If you have followed this BLOG for any length of time you know my 11-year-old son Bat does a lot of shooting and hunting with me and that he also helps me review firearms and other hunting and shooting related gear. Rifle Firepower Editor Nino Bosaz recently asked me to  contribute a column to that new magazine and we both agreed it might be a good idea for Bat to include a sidebar with each column that would give the perspective of an 11-year-old shooter.

My check for that column includes a little something extra for Bat to compensate him for his efforts and the entire process is improving his communication skills and teaching him what work is all about.

Here is the absurdity. Bat’s school has a zero tolerance policy on firearms. On the surface this seems like a good idea; none of us want kids bringing guns to school. However the school takes the policy to such an extreme, kids cannot show a photo to other students of the buck they killed if a gun is in the picture. Nor can Bat present his published work to his language arts teacher for review, critique or extra credit.

Have we evolved to the point we are so afraid of images and words that we cannot properly educate our children?

It appears so. When I was in 7th grade hunter safety was part of our physical education curriculum. We shot clays on the baseball field and loaded shot shells in the gym. Ever student received firearms safety education and a hunter’s safety card. It seems to me that our education system is subverting the proper recognition and education of the 1st two amendments to the law of the land.

Absurdity is the best word I can find to describe this but maybe this is due to my lack of proper education through the public school system where I spent too much time learning about guns and talking to my buddies about hunting. Look where that got me!

If you can think of a better word, please let me know.


About gunwriter

Born and raised in the West Virginia hills, Richard literally grew up in the woods. He has chased coon hounds until daylight, waited out whitetails perched high in an oak, canoed the New River and hunted from the Montana Mountains to the Green Hills of Africa. During service in the Army and later as a municipal police officer and Special Agent with the railroad police, Richard obtained numerous certifications in small arms instruction. He has trained military personnel, law enforcement officers and civilians in the application of firearms for defensive, competitive and recreational use. Richard won the West Virginia Governor’s Twenty Award for law enforcement, the West Virginia National Guard State Pistol Competition and earned his Distinguished Medal with pistol. Badge turned in, Richard is now a contributing editor for several magazines. He was the compiling author of the book, Rifle Bullets for the Hunter and conceptualized and contributed to Selecting and Ordering a Custom Hunting Rifle. Richard also contributed a chapter to the John Velke book, The True Story of the Baldwin-Felts Detective Agency. Richard has patents on a riflescope reticle and a revolutionary bullet testing media. A hillbilly at heart, Richard lives on Shadowland - his shooting range in West Virginia - with the most understanding wife in the world, their three kids and a very protective ridgeback hound.
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  1. Pingback: Zero-Something Policy, Anyway | GunPundit

  2. jd rush says:

    That would have elminated half of my middle and high school opinion papers. Not to mention the hunting or Guns and Ammo type mags I carried every day in school. And we actually had a murder suicide at school 3 years before I attended. And we still carried knives. I graduated right when Clinton started mucking things down.

  3. Murdoc says:

    Thank God the school prevented that photo from being seen by children. Imagine all the poor traumatized little souls. Just think how many kids are killed each year by photos of firearms.

  4. Cigr says:

    “Zero Tolerance” policies are zero thought policies. Bureaucrats love them because they don’t ever have to consider individual circumstances or context for anything. Of course, like all bad bureaucratic remedies, this only leads to ludicrous policies like people being punished for having a picture of a gun. Sadly I don’t see these policies going away, as they are the ultimate crutch for the lazy.

  5. LLD & POMA says:

    This is outrageous. Our industry, traditional outdoor sports, need to stand in support of Bat and other youngsters who love shooting, who want to convey the joys and challenges of the shooting sports to others and who are the future of our indsutry — future leaders and future participants. Bat, let us know what we can do to help you reach your goals as a communicator and or shooter.

  6. Jim Dodd says:

    Zero tolerance means zero leadership at this government school. TAke it up with the school board…jim dodd

  7. John in KS says:

    Some other words (synonyms) for “absurd” that apply to “zero tolerance” policies in schools: asininity, hoplophobia, psychosis, irrationality, senselessness, folly —- liberal/progressives.

    Sounds like you and the Mrs. must be doing a good job of de-programming Bat from his gov-school attempts at indoctrination.

    Good on ‘ya!

  8. Frank H. says:

    A N.C. school teacher reported to the principal she overheard one of her male students,8-years-old, telling another student his teacher was “cute.” The principal suspended the 8-year-old for sexual harassment. Once word of this nuttiness leaked to a local TV station, the principal and the teacher lost their jobs.

  9. Jason Craft says:

    I’d possibly use the term “asinine nincompoops” to describe those who push zero tolerance policies such as this in our school system. In trying to create a Utopian environment to espouse their progressive agenda, these people are creating a vision of Pollyanna that’s so far removed from the reality that we live in, it’s no wonder that children graduate nowadays without the slightest notion of the heritage of our nation, and what the founding fathers battled against for our freedoms that are being eroded away in this exact manner.

  10. Steve says:

    Everything about this is absurd. The most unbelievable thing by far though is that you actually named your son Batman.

  11. Tyler Staggs says:

    I agree whole heartedly with the blog post and most of the above comments. However, all is not lost. Some schools are still teaching these types of things, but unfortunately they are typically in very rural areas where most do not live anymore. My step-nephew will be taking Hunters Education, Trapper Education, and Boat Safety through is public school’s health education class starting next sememster.

    I am a relative newcomer to following this blog, but appreciate the material pertaining to your son very much as I have a 1yo and a 4yo that I will be bringing up in a similar fashion. Thank you for giving ideas and setting a great example for me.

  12. Pingback: Teaching The Kids The Right Way « Weapon Blog

  13. chris says:

    I would use an exacto knife to cut out the gun perfectly and then submit the photo to his teacher. Just when I think the general public or the government can’t disappoint me more, they do.

    • Heck, I used to carry an Xacto with me, as well as a pocket knife. Now, someone so much as forgets his Boy Scout knife is in his pocket, he’ll be suspended for a week if they catch him. The enemy is in charge.

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  15. A Critic says:

    “Have we evolved to the point we are so afraid of images and words that we cannot properly educate our children?”

    This is a proper “education”, and by “education” I mean it is a scientifically designed mind control program carefully calculated to instill ignorance, incompetence, and idiocy. You are sending your child to an institution that is attempting to destroy him.

  16. mikee says:

    I’d suggest a Sharpie marker to do the censoring of the rifle. Then I would do the same to young Bat’s face in the picture, so he would not be embarrassed of being associated with his school’s idiocy.

    I recall how Sister Mary John supervised several of my classmates making black powder from charcoal, sulfur and saltpeter at school for class show and tell. She personally set off the pile of powder in the front yard of the school, with 1st through 5th grades watching. The lessons I learned from this is that attempts at forbidding knowledge from kids can’t work, and don’t mess with Sister Mary John.

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