The risk to the boy’s vision, above, is pretty obvious. The cock of the gunlock blocks some of the debris from reaching the right eye, but the left eye is unprotected. While blinking offers some protection to the eyeballs, our reflexes aren’t always rapid enough…and getting fragments of burning priming powder, frizzen sparks or flint chips on the eyelids isn’t much fun, either. The danger is reduced but not eliminated with percussion and cartridge firearms, though the danger there is more from ricochets, gas leakage and splashing of lubricants.
Shooting without eye protection may be more authentic, but it’s a considerable risk. he same is true of shooting without hearing protection: blank shots aren’t very loud, but live rounds can damage hearing. Flesh-colored molded plugs won’t stand out, and neither would period-correct glasses. Fortunately, this young lady used glasses during actual live fire events.