Shannon Watts, founder of Moms Demand Action, told the Washington Post her first thought upon seeing it was it was "sick and that children would die".
She immediately contacted Lego to inform them, which sent Culper a Cease & Desist.
"This is beyond irresponsible and dangerous," she tweeted. "Even when guns don't look like toys, children may use them. In 2021, we've seen over 165 incidents of unintentional shootings by children."
Last week, I tweeted about this gun meant to look like a toy last week and our organization reached out to Lego, which then sent a cease and desist letter to the reckless gun maker - he says he’s complying. Read the story here: https://t.co/hl5P7OKiVWhttps://t.co/SH4QbwHfPw
The weapon, which ranged from $549 to $765, was described on the original website listing as "SUPER FUN!": "Here's the thing. Guns are fun. Shooting is fun. 30 rounds full auto is fun."
In a lengthy statement on its site responding to the backlash, Culper Precision said it was "grateful" for the attention that Block19 is currently getting across the globe.
It said that while it would never support legislating personal responsibility, many municipalities had laws in place to penalize gun owners who failed to secure their weapons around children.
"Our business is taking a firearm of known value and transforming it into a personalized invaluable treasure for a fair price. People have the right to customize their property to make it look like whatever they want," it said.
"It seems that no matter what we create in the firearms industry anti gunners seem to leverage every *true* innovation (block19 is NOT an innovation it is a fun safe queen) shortly after its release to talk about why guns are bad," it continued.
"We built block19 to show all these new firearms owners that guns are not JUST for Law Enforcement and current or former Military, or the types that are prone to overt bravado that is so often portrayed on social media, guns are for EVERYONE, and we want to be the first to welcome new firearms owners from any personality type or political affiliation, if you own a firearm, you are our friend."
While US law stops companies from making toys that look like guns, there is no such law to prevent companies making guns that look like toys.
In an interview with the Washington Post, company president Brandon Scott said that if a customer's child shot themselves with it, that would be the customer's fault, and not his.
He said he did not believe that parent should be held criminally responsible — because he does not want the government regulating "common sense" — before suggesting that the "pain and anguish" of losing the child would be punishment enough.
If it were a neighbor's child who got shot, he said "The neighbor can obviously sue."
Although Culper was careful not to mention Lego by name anywhere on its site, it ultimately decided to comply and pull the Block19 from sale.
It did not reveal how many it had sold, but confirmed it was fewer than 20 — which will likely now cause those few to skyrocket in value.