I am not a fan of kombucha, the fermented drink that health nuts swear by, but that doesn't mean I'm going to impose my beliefs on others. If people want to drink that fizzy stuff, then God bless them. If a mom wants her child to drink some, awesome. But woe is the idiotic school official who catches a student with a bottle of kombucha, thinks it's alcohol because they don't know any better, has the poor kid interrogated by police officers, then tries to suspend the child for five days for possession of an “alcoholic” beverage (kombucha usually has a miniscule amount of alcohol due to the fermentation process), and get the student enrolled in a teen-alcoholics program.
Yet that's exactly what happened last week at the Newport-Mesa Unified School District, where school officials not only did the above actions to a boy, but are now desperately trying to spin their way out of an embarrassing situation
The story was first broken by The Healthy Home Economist after the boy's mother contacted them, and immediately sparked outrage among the kombucha community and civil libertarians alike. Enough of them must've called Newport-Mesa officials that they took the pains of issuing a press release on Friday claiming they hadn't suspended the student (all they had done was make the student sign paperwork that would've earned him a five-day suspension, but then the school principal decided to suspend the suspension) and explaining that Newport Beach police officers just happened to be on campus (the school has yet to be identified) and “participated in a routine discovery process”–i.e., they interrogated the poor kid without having any clue as to what kombucha is.
Man, just when you think Orange County can't look any stupider, someone comes along to bring us back to our pendejo fold. Stay classy, Newport-Mesa!