When I read Brandon Hurley’s story on CNN, I have to admit that my first feelings were that of disgust for the ugly behavior that people dole out. Where do they learn it from? It is group think at its worst?
It’s easy to throw a punch in a dark crowded room. Its easier when your verbal punches and back-handed jabs come from beyond the veil of cyber-space.
I remember being the smallest, youngest kid in my class. I remember the teasing, the ridicule. I remember being the victim and realizing the pecking order. I remember running across one of those persons that treated me rough. We were in a bank, he worked there. He was happy to see me. All I could think of was the flashback of memories from our elementary school playground time. I remember him introducing me to his colleagues and them inquiring about how he was as a kid. I told the truth. His jaw dropped. It has been 22 years for us and he had no recollection. For me, it was like it was yesterday.
Do I support a zero-tolerance for bullying/cyber-bullying? Heck yes! Ridicule, heckling, stabbing at someones awkwardness, no matter how overt their stature and appearance makes it out to be is no excuse.
My hope, my prayer, is to teach my children the defense mechanisms they need both physically and mentally to navigate the bullies in this world whether they be in the playground at recess or in the hallways between lunchtime and chemistry class; and to never, ever tolerate the disrespect from others whether or not that disrespect is directed at themselves or it is witnessed being doled out on the “outcast”.
Brandon, if you are ever in San Antonio, lunch is on me. I know what it is like and my heart goes out to you and to everyone else that has to suffer through it.