relax, it’s just art – or maybe Die Hard episode 413

There was a story that came out last week that I cannot stop thinking about. – here’s a portion of my little write-up about the case….

“Last week a dad was arrested when he came to pick up his daughter from preschool. It seems the picture the little girl drew caused the teacher concern. The four year old drew a picture of a man with a gun. When asked about it, she told the teacher it was “her dad, getting the bad guys and monsters.”

The teacher did not like what she saw, so she called Family and Social Services. When the dad arrived at the school to pick up his daughter and his other children, he was handcuffed, arrested, and strip searched. According to the Calgary Herald, the police were apparently searching for the gun depicted by the girl. They then went to his house and searched for the weapon. What they found was a single toy gun.” 

The gun in question was not even a realistic-looking gun, it was clear plastic and wait, I probably have one lying around…. 

Anyways, let’s recap here, a four-year old girl drew a picture of gun.
Her teacher freaked out – called social services and the police…
Dad was arrested
House was searched
Nothing found
What?  that was just a picture?  oh, sorry for damaging your reputation dad..
But that’ll teach your little girl from ever drawing anything, ever again – maybe she can stick to coloring, within the lines of course, with teacher-approved colors, and plenty of supervision…
 (sorry artist/art teacher ranting)

It was a gun, drawn by a four-year old…not this lovely creation by an 11-year old in my class
– for the record, this rifle or semi-automatic thing was not part of my lesson plan… but since
“my main two rules” for my class include

*Pencils must be moving if they want the privilege of talking throughout the hour*
*No erasing, or I cut off their erasers*

Maybe that last one induced violence… ?  oh well, no matter. NO erasing or I pull out the BIG scissors. 

 The gun in the little girl’s picture was not firing at anyone, no one was being threatened, buildings were not being blown up,  heads were not seen “accidentally” rolling across the bottom of the page….babies were not being set on barbeque grills and dogs were not jumping into empty pools… and the leprechaun did not have a pot of gold fall on his foot….


No, the girl drew a picture of her dad holding a gun to fend away the monsters and bad guys. Or maybe she just didn’t know how to draw a hand, sometimes it is just easier to put something in its place, a purse, a cookie, a gun…

I would like to have seen the picture that caused so much concern from the teacher. I’m sure her intentions were to simply protect the child from perceived danger, but then again, a lot of parents have guns in their homes…for protection, for hunting, b/c they are Vietnam vets (like my dad)

Just because a child does not draw rainbows and butterflies does not mean they are from a bad home, or have evil intentions. It could be meant to shock onlookers, or be an attempt at humor.

One of my classroom helpers mentioned how refreshing it was to see that even the “good families” at the school had kids with a slightly disturbing streak when it comes to their art work.

Like the boy in my class who thought it would be funny to draw a beard on his cartoon baby and then draw a barbeque grill underneath.

He titled his masterpiece “Bearded Baby Barbeque.”

Now, this is not a boy who would harm his baby sister, nor was this image part of his memory bank, but it simply made the table laugh. 

Come on, do these fellas look like they are planning the adventures of a cute puppy or making plans to tell the sweet story of a lost kitten who finally finds her way home?  No, their story involves lots of unnecessary violence and chase scenes…sort of like Die Hard.

I always say Die Hard was written by an eleven year old boy.  Seriously, a semi-truck being chased by a fighter jet and numerous helicopters. Complete with computer hacking en route and a collapsing highway…no panic, just snarky comments throughout….then of course, jumping out of the falling truck onto the wing of an airplane and of course, surviving…

Uh huh, my boys could do better. and have.

No need to call social services, I say, place a call to Hollywood, pronto!