well like the old saying says:
"one spoils it for us all"
reptiles have had a history of not mixing with children, and these people have them and children.
all of the very stupid people who do not care properly for their reptiles and endanger their children, is the reason why your friends are having problems.
*** in no way am i saying your friends are stupid, its just unfortunate that some peopl eare and it ruins it for everyone.