Thursday, May 18, 2017

Anti-Bullying Movement

Bullying has been an issue for quite some time now in the United States. When most people hear the term “bullying” they think of kids in middle or high school harassing others. When I hear that term used in any context, I usually think about name-calling. I can admit, and I am sure than many others can say that they have bullied someone in the past, or have been bullied on more than one occasion. The definition of bullying is, “unwanted, aggressive behavior among school aged children that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. The behavior is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time. Both kids who are bullied and who bully others may have serious, lasting problems.” ( The exigence from bullying is laid out very clearly in the definition I pulled from a government website. This issue has lasting effects on children as they go through a very tough time during their teenage years. This not only affects the kids directly involved in bullying, but also the parents of both the bully and the victim. Another type of bullying has become more popular in recent years, cyberbullying. This is bullying that takes place using electronic technology. Examples of cyberbullying include nasty text messages or emails, rumors sent by text, group messages or posted on social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter. Some of the more cruel forms of cyberbullying encompass posting humiliating pictures, videos, or fake profiles of someone else. Many of the constraints involved include numerous gray-areas. The parents rarely see the bullying first-hand; they only hear one side of the story from their child. Many parents blame the school for bullying issues when most of these originate from problems at home. It seems that in many situations, parents are not aware, or cannot understand the reasoning for their child being a bully or its origin. Parents, teachers, and other trusted adults all have a role to play in bully prevention. They can assist kids recognize bullying, keep the lines of communication open, and model how to treat others with kindness and respect. In many schools, and since I was a kid, I was taught the ‘Golden Rule’ – “Treat others how you want to be treated.” Bullying is preventable, especially when the power of a community is brought together. In the area where I went to high school in Omaha, the school district would host their own events that can help identify and support children who are bullied. This helps redirect the attitudes and behaviors of children who bully or tolerate bullying on a smaller, more targeted area in the Omaha metropolitan area. Across the country, local leaders are stepping up to address bullying (ethos). There are bully prevention courses all over the country. These are designed to provide individuals with the tools and resources necessary to organize effective bullying prevention efforts in their communities (logos). This is inventive in the sense that community members have noticed the issue, and see that is a big enough problem to arrange specific events and programs to bring down the number and severity of bullying incidents. All of the programs that are put on include a certain style and delivery that will ensure the success of the program, as well as making it specific and centralized to a certain community to deal with their biggest issue. For example, a school in North Lincoln might have the issue of physical bullying, while a school in Southeast Lincoln might have a bigger problem with cyberbullying, certifying that the program will be a memorable one for both the parents and the children (pathos).

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