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Gun Hand Gesture Gets Student Suspended

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Gun Hand Gesture Gets Student Suspended

Postby hayes1966 » Sat Sep 14, 2013 5:40 pm

Gun Hand Gesture Gets Student Suspended, Revives Debate

The drill is well known: A student brings a gun to school and suffers the consequences through detention, suspension, or expulsion. It’s the price children and teens in the public school system must pay for the violent actions of their peers in highly publicized massacres like Columbine.

But, what happens when the student is punished for yielding a weapon, when the only weapon he holds is his own hand mimicking a firearm? Such was the case for an 11-year-old in Calvert County, Md. who faced an all day in- school-suspension for shooting his fingers like a gun on a school bus last week.

“It seems illogical on its face,” says Kim Anderson, director of the center for advocacy at the National Education Association, which opposes zero-tolerance policies. “It seems like something is wrong when students make hand gestures and get punished this severely.”

Unfortunately, this case does not stand-alone. In fact, it’s only the most recent. There have been numerous incidents of students facing suspension for gun-related hand gesturing, for shaping PopTart into the shape of a gun and even for drawing a stick-figure to look like a gun.

Thanks to the Gun-Free Schools Act of 1994, the decades-old federal zero tolerance policy that shows no mercy to students who bring firearms to school, the Department of Education reports that during the 2006-07 school year, 2,695 students were expelled from schools for bringing firearms to school. Fifty-five percent were handguns. By the end of the 2010 school year, over 32,000 students had faced disciplinary action for bringing a weapon to school, including a finger-gun-toting 6-year-old in Michigan. ... z2eVpOx6u6

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