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Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Wake Up Wednesday: Could You & I Be Bullies?

Thought for the Day: Since I will be speaking on the Blind Matters Radio program this Saturday on bullying, I have been giving the subject a lot of thought. In my mind, bullying & prejudice go hand in hand. I was brought up in a home where prejudice was seen as intolerable. I tend to be very liberal & accepting of differences; however, I, like all human beings, tend to gravitate towards like minded people & spend more time with those who agree with me. It is hard not to feel disdain towards those that I see as "bullies." Is that not prejudice? Although I do everything in my power not to harm others, I wonder could anyone become a bully, even me? Is a zero tolerance policy that expels a child for bullying from a school not a form of bullying? Does our society, pass the buck by moving bullies from school to school, class to class or having the bully home schooled actually perpetuate the problem?

The answers to ending bullying are more complex than just a zero tolerance policy. Psychological research has found that many bullies in our schools have or are being bullied at home. Sending them home, expelling them from school may only exacerbate the problem. Are you & I bullying the bullies by not providing comprehensive therapeutic interventions that would get to the bottom of why a child is bullying his peers & help them change their behavior?

I hope you will tune in on Saturday & ask questions. I will propose some of my ideas about how to solve the epidemic of bullying. As always, I'd love to hear your thoughts on this complex & troubling issue.

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