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November 19, 1982

Greg and the BB Gun

JAMA. 1982;248(19):2504. doi:10.1001/jama.1982.03330190066038

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Greg is 12 years old now, and as mature as any 12-year-old boy can be. He has been going to the hospital and office with his dad ever since he could walk, and exposure to medical practice can teach a young person a lot. Recently, Greg decided that he was ready for a BB gun. Despite vigorous opposition from his parents, Greg was determined to have his wish. He was quite definite that he wasn't going to shoot any of the neighbor kids. The plan was to put a target up on a tree and shoot at the target.

The other day, a man in his 40s was at the office. I noticed that one of his eyes didn't look quite right. I asked him about it, and he told me that he lost the eye when he was 14. He was setting up cans on a railroad track and