Attack of the Killer High School Students

As Labour ministers backed down on aspects of the Terrorism Prevention Bill after losing a division in the House of Commons and being roundly condemned by MPs from all parties for the anti-civil libertarian aspects of the bill, a big contrast can be drawn with the latest developments in the Land of the Free and First Amendment Rights. Yep, kids, don’t write stories about Zombies for high school English class. Otherwise, you’ll be committing a felony and you’ll find yourself in Clark County Detention Centre, Winchester, Kentucky:

A George Rogers Clark High School junior arrested Tuesday for making terrorist threats told LEX 18 News Thursday that the “writings” that got him arrested are being taken out of context. Winchester police say William Poole, 18, was taken into custody Tuesday morning.

Investigators say they discovered materials at Poole’s home that outline possible acts of violence aimed at students, teachers, and police. Poole told LEX 18 that the whole incident is a big misunderstanding. He claims that what his grandparents found in his journal and turned into police was a short story he wrote for English class. “My story is based on fiction,” said Poole, who faces a second-degree felony terrorist threatening charge. “It’s a fake story. I made it up. I’ve been working on one of my short stories, (and) the short story they found was about zombies. Yes, it did say a high school. It was about a high school over ran by zombies.” Even so, police say the nature of the story makes it a felony.

About Mark Bahnisch

Mark Bahnisch is a sociologist and is the founder of this blog. He has an undergraduate degree in history and politics from UQ, and postgraduate qualifications in sociology, industrial relations and political economy from Griffith and QUT. He has recently been awarded his PhD through the Humanities Program at QUT. Mark's full bio is on this page.
This entry was posted in Politics - international, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.
Subscribe
Notify of
guest
25 Comments
Oldest
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Fyodor
2022 years ago

Probably watched a litte too much Buffy.

Good morning, America, land of the free.

Michael Carden
Michael Carden
2022 years ago

Oh my! It sounds almost Stalinist. Solzhenitsyn’s Gulag Archipelago has many similar stories from the era of the great purges. I don’t know if anyone saw Cutting Edge last night on the war against indecency in the US. Very disturbing and very much a war on the young from what I can see. I think it marks the twilight of the Empire.

Irant
2022 years ago

America does seem to be heading towards a state of “only approved thoughts allowed” in regards to fiction and entertainment. It seems there was controversy over “Million Dollar Baby” as it only showed “one side” of the issue that compromises that last part of the movie (Haven’t seen to the movie – just read spoilers).

Also noted that someone complained about “Saving Private Ryan” being showed on TV recently. It was less the violence and more the cussing. I see the current fad of childish prudishness masquerading as a way of sticking ones head in the sand and avoiding real issue. Conspicuous indignation is taking over America!

yobbo
2022 years ago

Time to ship nan and pop off to the institute.

ctd
ctd
2022 years ago

As Fyodor points out, this is pretty much a Buffy episode. Are they now illegal? Or only the first 3 seasons?

The ‘zero’ tolerance policy adopted by many US schools produces such ridiculous results. I remember one story – 17yr old guy, active in the church, high academic acheiver, school football team etc had been helping disabled old people move from their homes to care facilities on the weekend. Drove to school but forgot about the box cutter on his back seat, used for packing/cutting tape. Result – zero tolerance for bringing knives/weapons to school, expelled. Probably no chance to get into a good college. Yay.

Guy
Guy
2022 years ago

Pretty ridiculous. Raises some worrying questions about censorship.

Are people afraid of the reality? I note with annoyance the reluctance of the print and television media (particularly in the U.S.) to show the raw images of people hurting from the results of the Iraqi war.

Then there was “Nipplegate” and the ridiculously disproportionate furore that caused during the Superbowl last year….

Nabakov
Nabakov
2022 years ago

The irony is that this zero tolerance thing will lead to high schools being overun by zombies.

Irant
2022 years ago

What about the final season of Buffy? The school was almost overun by vampires and then sucked into the ground (as was most of Sunnydale IIRC). Season 7 should be banned also as a threat to national security!

observa
observa
2022 years ago

Cmon guys, you know full well the seriousness with which authorities must view any hint of a potential attack on a school in the US nowadays. What would you say if they ignored it on his say so and he shot up his school later. Shades of Sept11 hindsight I’ll bet. The kid will have every opportunity to explain himself, but if it’s like any of the gaps in Habib’s yarn well……

Nabakov
Nabakov
2022 years ago

“The kid will have every opportunity to explain himself,”

Before or after he’s charged with a second-degree felony?

What I find rather creepy too is that it was his grandparents who sicced the cops onto him. Doesn’t sound like much of a family for sittiing down and talking things through.

Economically too, this whole zero tolerance thing is gonna backfire as well. 50% of the US’s exports are now in the form of intellectual property like technology patents, software and entertainment. And stamping on anything that doesn’t fit a narrow norm ain’t the best way to encourage the next generation of creativity they’re gonna need to refresh their entertainment industry base.

Edgar Allen Poe may have been able to survive West Point but you couldn’t see him making it through George Rogers Clark High.

Stephen Hill
Stephen Hill
2022 years ago

Edgar Allen Poe did have to contend with that devious William Watson chap in the classroom.

Imagine what the authorities would make of his morbid tales these days, what would they do if they discovered a Mr Poe writing in his adolescence. And now they are teaching these nefarious works, surely even more evil than Harry Potter and i won’t mention the satanic majestic of the Brothers Grimm.

Funny enough, this post brings back memories to when I was in Year 5 when I wrote a story based on a friend’s description of seeing “American Warewolf in London” (still haven’t seen this film BTW). Funnily enough my teacher did ring my parents but this was in form of praise rather than warning, the teacher apparently was impressed with the imaginative faculties of this student (who would go on to be a good-for-nothing) and wanted to inform my parents to encourage this chap to keep writing.
I wasn’t locked up for having my school teacher’s head roll down the hill and ran over by a bus in the first paragraph – my teacher obviously had the required sense of humour. And fortunately he most not have been a Freudian.

Rex
Rex
2022 years ago

“Cmon guys, you know full well the seriousness with which authorities must view any hint of a potential attack on a school in the US nowadays”

but of course that doesn’t extend to restricting gun sales.

blank
blank
2022 years ago

This type of over-the-top idiocy is so American.

Kindergarten children in the US have been suspended for playing “cops and robbers” and pointing their fingers like guns.
A boy was suspended for possessing a knife, after he had disarmed a girl who was threatening suicide.
A student suspended for giving another organic lemon drop lollies bought at a health food shop.
Some schools ban sunscreen, listerine and cough-drops as “drugs”.

One of my favourites is
Andra Ferguson and her boyfriend, Brandon Kivi, both 15, use the same type of asthma medicine, Albuterol Inhalation Aerosol. …
Andra had left her medication at home, had difficulty breathing and went to see the school nurse. Out of concern, Brandon let her use his inhaler.
But the school nurse said it was a violation of the district’s no-tolerance drug policy, and reported him to the campus police. The next day, he was arrested and accused of delivering a dangerous drug. He was suspended from school for three days, and then expelled.
The drug probably saved Andra’s life.
The school board’s reaction?
“TX school districts are required by law to expel students who commit certain offenses. Delivery of a dangerous drug is one of those offenses.”

An eleven year old asthma sufferer died because the school’s zero tolerance prevented him from carrying an inhaler.

(apparently using the name of the home state of the US president is “questionable content”, I’ve use TX as the code.

James Hamilton
James Hamilton
2022 years ago

And this thread is not full of urban myths and not an example of idiot lefty anti-americanism how exactly?

Here in Australia we are enlightened, we encourage kids to diagnose and medicate their fellow students.

harry
harry
2022 years ago

What about the “B.C.E” rather than “B.C” in a NSW school exam today?
Talk about an over reaction.
Skinner (State Education shadowminister) asked if this sort of rampant political correctness contributed to more parents taking their kids to Pirvate School.
Um, hurh?

harry
harry
2022 years ago

“not an example of idiot lefty anti-americanism how exactly?”
Chill James.

Lets have an idiot lefty pro-canadian thread where we acknowledge Canada’s regection of Missile Shield.
And an idiot lefty pro-newzealand thread where we go “‘Ray!” because they gave up their airforce.

david tiley
2022 years ago

An urban myth charge sets my fingers dancing across the keyboard. Debunk, here we come..

Nipplegate – I saw it with my own prurient eyes.

Mark’s original story, with corroborating details, comes from one of those terrible communist fronts, an american provincial television channel.

“Blank” – just one contributor to the thread – cites a few uncorroborated stories. The main one about the athsma inhaler is a bit disputed, but has been distributed widely by the mainstream press – vicious communists all – and is challenged mostly in the details by people who would be expected to defend themselves.

“Here in Australia we are enlightened, we encourage kids to diagnose and medicate their fellow students.”…

huh?

derrida derider
derrida derider
2022 years ago

Yep, how times have changed. The people who sincerely believe the liberty of individual citizens must be destroyed in order to save it for ‘the people’ are pretty well all on the right now (hullo, Observa).

Irant
2022 years ago

What I loved about Nipplegate was that the full expose in the Aussie newspapers and shown repeatedly on TV had no blurring of offending mammarian appendage. It was full on Janet.

The efforts to censor the images in the US were comedic in contrast and tragic in rationale.

blank
blank
2022 years ago

Urban Myths, David Tiley?

Is the Washington Post a sufficiently reliable source?

Try here:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/ac2/wp-dyn?pagename=article&contentId=A16262-2002Jan21&notFound=true
or here
http://www.washingtonpost.com/ac2/wp-dyn?pagename=article&contentId=A46130-2002Jan14&notFound=true

This site gives links to a wide variety of horror stories with sources:
http://www.akdart.com/zero.html

yellowvinyl
2022 years ago

I think there was some attempt to censor or ban the Buffy ep which dealt with school shootings. anyone remember?

Vee
Vee
2022 years ago

All govts have gone overboard on the alleged War on Terror?

I thought sports, writing, etc were therapeutic, things you may like to say or do but are aware of the consequences (i’m referring to writing mainly) – apparently this is a realm where free speech is now non-existent.

harry
harry
2022 years ago

I do yellowvinyl: the screening of the relevant episode was delayed by two months or so.

James Hamilton
James Hamilton
2022 years ago

It was I not David T who used the term “urban myth” and, no, I’m not a fan of The Washington Post. All the examples cited were not sufficiently couched in bias (not for the want of trying I’m sure) that the opposing viewpoint was totally hidden.

I do not happen to be a supporter of a zero tolerance policy on drugs at school but I might become one. I am a supporter of zero tolernace of weaposn at school.

Incidentally David, you found one of my comments oblique. I was referring to this quote from an earlier comment:

>>The drug probably saved Andra’s life.
The school board’s reaction?
“TX school districts are required by law to expel students who commit certain offenses. Delivery of a dangerous drug is one of those offenses.”<<

Mark Bahnisch
2022 years ago

harry, what was the deal? It was a bloody good episode by the way…