Rhode Island School Bans Toy Soldier Cap

Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by The Poultry Peanut, Jun 19, 2010.

  1. The Poultry Peanut

    The Poultry Peanut lives under rock


    David Morales, a Coventry, Rhode Island, second grader, was recently banned from wearing a patriotic cap he made for a school project to school because it was adorned with plastic toy soldiers carrying tiny plastic “weapons.”

    WPRI in Providence reported that David said he did not make the camouflage cap with soldiers on top as a fashion statement: It was meant to honor military members.

    David’s teacher phoned his mother, Christan Morales, explaining that the miniature military figures brandishing even tinier, toothpick-sized rifles violated the school district's zero-tolerance weapons policy.( [​IMG] )

    "His teacher called and said it wasn't appropriate," Morales told AP reporters. But she disagrees with the lack of sense behind the decision, saying that banning the cap "sent the wrong message to the kids, because it wasn't in any way to cause any harm to anyone. You're talking about Army men. This wasn't about guns."

    Coventry School Superintendent Kenneth R. Di Pietro related to the media that Denise Richtarik, the principal at the Tiogue Elementary School, told David’s family that the cap would be allowed if David replaced the soldiers holding weapons with others that were unarmed.

    But the family had only one soldier represented without a weapon, and he was carrying binoculars. So in order to comply with the ban, David wore an unadorned, soldier-less baseball cap on the day of the special program — a meeting with pen pals from another school.

    "Nothing was being done to limit patriotism, creativity, other than find an alternative to a weapon," said Di Pietro, stating that Principal Richtarik "wasn't denying the patriotism.” "That just is the wrong and unfair image of one of our finest principals," he added.

    On June 17, reported AP, Di Pietro and Richtarik met with Lt. Gen. Reginald Centracchio, adjutant general emeritus of the Rhode Island National Guard, at the general's request.

    Centracchio praised the Coventry school district for supporting the military in the past, including sponsoring a junior ROTC program, but he took exception to the decision to ban the cap. He also expressed hope that the incident would provide an opportunity for the distrcit to review its policies. "The American soldier is armed. That's why they're called the armed forces," said Centracchio. "If you're going to portray it any other way, you miss the point."

    Centracchio presented David with a medal for his patriotic efforts on June 18, along with a certificate that allows the boy to call himself an honorary brigadier general.

    Such irrational fear of “weapons” reminds this writer of the old joke about the man who — lacking a piece of cheese with which to bait his mouse trap — used, instead, a picture of a piece of cheese. He caught a picture of a mouse!

    The tiny, half-inch-long strips of plastic protruding from two-inch-high toy soldiers are no more “weapons,” than a picture of a piece of cheese is real cheese. Only in animated movies do such toys come to life and threaten anyone.

    Such thinking is not unique to Coventry, Rhode Island, however. Earlier in the school year our grandson was sent to the principal’s office of his Rowlett, Texas, elementary school for engaging in the “dangerous” act of actually drawing battle scenes involving tanks and other military armaments. The principal thought this drawing was dangerous enough to confiscate as contraband and sent Kyle to the school’s counselor. (Incidentally, Kyle has a remarkable knowledge of World War II history, being able to name most of the conflict's major battles and participants.)

    Probably contributing to this young lad’s admiration for the military is the fact that his father served in the U.S. Marine Corps and currently is a civilian technician working at Kirkuk Air Base in Iraq. The school’s administration, obviously, does not share in this respect for our nation’s armed forces.

    In contrast, this writer has quite distinct memories of class in the first grade during the 1954-55 school year, only 10 years after the conclusion of World War II and a year after fighting in Korea ended. In order to promote creativity, the teacher would pass out drawing paper several times a week and allow the children to draw with their crayons whatever their little hearts desired.

    Now the girls were prone to making pictures of flowers, puppies, and kittens, but the boys would have none of such “sissy” subject matter. Almost without exception, the boys would use their crayons to recreate battle scenes they had seen watching the popular World War II-themed movies of the day or from the popular Victory at Sea TV documentary series.

    Most of the boys would become quite animated when drawing pictures of U.S. battleships pointing enormously out-of-proportion guns at dive-bombing Japanese kamikaze pilots flying planes with the red, rising-sun “meatballs" on their wings! They would become so engrossed in their creations that they would make “rat-a-tat-tat” machine-gun sound effects while using red and yellow crayons to depict fire belching out of the muzzles of cannon and machine guns, demolishing the Japanese Mitsubishi Zeros.

    If the teachers reacted at all to the little boys’ apparent enthusiasm for military battles, it was perhaps to smile in amusement. Most of them, after all, were probably married to men who had served their country at places like Normandy, Anzio, or Iwo Jima — or in operations supporting those who did.

    One hopes that if a foreign enemy ever invades America, such fear of even representations of military weaponry will not have led to the complete disarmament of our nation, rendering us defenseless.
  2. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

    May 14, 2008
    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    I saw this on the news recently.

    Political correctness has gone too far...


    .........edited this part of my post so it doesn't get edited.....
  3. Yep, read about that one too.

    The kid and parents knew at the beginning of the year about the no weapons policy and that it included toys. If they had asked in advance they'd have known. Instead they just assumed that Their Case would be okay. Never a good idea. It is interesting don't you think that you study war in school, see pics of memorials (with guns) but a plastic one might inspire violence... I understand that annoyance, but I also understand being advised of a rule and then breaking it. If you want it changed, go for it, but until it is you signed a thing (leastways in our district you have to) saying you got a copy of the rules and agree to abide by them or face the proscribed consequences. Mainly sucks for the kid who put all that work in and then had it shot down.

    Save that hat and wear it to your 4th of July parade... not to mention Veteran's Day, Memorial Day... etc. he'll be a hit.
  4. Goose and Fig

    Goose and Fig Grateful Geese

    Apr 19, 2009
    Fall Creek Falls TN
    Quote:Yeah- it's a bit overdone for everyday school wear anyway.
  5. Gonzo

    Gonzo Songster

    May 25, 2009
    Southwestern, In
    Quote:[​IMG] Rightly said!
  6. The No Weapon No Tolerance thing isn't political... least not as far as the kids are concerned... it's just No Guns No Knives real or fake period... oh, and no bows. We had a senior at our HS who left his bow in his truck (forgot about it after bowhunting over the weekend)... no arrows, just the bow. He was expelled, could not graduate, totally toast... because there's always a chance that a student or random homeless person might be walking by with a quiver of arrows and see that bow and decide to rob the PTA with it... did I mention that this student was in the Church across the street's parking lot, not on school property?

    So, I do know of cases where this was really blown out of proportion... but that senior had no one to blame but himself... he put it there, then left it (not very responsible weapon ownership IMHO) and he parked where school security could see it... knowing that ANY weapon would get him booted... but of course they didn't see it that way at all... they played the poor innocent child (18 years old here, not 8) just didn't know no better... that part kinda peeved me...

    I guess it's possible that these parents didn't bother to read the school handbook. It is rather lengthy (for our schools) but then don't sign the thing saying you did... once you sign that you're responsible if you ignore a rule. But, that's a pet peeve of mine... giving your word and then blowing it off because you don't think this or that applies to you... don't have to be right or left to be an oathbreaker.
  7. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member 11 Years

    Following rules blindly to the letter negates any rational, reasonable thinking. No one can think rationally anymore! They completely ignore the spirit of the rule and doggedly hang on to the stupidest, most extreme interpretation of it. I'm not in the least surprised. Common sense is dead.
  8. Zahboo

    Zahboo Simply Stated

    Feb 3, 2009
    Hope Mills, NC
    Oh so they can sit and watch their mothers and fathers be deported and see kids get shot in drivebys by the street but can't have a simple kids toy on their hat? Idiotic thinking maximized.
  9. FarmerJamie

    FarmerJamie Songster

    Mar 21, 2010
    Quote:Didn't we just have a thread simliar to this locked down by the admins not too long ago? I love this type of discussion here, and if it continues, let's just use a little a common sense ourselves. [​IMG]

    To many people think "having laws" will protect them from the badness (and accidents) of the world.
    Heard one today, "how many federal lawyers will it take to stop the oil well leak in Gulf? Only 2 or 3, if they are wedged in just right".

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