sunset from behind the wire

sunset from behind the wire

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Is Eliminating the Alphabet Entirely the Solution to Violence?

Last week, I suggested that schools eliminate the "Letter L" in order to bring some sanity to elementary schools as an interim measure until children's index fingers were amputated to keep them from operating handguns. 

Lest you think I was serious, I was not. I was kidding. BUT apparently Maryland schools do have a rule on the books that would keep children from holding a cut out of a "Letter L" - in the interest of school safety and advancing a progressive agenda. 

This is the letter that school officials at Brooklyn Park, Maryland sent home

Dear Parents and Guardians: 
I am writing to let you know about an incident that occurred this morning in one of our classrooms and encourage you to discuss this matter with your child in a manner you deem most appropriate. 
During breakfast this morning, one of our students used food to make inappropriate gestures that disrupted the class. While no physical threats were made and no one [was] harmed, the student had to be removed from the classroom. 
As you are aware, the ... Code of Student Conduct and appropriate consequences related to violations of the code are clearly spelled out in the Student Handbook, which was sent home during the first week of school and can be found on our website,
If your children express that they are troubled by today's incident, please talk with them and help them share their feelings. Our school counselor is available to meet with any students who have the need to do so next week. In general, please remind them of the importance of making good choices.

As you know if you have been following this insane story unfolding in Brooklyn Park, Maryland, seven-year-old Josh Welch was suspended for two days after he allegedly fashioned his breakfast pastry into the shape of a gun. Josh said that he made a mountain by gnawing at his strawberry Pop Tart and his teacher said that it was definitely a handgun because he raised the Pop Tart toward the ceiling. 

(Fox News)
(Lowering the Bar)

In order to suspend Josh, the school had to charge him with a violation of school policy. This is what the policy prohibits:
Any gun of any kind, loaded or unloaded, operable or inoperable, including any object other than a firearm which is a look-a-like of a gun. This shall include, but is not limited to, pellet gun, paintball gun, stun gun, taser, BB gun, flare gun, nail gun, and air soft gun.
Lowering the Bar wrote, "Josh's gun was not a firearm, because it was a pastry, and it seems highly unlikely that it qualified as a gun "look-a-like," again because it was a pastry. It certainly is nothing like any of the "look-a-like" items set forth in the list, largely because those items are not pastries."

"The two-day suspension indicates that the school considered this a "Level 3" violation, but exactly what part of the Code was in play is not clear. The letter suggests Josh disrupted the class, but the reference to 'inappropriate gestures" involving food can only mean he was also charged with a pastry-based-weapons violation." (Lowering the Bar) He could have just as easily picked up a cut out of the "Letter L" and waved it around, causing fear in the classroom and sending teachers scurrying for the police. The entire class would need subsequent counseling and maybe the district would send counselors from other schools to help children understand why one of their number mishandled a paper cut out of the "Letter L". And if the "Letter L" is threatening, the "Letter J" could be a replica flintlock pistol from America's revolutionary period. Then there's the "Letter I" that could be used as a club and both Z, M and W have sharp edges. Any of those letters could cause a paper cut if mishandled. Construction paper is not exempt from causing that sort of injury. "O" is a pleasing letter to progressives. Maybe we should just keep that one?

Has the entire world 
gone totally MAD?

And what of the pastry? Was it sent to the police crime lab for fingerprinting? Was there a court order that led to its destruction in a "progressive way"? Or did the offended teacher just throw it in the trash?

And did a janitor later that night end up finishing the gnawed on Pop Tart that he fished from the trash? Could that janitor explode? What sort of counseling would the children need then?