Zero tolerance: two-inch pocket knife in car may derail Eagle Scout's Life

How nutsy can these rules be? This incident occurred in Albany, NY.

High school senior Matthew Whalen is the kind of student any parent would want.

He's an Eagle Scout, on the honor roll, taking Advanced Placement classes, and never been in trouble with the law. He's received commendations from the City of Troy and the Boy Scouts of America for saving a woman's life, and this past summer, he completed Army basic training. All of it was accomplished before the age of 17.

"I'm just trying to do what I can while I can," Matthew says.

His goal is to attend the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, a dream since he was in grade school.

"I have a first-grade yearbook that says I want to be driving tanks in the Army," Matthew says. "I mean, this is something that I know I've always wanted to do."

But the dream could be in jeopardy, thanks to a two-inch pocket knife that officials at Lansingburgh Senior High School found in Matthew's locked car last month. The pocket knife was a gift from his grandfather, Robert Whalen, who's the Hoosick Falls Police Chief. Matthew says he kept the knife in a side compartment and never tried showing it off or threatening anyone with it. Instead it was a part of the survival kit that was his car.

"My car is designed in a way that if I ever broke down, I'd be OK," Whalen explains. "I have a sleeping bag. I have bottled water. I have an MRE. I believe it's better to be prepared and not need it than need it and not have it."

Matthew says school officials approached him on Sept. 21, asking if he had a weapon on him. When Matthew answered he did not, he says the officials asked if he had a knife in his car. Matthew said it was a pocket knife, and took officials to his car when asked. He also turned over the pocket knife when asked. . . .

Cub Scout suspended for bringing an eating utensil to school. The poor boy faces 45 days in reform school. The video from Fox News is here.

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Blogger Doug the Second said...

Society is really messed up and has changed dramatically. I met a person in his 40s who grew up in a small town in Minnesota and he told me when he was in grade school he was able to bring a hunting rifle to a classroom show and tell. Nobody thought anything of it. Nowadays, an Eagle Scout with a two-inch knife is being hounded for having it in his CAR!

10/10/2009 12:31 PM  
Blogger Proof said...

Zero tolerance: A student with an aspirin is a "drug dealer", a student with a small plastic gun or even a drawing of a gun is a terrorist, and if you keep a small pocketknife in your car you are treated as if you carried a concealed weapon.
Zero tolerance is maximum stupidity.

I was recently denied entrance to a courthouse because I carried on my keyring a screwdriver with a blade slightly longer than a quarter is round. The ballpoint pen I was carrying was more lethal!

10/10/2009 1:58 PM  
Blogger Chas said...

Markie Marxist sez: "It's nice to see my Marxist amigos in academia policing the schools for prospective political opponents and taking action against them. The kid wants to go to West Point? That doesn’t sound like a proper Marxist aspiration. Fortunately, my commie compadres were vigilant and nailed him. Hopefully, he'll end up as an impoverished janitor, and not cause us any political difficulties down the road, which he might do if he becomes a military officer. If we can't use our control over education to ruin children's lives for not being good communists, then what's it good for? He's lucky we didn't send him to a re-education camp. Imagine, all that independent-mindedness of actually having a survival kit in his own car! He’s one of those freedom lovers for sure! It’s a good thing we got him early."

10/11/2009 9:53 AM  
Blogger bdickens said...

That's why you din't answer prying questions.

10/11/2009 3:14 PM  
Blogger John Lott said...

Sorry, bdickens, but your comment doesn't make a lot of sense to me. What are you asking?

10/11/2009 3:43 PM  
Blogger robert said...

Pocket knife is very useful for everyone. in car i am always keep a pocket knife with me.it is very useful in some emergency.

6/16/2010 8:58 AM  
Blogger Menseffects said...

Thanks for sharing us blog about knives.I really like to share this blog with my friends.
Out The Front Knives

10/19/2013 7:54 AM  

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