the right direction to start the programming and recently got to this 1 of iphone and Ipad app development course http://www.wiziq.com/course/13809-iphone-app-development-xcode-cocoa-framework-jquery-phonegap, wonder this will work or not as I haven’t got enough info regarding these online courses.

  • REALITY CHECK

    2 things here.
    1. Common Cents is right. The app is not put out by the NRA. Its by MEDL Mobile Inc,

    2. Here is the sick part. What parent will even allow their four yr old to play this. Shouldn’t the parents over see what their children are doing? I have noticed a very large trend of parents say their children are perfect angles. But once some thing goes wrong (in trouble, poor scores in school) its always someone else’s fault. Its not longer the parent to be blamed, its the teacher’s, the movie’s, the gaming world, and the shrinks. But never the the parents. Lets look ate the meaning behind the word parent.

    par·ent [pair-uh nt, par-] Show IPA
    noun
    1.
    a father or a mother.
    2.
    an ancestor, precursor, or progenitor.
    3.
    a source, origin, or cause.
    4.
    a protector or guardian.
    5.
    Biology . any organism that produces or generates another.

    adjective
    7.
    being the original source: a parent organization.
    8.
    Biology . pertaining to an organism, cell, or complex molecular structure that generates or producesanother: parent cell; parent DNA.

  • http://twitter.com/CommonCentsUSA Common Cents

    I guess “A great nation deserves the truth” is just something for the header image. No commitment to investigating and showing the actual truth. Your first screen shows the seller of this game is “MEDL Media, Inc.” MEDL Media is an “alliance” which allows apps to be submitted anonymously and put in the Apple iPhone App store. If you have a finished app, you can submit it to MEDL Media. Has anyone investigated to see if this was actually submitted by the NRA? Or if some third party with an ax to grind submitted it to make it look like NRA issued this “Official” app. The “Official” NRA iPhone app is not sold by MEDL Media, Inc. Why would they change to an anonymous “alliance” of developers for this app?

  • flug32

    Yes, ditto to FuzzyRabbit. These “coffin” targets are practice for shooting at humans, with the killzones in the head and the middle of the chest marked in red.

  • FuzzyRabbit

    The targets in the NRA game are called silhouette targets, made to resemble a human silhouette.
    More information (on shooter’s sites) here: http://www.thetruthaboutguns.com/2012/10/daniel-zimmerman/omg-targets-human-shaped-targets-omg/ and here: http://statelymcdanielmanor.wordpress.com/2012/09/19/shooting-basics-targets-sights-and-safety/

    The red markings on the NRA children’s targets represent the best places to shoot a human in order to kill him instantly, the head and the heart.

    The NRA idea of the perfect America is an extremely violent, bleak place. These NRA executives are a bunch of the sickest, most twisted sociopaths I can imagine.

  • theoracle

    Gee, those coffin-shaped targets look like they’re about the right size for the bullet-riddled bodies of 6 and 7 year old kids. (The NRA is nothing more than a death cult).

  • Litterbox

    Oh look, John is going on about something he knows little about but hey, it brings the traffic to the site! So the developer used non-descript targets rather than normal “human shaped” ones and you bitch about that??? Yeah, pushing their agenda…education, safety etc. Sad that you guys here have to paint something like this as something it isn’t.

  • Just an elbow

    You’re a disgusting pox on the body of humanity. You should be ashamed.

  • John Hattan

    Best of all, you can practice with an M16, the military predecessor to the Bushmaster XM15 “Daycare Annihilator”. Or for a 99 cent in-app purchase you can try an AK47. Fun for all ages!

  • CCK

    If you’re questioning the rating, here is the Mashable.com article, confirming that yes, this is a shooter game for 4-year-olds (and up). http://mashable.com/2013/01/14/nra-shooter-game/

  • Snaggletooth

    Do you get bonus pay for generating replies? In this economy you probably need every little bit right? Isn’t that what you tell yourself to sleep at night?

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001055172670 Scott Brown

    This article is dumb. The Itunes store gave it a 4+ rating The game wasn’t made for 4yr olds and up. The journalism here is whats sickening. Very misleading story. Shame on you who fall for this “lowest common denominator” type of journalism.

  • monopole

    Oh for a second I thought it was an app promoting shooting iPhones, which would be productive!
    Nevermind.

  • http://adgitadiaries.com/ karmanot

    Sickening

  • Naja pallida

    Remember, according to the NRA, violent video games targeted at children are a primary cause of gun violence. Maybe it is finally the NRA admitting they have some culpability. Maybe they can link it to Apple Maps and the idiots who want to play it can get lost in an Australian desert somewhere.

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