“11-Yr-Old Suspended From School For Merely TALKING About Guns”
I ask you, even you Democrats and heel-dug Obama defenders who are committed to the man because you invested your trust and franchise in him, either because you bought his bromides and bullshit, or because Rush Limbaugh’s talk about Obama phones reeked of racism, and you refused to be part of that (though evidently, the institutionalized racialism in the Civil Rights Division and at the Justice Department wasn’t a factor in your decision making): is this the country you imagined you lived in?:
The father of a middle schooler in Calvert County, Md. says his 11-year-old son was suspended for 10 days for merely talking about guns on the bus ride home.
Bruce Henkelman of Huntingtown says his son, a sixth grader at Northern Middle School in Owings, was talking with friends about the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre when the bus driver hauled him back to school to be questioned by the principal, Darrel Prioleau.
“The principal told me that with what happened at Sandy Hook if you say the word ‘gun’ in my school you are going to get suspended for 10 days,” Henkelman said in an interview with WMAL.com.
So what did the boy say? According to his father, he neither threatened nor bullied anyone.
“He said, I wish I had a gun to protect everyone. He wanted to defeat the bad guys. That’s the context of what he said,” Henkelman said. “He wanted to be the hero.”
The boy was questioned by the principal and a sheriff’s deputy, who also wanted to search the family home without a warrant, Henkelman said. “He started asking me questions about if I have firearms, and [the deputy said] he’s going to have to search my house. Search my house? I just wanted to know what happened.”
Principal Darrel Prioleau did not respond to calls and emails seeking comment. Robin Welsh, the deputy superintendent of Calvert County Schools, said federal privacy rules prohibited her from commenting on a specific case, but she said students are not suspended without cause.
“There has to be some violation within the code of conduct that would trigger some type of consequence or intervention,” said Welsh, who said the county school system does not have a zero tolerance policy.
Based on information about Henkelman’s case provided by WMAL.com, the ACLU of Maryland said the suspension, later reduced to one day, was a poor choice by school administrators.
“It’s appropriate for school officials to investigate when there is a concern about student safety. But based on what’s been described to us, once the school official concluded that all the young man wanted to do was to be safe at school and that he posed no risk to anyone, the suspension was really inappropriate,” said Sonya Kumar, an ACLU staff attorney.
“The school should have been assuring him that they were going to take steps to keep all students safe, not punishing him,” she added.
Let me just lay this out as plainly as possible: using the word “gun” in conversation on a crowded bus is not the functional or legal equivalent to shouting “fire” in a crowded theater. For instance, I saw the Royals’ Alex Gordon last night gun down a runner trying to stretch out a double — which as a baseball-playing teen, back in the days of parachute pants and Chams shirts, I almost certainly would have related to friends. Or perhaps I’d seen a YouTube video of a Florida senior break up an armed robbery attempt by pulling out his concealed carry piece and firing on the two perpetrators — in which case I’m using the word “gun” to relate details of a factual, historically documented incident. And the schools are essentially claiming they have the power to remove my ability to speak in a way that accurately and objectively describes the world.
The argument over signs vs. signifiers, intent of the utterer vs. intent of the “interpretive community” — and which is privileged — is apropos in my first example. And the idea that context plays an important role in proper interpretation is evident in my second example.
But were we to avoid hypotheticals and look merely at the specific mention of the noun gun — referring to the firearm — in what possible world can we allow such scrubbing of the English language to appease the increasingly ludicrous zero tolerance policies, whether official or merely tacit (as was the case here) of power drunk, rumpled school administrators? And why on earth is law enforcement so eager to aid in these obviously surreal bits of PC theater?
The idea, as Daren Jonescu expressed well yesterday, is to make any use of the referent — any thought of the implement expressed, the firearm, or the signifier that can be construed as referring to the firearm — a crime, one that aids, the progressives hope, in a kind of intellectual conditioning that will predispose children toward equating guns with punishment, danger, personal suffering, pants wetting, and shunning by teachers and schools.
Fortunately, many resist such bald-faced attempts at indoctrination, manage to navigate the minefield of the left’s thought crimes division, and emerge one released from the government’s social petry dishes and “nudge” factories as ardent opponents of such linguistic and cultural tyranny.
We call those people free. And many of them will find their way to classical liberalism or constitutional conservatism, if properly engaged.
What a waste it would be, then, for them to then have to rely on the contemporary GOP for representation.
(h/t IP via geoff B)