7-year-old Josh Welch was suspended from his Maryland school for two days for eating a toaster pastry as below:
"It was already a rectangle and I just kept on biting it and biting it and tore off the top and it kinda looked like a gun but it wasn't," Welch told Baltimore Fox station WBFF. "All I was trying to do was turn it into a mountain but, it didn't look like a mountain really and it turned out to be a gun kinda."
A Maryland lawmaker, who is among those who think that Park Elementary School may have doled out too harsh a punishment, has now introduced a bill to stop students who chew Pop-Tarts, or other not-ordinarily-dangerous materials, into the shape of a gun -- or who merely hold their fingers into the shape of a gun -- from being suspended again.
Senate Bill 1058 -- "The Reasonable School Discipline Act of 2013" -- has been given an alternative moniker by conservative website The Daily Caller: the "Toaster Pastry Gun Freedom Act".
Sen. J. B. Jennings, a Republican representing Baltimore and Hartford counties, introduced this legislation to prohibit students from being suspended for "mak[ing] a hand shape or gesture resembling a gun" -- the bill would also stop principals from expelling students who bring to school "any other object that resembles a gun but serves another purpose."
At a fundraiser for Anne Arundel County Republicans, House Minority Leader Nicholaus R. Kipke presented Josh Welch with the membership, which cost $550, during a tongue-in-cheek presentation that involved a Pop-Tart fashioned into pistol and gun safety tips.
Josh said he didn't know what the NRA was or what it meant to have a membership, but chimed in when his parents were asked whether anyone else in his family belonged to the NRA. "Nope, only me," he said.
He also said: "Everyone keeps asking me why I did it," Josh said. "I don't know why I did it. ... I wish people would stop asking me about it. It'll probably go on for 45 years or something."
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