Thursday, June 14, 2007

Canadian student suspended after voicing marijuana opinion

Kieran King's views on marijuana have led to his suspension from Wawota Parkland School.

King said he was threatened with police action by Principal Susan Wilson previously after making the case that marijuana was less harmful than alcohol.

"In my opinion, cannabis is safer than they say, it is not worse than alcohol or tobacco," said King, a 15-year-old Grade 10 student.

This from the National Post.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Watch this video of a school official explaining her actions:

Part 1: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tvc5zLee--8

Part 2: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YxavtfDPZvE

Part 3: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FTDVdT-YjoI

Jo Ann said...

This is Kieran's mom. Kieran is a serious researcher. Earlier in the year, there was a presentation on drugs. Kieran stated that none of the stats given were cited and little clear factual information was given. Kieran began to research marijuana. He loves to share and debate what he learns- we listen to it on a daily basis at home. All he was doing at school was sharing what he had learned in his research. Kieran often compares alcohol, cigarettes, and marijuana- referencing, for example, how addictive each is, how damaging to the body, and how each affects the health care system. Kieran was accused of promoting marijuana after one such sharing episode- when talking to the principal regarding the need for Kieran to write his exams early, as he was leaving for China, I was told that Kieran had talked in a positive way about marijuana to a grade 9 student. I was told that if he talked to any Grade 9’s again about marijuana, the police would be called. I told them that Kieran was a full-time researcher and he loved to share. No one listened, no one has ever talked to Kieran (even after I e-mailed his teacher asking them to talk to Kieran if there were ever any issues of concern), but I did ask Kieran to not talk to Grade 9's. Kieran, unknown to me, made contacts and the school received a call from Senator Lorne Campbell's office promoting free discussion on the effects of drugs. The school called me, and I was asked to squash Kieran's push for freedom of speech. Again it was repeated that Kieran was not allowed to talk to grade 9's. This did not sit well with me. I chose not to make any attempt to squash Kieran’s efforts in regards to freedom of speech. Kieran organized the walkout. A lock down was planned to stop anyone from leaving, but Kieran and his brother walked out anyway. Kieran was suspended for organizing a protest against administration and defying the order to stay in. Lucas for defying the order to stay in the school. The issues are freedom of speech and fair assessment (as Kieran was not allowed to write his scheduled finals and will receive 0 out of 30%.) There may be another issue as well if the director keeps making statements such as the following: "The youth and his mother had been warned previously that school officials didn't think it was appropriate for him to promote drug use at the school, Rempel said"..."Condoning drug use in a school setting is inappropriate. The freedom of speech issue is really a mischaracterization of what occurred here," Rempel said." Mr. Remple is so wrong when he says this to the Canadian Press, that I could scream. Kieran did not promote drug use- he researched and shared facts and compared statistics. It is a crime that the director keeps saying that Kieran was promoting drug use at the school- Kieran has always promoted knkowledge.

Kieran does not drink, smoke cigarettes or marijuana, or take any other drugs. He is an honor student and good kid who believes in researching everything; stating the facts, freedom of speech, beliefs, and opinion; and fairness to others.