You know, I'm really getting tired of kids being punished for being normal kids. But here we go again. First graders at a Maryland elementary school have been suspended for having the audacity to play a good old-fashioned game of cops and robbers.
OMG. Don the Kevlar! Call out the National Guard! Six-year-olds are playing games on the playground!
After a 6-year-old was suspended -- in Maryland as well -- for pointing his fingers at his classmate and saying "Pow," this latest punishment that doesn't fit the crime hardly surprises me. Heck, we have kids being dubbed sexual deviants at 5 for hugging pals in kindergarten. NOTHING surprises me.
But it does depress me. These blatant over-reactions are slowly destroying childhood as we know it and turning kids into something ... jaded? Old?
We're expecting kids to face issues that are far above their level of cognition. We're aging them.
Kids shouldn't know about school shootings and mass murders. They shouldn't know that a game of cops and robbers could upset some adults who see shades of darkness where they see only some innocent horseplay.
I can only wonder what is next if we keep pushing kids to explore topics they're not yet ready to deal with. Is cops and robbers going to be replaced by a game of drug dealers and addicts? Or maybe pimps and prostitutes? After all ... we're expecting kids to tackle more and more adult themes, but they are still just kids, kids who engage one another in play. Turning something into a game is in their nature.
I need no more proof of that than to look to these little boys playing cops and robbers. One of the boys' father is an Army staff sergeant who pointed out that his boy is well aware that his dad uses firearms in defense of this nation. He's a kid being brought up to respect guns ... but he's still just a kid who was playing a game.
Do we really want to take that away from our kids?
Is cops and robbers on the playground really something to be upset over?
Image via EdiSellsTulsa/Flickr