Thursday, April 05, 2012


"I don't understand why he's getting bullied, it's not like he's fat or ret@rded or anything. He's just a nice looking, pleasant kid, I don't understand.'

I stopped my wheelchair dead in my tracks. The woman behind me, talking about her child being bullied to a friend, had to swerve around me. She shot a nasty glance at me.

I couldn't move.

Simply couldn't move.

That's at the bottom of all this concern isn't it?

The concern is really for those kids who are being bullied AND DON'T DESERVE IT.

Those kids who are:








don't count.

Those kids kind of DESERVE WHAT THEY GET.

God, damn, don't they know that they should just stop being:

short sighted,







You get what you deserve!! Difference is rewarded with punishment - get that through you thick, fat, pimpled head!!!

We need to stop the bullying of those kids who don't deserve it.

The other's ... really, who gives a shit.


Moose said...


It's the polar opposite of "being bullied for being XYZ is worse than being bullied for ABC!" (as if it's a frakkin' contest!)

Now it's "S/He doesn't have XYZ or ABC, why is s/he being bullied?"

Am I a bad person for wanting to bully people like this? (Well, yes, I am. Can I call myself a bad name now? :-/)

Kristin said...

People like that woman INFURIATE me. No one deserves to be one.

Wordshurtorheal said...

As if bullying and hate is a requirement.....a rite of passage....I've even heard it's Full Inclusion....we have so much to do.

Anonymous said...


I am so sorry you had to go through such a situation which led to "instant anger".

I am "invisible" disabled and sometimes I am very frustrated by my own thoughts or the things people around me tend to voice or do. Sometimes I can not tell whether my and their problems origin from my disability or from me trying to hard to act average and "normal"...

Yes and some situation just leaves me with the word SHIT echoing in my head round and round and there is no place left for constructiv thought.

Dave for me as I can read it on your blog, see it in the things you try to do and change and especially in Joes and your interaction wirh Ruby, you are a very good social teacher! And it is good to read that you too sometimes are driven to the edge of anger.

That makes you human and shows how horrible things can make us feel and if we are able to change the anger inside of us a new chance to go and change the world for us and for others - as long as it may take.


John R. said...

These are the moments when you want karma to run over that woman's dogma...I know, that is not too pacifist of me but holy cow! Tough one, Dave....tough one.... No one deserves hatred.

Colleen said...

Dear Dave:

Unbelievable! Someone deserves to get bullied?!?!

Of course we know that bullies target people they think are vulnerable. Bullying happens because of the qualities of the bully not the qualities of the person they target.

My first thought was that I hoped she tripped over you (leaving you totally unscathed of course) - like John I realize that this thought is unworthy of the non-violent person I try to be but still . . .


Happy said...

This is completely off the topic of this post, but have you seen the memorial entitled "Bloom" as a memorial to the demolition of a mental health center? 28,000 live flowers were brought in. It's absolutely breathtaking.

Princeton Posse said...

Sometimes, I think I am going one step forward and two steps back. I usually try to be optimistic with Easter, spring etc snowed again today. I think I will eat chocolate.

CapriUni said...

This is precisely why the (flavor of) the current anti-bullying campaign going around right now leaves me a little bit queasy. There is much focus and celebration of the movement when the Beautiful Celebrities speak out about it on TV.

...And then, in the very next segment on the Entertainment News Show (pick your title) there's an "expose" of some star being "caught" out in public looking frumpy or tired, and belittled for it.

Grown-ups are all too often righteous in their lecturing to children, at the same time they are all to care-less with their own thoughts and actions.

Physician, heal thyself; Parent, grow up.

lillytigre said...

My roommate whom I ,generally like very much, and I were watching tv the other night and a commercial for the movie bully or bullied came on. She looks at me and says I just don't understand why bullying is such a big deal all of sudden! Oh my goodness, this pushes my buttons. Because when I went to school it never got the attention it deserved. Although my parents and teachers were on top of things. I was lucky, for that. I said to her spoken like a person who has never been bullied. She insisted that just because she was never bullied didn't mean she didn't get it... when in the course of out continued conversation I was so sure she didn't . Because it's just teasing So and I'm not sure if I should have done this or not, I said so if your daughter who is a lesbian, was being called names just because she happens to be attracted to girls, something which she has no control over, that wouldn't be a big deal huh? If this "teasing" was changing who she was inside or how she saw herself when she looked in the mirror, that's not a big deal right? If somebody was picking on your grandchild be cause her mom loves another girl, that's not anything to be concerned about right?
Ohhh she says I never thought about it that way
I still like her just as much but why is that that people are so incapable of seeing something is wrong unless you make it relevant to their experience ?? How about it's wrong because it is making anyone feel bad about who they are for whatever reason, is just MEAN!!! Ok so maybe it's simplistic but I would rather not see a grey area in bullying that's all!

Liz Miller said...

Thank you for posting this. I am seeing red. NOBODY deserves to get bullied. NOBODY.

Rachel in Idaho said...

You know, I'd like to think what she meant was "I can't think of anything obvious about him that would attract bullies, which is odd. There's no excuse for it under any circumstances, of course." Her look at you says otherwise, but I could see somebody wondering what made a seemingly average kid a target so they can figure out how to stop it.

The downside of that is that people simply assume that certain folks are bullied, us among them. And God knows I was. The one thing I still can't do after all these years is convince my mother of how bad it was. Middle school was three years of psychological warfare being waged against me by almost the entire school.

But assuming that I somehow deserved the mistreatment I got? Oh no. That sh@t won't fly with me anymore. I'm not a defenseless 12-year-old girl who had no choice but to face her tormenters every day and thought the whole world hated her anymore. I may still be a foot or more shorter than you but I'm 36 and I know who I am and I know what I will not put up with.

Flemisa said...

Love the notice after the words "Leave your comment". Very generous and open and, obviously, much needed.

As to bullying -- makes you wish more of the ads were directed to the "teachers" in which I include all adults.

I try to follow the "Golden Rule" at all times but sometimes it gets hard. Sometimes I don't think something through enough which is why I am a daily reader of your blog.

May your Easter be memorable in all the good ways.

Anonymous said...

I’m a bit behind on commenting, the next days post is here, but this has really stayed with me.
What happened, what the woman said is OUTRAGEOUS and so grateful that Dave has called this.
I have also been unable to leave alone, how could a mother say this?
I’m not a mother but I understand the majesty and magnitude of a mother’s drive and love to protect her son.
It’s shocking that a mother would invoke the act of ‘othering’ to protect her son. Maybe it’s easier for me not being a mother, but this urge to protect belongs to all children we are connected with, all children in our community, it takes a village to raise a child. That’s to raise your chlld too, madam, and the loss of that leaves your child vulnerable to bullying.
Dave’s posts about the mother and also about the choir I have been thinking about the loss of collective responsibility in our communities- well that’s some of our communities, because communities under siege know this- I’m thinking of disabled people, LGBT people, people with history of i/e-migration.
A small book list has come to mind to educate young children, as I was educated by my parents and grandam through these stories in the 70s.
In the uk the kids ‘do’ traditional stories in school when they are 5 or 6, the gingerbread man, three little pigs, that sort of stuff.
How about the Little Red Hen? Who’ll help me grind the corn?
How about who’ll bell the cat?
And Richard Scarry’s Pig WIll and Pig Won’t.
I think these should be on the ‘reading list’ for all schools, communities that say they seek to be inclusive.

Jamie S said...

This was really impacting for me, I could not believe that a person could use that kind of terminoligy to describe bullying. No one deserves to be bullied ever. No person deserves to feel like they are not good enough, and no person deserves to feel like they need to be someone else to fit in. Each child should grow up in an environment where it is ok to look any way, and where difference is applauded, and 'weirdness' forgive my choice of words is an outstanding aspect of a person's personality. It is almost disgusting how many parents you catch using this kind of sentence structure to explain things like this, and its so hard to believe that they do not notice either. I agree with Kristin, it is infuriating... and it is completely unlogical.