Institutional hoplophobia knows no bounds where government schools are concerned. The most innocuous, everyday item, when accompanied by the right sounds or trigger cocking motion, can (and will) be treated as a threat to another student, followed by swift and harsh punishment. Proportionality be damned. The latest wanton offender is a Suffolk (Virginia) Schools (Every Child a Star!) second grader at Driver Elementary. The offense: pointing his Ticonderoga #2 and saying “pew, pew, pew!” wset.com quotes a district flack, speaking for Superintendent Dr. Deran Whitney, who tried to justify the tike’s 2-day suspension by pointing out that “a pencil is considered a weapon when it’s pointed at someone in a threatening way and gunlike noises are made. (Bethanne) Bradshaw says some children would consider the incident threatening.” Yes, and some children no doubt would consider a pop spelling quiz threatening, too. How long before we see those on the verboten list?