scouts-l Mail Archive for March of 2000: Re: A pocket knife is a weapon...
Conrad Shultz (shultzc@HOME.COM
Mon Mar 20 2000 - 19:34:24 CST
> The leader would be on a bit of shaky
> ground here because, after all, we are supposed to require that a Scout
> his authority to carry a knife (his Totin' Chip) along with the knife.
I am a Scout with a wallet virtually attached to me. My Totin' and Fireman
Chits are in there, so I, for one, almost always have them with me.
Now, on to my real comments.
1) Most on here seem to agree that ZT rules are generally bad. So, okay,
great. Talking about them endlessly accomplishes nothing. If we think that
they (ZT rules) do more harm than good, let us try to change the rules. SB
members are elected. If you want something changed, run for public office.
Isn't that what Scouting teaches? Being a good citizen? I'd run for
office, but sadly I am not 18 (another rule that I, personally, think is
bad. But lets not get into that).
2) Even ZT rules, at least around here (Oregon), aren't actually zero
tolerance, making them even more ridiculous in nature (why have rules that,
regardless of the rule, are only enforced in a certain body of people?).
This is what I mean: I have a habit of, when I am not in school, carrying
more than one knife on me, as I am constantly in need of them and everyone
else seems to borrow them). So, I have my Gerber multiplier in the Pock-it,
with the sharpener, and two single lock-blade knives, one in each front
pocket. Without thinking, I headed off (after high school was out for the
day) to help out at the middle school I went to a few years ago, with all of
my knives. I walked into the front office, saw the principal, and
simultaneously realized what I had done (he didn't notice, though). I asked
him semi-sarcastically if I was breaking any rules after puling the knives
out. His response? Yes. Did I get in trouble? Not in the slightest. He
told me that he knew I wasn't going to kill anyone, and that I can carry
knives in his school (understand that I was not a student going there
anymore, that the teachers [or most of them] were good friends of mine, and
that for years I have helped with computer work at that school, which
occasionally did involve knives). I think that this type of judgement is
what we need (maybe not the part about letting me carry them, but at least
not getting angry at me). Oh, our district DOES have a zero tolerance
policy in place.
Anyway, I tell you this so that you can see that not ALL school officials
are using ZT policies to avoid any real thinking. I am sure, after several
years of dealing with this particular principal, that if he did not know me
as well as he did, the situation would have turned out quite differently.
Do we want administrators with brains, not to mention the power to think? I
think so. Will they magically appear, without us (adults and youth)
lobbying for changes to the rules? Nope.