By On the occasion of our 20th anniversary
By Gustavo Arellano
By R. Scott Moxley
By Alfonso Delgado
By Courtney Hamilton
By Joel Beers
By Peter Maguire
By Charles Lam
A10-year-old mission viejo schoolgirl was recently suspended for bringing a small cap gun to school. The toy violated the Capistrano Unified School District's ban on imitation firearms and comes in the wake of several deadly student shootings across the country.
To some, the Mission Viejo case is an excellent example of zero tolerance sending a strong message. Others see it as completely over the top, an affront to common sense. Sam Guy, director of the Irvine-based Center for Excellence in Traditional Education Values Coalition, has been outspoken in his views on stronger discipline in the classroom through the development of the organization's "Who Asked You?" program. The center has also supported having not only teens treated as adults in the judicial system, but also the unborn and most breeds of dog.
But the center has also been a strong supporter of the National Rifle Association. In fact, Guy was an executive producer on the short-lived Charlton Heston Presents: Captain Colt and the Ammo Pals' Saturday Morning Special cartoon series.
Because he's right in the middle of the argument-law and order vs. gun rights-we thought Guy would have some interesting views on the Mission Viejo situation. But he was hesitant, agreeing to talk to us only after we agreed to discuss with him a group of Christian teens in Tustin who had recently signed pledges not to have sex until their wedding nights.
OC Weekly: So, about Mission Viejo . . .
Sam Guy: Try her as an adult.
Uh . . . yeah. Really. She broke the rules. She brought a gun to school. A cap gun. On a key chain. Buried in a backpack. She's pretty much Manson, so let's throw her up the river with Big Mama and the girl from Diff'rent Strokes and . . .
Now wait, are you being serious?
Of course. She broke the rules, and rules are rules. Can't be breaking the rules, you know: no cap guns, no prayer in school, no Bibles on campus.
I don't think bringing a Bible to school is against the rules.
Trust me: first it's the cap guns, then it's the Bibles, and pretty soon, we're all marching around a stadium doing synchronized shovel maneuvers.
So what are you saying? You really think the girl got a raw deal? Or that she should be punished?
I'm saying the rules are enforced with bias. Here, let me illustrate this hypothetically. Let's say a couple of high school kids are having sex in the back seat of a car.
[. . .]
And let's say a man has been videotaping them by hiding up in the old oak tree that sits just off the park's parking lot-you know, the one by the recycling dumpster.
Sure, I know the one.
And let's say, to give the tape some production value-since Johnny Jock Strap doesn't know more than two moves: up and down-the man uses a laser pointer to highlight . . . certain areas. Now, when the police come, it's a lady cop who really shows very little respect for taxpayers or technology. Who do you think gets charged with a crime?
The guy in the tree.
You see the absurdity? High school kids are allowed to have sex while those who would document their misdeeds for evidence, for use at a later time-you know, after editing and adding a bass line-are punished. I'm all for law and order, but you can tell a lot about a society by what laws it chooses to enforce. I mean, I'm not defending the girl, but did you see the size of the gun? It was teeny. Here, look at the picture in the LA Times.
Actually, I think it looks rather large.
Oh, come on. You really think she could have killed anyone with that? Maybe she squeezes off a round or two, but if all teachers and students are wearing flak jackets as we have suggested . . .
No, really, it looks just like the gun that killed Lincoln.
Oh, so she's assassinating the president?
I didn't say . . .
A little gun like this is not going to fire a shot strong enough to . . .
Lincoln was shot in the head at close range.
Look, even if she could get by the Secret Service, which I doubt, how would a third grader be able to reach high enough to shoot Lincoln in the head? He was over 6 feet tall, you know. You really need to read your history.
He was sitting down.
. . . Kids are not having sex in Tustin, got an answer for that? You want to ban that? Put them in sexual-intercourse re-education camps? Oh, wait, we already have those. What do they call them? Oh, yeah: public schools.
This is really killing you, isn't it? Law and order on one side, and guns on the other.
What do you think? I believe guns can teach kids a lot about responsibility and history if just given the chance. For example, we developed a wonderful character named Uzi for the NRA's "Aim for the Head" after-school honors program. People were telling us that Uzi was going to be bigger than Joe Camel, but then there were those minor incidents . . .