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January 31, 2007

Common sense is dead

Does this make any sense?
Two Osceola County parents said their son was humiliated at school when he was suspected of wearing "gang-style" clothing. Saint Cloud Middle School said only a handful of students were searched last week when they got a complaint.

The parents told Eyewitness News, if their son was wearing low baggy pants or a bandana, by all means he should have been sent home, but he wasn't. He was wearing a Florida Gators t-shirt.

Robert and Sara Crosby can't understand how their son could be connected to gang activity, especially by wearing a Gators t-shirt.
Now, if it were a Virginia Tech shirt, I could understand...

But seriously, who is really providing the distraction? I remember wearing various different t-shirts in school and never was accused of wearing gang apparel; no one I know was. Why? Because t-shirts showing your favorite team or school generally is not gang apparel. In fact, last I checked, most gangs do not have a strong affinity for school.

I also see little reason to believe that getting rid of "gang apparel" will stop or even slow down gangs. There are other ways around this; are schools going to start sending home every kid who has a tattoo next? Hard to change those, and forcing kids out of schools will only accelerate any moves they might make towards joining a gang.

Common sense people. The one place children are best suited is school, and making them feel unwelcome there is foolhardy at best. I am not saying not to look for the signs; I am saying that, sometimes, you need to look at more than one piece of evidence.