As a society, do we want to teach our kids to be liars who bend the rules and game the system, or do we want them to tell the truth and do the right thing?
Pennsylvania school officials are voting for Door #1. Here’s how:David Schaffner III, above right, went to watch a football game at his high school on September 13th. He had been working on his hunting tree stand earlier that day (TTAK likes him already) and by accident he still had his hunting knife in his pocket when his father dropped him off at the game. As he approached the field, he felt it in his pocket and had a temporary ‘oh sh*t‘ moment.
He could have just walked in with it. He could have said nothing. He could have lied. And nobody would have noticed because there were no metal detectors, but he did the right thing and turned the knife over to a security guard at the entrance. Since he never actually brought it into the game, he assumed that he’d be able to reclaim it after the game and carry on with his life.
A Pennsylvania teen was slapped with a 10-day out-of-school suspension for what his attorney calls “doing the right thing.”
David Schaffner III, 16, was at his school’s football game Friday night when he realized he had mistakenly left a hunting knife in his pocket after using it that afternoon at his home. Schaffner decided to turn it in to a security guard at the entrance, thinking he could just get it back at the end of the game.
A few minutes into the game, Schaffner says the principal of Fox Chapel Area School found him and told him that his error was “much more serious.” Schaffner and his attorney, Phil Dilucente, talked to Steve Doocy about the incident this morning on Fox & Friends.
Schaffner was informed that he would be suspended for 10 days under the school’s zero-tolerance policy about weapons on school property. Perhaps worse though is that the suspension and the reason for it could end up on his permanent record when he applies to colleges.
The Schaffner family looks like they hired the right lawyer, because Mr. Dilucente is actually a hearings officer for the very same school board.
As we’ve pointed out so many times, this sort of thing shouldn’t even be a violation of school rules. It certainly wasn’t back in my day, and my classmates and I came out all right. ‘Zero Tolerance’ polices are actually ‘Zero Intelligence’ policies, because they don’t let the punishment fit the crime.
Here is my letter to the Fox Chapel Area School District in its abbreviated entirety, because their ‘comment’ page cut me short:
The so-called ‘zero tolerance’ policy that you have applied to the case of Mr. Schaffner is a disgrace.
So-called ‘zero tolerance’ policies such as yours absolve you of the requirement that you actually use your judgment when responding to de minimis infractions of your rules. By adopting such rules, you declare yourselves to be imbeciles or tyrants.
If you *lack* the judgment to evaluate each case, such as Mr. Schaffner’s, on its own merits, you are too stupid to be entrusted with the education of children. You are, then, imbeciles.
If you *choose* not to exercise the judgment to evaluate each case on its own merits, then you are too intoxicated with the arrogance of your own authority to be entrusted in any civic capacity. You, in other words, are tyrants.
By these actions you disgrace yourselves, but you also unjustly punish a young man who found himself in a difficult situation through mere human forgetfulness. You are punishing honesty.
Shame on you.
You can add your own comments at their website here. You don’t have to be friendly (I certainly wasn’t) but keep it clean. And try to use simple words, because those fucktards won’t understand you if you use long ones.