Is this an example of a world gone mad, or what?
A 10-year-old Florida girl faces felony weapons charges after bringing a small steak knife to school to cut up her lunch, according to a report on WFTV.com. School officials say the Ocala 5th grader had brought a piece of steak for her lunch, and had brought a steak knife.
According to the report, a couple of teachers took the utensil and called authorities, who arrested the girl and took her to the county’s juvenile assessment center.
“She did not use it inappropriately. She did not threaten anyone with it. She didn’t pull it out and brandish it. Nothing of that nature,” explained Marion County School Spokesman Kevin Christian, who added that it made no difference what the knife was being used for, they had no choice but to call police.”
Anytime there’s a weapon on campus, yes, we have to report it and we aggressively report it because we don’t want to take any chances, regardless,” Christian said.The girl now faces a felony charge for possessing a weapon on school property and has been suspended from school for 10 days. The parents of the girl could not be reached for comment, WFTV.com reported.
Maybe giving a sharp knife to a 10 year old child was not the smartest thing mum ever did… in hindsight perhaps it would have been better to cut the meat up at home and bring it to school ready to eat, but the idea of charging this child with a felony for this mistake is just stupid. How ridiculous that she should carry a criminal charge on her record for the rest of her life!
Hopefully, common sense will prevail in the end and things will get sorted out, but in the meantime we have put this kid through negative publicity, a suspension from school, fear of a criminal charge, and the general trauma that goes with this whole nonsense. As it pointed out in the story, although the knife was not used in any sort of inappropriate way, the school “had no choice” but to just follow the rules – no matter how mindlessly stupid those rules may be. That’s rubbish. You always have the choice as to whether you follow the rules or not, especially when they are stupid rules. Whatever happened to using common sense and discretionary judgment?
And what’s this about the parents not being available for comment? If that were my own daughter, trust me, I would have been available for comment, and you can guarantee I would have had some comments to make…
An Absence of Common Sense by Chris Betcher is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.