A victim support group in Australia is calling for Mattel’s Naruto action figures be removed from store shelves because the toys can be used to act out stabbing and slashing.
The Daily Telegraph reports the Homicide Survivors Association says the figures, marketed to ages 6 and up, teach children a dangerous lesson.
“I think there’s a link between playing with these toys and violent behavior later,” group founder Peter Rolfe tells the newspaper. “It doesn’t happen to everyone but it can have an effect on people with problems. … If they play with toy weapons does it make them more comfortable with real weapons later? At some stage there’s an imprint left on them.”
Mattel, for its part, says it’s up to parents to decide whether their kids should play with knife-wielding ninja figures.