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Bullying Discussion

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Re: Bullying Discussion

Post by cya6 on Tue Jun 04, 2013 12:26 pm

I was thinking how bullying is approached similar to how rape is. It blames the victim.

There's no reason EVER to bully someone. But oh, it's just a part of childhood. Children should learn to get over it. You should just suck it up. People are always gonna do that...
Just like rape. Well, boy will be boys. Just don't go out late alone. Don't where revealing clothing. Don't flirt with guys. Don't drink. Don't walk alone. Pay attention to your surroundings...

How about we teach our children not to bully or rape, instead of telling the victim that they're to blame? How about we say 'there's NO REASON to tell someone to kill themselves' instead of telling children to 'suck it up'. How about we tell our boys to respect girls and to always wait for consent instead of telling the victim that they should have been more vigilant.

If you say bullying is just part of childhood, you're part of the problem. Because you're the person saying it's ok to abuse someone emotionally, physically, and mentally. You're saying it's the victim's fault for being affected, instead of the bully's fault. And that's just enhancing this horrible part of society.
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Re: Bullying Discussion

Post by Snickie on Tue Jun 04, 2013 8:58 pm

Interesting post, cya.
Now excuse me while I play devil's advocate because that's one of my favorite things to do apparently. Very Happy

cya6 wrote:I was thinking how bullying is approached similar to how rape is. It blames the victim.
I think that's only really true in Muslim culture. I mean, women get killed for being raped, and even if they do get the rapist to be convicted (which is super difficult there) they might as well just kill themselves anyway because their bloodline and virginity have been tainted and that's a huge no-no over there.

cya6 wrote:There's no reason EVER to bully someone. But oh, it's just a part of childhood. Children should learn to get over it. You should just suck it up. People are always gonna do that...
Just like rape. Well, boy will be boys. Just don't go out late alone. Don't where revealing clothing. Don't flirt with guys. Don't drink. Don't walk alone. Pay attention to your surroundings...
People bully because they're insecure about themselves and they feel like they have to make someone else feel even more insecure so that they can feel better about themselves. In other words, power. Bullying is a part of childhood because some children are insecure. Some grew up in rough households; some were bullied or abused by their own parents, some have neglectful parents, and some don't have parents at all. Or they feel like they are under a whole lot of pressure to be popular or whatever from parents or siblings or someone else they really respect.

Also, a lot of what you mentioned just now about "don't go out late alone, don't wear revealing clothing," blah blah etcetera is stuff to try to prevent rape and bullying so that there are no victims. I mean, there are never any victims until the deed has been done.

Cool yet scary story: my aunt was at a shopping mall by herself, and she noticed a guy sort of keeping his distance yet following her around. She went outside to leave and saw him following her. So she went back inside and called the cops and described the guy. The cops came and arrested him, and it turned out he was on the FBI's wanted list for raping a whole bunch of women.

cya6 wrote:How about we teach our children not to bully or rape, instead of telling the victim that they're to blame? How about we say 'there's NO REASON to tell someone to kill themselves' instead of telling children to 'suck it up'. How about we tell our boys to respect girls and to always wait for consent instead of telling the victim that they should have been more vigilant.
Don't you think the world is trying that? Schools have sex education where folks come in and tell you all this stuff. But only a fraction of them listen. By high school, it's too late, imo (and this might be an exaggeration). Either parents (or other influential figures) have already instilled it into their kids that it's not okay to do (and the kids may or may not have listened-- teenagers are rebellious, remember; ever wonder why the stereotypical pastor's kid is way into partying?) or they've neglected the topic altogether and the kid probably does it anyway.

There's a problem with our society as well that is a key contributor (if not THE main contributor) to bullying and rape. It's called selfish impulse, and a huge example of exploitation of this is in commercials. "You can get this thing AND this thing AND pay no shipping and handling but ONLY IF YOU ORDER RIGHT NOW!" This is why it's difficult to rehabilitate rapists and pedophiles. Rapists want power (and sex and other things like that) and they want it when they want it (or NOW is also a good translation). Bullies want some kind of sense of security (even if it's false security gained by stripping someone else of theirs) and they want it now. Leaders want more power, and so they oppress the people in attempts to keep them from being able to take back any sort of power now and ever (especially common with dictators).

We as humans, especially in Western society, have been taught to go for our dreams, and largely have developed a Machiavellian point of view on the process: "The ends justify the means." We do things because we want an end result, and some people don't care who or what they hurt along the way.

Take World War II, for example, when President Truman decided to nuke Nagasaki and Hiroshima. Two Japanese cities huge on manufacturing or something. They were pretty well obliterated and those who survived had major problems for the rest of their lives, like the patterns of their robes being burned into their skin, and infertility, and severe burns, and a crapton of other side effects of radiation poisoning. But it ended World War II quickly, and that's what counts, right? Right? Granted, Truman did feel awful about it for the rest of his life, and maybe this is a bit of an extreme, slightly unpractical example. I mean, how many of us will ever have the power to say whether or not a region gets wiped out by nuclear weapons?

So here's a better example: Alcohol. People drink and drink and drink and drink for a buzz and/or popularity (power!) and don't think too hard about the damage it could be doing to their livers (and brains especially if they're underage).

cya6 wrote:If you say bullying is just part of childhood, you're part of the problem. Because you're the person saying it's ok to abuse someone emotionally, physically, and mentally. You're saying it's the victim's fault for being affected, instead of the bully's fault. And that's just enhancing this horrible part of society.
This is a straw man fallacy. Bullying is a part of childhood, but that doesn't mean it's okay. It's kind of like saying that since tornadoes are a part of weather they must be as good and harmless as clear skies (which we all know is not true). As long as we're not living in a world full of sunshine and rainbows and cute little duckies and where everyone loves everyone equally and nobody ever has conflict with anybody ever, bad things like bullying will be a part of life.

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Re: Bullying Discussion

Post by Guest on Wed Jun 05, 2013 6:56 pm

I would just like to point out that while bullying does start at childhood, it is not limited to that period of time. Bullying happens to people from all ages.

First of all, I personally believe that there exists or will exist no method that will 100% terminate bullying. It’s just not possible. No matter how hard society tries, there will always be a bully and a victim somewhere. However, we can definitely control and minimize the extent of the problem.

Moving to what Cya said, I completely understand what she is talking about. While I am not keen on the comparison of rape and bullying, I comprehend what was meant. Before I go on, I would like to comment on what Cya said in her last paragraph. Just because someone says that bullying is part of childhood, doesn’t mean they support it or hold no positions against it. I am merely accepting the fact that it does exist and it is strongly related to that period. There’s a difference between those who accept the existence of a problem and those who accept the problem. Admitting that a problem exists equals taking more than one step towards solving it. Now, strictly addressing bullying in the following:

Yes, more often than not, bullying is seen as a natural part of the childhood period (which it is) and victims are urged to get over the experience, toughen up and endure because everyone goes through it. I don’t think anyone would disagree that bullying happens in pretty much most, if not all, environments. The question is: are the means and methods used to deal with the issue effective? I would personally answer with a no. Simply telling children to deal with it is not an effective way of handling the problem. I understand the parents’ point of view and how they want their kids to acquire experience and learn to go through life with a tough skin, but that does not go well with the variety of the means that bullying can be carried out, the extent and most importantly, the age of the children.

Of course no reason validates the practice, but a variety of factors contribute to creating bullies. Maternal depression, parents’ educational level, external environment, lack of communication between family members and parent-child relationships...etc.

As to means to effectively deal with the problem, a system which involves parents, school/college and government is key. During childhood, parents can greatly influence their kids and ingrain all the positive qualities which banishes aggression and violence, accepting others' differences and showing a civilized demeanor. Parents themselves need education on the subject to be aware of its ramifications. Peers also influence kids (and teenagers) more than anyone and educating classes about bullying and its dangers are necessary for the whole group to get the message.


Idk if the poll section was completely removed or not, but if it was, at least make a topic for such discussions if they proceed over more than a couple posts. It's just better.

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Re: Bullying Discussion

Post by aelitaxwilliam on Wed Jun 05, 2013 8:37 pm

I think Cya's point was that our society shouldn't be like that. It's ridiculous that wearing skimpy clothing is grounds for being raped. Like, the thinking that if she'd just stopped being an idiot and dressed a different way, she wouldn't have gotten raped. I understand prevention, but it puts the onus on the woman to prevent rape, rather than the man.*

That is a really scary story! I'm glad she's all right though/called the police on him.

*ofc,women /can/ rape men, and it does happen, likely in larger numbers than reported.

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Re: Bullying Discussion

Post by Stella Luce 333 on Thu Jun 06, 2013 8:05 am

I never really made the connection before, but you’re right. They’re both types of harassment in which the victim takes the blame (maybe slightly more so with rape than bullying, but it still happens).

Just because bullying is a part of childhood doesn’t mean that it should be, or that it always will be. I’d love to see something change & see kids actually being nice to each other…but I agree that there’s no way to 100% do this. I know from personal experience, the bullying would just get worse every time a teacher got involved. The bullies would then target me somewhere else, where they wouldn’t get caught, because they blamed me for whatever the teacher said or did to them…
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Re: Bullying Discussion

Post by cya6 on Thu Jun 06, 2013 9:16 am

Basically this. I wasn't implying that bullying and rape were so comparable, so much as the way people put the blame and responsibility on the victim. So children are gonna feel insecure and want to show their dominance by bullying. That's actually very similar to rape.
My point is, I once read a comment on a page that said if people think that cyber bullying exists, they deserve to be made fun of. A few comments disagreed, and those disagreeing were made fun of by quite a few people who derisively repeated that people should just get over themselves.
It's the mindset, that if you're affected by bullying, it's your fault for letting it affect you, rather than the bully's fault.
These are the people who are part of the problem. They people who say it's up to you to get over it. Because, yeah, in an ideal world, that would be, well, ideal. But realistically, that's not easy to achieve. People see themselves as they feel others see them. And that's not an easy mindset to shake.

But people continue to put already depressed, unhappy people even further down by telling them that they're being (in more polite terms) wimps, and should just stop giving a f***. And that's not right. That's ignoring the problem, and further exacerbating it.
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Re: Bullying Discussion

Post by Stella Luce 333 on Mon Jun 10, 2013 7:49 am

Exactly! That logic even makes bullying a bigger problem…Suggesting that the victim is a “wimp” might make that person feel as though they need to bully others, since their bullies seem to have power…
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Re: Bullying Discussion

Post by cya6 on Mon Jun 10, 2013 10:53 am

Basically this. And also, it's these people who are raised believing that bullying is the fault of the victim that end up being bullies. Because they don't think they're hurting anyone, they think the victims are hurting because they're weak.
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Re: Bullying Discussion

Post by Guest on Mon Jun 10, 2013 2:46 pm

Again, having all these posts in a thread specific to the topic would be great. I don't want the discussion to end abruptly because very good points are raised.

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Bullying Discussion

Post by Snickie on Mon Jun 10, 2013 3:27 pm

Voila

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Re: Bullying Discussion

Post by Guest on Mon Jun 10, 2013 3:57 pm

Merci Mademoiselle.

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Re: Bullying Discussion

Post by Atlas on Mon Jun 10, 2013 6:45 pm

If Snickie was playing Devil's Advocate them I'm going to play the Devil himself.

First off I'd like to say that it's really hard to generalize why people bully other people and all that and I'll probably be guilty of that myself later in this post. People are complicated and making sweeping statements usually leads to a lot of inaccuracies about the matter.

Still I will say that when people "blame the victim" for bullying I feel that it has less to do with the fact that they are weaker in some way to their bully but the feeling that the person being bullied is not taking the steps they need to make in order to resolve the situation. Or in a simpler statement, they don't take some initiative to get it to stop.

Assuming a school age the most common suggestion would be to tell your friends or a teacher or someone in authority. It's a pretty well documented fact that a lot of people being bullied don't come forward when it happens.

When people criticize the person being bullied about such things, I don't think it's wrong to say that such statements may be harsh. But unfair? I don't know.

As a second point I read a lot about how people need to change the system in order to "fix" this problem, but I don't really see it as that. As I said earlier you can't really generalize things and some standard dictated from outside the scope of the conflict will most likely fail to meet acceptable results.

You just can't really institutionalize out human nature without giving up on a lot of freedom and I feel that bullying is very much a human nature thing. Ultimately from the perspective as a society as a whole conflict is good. Greed is good. It's a way of culling out the weak while respecting the right to a fair chance. We do our best to moderate the extremes of it to maintain a semblance of fairness and order and we take the same approach with bullying; controlled, but generally encourageable.

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Re: Bullying Discussion

Post by Guest on Tue Jun 11, 2013 1:42 pm

Since everyone's role-playing, can I play Daffy Duck? always wanted to play Daffy. Oh, back to the topic.

Atlas wrote:Still I will say that when people "blame the victim" for bullying I feel that it has less to do with the fact that they are weaker in some way to their bully but the feeling that the person being bullied is not taking the steps they need to make in order to resolve the situation. Or in a simpler statement, they don't take some initiative to get it to stop. Assuming a school age the most common suggestion would be to tell your friends or a teacher or someone in authority. It's a pretty well documented fact that a lot of people being bullied don't come forward when it happens.

I would have to say the reason it is documented that less students inform teachers or authorities of the bullying they receive is the fact that the disciplinary measures taken are to large extent futile.

In a recent survey in the USA conducted with school psychologists (N0205), some 96.7% of respondents reported that at the schools where they worked, cases of bullying were readdressed using disciplinary consequences, ‘i.e.(sic) suspension and expulsions for bullies’ (Sherer and Nickerson 2010, p 222). Over half (57%) of the school psychologists opined that the zero-tolerance approach was ineffective.

It is not that resulting to authorities was never considered or actively taken, it's more of 'I told X person and the bullying didn't stop'. Over time, students refrain from even considering the option because of their past experiences and think it's wiser to keep it to themselves. I consider it a form of action bias on authorities' part: look active, even if it achieves nothing. The pressure and the need to do something about the problem renders most teachers/principals vulnerable to such bias and reduces the effectiveness of most methods. According to Bauman and Del Rio (2005), teachers are more inclined to take action of some kind when the bullying is direct and physical. That's understandable. What happens in the cases where bullying is covert though? It requires a high degree of surveillance, which is often impossible or difficult to maintain. Such psychological attack is often more damaging than a physical one and even harder to recognize and deal with. Another camouflaged aspect is how equipped are the teachers themselves to be able to deal with such cases. I recall 18% of teachers admitting they are undecided in an online survey when they were presented with a bully case.

Atlas wrote:As a second point I read a lot about how people need to change the system in order to "fix" this problem, but I don't really see it as that. As I said earlier you can't really generalize things and some standard dictated from outside the scope of the conflict will most likely fail to meet acceptable results.

You just can't really institutionalize out human nature without giving up on a lot of freedom and I feel that bullying is very much a human nature thing. Ultimately from the perspective as a society as a whole conflict is good. Greed is good. It's a way of culling out the weak while respecting the right to a fair chance. We do our best to moderate the extremes of it to maintain a semblance of fairness and order and we take the same approach with bullying; controlled, but generally encourageable.

Throughout the past decade, more than $10 billion has been invested to reduce violence and improve safety in schools (U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Community Oriented Policing Services 2003; The U.S. Security Market 2000). The vast majority of those dollars have underwritten an “outside-in” approach, that is, one that has focused on physical safety and security, including fences, locks, cameras, tough rules, zero-tolerance policies, and additional staff to monitor student behaviour (Knickerbocker 2004).

It is safe to say that such measures have not been the most effective. I believe a psychological approach is a hundred times better than surrounding students with surveillance. I don't object on the latter, but I simply demand more focus on the former. A lot of freedom is already given up in the current system. A social-ecological theory describing the development of aggressive behaviour in school children posits that the interaction of individual, family, peer, and community factors influence an individual’s propensity to engage in aggressive behaviours (Espelage 2004). A study by Cairns, Leung and Cairns (1995) highlighted the significance of peers’ social influence, indicating that students tend to bully about as much has their friends and that students whose friends bully tend to increase their own levels of bullying throughout the school year.

Such studies have to be taken into consideration. The government has already spent $10 billion which is hugely inefficient compared to the results at hand. To demand a new approach is nothing but rational, logical thinking. I have already shared my belief that eliminating the act is unrealistic and impossible to achieve, but that doesn't entail accepting the status quo. The power of social influence is so vast it can change the attitudes of bullies, bystanders and victims. Bystanders make 70-85% of students at schools. They witness the aggression and do nothing about it for a variety of reasons. Educating them is a great way to turn the tide. As for bullies and victims, both need psychological help which I think should be provided by family, school and the government in a unified manner. How and to what extent remains up to debate, but the old approach isn't doing the society any good.

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