Bullies Behind Bars
Creating and Enforcing Bullying Laws in the United States
In the past decade there have been a growing number of teenage suicide attempts and successes. Many of these come from some form of bullying and harassment in our schools. Bullies leave scars on our children that last long into their adulthood; if they are lucky enough to make it to adulthood. This behavior has long been accepted as “boys will be boys.” Well boys are no longer boys and girls are sometimes more cruel than boys. It’s time we as parents and adults tell these bullies that their behavior has consequences and we as a society will no longer accept their behavior.
Creating and ...view middle of the document...
She was tough, but sweet and I knew many would dare not mess with her out of fear she may come back at them. Throughout middle school she was a star on the basketball and softball teams and seemed to be very popular. She made Varsity and All-State her freshman year. Then things changed. Brittney was no longer friends with the jocks; she was now friends with a very dark group. I began to find marijuana in her room and her interest in sports had gone completely and she had been cutting school.
When I tried to talk to her, she would slam the door in my face and tell me she hated me. After several months, I happened to walk by the computer while she was getting a snack and saw the AOL Messenger messages. There were about 8 or 9 popped up and they were horrible. She was called many names referencing her height and stating that she was really a man. I broke down and finally asked her about it. One of the popular “prom” girls was jealous that Brittney had made the newspaper for softball and she decided to tell everyone that Brittney was a man who had a sex change. As ridiculous as that was, the others thought it was funny and my daughter was tormented for months in school and over the internet. I went to the school and was told “girls will be girls.” This was ten years ago, when we were still dialing up the internet, before Facebook and YouTube, and to this day, my daughter still has scars from high school.
Today, bullying has gotten worse, to the extent that children are committing bullycide; suicide from bullying. Bullies are videotaping harassment and beatings and broadcasting to the world their victim’s humiliation. School is like a prison to the victim because they are forced to go and face this abuse daily. In addition, they feel the punishment from school if they report it. In an elementary school in Vallejo, two 5th grade girls repeatedly reported being bullied and harassed in school. According to the mother of one of the victims Patricia Hartzell “the school’s solution was to keep the girls inside for recess, which just made things worse.” (CBS News, 2011) The bully however, never has to answer for his or her behavior. This needs to stop. Bullies have to be liable for the emotional and physical damage they cause others and since the schools and parents don’t feel the need to intervene, it’s up to the lawmakers to create laws to stop this behavior.
According to Cyberbullyingus.com (Summary of our Cyberbullying Research from 2004-2010, 2010), research shows that from 2002-2010, “over 80 percent of teens use a cell phone regularly, making it the most popular form of technology and a common medium for cyber bullying. Of those about half of young people have experienced some form of cyber bullying, and 10 to 20 percent experience it regularly. Mean, hurtful comments and spreading rumors are the most common type of cyber bullying. Girls are at least as likely as boys to be cyber bullies or their victims. Boys are more likely to be threatened...