TROY, Ill. — Anti-gun hysteria hit a disturbing new low this week in one Illinois town, when 4-year-old Hunter Jackson was suspended from preschool for bringing a harmless object — an empty shell casing — to school.
The boy had put it in his pocket without his mother knowing.
“He’s cried about it and he doesn’t understand why his school hates him,” Hunter’s mom, Kristy Jackson, told Fox 2. “It’s paranoia, and it’s something that’s become quite an epidemic where guns are automatically assumed that they’re bad.”
Hunter was suspended from A Place to Grow Preschool for seven days because he brought a spent .22 caliber bullet casing to school. The preschool had previously given Jackson a letter saying her son would be disciplined for pretending he was shooting things on the playground. The preschool also called the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS).
“I’m not sure how a seven-day suspension teaches my son anything about tolerance, anything about why he was wrong,” Jackson said. “It just means his school doesn’t want him there because of things he enjoys.”
Hunter apparently found the bullet in a field while visiting his grandfather, a police officer. The grandfather was teaching the boy about gun safety and hunting.
“I was handed a piece of paper,” Jackson wrote on Facebook. “No words, just eyebrows raised in disgust at my son, explaining that his behavior warranted a seven school day suspension. Which I still was expected to pay tuition for, of course. And a threat that if his enthusiasm for guns continued, he’d be permanently expelled.”
Officials at the school were unable to tell a bullet from a shotgun shell.
“I was met with a stone-faced teacher who said that my son had a shotgun bullet,” Jackson said. “I was horrified thinking, ‘Where could he have gotten this?’”
Hunter has been attending the daycare for about a year.
“This could literally happen to ANY CHILD who happened to find one on the ground and thought it was cool,” she wrote.
What is your reaction? Should the boy have been suspended? Share your thoughts in the section below: