Bullying II

I’ve been blogging “My World” for quite a while posting my opinions on anything that sparks my interest.  The way my blog works is that my posts move down chronologically as I add new ones.  But there are some subjects that need to be addressed more than once—like Bullying.

I recently received a comment on my 2014 post on bullying:

I want to suggest you share an important guide which came out last week. I found it was very thorough on child safety online”.  (3/13/18)

In response to this comment I am including: the link to this new information on protecting your children from all sorts of internet abuses including cyber-bullying, a great general bullying information link, and a re-post of my original blog on bullying.

I thank Jackie for her comment inspiring this post and promoting child safety online.  Solving the bullying problem has recently taken on more importance since bullying has become part of the conversation in the tragic school shootings and internet abuse.cyberbullying cartoon

We need to unite to eliminate the bullying problem by following the professional strategies outlined in the links above or we can just “frogimize” the bullies (see the video in my post below).

My Blog on Bullying (2014)

There seems to be a lot in the news about bullying. I guess like underage drinking and drugs it is a topic that will never go away. I’m pretty sure it’s been around since caveman days where the guy with the bigger club and smallest brain is harassing the guy who figured out the wheel and got fire going.

There are two types of bullies: the blatant atomic wedgie, get-out-of-my way, totally abusive moron and the rest of us. That’s right, you too. We all seem to go through an insecure need-to-find-weaker-prey stage to elevate our sagging self-esteem. Even if you’re a caring individual you probably unknowingly participate in these feeding frenzies. It usually starts with the back and forth teasing between friends or siblings looking to one up each other and progresses to include innocent victims who are genuinely hurt by these verbal assaults. It isn’t just the taunts that make you a bully; it’s your self-perceived innocent actions. Social events that exclude a few can really hurt if you’re the excluded and being that guy/girl who’s always picked last for dodge ball or is the first easy target sucks. And you brainiacs who are thinking that I’m sympathizing with you have your own bullying techniques of looking down at the average kid struggling with geometry or physics. I’ve been lucky enough to have flown below the bully radar but I’ve done my share of teasing and witnessing teasing and not intervening. The good news is that most of us grow up to see that the bullying thing is FUBAR so we cease and desist. It’s probably a good thing since a lot of the bullied end up being the boss.

The real problem is the hard core bullies who just won’t let up. These guys/gals are relentless at abusing the masses. I’m not sure what satisfaction there could be in picking on innocents who are smaller, different, or just in their way. Many bullies have documented issues that we should be sympathetic to, but what about sympathy for all the victims of their wrath. Nobody, for any reason, is entitled to invade anybody else’s space unless invited and being smaller or less aggressive is not an invitation to abuse.

Middle schools seem to be the launching pads for bullies. I don’t know why but middle school sucks in all ways and in all communities: rich, poor, urban, rural… This is where wedgies and put-downs are perfected. I know the schools have real challenges but it is their responsibility to create a safe non-abusive environment and be accountable if that standard is not maintained. Some seem to put the quality of what’s served in the lunch room above protection of harassed kids. Many of these adolescent terrorists continue to bully as adults. Think about road rage, oppressive bosses and coworkers, and some of our government officials. And now bullies have an even bigger platform with the cyber world. They can be faceless cowards who attack people and humiliate their victims on a grander scale. Even a mild tease is magnified when it is sent out to the world.

It’s always great to see how neighbors and strangers unite during man-made or natural crisis to help victims. Bullying is a crisis and needs the same team effort to eliminate bullies at all levels. I remember the wooden rulers with the golden rule engraved on it -“do unto others as you would have them do unto you”. We have to add to the rule that we will also “defend all against bullies”. We ALL have to make sure we live by that rule and be ready to step in when we witness those wedgies and educate ourselves to recognize and stop bullying without becoming the bully. I googled bully and got over 28 million results so this subject is getting some attention. If you need a starting point for information on bullying:  http://www.stopbullying.gov/ .

The good news is that there are a lot of great programs addressing the bullying problem including the people behind the links above and as my small contribution to the anti-bullying initiative I have created a fantasy anti-bully app: The Bully frogamizer. This makes light of a serious subject but hopefully can put a smile on the faces of those who have been bullied and give them a little vicarious revenge. This app might be fantasy, but anything that can help to address this problem that is subjecting innocents to bully abuse is a good thing.