Bullying and your character
Bullying is a big problem in schools today, and educators are looking for ways to keep young people from bullying. The surest way to end bullying in schools, and anywhere else, is for more young people to build their character around good values. A person with good character does not bully and does not allow anyone else to bully others in his presence. Bullying stoops to a level of behavior that good character would not allow. Bullying is harassing, teasing, taunting, bluffing, threatening, and exhibiting any speech or behavior toward another person who is threatened by that speech or behavior, especially if you have a physical, authoritative, or emotional advantage over that person. It is bothering somebody who is not your equal, or picking on them. Bullying can be done in a group or by an individual, in person, or through technology. Either way, it is wrong. It is against the law and the values of decent people. And everywhere young people gather bullying is against the rules. Bullying is a violation of practically every value of the American people. No person who claims good character or common decency can justify bullying. Bullying disrespects human dignity by degrading the victim and trying to make him feel worthless. Bullying is a disrespect of one’s citizenship because it violates the protections one has under the law. Bullying violates the value of humility by projecting arrogance. It violates the value of obeying rules, and respecting authority. Bullying lacks compassion, for it shows no concern for the victim. Bullying is absent of courage for it is engaged in by cowards who choose victims who cannot put up a fair fight. Bullying is so terrible that no group of decent human beings should tolerate it. It certainly shouldn’t be tolerated by schools. Any sign of bullying should be stopped immediately. Stopping bullying can be done more effectively by students than by teachers and administrators.
Students can stop bullying by standing up to the bully. When a person bullies anyone in your presence he is bullying everyone in that presence and daring anyone to come to the aid of the victim. The Bully is saying to the entire group, “I can do whatever I wish to this person and I dare any of you to try to stop me. If you don’t try to stop me you must agree with me or be afraid of me.” Your refusal to come to the aid of the victim is the Bully’s permission to continue his bullying. If he gets away with his behavior he concludes that he is stronger than the rest of the community. Students can stop bullying by forming a circle around anyone being bullied. The circle can be physical and/or emotional. The circle says to the one being bullied, “we have formed a circle of protection around you.” It says to the bully, “If you want to get to this person you’ll have to go through the rest of us.” Once the bully sees that the victim has the support of the community the bullying will stop. The mere fact that the Bully targets the weak is evidence that he wouldn’t stand up to one strong person, let alone a whole group of them. There are many reasons young people bully, but the overriding reason is that they can get away with it. When bullying is unacceptable to the students at your school, and would be Bullies know it, there will be no more bullying. Ultimately, if those who are tempted to bully embraced the values in this book, they would respect other people’s dignity and their rights, have compassion for their condition, and connect with them as fellow citizens involved in the noble ventures of building a better world for all. After all, true respect comes from within.
Bullying is harassing, teasing, taunting, bluffing, threatening, and exhibiting any speech or behavior toward another person who is threatened by that speech or behavior, especially if you have a physical, authoritative, or emotional advantage over that person.
Bullying is absent of courage, for it is engaged in by cowards who choose victims who cannot put up a fair fight.
Stopping Bullying in its tracks
Bullying has emerged as one of the biggest issues in schools today. All over the country there have been incidents of terrible humiliations and even suicides as a result of bullying.
This phenomenon is even more perplexing and unusual in that as many girls are guilty of bullying than boys. In fact, in many areas girls are more likely to bully than boys.
What is causing this bullying and what can parents, schools, churches and communities do to stop it? This book is written to address the issue of bullying and it is intended to be a guide to youth and adults on the root cause of bullying and what can be done to stop it. In the ages that follow I will share with you, as a young person, information that will make you less likely to bully and less likely to tolerate bullying in your presence.
The second part of this book is for parents and school administrators who have the responsibility of teaching kids not to bully, and protecting would be victims from those who will not adhere to the message.
To begin with, bullying is morally wrong and illegal. It is morally wrong because it is a violation of the laws of decency and a tremendous disrespect of human dignity and personality.
It is illegal because it violates the rights of individual protected by the constitution.
Schools should have a clear definition of bullying and very strict guidelines about it and swift and sure consequences to deal with it.
An air of meanness
Bullying can never be totally separated from the rest of society. The student who bullies grows up in households. They watch television and behavior in their homes and communities, they see things in their communities. It would be unwise to think they are not influences by some of these things. There is in our society a meanness that didn’t exist years ago. Children were playful, but they weren’t mean. The
Definition: Bullying is harassing, taunting, bluffing, threatening, and exhibiting any speech or behavior toward another person who is threatened by that behavior, especially if you have a physical, authoritative or emotional advantage over him/her. It is bothering somebody who is not your equal. Bullying can be done as an individual or as a group.
The worst bullying is intentional. However, some kids can be bullied unintentionally. Therefore, it is the responsibility of person to measures other people’s response to their behavior. If one feels he or she is being bullied by you, even if that is not your intention, it is up to you to change your behavior toward that person.
As a classroom teacher, I witnessed many kids playing and joking around with each other. It was almost always friendly, and the kids almost always took it well and it had no apparent lasting impact on them. But there seems to be a meanness in the country today, even among young people.
We can stop kids from bullying in two ways. We can make the penalties of bullying so severe that almost no reasonable person would risk doing it and facing those consequences, or we can educate and sensitize our society to a degree of civility that they would be ashamed to participate in such barbaric and hurtful behavior to another human being.
In fact, every institution that works with young people, whether it is the home, church, school, or community organization, should have both of these methods in place simultaneously. Young people should always be taught the civilized and humane way to treat others in their environment, but they should also know that we are a country of laws, and every individual in our country is protected by those laws. When they reduce themselves to bullying another human being, for whatever reason, they are breaking laws and infringing upon the rights o that person, and their behavior will not be tolerated.
Bullying thrives when kids are not sure of the authority’s position on bullying.
Every environment should have a clearly stated position that embodied by the entire community. It should be explained by the authorities, but it must be embraced by the students. (It is the adult’s job and challenge to educate the students on their position.
A person stoops to bullying when he feels inferior and/or insecure and wants to elevate his status at the expense of debasing another person.
Those who will have fun at the expense of other’s feelings- picking on people is fun—sometimes it is harmless fun and sometimes it is hurtful fun. Because you don’t always know when it is harmful or hurtful, it is better not to do it.
Bullying is sometimes rooted in the arrogance of believing that one has the right to decide what is right for others: Their size, their style, their sexual orientation, their religious preference, their color, or anything about them.
There is a line (sometimes thin) between having fun and bullying.
What to do when bullying occurs
Everybody stand up for the victim of bullying. When a person bullies anyone in your presence he is bullying everyone in that presence. He is daring everyone to come to the aid of the victim; in fact, he is saying, "I can do whatever I want to this person and I dare any of you to say anything to me, or try in anyway to stop me." He/she is further saying, "All of you guys must agree with me or be afraid of me. If you don’t agree with me and don’t try to stop me that means that you are afraid of me."
If you refuse to come to the aid of the victim you are giving victory to the perpetrator. You are telling him/her that he is stronger than your teachings, your reputation, your feelings, your identity and your ideals.
So when one person is bullied every person in that community should feel bullied. The one who bullies is breaking that code of behavior set by the entire group. He is saying I am more important than the group and I dare anyone in the group to try to stop me.
Form a circle around the bullied. Students who see another child being bullied can in a group go to that child an form a circle around the child. The circle says to the child being bullied we are with you; we are a team. We have formed a circle of friendship and protection around you.
It says to the bully, “If you want to get to this person you will have to go through the rest of us to do so.”
Hold the community responsible----if this house is not clean when I get back I’m going to whip every but in here.
A community of cowards
Bullying can only take place in a community of cowards. In order for bullying to thrive the community must look the other way.
1. Be careful in your interaction with anyone that you have an extreme advantage over.
Attitudes that lead to bullying.
There are several ideas that predispose one to becoming a bully. One who fosters
these ideas is more likely to become a bully than one who doesn't have such thoughts.
1. I have a right to set the rules of this place. I am bigger. I have more money. My sexual preference is more desirable. I am smarter. I am a better athlete. I dress better. I look better.
2. More people think as I do aout me and my thoughts about others.
3. No one else is going to say anything about what I do to someone else.
Whenever adults hear a child expressing the aforementioned ideas, they should know that they are the seeds that grow into bullying.
Adults are always in charge.
'No child, or group of children, should exist anywhere on the planet, where there is not an adult in charge of that space." William Jenkins
Adults should remember that it is the responsibility of adults to set the tone and culture of the space of which they are in charge, whether that is the home, School, playground, or neighborhood. Adults should be in charge, and adults should make and enforce the rules. The rules on bullying should be clear, strict, fair, and enforceable. There should never be any doubt as to who is in charge in a space and whose rules reign. Whenever there is doubt, that is the crack through which bullying and other unacceptable behaviors can creep in. Bullying is almost always a failure of adult supervision, or adult teaching.
“He who wins the battle by force has only half won it.” John Milton
When it comes to bullying, the objective of every adult should be to convince every child that bullying is wrong and illegal, and people of good character and values should not engage in, or tolerate bullying. But until that lesson is learned and obeyed, it is the responsibility of adults to protect the innocent.
1. No child will hit, push, or threaten any child in this space.
Every adult who works with young people should be aware of the prevalence and danger of bullying and should be observant of the behavior of all young people in their care. Every adult should have a clear definition of bullying and should be able to explain bullying to every child in their care.