A kid gets suspended from school for ‘liking’ a picture of a toy gun. He didn’t make a comment. He didn’t threaten anyone. He just double-tapped on a picture in a social media app.
In response, the school administration suspended him for 10 days, and sent out an email to parents about an “alleged threat of a student bringing a gun to school,” which they had addressed.
You’d think they had just stopped the next Sandy Hook.
Beyond the blatant absurdity of equating a social media ‘like’ to a “threat,” my question is, how did the school know? Are they actively monitoring kids’ social media accounts? Reviewing every Like and comment? This is not the the first time a student’s rather innocuous social media activity has been met with an overwhelmingly incongruous response by school administrators due to ‘zero tolerance’ policies (and I’m sure there are at least a few dozen other instances).
There is likely one of two things at play here: either schools have come up with some way to monitor their students’ social media activity without the general public’s knowledge (which isn’t as likely, as they would probably require students and/or parents to sign some kind of waiver, and some parents actually read that stuff before signing), or the public school police state has reached such heights that schools are encouraging students to report on each other’s social media activity, so that they can hand down suspensions & expulsions for social media thought crimes.
Of course, the way school administrators tend to see it, they don’t have much choice but to over-react to this kind of thing. The problem is, it takes several gargantuan leaps of logic to get from an Instagram ‘like’ to a “threat of a student bringing a gun to school.” It certainly doesn’t warrant a suspension & mass-mailing to parents.
But we’ve seen this over and over again in recent years…from a second-grade boy’s suspension over a “pop-tart gun,” to suspending a Kindergarten girl over a plastic bubble-blowing gun, to suspending a 5-year-old for playing with a stick, and on and on.
There have been cases of students facing discipline for finger guns, tiny GI-Joe toy guns, water guns, a deaf pre-school kid named Hunter asked to change how he signs his name because it looked too gun-like (the preschool relented & denied everything when the story gained national attention), shirts with images of guns…and most (if not all) of these zero-tolerance policies carry with them ominous language about students threatening other students, causing dangerous situations through violations of firearms policies, etc. That note is placed in the kid’s permanent education file, potentially endangering their chances to get into a good college, even years after the incident occurred.
What’s going on here is not good policy, it is a campaign of indoctrination.
22 years ago, Eric Holder said that we need to “brainwash people into thinking about guns in a vastly different way.”
Today, they are using public schools to do just that.