Sunday, October 23, 2016

High School Senior

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A 17-year-old high school senior is making the news this month for being told that her senior photo was being rejected from the yearbook.

The “Ads For Grads” section of the yearbook features graduating seniors and includes optional photos chosen by the student. Jordyn Bihon, an avid archer and hunter, chose a simple but artful picture of herself to be included. She is staring down the sight of a bow and has it drawn. There is no arrow in the bow and Bihon is facing the camera. The photo was taken by her sister.

Lisa Bihon, received a call shortly after the photo was submitted to be included, the school took issue with the photo, claiming that it is inappropriate that the girl is holding a weapon.

Her mother told news sources that Jordyn picked the picture because of her love of archery and that it is something she practices everyday with her father. She has gone hunting and practiced archery all her life, her mother went on to say that she didn’t think there would be anything wrong with the picture being included.

The school contends that the bow pictured is a weapon and is insisting that another photo be chosen for the 2015-2016 yearbook.

The family argued that it isn’t a weapon, it’s her sport, it’s no different than another student posing with a football or a golf club. In fact, a golf club would probably do more damage to someone than a bow with no arrow in it.

The area superintendent, Cheryl Walters, made a statement that while there is no written policy outlining acceptability of photos, students holding weapons in their pictures is not allowed.

Lisa Bihon has brought to the superintendent’s attention a picture in the 2011 yearbook of a different girl holding a bow. The photo was professionally taken and the bow is not facing the camera. Walters is sticking to her guns –or rather lack of guns– and claims that the bow should not have been included.

The Bihon family is chalking this one up to “a sign of the times” and says, “it’s sad. It’s very sad,”
We agree Lisa.

When we start removing the understanding of sport and skill from this weapons “debate” we make guns and bows and even knives out to be these monsters that wander around of their own accord in order to hurt people.

They aren’t. They are tools. In the same way you can kill someone with a nail gun or a crowbar, you can hurt someone with any of those things. Responsible, law abiding people, employ weapons every day, this shouldn’t be a debate.



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