Every so often, I wonder at the sheer nerve of research scientists. Instead of peeking into something useful (like warp drive, or nanotechnology, or … you know, actual science) they get grants to carry out studies that prove the bleeding obvious. In this case, that bullying is bad for the victims AND the d*** perpetrators. I could have told them that for free!
(Picture from above link.)
It is said, quite truthfully, that the child is the parent of the adult. A happy well-adjusted child will grow up into a happy well-adjusted adult (or will have the potential for being one, which isn’t always the same thing.) A child who is allowed to develop unpleasant personality traits will carry them into adulthood, where they often wind up in jail. How unsurprising! After all, if they spent 18 years learning that hitting someone weaker than them in the playground is considered nothing serious, they aren’t going to magically adjust their thinking because they’re now legally adults.
But spare no sympathy for the bully. It is his victim you need to worry about … you know, the innocent in all of this. The victim will frequently discover that so-called responsible adults will not lift a finger to save him from the bully. No, all that will happen if he tells a teacher (or a parent, or even a policeman) is that the bully will target him further. And, because no one wants to be bullied, the victim will face social exclusion from his schoolmates. Who will be friends with little Harry when big bad Dudley beats the living daylights out of everyone who even smiles at him in the classroom?
You can tell a child all day that his behaviour is bad, but that isn’t enough with kids. They rarely have any form of thinking beyond instant gratification. Their thinking runs “it makes me laugh to push him around and nothing happens to me,” not “if I push him around, twenty years from now I’ll be in jail.” They need to be taught that their actions have immediate consequences. The sense of gratification has to be removed.
What happens to the victim if the bully is left to run unchecked? Well, some victims kill themselves, unable to bear it any longer. Others take up guns and carry out school shootings. Do you think they think that they’re gunning down innocent victims? No – they’re gunning down people who did nothing to stop the torment, who even participated in the torment. And others become stunted social recluses who don’t even dare to open their mouths, fearing a torrent of mockery from everyone else.
There are people, so-called child psychologists, who feel that giving children a short, sharp shock is inappropriate. No, the child must be understood. His delicate self-esteem must not be damaged. Well, I understand bullies all too well. They think that they can get away with finding amusement in picking on people and, sadly, they’re often correct.
There are even worse idiots among the ranks of child psychologists (my contempt for them is so great that I would sooner share a room with fundamentalist terrorists than such people) who actually believe that the victim deserves his suffering, that he is somehow provoking the bully. What absolute claptrap! Even if the victim was an odious little git, he shouldn’t be picked on. Or should I consider my distaste for so-called psychologists sufficient grounds for terrorising them?
Sigh. No one deserves to be bullied.
If you want to deal with bullies, you have to make it d*** clear to them that their behaviour will bring them nothing, but immediate and painful consequences. You need to punish the guilty and protect the innocent.
Right now, when it comes to anti-bullying policies, it is almost always the other way around.