No, you were clear. It's simply blurred lines that get people into a debate. Although a strong guideline, age isn't always synonymous with maturity. It's not terribly difficult to judge someone's maturity and capability levels at all. There are always several factors to take into consideration, but it has nothing to do with any of them in the end. It's the way you say things. Such as, "a kid shouldn't play because they are not, or will not be mature"; or "my field is safe for youth, and I am an appropriate judge of this"; and "the parents signed a waiver, so everything is okay". None of those statements are true necessarily.
You can't have a maturity debate when it's only a foot note of the bigger picture. Safety as well; although important, isn't any more than a part of the puzzle. It's simply a legal issue and legal responsibilty issue; that's it, that's all.
I don't play airsoft with youths because of the general level of maturity along with a few other things. That's a personal issue, and does not diminish their ability to play, or mine to accommodate the proper safety to incorporate them in game; we are simply an eighteen plus club.
I think there are many youths who could play airsoft safely, and maybe they should be able to play. There are also people on here who field youths, and have probably taken the proper precautions and liabilities to "reasonably" keep them safe; and if you do, good for you. But there are those who think that it's readonable to field youths because they feel justified, assume they know better, depend on the money, or need the numbers to play; these people are wrong in what they do.
I hope that some forthright individuals get together one day and start a proper league or standard for kids to play. A governing body that covers things like Safety equipment, safe play areas, FPS limitations, and insurance for kids in the sport. Call it something like N.A.Y.A. (National Association for Yourh in Airsoft), as an example. Get some legislation in place to govern places that allow kids to play, and have a national standard of safety and liability; much like there is in hockey, football, etc.
Until that happens, it's a legal issue where the kids are at risk; and a bunch of adults and parents that either don't care, or think they know better.
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