Last April, eighth-grader Jared Marcum was arrested at school in Logan County, W.Va., for refusing to take off his NRA shirt that had the organization’s logo of crossed rifles with the slogan “Protect Your Right.” A judge dismissed the charge.
Two weeks ago in upstate New York, 16-year-old Shane Kinney was suspended for a day for wearing an NRA shirt. Shane refused to obey school administrators who demanded that he turn the shirt inside out or put tape over the NRA logo with the crossed rifles and the words “The 2nd Amendment Shall Not Be Infringed” on the back.
If the Florida legislation is signed into law, it will be the first in the nation to codify what is considered children’s play instead of real danger. The NRA also supports similar legislation in Ohio and Oklahoma that instill common sense into “zero tolerance.”
Since the tragedy in Newtown, Conn., in December 2012, schools are understandably more concerned about the safety of their children.
However, cracking down on kids playing harmless games, using their imaginations or expressing their free speech has gotten out of control. And primary education teachers and administrators are notoriously knee-jerk anti-gun.
All states should consider introducing bills modeled after the one in Florida so our children are protected from unfair punishment for innocent fun.
Emily Miller is senior editor of opinion for The Washington Times and author of “Emily Gets Her Gun” (Regnery, 2013).