Monday, 13 August 2012
A video of a fat boy retaliating against a bully in school appeared on television.
This stimulated a debate about how to handle bullying.
The fat boy was suspended for retaliating but many supported his actions.
Bullies are people who are afraid of being bullied. They are so frightened that they strike first in order to scare off potential predators. They pick on people more vulnerable than themselves. This creates the impression that they are not to be messed with.
The culture of violence comes from the top.
At the grammar school which I attended the old headmaster had been open minded and lenient. Under him the school had had a reputation for children not bullying others. He was dismissed because the parents thought he was too weak.
The new headmaster was an Englishman who brought with him the British school tradition of discipline. Under his authority bullying thrived.
The culture of fear and violence comes from the top. From the headmaster to the teachers to the students.
The new headmaster at my school came from the British public school tradition of strict discipline. This is based on violence and fear. He may have had a violent father. He definitely had a violent headmaster.
We can see this bullying in our politicians and media, also in sport and movies. While we are showing our children this example we will never stop the bullying in our schools.
So the fear is passed down from generation to generation.
Photo Credit: mangee Flickr via Compfight cc