I’m sure by now most of you have heard about the local Kitchener, Ontario man who was briefly tossed in jail and had his house turned upside down because his daughter drew a picture of him holding a gun at school. When the teacher asked the child what the drawing was she said, “that’s my dad and his gun that he uses to shoot monsters and bad guys!”
What four year old doesn’t have a dad that kills monsters and bad guys? By the way, I should add that the school knows the father and has up until this point had a good relationship with him. To put everything in the open so no one is saying “I’ll bet there’s more to the story” in a smarmy voice, five years prior he had an assault and burglary conviction, but since then he’s turned his life around and is now a life coach and certified PSW (personal support worker — sort of like a home nurse). Again, the school knows all this, and last year they even offered him a job as a counselor.
Anyway, instead of talking to the child, having a parent teacher conference, or doing the reasonable thing and realizing this is a happy child with a decent parent known to the school and IGNORING IT, the teacher freaked out and called the authorities, telling them in very clear terms that this child was in danger because of guns in the home. The police never heard about it simply being a child’s drawing — they just heard “child with access to unregistered guns”.
So when the guy went to pick up his three children after school like every day, he was instead met by three police and he was handcuffed and told he was being charged with possession of a firearm. They ignored his tearful and terrified claims that they were making a mistake and took him and the children to the police station where he was strip searched and dumped in a cell. I’ve spent time in a jail cell for something I didn’t do, strip-searched, and I have had my home invaded by child services on false charges, and even though it “all turned out fine” and in the end the police and children’s aid both apologized for wasting my time (which I assure you does not make it any better), it was still incredibly stressful to go through for me and something I’d never wish on anyone, and even more so for my daughter. Anyway, they went to this poor guy’s home and brought his wife and baby (he has a lot of kids!) to the station where they were interviewed by Family and Children’s Services. While this was going on they were searching his house top to bottom — I am sure it’s ripped to shreds. In their search the totality of what they found was a clear plastic toy gun, which wa later identified as the gun in the drawing. No weapons, no drugs, no nothing. A typical baseless witch hunt.
The police released him with no charges and “an apology”, although he now has an additional arrest record which will stay on his record for the next three years making it difficult for him to travel and potentially get jobs. The school and child welfare and police all stand by their actions and are not only clear that everything was done correctly and that they’d do it the same way again, but the school has been very clear that they are completely unwilling to even review their actions for the possibility of other ways of handling such a situation. Scum. Scum. Scum.
Ignoring the fact that there is nothing more dangerous than subjectively investigating people for thought-crimes, this shows a disturbing level of incompetence on the part of the teacher in being able to identify problems at home. Teachers are the first line of defense against child abuse. They need to be able to tell when a child is in danger and when a child is not. To identify the problem signs. The system failed to a comical degree here. In this case it failed with a false positive. That’s terrible. But I have to wonder with such ignorant people, how many times have they failed with a false negative? Because that’s even worse. I haven’t even talked about the collateral damage here — how is this family ever supposed to trust this school again? How can they continue to have a reasonable relationship with them? They’re going to have to move. And how are these kids ever supposed to trust teachers — let alone police — again? The whole thing is sickening on so many levels.
By the way, here’s a drawing that Nefarious did. I don’t even want to think what could have happened if she had gone to this school (which is not very far from where we live):
Christmas is ruined!
Thankfully my daughter went to a wonderful school where they were willing to foster children’s creativity rather than try and destroy their family if they moved even slightly outside the boundaries of acceptable prole behavior as determined by the lowest of the low level “politically correct” bureaucrat.
Nefarious by the way has had automatic knives of her own since she was five. She has been shooting air guns — with my guidance and safety instruction — since she was three. Her school was aware of this as well. Heck, on one of their school trips to the park the kids were showing each other how to make bows and arrows out of sticks and found objects. There is nothing wrong with responsible use of such things. In fact, learning how to responsibly handle danger is a very, very important part of growing up, and one that I worry many children miss out on in these politically correct danger-averse modern times.
News links on this story: Man shocked by arrest after daughter draws picture of gun at school, Kitchener officials sticking to their guns, Possession of a dangerous crayon , etc. — the victim’s name is “Jessie Sansone” for those wanting to search for updates.