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Added By: Alex
Added on: 10/13/2009 @ 1:56:40 PM
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Del. 1st grader faces reform school for camp tool

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newalex.jpgAlex - 3618 Posts
10/13/2009 @ 11:31:48 PM
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Suspension overturned

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20091014/ap_on_re_us/us_zero_tolerance_boy

Actually, it sounds from this like it was just shortened, and they lowered the punishment across the board for "kindergartners and first-graders who take weapons to school or commit violent offenses". Those seem like 2 (at least) completely different cases to me.
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Alex edited this at 10/13/2009 11:37:41 pm
matt.jpgMatt - 3407 Posts
10/13/2009 @ 11:58:21 PM
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It's mentioned in the article Alex posted, but the New York Times article has a little more detail. Anyway, it was my favorite part of the story.

"The law was introduced after a third-grade girl was expelled for a year because her grandmother had sent a birthday cake to school, along with a knife to cut it. The teacher called the principal — but not before using the knife to cut and serve the cake."
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matt.jpgMatt - Ombudsman
10/14/2009 @ 06:04:11 PM
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More madness: New York Eagle Scout Suspended From School for 20 Days for Keeping Pocketknife in Car

If you don't want to read the article, the knife in question was a 2-inch pocketknife, in a survival kit, locked inside his car (the kid is 17).

As I was reading, I started to think of all the various items a high school student would be allowed to have in school that could do as much (or even more) damage to someone than a small pocketknife (pen, pencil, compass, a heavy book, any heavy object, car keys, a fist, etc.). I was happy to see then that the kid made the same argument for himself (for all the good it did him):

"Whalen [the student] said he asked Macri [the asst. principal] why a 2-inch pocketknife would be considered more dangerous than other everyday items around the school.

"I said to him, 'What about a person who has a bat, on a baseball team? That could be a weapon.' And he said, 'Well, it's not the same thing.'"
"

It sure isn't the same thing, you could actually do real harm with a baseball bat. You know what else isn't the same? A pocket knife and any other item a sane person would classify as a weapon.
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jeremy.jpgJeremy - I hate our freedoms
10/15/2009 @ 11:34:30 AM
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Well, you could do a lot of damage with a pocket knife, and unlike a baseball bat, it has no real alternative need for it to be on a school ground. Put it this way, it might be a tough call if you'd rather have someone attack you with a bat or a pocket knife, but if a knife and a bat were sitting on a table, and someone just asked you "Which is more of a weapon?" you'd have to go with the knife. That said, this is still insane, and made even more insane about the fact that it was in his car.
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scott.jpgScott - You're going to have to call your hardware guy. It's not a software issue.
10/16/2009 @ 06:21:26 AM
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Matt Wrote - 10/14/2009 @ 12:58:21 AM
It's mentioned in the article Alex posted, but the New York Times article has a little more detail. Anyway, it was my favorite part of the story.

"The law was introduced after a third-grade girl was expelled for a year because her grandmother had sent a birthday cake to school, along with a knife to cut it. The teacher called the principal — but not before using the knife to cut and serve the cake."


This I support, if for no other reason that its too hillarious. You can't make that stuff up.
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fry6beeu9.jpgJeremy - The pig says "My wife is a slut?"
10/16/2009 @ 08:36:36 AM
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I think I'm somewhat ok with zero tolerance as a policy once it gets high enough, as long as the punishment for a small knife in a tackle box in your car is much different than a gun in your pocket in the classroom. (Assuming that is they knew he had a knife because he said something about it, if they're just searching cars for anything you could conceal and harm someone with, then that's lame.)

Anywho, I think the situation should be treated the same way you'll sometimes see on TV where a friend is spilling their guts to a cop friend, who eventually pulls the "woah, woah, I don't want to hear about it," thing. The understanding is, I'm not going to pry, but if you report this to me, I have a duty to act.

Long story short, I can see why the principal/school system was forced to act, the teacher could have used her discretion and decided that there was clearly no intent to do anything with the knife, which she could have hung onto until the end of the day anyway, which the kid's grandma probably just tossed in with the cake anyway.
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newalex.jpgAlex - 3618 Posts
10/16/2009 @ 12:23:53 PM
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OMG, you think's it ok for the teacher to have a knife in a school?!!!?!?! She might be a serial stabber from outer space (or a terrorist)!!! Think about the children for once. Clearly she should have reported this directly to the FBI so they could confiscate the knife and continue their job of ensuring that no one anywhere ever is in the slightest bit of danger.
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2887.gifAlex - 3618 Posts
10/16/2009 @ 12:27:57 PM
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Jeremy Wrote - Today @ 08:36:36 AM
I think I'm somewhat ok with zero tolerance as a policy once it gets high enough


Like Towelie? I'm not sure what this means. Plus how ironic is being "somewhat ok" with "zero tolerance"!

Jeremy Wrote - Today @ 08:36:36 AM
as long as the punishment for a small knife in a tackle box in your car is much different than a gun in your pocket in the classroom.


Punishment like having to use the knife to open packages for the school for a week?
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fry6beeu9.jpgJeremy - Cube Phenomenoligist
10/16/2009 @ 12:54:38 PM
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There is some merit to the idea that equal* crimes should have equal punishments, so discretion with punishments is crippled, which is partially he rational behind the zero tolerance. If two kids bring a gun to class, they should get the same punishment. Zero tolerance as a determinant for punishments I'm more-or-less ok with, zero-tolerance as a determinant of what is an offense in the first place leads to inevitable situations like this. Granted, it might lead to biases as well, but the potential is probably a bit less, because you would have the side that is most "in the know" making the call, rather than the side least knowledgeable.

In other words, a teacher could know "Jimmy's mom packed this knife so I could cut this cake" and likewise know "Billy has been getting picked on a lot lately, and now he has a knife in his pocket." Once you work your way up high enough the person making the call wouldn't know you from Adam or Eve, the potential to fall into the "tiny white girl must have committed less of an offense than black male" pit is higher.

*Of course determining when two situations are equal is pretty tough, which is why they should probably ditch the whole idea, and decide things on a case-by-case basis.
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Jeremy edited this 2 times, last at 10/16/2009 1:01:20 pm
fry6beeu9.jpgJeremy - Cube Phenomenoligist
10/16/2009 @ 01:14:59 PM
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Of course this also gets into the over peeceeification of America where we've over simplified things. If one group of people gets more severe punishments than another group that doesn't necessarily imply anything. I'm not saying it is or isn't the case, but if, under the "we can call em like we see em" rules of years gone by black people are punished longer or more often than white people there's always the possibility that they actually commit higher amounts of, or worse, crimes than white people.

I feel like Jon and I must have been talking about something similar, because he made this point, which is apt here. It often happens toward the end of a football game where the announcers look at the penalties and yards and if there's a big discrepancy, they question the officiating. For some bizarre reason we expect that a "perfectly officiated" game would involve the same number of penalties for both teams. Which is, of course, absurd when that notion is examined even a little. There could be biases involved, and certainly could have been missed calls, but it's definitely the case that one team can indeed commit more penalties than the other.

Maybe there are deeper issues that need to be fixed why one group has a higher percentage than average in trouble, but that doesn't make it not true. And more importantly, it shouldn't be a taboo topic that makes you a racist to even consider.
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Jeremy edited this 2 times, last at 10/16/2009 1:18:41 pm
vignette.bmpCarlos44ec - 2078 Posts
10/19/2009 @ 10:21:34 AM
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When I was in high school a kid had a hunting rifle, ammo, and knives in his car. These were found in an extremely rare visit from the local PD and K-9 drug unit, but nothing became of it after the cops spoke with the principal- aparently the guy had a pre-approved 4-day trip to go on a hunting trip with his dad.

The year was 1997 and the town was DeWitt, IA. Times have changed, eh?
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Carlos44ec perfected this at 10/19/2009 10:21:47 am
newalex.jpgAlex - 3618 Posts
10/30/2009 @ 01:26:01 PM
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http://sports.espn.go.com/oly/news/story?id=4608269
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2887.gifAlex - 3618 Posts
10/30/2009 @ 06:59:39 PM
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http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1223528/Parents-banned-supervising-children-playgrounds--case-paedophiles.html
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