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Thread: Bullying in Schools

  1. #1
    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
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    Bullying in Schools

    A little while ago someone told me about the stabbing incident at a PA high school, so I called up a few media sources and most of them noted that the attacker had been a victim of bulling. Don't get me wrong, what the attacker did was wrong and he should be held responsible for his actions. But I think it is important to look at the deeper root cause. But it got me thinking about my kids. My oldest is in preschool and has gone toe to toe with a few bully's in the class. The teachers said that he has a natural protective attribute and they are not surprised when he will drop what he is doing and stop a bully from picking on someone else, and he does not let anyone bully him.

    I think that bullying has been around since the beginning of social interaction, but it makes me wonder what makes a person a bully. Is it how they are raised? Is it because of their friends? Is it a mental deficiency that doesn't allow them to care?

    Do you think that we as a society, or parents, or just anyone can do anything to limit if not prevent bullying from happening?
    "I learned many great lessons from my father, not the least of which, was that you can fail at what you don't want, so you might as well take a chance on doing what you love." - Jim Carrey

  2. #2
    Cyburbian Plus Whose Yur Planner's avatar
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    I think it runs deep in human nature, across all religious/social/ethnic/racial/economic/gender lines. I think it's a matter of how the child is raised, to a point. However, some come from great parent and still wind up bullies.
    Last edited by Whose Yur Planner; 09 Apr 2014 at 2:18 PM.
    When did I go from Luke Skywalker to Obi-Wan Kenobi?

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    Super Moderator kjel's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Whose Yur Planner View post
    I think it runs deep in human nature, across all religious/social/ethnic/racial/economic/gender lines. I think it's a matter of how the child is raised, to a point. However, some come from great parent and still wind up bullies.
    Yes. And schools are extremely limited in how they can deal with bullies/bullying. I think that social media has added fuel to the fire especially amongst tweens/teens.

    My friend is going through this with her middle school aged son who is small for his size and also partially deaf which requires him to wear hearing aids and attend speech therapy. He's a great kid and does his best to walk away from confrontation and avoid his bully. My friend has pushed back against the school recently and their response was the bully had an IEP because he had behavioral problems. My friend was pissed and said "You think? Why does my son have to be victimized because the other kid has behavioral problems. He deserves to be in a safe learning environment." She's looking at other options for him for next year.
    "He defended the cause of the poor and needy, and so all went well. Is that not what it means to know me?" Jeremiah 22:16

  4. #4
    moderator in moderation Suburb Repairman's avatar
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    I think schools are really struggling to deal with this issue because there are so many factors relating to "what makes a bully" that are beyond a school's control. Not only that, but you have new bullying methods that are perhaps worse than what many of us saw as kids, given social media & the Internet. I do believe there is both a nature & nurture aspect to what makes a bully.

    I've always been a big kid. Up through middle school I was by far the tallest & pretty strong as well (I was over 6' tall in 5th grade). I had a tendency to play pretty rough, act out and had a bit of a short fuse (much like my dad). Part of that was due to boredom in school (I eventually tested as 'gifted' and placed in more challenging classes). I also got better discipline thanks to the local YMCA. Anyway, my dad took me aside early on and essentially had the "with great power comes great responsibility" discussion with me, explaining that I had to be careful how I treated other kids because of my size--that I would be presumed to be the instigator and a bully--and that I was perhaps becoming one. He also said that I had an obligation to defend those that did get picked on. Those concepts were reinforced by a few really great teachers & coaches along the way. It was a lesson not lost on me. I think it is a real possibility that without the right interventions at the right times with my parents, teachers, etc., that I very likely would have gone down a bullying path.

    I think everyone has bullying potential--it is whether they have the right interventions at the right times and whether those interventions can overcome other outside influences (or mental health issues, which were pretty clear to me in the bullies I encountered in high school).

    "Oh, that is all well and good, but, voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country."

    - Herman Göring at the Nuremburg trials (thoughts on democracy)

  5. #5
    Cyburbian
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    40 years ago, kids were still being bullied but they weren't coming to school with a knife or gun. Unfortunately, at 26 years old, I don't really know of a time where violence in schools didn't exist.

    So what's changed in 40 years? The free and easy access to violent media or the inability for a school to take action on these bullies without risking a lawsuit?

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