Zero Tolerance

More Hysteria Over Toy Guns and Non-Guns in Schools

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Toy gun
Beercha / Flickr

Paranoia about guns in schools continues unabated. From NJ.com:

A day after the council in Atlantic City voted to ban the sale of realistic toy guns, a student in a nearby town was arrested for bringing a fake firearm to school.

The 15-year-old boy was arrested Wednesday at Mainland High School after school officials got word there was an object resembling a gun in his backpack, according to a report on PressofAtlanticCity.com.

The boy, a resident of Somers Point, was charged with possession of an imitation firearm in an educational setting, the report said.

The news story doesn't explain why the toy was brought to school or how administrators discovered that it was tucked away in a backpack. If the teen intended to scare someone with it, then obviously he should be punished. But these rule violations are often just accidents: a matter of forgetting to put away a toy before heading off to school in the morning. It seems awfully cruel to charge a 15-year-old with a crime for inadvertent behavior that harmed no one—especially if he did the right thing by telling a teacher about it. 

Here's another story that illustrates just how paranoid schools are about guns. From The Tennessean:

A student reported that another student possibly had a gun, which turned out to be prop for the drama department, said Tullahoma City Schools Superintendent Dan Lawson. …

Tullahoma High School's lockdown this afternoon has been lifted after police determined that a report that a student had brought a handgun to school was not true.

At least nobody is going to jail over this mistake, but still: Stop the madness! Despite the incessant headlines implying the contrary, school shootings are not becoming vastly more frequent (and zero tolerance punishments for accidental breaches of weapons policies wouldn't combat them, even if they were).

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  1. Arrrr, those “weapons” be nothin’ more than Quaker Guns

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quaker_Gun

    These young ‘uns need experience of the real world – let ’em serve as cabin boys on me frigate.

  2. I would think zero tolerance policies would make school shootings more likely. Arrest and shame the wrong kind of kid for some stupid zero tolerance bullshit, and you could have a real situation on your hands.

    1. You’re putting ideas in their heads! You MONSTER!

  3. I wonder if the cops responded in an armored vehicle bristling with M16s.

    1. I bet they really regretted giving up their grenade launcher.

  4. When will Idaho be stricken from classroom maps?

    It looks far too much like a pistol pointed at the guts of Canada.

    1. Canada has no guts – not since the NHL wouldn’t let anyone touch that pussy Gretsky.

      Now, Gordie Howe – THERE was a Canuck with some guts. Could score AND give ya the business….a REAL hockey player. Back when kids used to learn on frozen ponds in Saskatchewen, not a goddamned rented rink in Burlington, Ontario at midnight…

      *wanders off mumbling to self*

  5. The boy, a resident of Somers Point, was charged with possession of an imitation firearm in an educational setting…

    Three felonies a day seems like a light estimate.

    1. Try him as an adult. If we can start putting felonies on people before they turn 18, then they’ll just transition from childhood right into being a disenfranchised second class citizen who is officially stripped of their rights for life. Don’t even give ’em a taste of freedom.

      1. ideas – pleez don’t give them any

        1. an imitation firearm in an educational setting

          I guess NJ Police Academy’s get by this by using real fire-arms?

          Or is it the fact that calling it an educational setting would be a stretch, given a classroom full of mouth-breathers?

          Also, no firearms safety courses in NJ?

  6. The 15-year-old boy was arrested Wednesday at Mainland High School…charged with possession of an imitation firearm

    I would sue the fuck out of all involved. The individuals, personally, not the gov’t they represent. I’d rather not have the taxpayers on the hook.

  7. They will not stop ever. If they can’t get rid of guns, then they’ll mentally breed them out of the next generation.

    1. They’re not succeeding yet. I was in Walmart the other day – quite a nice selection of toy guns – and toy bows for little Hunger Games fans, including one in pinkish purple.

    2. This is why every time we take a kid to the gun range for the first time (and DON’T hand them an Uzi, but teach them to shoot something sensible first…) an angel gets its wings.

      My own fucking kids – MY KIDS – were getting programmed. First day at the range undid it all. Now they all want their own gun 🙂

  8. I got some kind of insight into this thinking last weekend at a bbq.

    About a third of the people were grade school teachers (public and catholic) and counselers. They started talking about this weird kid or that twitchy girl. A little questioning and it comes out, just a few weeks into the school year, and they’ve all picked out in their classes the kid “most likely to go nuts and machine gun us all”. They all have obsessed about school shootings and masscres and are seriously paranoid. It sounds like this discussion is regular thing for them.

    They see those kids as threats.

    1. Reminds me of a nun in charge of an after-school program for young children, many of them younger than school age. She had the idea that the little boys & girls had sex on their minds and so needed to be carefully watched.

      1. Well, somebody had sex on their mind…

    2. Everyone is a threat until they prove that they are not. And since there is no way to prove that you’re not a threat, everyone is a threat.

    3. See, this is why we need a Reason for Kids. If only we could give those weird, twitchy kids a place they’d be accepted, free to mock their idiot teachers and education administrators.

  9. http://www.nbcwashington.com/n…..63741.html

    False alarm freaks out lots of anti-gun adults.

    All 18 public schools in the city were “locked in” Tuesday afternoon ? no one was allowed in or out of school buildings but classes continued inside ? after several 5- and 6-year-old children playing outside Maury Elementary School after noon reported seeing an unknown man on the other side of a chain-link fence. The children said the man called to them and then pointed what appeared to be a long gun at them.

    Several police helicopters were circling too. The 5- and 6-year old kids described him as black with a belly and a mohawk.

  10. charged with possession of an imitation firearm in an educational setting

    Can we start charging school administrators with “impersonating a sentient life form”?

  11. When I was in the eighth(?) grade, one of my shop class projects was sand casting a replica Colt 1911. The shop teacher thought it was a good project, and was extremely helpful. We’d probably both get tossed in the slammer for that, today.

    1. When I was in shop class (as the only girl very popular I was), my final project was sand casting a sword. Due to an unfortunate bubble about midway down the blade, it became a rather large letter opener;still got it too. Good times.

  12. They all have obsessed about school shootings and masscres and are seriously paranoid.

    WAR ON TEECHURZ!

  13. If the teen intended to scare someone with it, then obviously he should be punished.

    It’s not obvious to me. stop telling me how to think.

    1. Yeah really. Did he intend to scare the douche that’s been chucking him into his locker every day since kindergarten? if so, totally justifiable.

  14. I don’t care how it sounds, but this sounds sick. Yes, I understand what this hysteria is all about. It is about all the recent events with shootings and the what we have today are the expected consequences. As we see, instead of writing professional case study on schizophrenia we see this. It will take time and improved schools’ security for people to relax. If our government remain ignorant, the situation will only get worse. people will start to panic. More will choose homeschooling

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