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    Second Grader Suspended for Pointing Pencil Like a Gun

    Second Grader Suspended for Pointing Pencil Like a Gun

    The war on little boys marches on

    In the latest school disciplinary response to anything that might resemble even the idea of a gun, a seven year old boy at a Virgina elementary school has been suspended for pointing a pencil at another student and simulating gun noises.


    A Suffolk school suspended a second grader for pointing a pencil at another student and making gun noises. Seven-year-old Christopher Marshall says he was playing with another student in class Friday, when the teacher at Driver Elementary asked them to stop pointing pencils at each other.

    “When I asked him about it, he said, ‘Well I was being a Marine and the other guy was being a bad guy,'” said Paul Marshall, the boy’s father. “It’s as simple as that.”

    Christopher’s father was a Marine for many years. He thinks school leaders overreacted.

    Boy who held pencil like gun suspended

    The boy’s parents said they felt the school failed to use common sense.  Their son has good grades and has never caused any problems in classes before, according to the parents.  The boy had also apparently stopped the “threatening” behavior when asked to do so by a teacher, as was indicated by a note that was made in the suspension notice.

    But a spokesperson for the school indicated that a pencil is considered to be “a weapon when it is pointed at someone in a threatening way and gun noises are made.”

    “Some children would consider it threatening, who are scared about shootings in schools or shootings in the community,” said Bradshaw. “Kids don’t think about ‘Cowboys and Indians’ anymore, they think about drive-by shootings and murders and everything they see on television news every day.”

    The boy’s father sees it differently.

    “Enough is enough,” said Paul Marshall. “I see it as the tail is now wagging the dog.”

    This is merely the latest in a series of similar reactionary incidents at schools across the country. Most recently, a seven year old was suspended in March for biting a pastry into the shape of a gun, prompting school officials to offer counseling to students who may have been troubled by the incident.

    At some point, we may have to consider whether the anti-gun hysteria is actually doing more harm than good to students.



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    JohnC | May 7, 2013 at 1:19 pm

    Public schools nowadays are designed for little girls and they want entire classes filled with children who act like most little girls. Sit still, don’t make noise, come over here, do this, hold hands, play nice, no aggression, no fighting… Most little boys are naturally more aggressive than most little girls. They don’t have ADD, they aren’t anti-social, they don’t need medicine! They’re perfectly normal! A boy must learn to control his aggression. It’s part of becoming a man. Playing sports, playing cops and robbers, playing army, racing each other on the playground, seeing who’s the strongest or fastest is all part of normal development for boys. Modern public schools don’t want that. They want quiet and calmness. So they crush little boys down into a mold of gender neutral-ness. Their rules are designed to teach little boys to be passive and compliant. Teachers used to be interested in harnessing boy’s traits for the good of society. Now they regard the spiritedness of these little males as something that must be broken.

    “A pencil is a weapon when it is pointed at someone in a threatening way and gun noises are made,”

    No, it’s just a pencil.
    If a pencil is a real weapon when a child makes gun noises then I guess my behind is a real wind instrument and a [email protected] is a ‘whole’ note.

    JohnC | May 7, 2013 at 1:25 pm

    Hey, Ms. Bradshaw.

    If the pencil was painted black and had an eraser cap would that make it an assault weapon?


    taznar | May 7, 2013 at 1:47 pm

    It becomes a “weapon” if pointed at someone and gun sounds are made?

    People used to worry about some kids being able to separate fantasy from reality. Apparently it was some adults we need to worry about.

    SoCA Conservative Mom | May 7, 2013 at 2:34 pm

    My son lost 2 recesses for pointing his fingers (in the shape of a gun) at another child and making “shooting” sounds. I told my son he is allowed to play cops and bad guys as much as he wants at home and bought him a cap gun…. which he LOVES. What angered me the most was that the prohibition on “gun” play was never explained to him or anyone else prior to the punishment.

    I’m not sure exactly what schools are trying to do by banning imaginary guns, but it’s not going to work. Get two boys together in a park and they will play cops & robbers. It happens every time I take my sons to the park, hell, it happens every afternoon in my back yard. My younger son does get tired of always being the bad guy, so I taught them rock/paper/scissors.

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