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Blog ArchivesDecember 2010
September 6th, 2011 - Kay
Post Date:September 06, 2011
Blame. Blame is an addiction that the vast majority of our society is addicted to. When something goes wrong, no matter the significance, we want to blame. Bullying. Bullying is an epidemic. That might sound extreme, but answer me this, in what place is bullying not an issue at some level. If you have an answer to that question, you are either not being realistic or I want to move to your community asap!
So, whose fault is bullying? Is it the bully? I think it is fair to say that they have to factor in the equation at some point, they are the one committing the action. But why is the bully a bully? I am not a geneticist, with the exception of some extreme anger management disorders, I don't think we can make the claim on a wide scale that bullies are born bullies. So then it must be the parents. The child was born angelic and at some point something went wrong. The trick is that "something" can be any number of things. In my 43 years as an educator, I have seen young people of all backgrounds turn to bullying. Some children have every material they could hope to want, but lack the attention at home and act out to gain that attention. Others have loving parents but lack the material needs and act out due to anger, "why don't I have that? I deserve it". Physical abuse, learning disorders, behavioral disorders, you name it, it can be the "something". So let's blame the schools. Any why not? I mean these are trained men and women who should be able to deal with this, right? With an hour a day they should be able to mold the entire lives of thirty young people, right? This is why we have school, right?
My answer, everyone needs to stop with blame and work together to address bullying. To those who bully, I know that you are likely not doing this as a recreational hobby, I am sure you are lashing out due to some form of hurt. I challenge you every time you look to bully, to read the story of Megan Meier, as a reminder of how deeply your words can hurt and how far the consequences range. To the parents, I realize that more are the challenges and higher are the climbs today. You each face unique and legitimate challenges in raising your children. I challenge you not to be so quick to dismiss your children’s behavior as "just the way they are" or assuming the bullying is a response to someone else, "someone else must have started it". I further challenge you to set the example and not bully amongst other adults. One saying that I think is totally accurate is that children, no matter what the age will duplicate observed behaviors. Don't give your children bullying as a duplicatable behavior. And, for the love of God, your children should NEVER see you bully one of their peers. One Lori Drew is quite enough. Lastly, to my brother and sister educators, resources and growing less, classrooms are bursting at the seams, the obstacles are everywhere. My challenge to you is don't forget your role as a role model. Your voice is heard loud and clear in the vast majority of your students, even if their actions do not support it. Don't give up on these kids, don't just allow bullying to become a standard within your school, you have a voice.
In summary, we are all responsible. Accept your role. Join this wonderful movement to bring simple peace to our schools and communities. Make a difference today!
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