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Zero Tolerance: Chicago School Officials Suspend 11-Year-Old Boy Under ‘Dangerous Weapons’ Policy
The Rutherford Institute ^ | February 6, 2014 | Nisha Whitehead

Posted on 02/11/2014 6:47:32 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet

CHICAGO, Il.— Criticizing Chicago school officials for being overzealous, misguided and incapable of distinguishing between an impotent toy and a dangerous weapon, The Rutherford Institute has come to the defense of an 11-year-old boy who was suspended from school after he voluntarily turned in a non-firing plastic toy gun that had been forgotten in his jacket pocket. Caden Cook, a sixth grader at Fredrick Funston Elementary School, was suspended for allegedly violating the school’s weapons policy against dangerous objects, in addition to being ordered to undergo counseling, and subjected to intimidation tactics, interrogation, and dire threats by school officials—all without his mother being present. Rutherford Institute attorneys have asked that the suspension be rescinded and all references to the incident be removed from Caden’s permanent school record.

“This case speaks volumes about what’s wrong with our public schools and public officials: rather than school officials showing they are capable of exercising good judgment, distinguishing between what is and is not a true threat, and preserving safety while steering clear of a lockdown mindset better suited to a prison environment, they instead opted to exhibit poor judgment, embrace heavy handed tactics, and treat a toy gun like a dangerous weapon,” said John W. Whitehead, president of The Rutherford Institute and author of A Government of Wolves: The Emerging American Police State. “In the process, school officials sent a strong, chilling message to this child and his classmates that they have no rights in the American police state.”

Frederick Funston Elementary School introduced a random “pat down” to its security and screening procedures at the beginning of this school year. All students are physically separated from their bags and randomly chosen for a manual “pat down” before going through the metal detectors. Students’ bags are also separately searched at random. On Friday, January 31, 2014, sixth grader Caden Cook was waiting in the school line to be patted down when he realized that he had mistakenly left in his sweater pocket a toy plastic gun which he had played with the previous night while he was out with friends and family. Realizing his error and that the toy was a prohibited item on school grounds, Caden alerted the security personnel to his predicament, explaining that he had accidentally brought the plastic toy to school and relinquishing the toy to school security personnel. Instead of recognizing that Caden was attempting to do the right thing and acknowledging the mistake, school officials allegedly subjected the 11-year-old to intimidation tactics, interrogation, accusations of lying, and threats. All of this was done in the absence of Caden’s mother and without her having been informed of the incident. Upon her arrival, Caden’s mother was berated and criticized for allowing her son to use toy guys.

In coming to Caden’s defense, Rutherford Institute attorneys point out that Caden’s conduct does not rise to the level of serious disruptive behavior, given that he immediately alerted school officials to his accidental transgression and voluntarily turned in the toy once he realized his mistake, even prior to entering the screening area, nor does the plastic toy gun constitute a dangerous object by the school’s standards or anyone else’s.


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Culture/Society; Government; US: Illinois
KEYWORDS: banglist; chicago; illinois; publicschools; zerotolerance
Full title: Zero Tolerance: Chicago School Officials Suspend 11-Year-Old Boy Under ‘Dangerous Weapons’ Policy for Voluntarily Turning in Non-Firing Toy Gun
1 posted on 02/11/2014 6:47:32 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

we surely live in ridiculous times, surrounded it seems by complete idiots


2 posted on 02/11/2014 6:53:40 PM PST by faithhopecharity
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

but getting tossed out of Chicago public school may be the kid’s first real break in his life....


3 posted on 02/11/2014 6:54:28 PM PST by faithhopecharity
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Finally hit me: such school administrators are BULLIES.

On the vaguest pretext they become utterly abusive to exert their power and establish dominance - and nobody dares call them on it, lest become their next victim. Bullies.


4 posted on 02/11/2014 6:56:20 PM PST by ctdonath2 (Making good people helpless doesn't make bad people harmless.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

None of this will change until lawsuits are brought against the abusive administrators which isnt likely due to the extreme levels of intimidation and leverage avail to use against the parents.

The admin are rewarded every time this sort of thing makes headlines....

enforcing the cow effect


5 posted on 02/11/2014 6:57:35 PM PST by Therapsid
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

If they had this policy when I was 11, you better believe I’d take full advantage of it!


6 posted on 02/11/2014 7:02:21 PM PST by Dogbert41 (Up yours NSA !)
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Have recently retire from several decades of public school teaching, I would like to say that when administrators do really stupid thing like that, it hurts all of those who teach. Unfortunately, administrators, doing stupid things that hurt education, are not nearly rare enough.


7 posted on 02/11/2014 7:02:48 PM PST by lrdg
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

8 yrs ago I was the plaintiff in an auto accident case and had a hearing at the county court house in Washington, PA. Upon entering I saw the metal detector and realized that I still had my pistol in my belt holster. Notified the deputy. He told me to go put it in my car.


8 posted on 02/11/2014 7:02:54 PM PST by Eagles6 (Valley Forge Redux)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Its a Government school in a Government city. I would expect nothing less from them. I have nothing but sympathy for any child in a government school especially in a Dem controlled city............


9 posted on 02/11/2014 7:03:31 PM PST by SECURE AMERICA (Where can I go to sign up for the American Revolution 2014 and the Crusades 2014?)
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To: faithhopecharity
This boy's parents obviously taught him that honesty is the best policy. Just like mine did and I'm certain everyone reading this learned.

The dullards on the Left have a new tactic. It is to use this against Conservatives. It is called Zero Tolerance.

Question;
When we watch a film with a villain, what perceived weakness of the hero does said villain use against him/her?

10 posted on 02/11/2014 7:04:49 PM PST by Bloody Sam Roberts ("The further a society drifts from truth the more it will hate those who speak it." - George Orwell)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

It’s tough actions like this that keeps the chicago murder rate so low. I guess.


11 posted on 02/11/2014 7:07:46 PM PST by FlJoePa ("Success without honor is an unseasoned dish; it will satisfy your hunger, but it won't taste good")
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Number One killer of school children everywhere.

(according to a liberal screwell administrator.)

12 posted on 02/11/2014 7:11:41 PM PST by Doomonyou (Let them eat Lead.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Should have been suspended for his silly name.


13 posted on 02/11/2014 7:15:13 PM PST by Dr. Pritchett
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To: faithhopecharity

But, teaching young children to accept pat-downs, and searches of back packs and their own persons is all part of the progressives’ plan for America.
Further, teaching them that there are serious consequences for violations of patently ridiculous rules established by ignorant socialists is to be commended.

/s


14 posted on 02/11/2014 7:16:57 PM PST by PubliusMM (RKBA; a matter of fact, not opinion. 01-20-2016; I pray we make it that long.)
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To: Dr. Pritchett

He’s apparently a white boy, so he got the book thrown at him.


15 posted on 02/11/2014 7:18:36 PM PST by Shimmer1
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

When you abandon God, you go insane.


16 posted on 02/11/2014 7:22:02 PM PST by Rocky (The further a society drifts from the truth, the more it will hate those who speak it. George Orwell)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Does this mean that they are going to start suspending Teachers? Because some of them are really dangerous weapons.


17 posted on 02/11/2014 7:33:08 PM PST by MA~Bear
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To: PubliusMM

you make a very important point....conditioning the kids...to accept tyranny....


18 posted on 02/11/2014 7:41:55 PM PST by faithhopecharity
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

This nation is insane.


19 posted on 02/11/2014 7:42:49 PM PST by LowTaxesEqualsProsperity
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

This little shit needs to be beaten and locked in a closet! </progressive>


20 posted on 02/11/2014 7:50:57 PM PST by glock rocks (If you like your health plan, you're a racist !)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Hopefully he learned a lesson. Today’s governmental authorities cannot be trusted. They are not our friends.


21 posted on 02/11/2014 7:52:17 PM PST by TigersEye (Stupid is a Progressive disease.)
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To: faithhopecharity

At this point I would either withdraw my child and find a good parochial school (finances allowing)or I would home school. The public school is terroristic.


22 posted on 02/11/2014 7:53:54 PM PST by ArmyTeach ( Videteco eos prius (See 'em first) Sculpin 191)
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To: AdmSmith; AnonymousConservative; Berosus; bigheadfred; Bockscar; cardinal4; ColdOne; ...

> The Rutherford Institute has come to the defense of an 11-year-old boy who was suspended from school after he voluntarily turned in a non-firing plastic toy gun that had been forgotten in his jacket pocket.

Thanks 2ndDivisionVet. The parents (or parent) should sue the school’s face off.


23 posted on 02/11/2014 8:06:05 PM PST by SunkenCiv (http://www.freerepublic.com/~mestamachine/)
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To: ArmyTeach

many public schools just don’t educate very well anymore

they are afraid to do any (moderate, reasonable) discipline, for starters


24 posted on 02/11/2014 8:11:29 PM PST by faithhopecharity
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Do you have to pass some sort of stupid test to become a school administrator?
Or are they deliberately making up impossible rules to demoralize our children?

25 posted on 02/11/2014 8:20:05 PM PST by BitWielder1 (Corporate Profits are better than Government Waste)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
John W. Whitehead, president of The Rutherford Institute and author of A Government of Wolves: The Emerging American Police State. “In the process, school officials sent a strong, chilling message to this child and his classmates that they have no rights in the American police state.”

That was the 'message' the school system wanted sent...

26 posted on 02/11/2014 8:23:27 PM PST by GOPJ ("Hillary Clinton says (the) press has big egos and no brains". - Tony Blair - May 19, 1993)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Being punished for voluntarily turning in the toy gun will teach him a life lesson that no good deed goes unpunished—so don’t expect him ever again to do a good deed. From now on, he will take a cynical view of life.


27 posted on 02/11/2014 8:37:25 PM PST by Fiji Hill
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To: faithhopecharity

this is shock indoctrination.

not you former public school.

my old elementary school doesn’t let kids play kickball or dodge ball anymore. just “skills” development.


28 posted on 02/11/2014 10:03:28 PM PST by Secret Agent Man (Gone Galt; Not averse to Going Bronson.)
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To: TigersEye

Government authorities should never have been trusted or considered “our friends”.

That *is* the problem. Too many Freepers are enamored of the idea of “good government”.


29 posted on 02/11/2014 10:04:11 PM PST by Altariel ("Curse your sudden but inevitable betrayal!")
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To: Altariel

Don’t count me among them.


30 posted on 02/11/2014 10:14:43 PM PST by TigersEye (Stupid is a Progressive disease.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

A toy plastic gun is more dangerous than a sharp pencil?


31 posted on 02/12/2014 2:32:05 AM PST by Right Wing Assault
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To: ctdonath2
ordered to undergo counseling, and subjected to intimidation tactics,
interrogation, and dire threats by school officials

They are bullies. most likely made him cry then really piled it on him
to satisfy their urge to hurt somebody, even an 11-year old. Sociopathic.

32 posted on 02/12/2014 2:45:39 AM PST by MaxMax (Pay Attention and you'll be pissed off too! FIRE BOEHNER, NOW!)
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To: Altariel
When using Good and Government in the same sentence my teacher told me
that "Good" must always be followed by a proper noun such as Riddance.
33 posted on 02/12/2014 2:48:57 AM PST by MaxMax (Pay Attention and you'll be pissed off too! FIRE BOEHNER, NOW!)
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To: faithhopecharity
"we surely live in ridiculous times, surrounded it seems by complete idiots"

Well I am sure most involved in the school hierarchy are indeed complete idiots you must give credit for a brilliant policy to someone.

Brilliant as in cunning that is. See what you have here is an institutional push to condition parents and students to fear gun ownership.

Think about it. This no tolerance policies for weapons and firearms are so over-the-top that it causes a huge explosion of negativity to the individual who violates such an edict. Lawyers are involved, news agencies descend on the alleged perp and his family and the student is expelled from school which of course singles out the lawbreaker and separates him from his schoolmates and as such he has become an example of socially unacceptable behavior as well as it shows what will happen if others engage in the same actions.

No this plan was not put in place by bumbling idiots who thought they would be helping society. Yes those idiots support and enact the policy but this whole issue is an effort to destroy the 2nd Amendment through long term conditioning. People who grow up in a school system that has such harsh policies will grow up to fear guns.

And if you get the majority of people in the USA to fear guns then the 2nd Amendment can be erased with ease. And that ultimately is the goal of zero tolerance.

34 posted on 02/12/2014 3:09:15 AM PST by Mad Dawgg (If you're going to deny my 1st Amendment rights then I must proceed to the 2nd one...)
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To: Mad Dawgg

“........he voluntarily turned in a non-firing plastic toy gun that had been forgotten in his jacket pocket.”....

Yepper, the 11 year old kid was a “real threat” to them.

What a bunch of dumb asses who are put in charge of our schools so they can brain wash the kids. Home schooling needs to be mandated across the country. Why not, since being un-employed is a great opportunity to spend with your family as stated by the gubmint idiots themselves.


35 posted on 02/12/2014 4:46:52 AM PST by DaveA37
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

The lesson learned here: Don’t admit to a mistake, don’t turn it in. Just try to not get caught.

As the twig is bent, so grows the tree.


36 posted on 02/12/2014 7:15:30 AM PST by JimRed (Excise the cancer before it kills us; feed & water the Tree of Liberty! TERM LIMITS NOW & FOREVER!)
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To: TigersEye

Do you agree that the time period in which conservatives “trusted” government and believed government employees were “their friends” is an anomaly which ought never to be repeated?


37 posted on 02/12/2014 8:36:57 AM PST by Altariel ("Curse your sudden but inevitable betrayal!")
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To: Altariel

I don’t know. That’s a rather convoluted premise and I’m not sure I can agree with it.


38 posted on 02/12/2014 11:13:15 AM PST by TigersEye (Stupid is a Progressive disease.)
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