On Dec. 30 the “Today Show” reported the story about San Francisco high school senior Courtni Webb. Webb, 17, is facing "possible expulsion" for writing a poem about the Newton, Conn., Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting. Courtni wasn’t trying to be dark and depressed in her poem, but she didn’t write memorials to the victims either.
Instead, Courtni wrote a poem about Adam Lanza and what she saw regarding his drive to a mass murder in a children’s classroom. She didn’t write about flowers and rainbows. She wrote, "They want to hold me back……I understand the killings in Connecticut. I know why he pulled the trigger…. society won't take the blame. We’re full of a society of haters and blamers"
What some might see as a child's way of speaking out and dealing with such a tragedy, others are seeing as part of a zero tolerance approach to violence within Courtni Webb's San Francisco high school. Webb didn’t turn the poem in as her assignment; it was something she had written for herself. However, the teacher discovered it in her personal notebook and turned it over to the principal.
Webb's mother thinks the school district is overreacting. For now, she is suspended until further notice. Courtni, who writes "all types" of poetry to express herself, told “Today” that she was just trying to express "her belief that tragedies in Sandy Hook happen because people feel helpless."
Peep the video of Courtni reading her poem below.
How do you feel about Courtni’s writing? Was she wrong for writing such a poem? Was the teacher wrong for reporting her to the principal??