Over at War on Guns, we're pointed to an incident in which a kid *gasp* sketched a gun!! Imagine this kid, seeming like just another kid, but then you find that he would dare sketch a gun.
It really makes me think about how different it was when/where I grew up. It wasn't all that long ago that I was a kid growing up in the small town of Mineral. Around there, kids started shooting BB guns about as early as they could hold them, and started with .22s not long after. The BB guns could be shot just about anywhere. There was hardly a shed in town without a pretty good number of embedded BBs and dents from the ones that didn't penetrate. The .22s, of course, required a bit safer approach than a shed as a backstop.
I was lucky. We had enough land that I could go out back to shoot. Later, when we put animals out there, it was still okay to shoot, but the first shot had to be a careful one. After it, though, the animals all knew to stay away. The goats even learned the sight of a gun pretty quickly. Other kids, though, would have to go out into the woods or onto one of the many hills nearby. Hell, I liked to go out there to shoot, too. It tended to provide a better area, and it was more fun to go shooting with friends.
My experiences in school included a tendency to draw swords, jets, and guns (I never could draw a gun that looked quite right, but I always enjoyed drawing these things). Sometimes, they even wound up in the margins on things I turned in. I sometimes got reprimanded for not keeping my paper neat, but never for my choice of things to draw.
By junior high, we had no problem setting up times and places to go shooting while at school. And the teachers would sometimes help with suggestions. By high school, there were a number of hunters, so hunting season found rifles in many of the rigs in the parking lot. I was even in class one day when a student reached into his pocket and fished out some shotgun shells. He then said that he had forgotten to take them out after duck hunting. The harshest punishment I heard of for anyone in relation to guns was when some of the hunters were encouraged to park off-campus, since we were having visitors come and inspect the school.
It wasn't all that long ago, though I'm certain things have changed even in Morton High School (Mineral didn't have a HS). I'm also pretty sure that things weren't like that everywhere.