Ham Sandwich...Or HATE CRIME?!
That's the question they're asking today in Lewiston, ME, after a middle school kid threw a bag with a slice of ham in it on a lunchroom table where some Muslim kids were sitting.
One student has been suspended for, er, "assault with a pork product," maybe? Anyway, one kid is suspended and "more disciplinary action could follow [the] possible hate crime."
Hate? Maybe. CRIME? No way.
What's the crime? Was anyone in any danger of any harm whatsoever from the ham in question? Now, if it were tainted ham or poisoned ham, or the life-threatening ham salad my culinary-impaired sister made for us one Easter--then you'd have a crime scene.
This was one kid or group of kids teasing another. It happens. It's called "middle school."
So if the ham-slamming 12-year-old broke some rule, fine. Detention, suspension, whatever. But does everyone involved after overreact?
Apparently, yes. "Incidents like this...are often said as a joke," says Stephen Wessler of the Center fro Prevention of Have Violence. "I know that conduct is never static. More degrading acts will follow, until at some point we'll end up having violence."
First it's the ham steak, then it's...THE AK-47!! RUN FOR YOUR LIVES!!
Apparently everyone in this Maine middle school is a moron. But, unlike the bonehead bureaucrats, the kids have the excuse of being 12-year-olds.