Boy arrested for doodling, tinkering

A 16-year-old New Jersey boy was arrested for having chemicals at home that could have been used to make a bomb but weren’t, reports the Press of Atlantic City. He also had electronic parts at home that weren’t being used to make a bomb. Police Chief Pat Moran said, “There was no indication he was making a bomb, or using a bomb or detonating a bomb.”

Nonetheless, high school junior was charged with possession of an explosive device and booked into Harborfields Detention Center. Later — it’s not clear how much later — charges were dropped, reports Salon. After all, he didn’t actually possess an explosive device. My house has chemicals that probably could be mixed to create a bomb. And we’ve got lots of electronic parts. I’m sure my husband is capable of building a bomb. All that stops him is a lack of homicidal intent. And, fortunately, he’s completed high school.

The Cedar Creek High School student’s teacher had reported him for doodling what might have been weapons in a notebook. The boy’s mother said he’d drawn a flaming glove. That’s why the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund is publicizing the case, reports Reason‘s Hit & Run. Apparently, flaming gloves are a common comic book fantasy.

A former Boy Scout, her son  “volunteers to help senior citizens,” said the mother.

She says his passion for collecting old stuff, taking it apart and rebuilding things lead to this arrest.

“He takes the parts and he builds things with them. Good things,” she explained.

That’s probably why he attends Cedar Creek, a magnet school with an engineering focus and a stress on hands-on learning.
School officials said the student hadn’t made threats and wasn’t in conflict with anyone, but the superintendent praised the teacher for reporting the doodler to police. Post-Newtown hysteria will be with us for awhile.

Gossiping is also a criminal offense these days. The Press also reports:

A 15-year-old girl was arrested at Mainland Regional High School and charged with false public alarm after she allegedly sent a text message to a friend stating that she had heard a rumor that there would be a shooting at the school on Friday.

If she’d heard such a rumor, as opposed to making it up herself, wouldn’t she have a public duty to pass it on? After all, the Cedar Creek teacher who turned in the doodling student wasn’t arrested for “false public alarm.”

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  1. Richard Aubrey says:

    Discretion and discrimination have the same first five letters. A coincidence? I think not. And then, there’s…discernment.
    Not sure how to work educrats in here, except to say, as I have before, that their practice at seeming baffled as to why people pull their kids out of public schools is useful.
    Should be remembered that kids learn in school, even if it’s not on the syllabus. Imagine what the kids in this school have learned about ‘crats, and government in general.

  2. Richard, if I was that student, the first thing I would have learned from all of this is that the school district isn’t worth the money that backs it, and that I’d think about filing a lawsuit against the district, the teacher, and the police under 42 USC 1983, for say 100 million dollars.

    That should give the id10t’s in Risk Management a very severe headache 🙂

  3. Pig cops, running wild.

  4. I think another lesson he learned is that nowadays you can be arrested for anything. It’s a good thing one of these educrat idiots isn’t sitting in a missile silo somewhere with his finger on a red button.

  5. Another example of boys not being welcome in school.

    • Nor are many girls. When I attended a small-town 1-12 school, in the 50s-60s, almost every boy and girl had at least a small penknife with them all of the time. The lucky ones had a Swiss-Army type, with lots of cool tools. Whittling and making small objects out of whatever twigs etc. could be found in the woods behind the unfenced playground were routine recess activities. Making a wooden dagger, bow and arrow or sword was perfectly acceptable.

      Many, if not most, of the student cars (rural and out-of-town kids) had fishing gear in the trunk, complete with knives etc. and many had rifles, shotguns and hunting gear, in season. Kids stopped before and/or after school for these activities. Never was there a problem with any of the “dangerous weapons.” The problem is not objects of any kind. The problem is failing to DISCRIMINATE between the normal, curious, inventive, law-abiding types and those abnormal and/or lawbreaking types and isolate the latter before they do damage to themselves or others. There are suitable situations where being non-judgmental is OK; this is not one of them.

      • Richard Aubrey says:

        Problem is, it is allowed to be judgmental about normal–or at least non-urban–behavior. It is not allowed to be judgmental about obvious nutcases. See various mass shooters.

      • I always had a pocketknife. I can also remember making “switchblades” out of broken-off street sweeper bristles (steel, sharpened by scraping against the curb) and a couple of popsicle sticks, and a rubber band. I’m fairly sure I learned the technique during recess. How’s that for prison culture?

        • It’s called normal boy behavior and I was one of the girls who had it, too. Back in the dinosaur era, my old-maid teachers and my DH’s nuns understood boys and accepted them as they were; as opposed to the “highly-educated” teachers of today, who have redefined normal boy behavior as pathological and in need of remediation and medication.

  6. I think “possible cause” has always been sufficient grounds for detaining a minor. The bomb-sniffing dogs were a new twist though.

  7. Hmmm… My high school had an ROTC program, which included a rifle range – on campus. As a high school student, I shot hundreds of rounds on campus (even non-ROTC students could take a semester of “marksmanship and gun safety”).

    It now seems like it must have been some sort of fever dream. It couldn’t have really happened.

    • I took a rifle course in college, to meet my PE requirement. Because it met in the evening, it was very popular with students having lots of labs. We used the ROTC range, in the basement of one of the most central buildings on campus. That was even in the 60s!