As the saying goes, "Guns don't kill people -- especially when they're made of plastic, and about the size of a quarter." Yet the administrators of Staten Island's PS 52 felt differently this week, plucking fourth-grader Patrick Timoney from the lunchroom and threatening to suspend him for bringing in a Lego gun roughly two inches long.

Gun control debates certainly generate heated reactions, but the backlash to Patrick was exceptional. The backstory goes that Patrick, age nine, favors his Lego policeman figure--complete with rifle--because his father is a retired cop. Eventually tempers cooled, and after he tearfully called home from the principal's office, Patrick escaped suspension. The toy, however, was confiscated.

In the clip linked here, Patrick's parents appear more than a little miffed. The New York Department of Education maintains that there was cause for "concern." Maybe they were worried that a student could have used this gun to hunt some tiny animals?


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