This post was written in response to my friend Sonny’s comment on a post on my Facebook Timeline. My original post was composed of this comment by me:
…and this is one example of why Christians need to be involved in the anti-bullying movement itself. When allowed to be lead only by people with an agenda to protect one certain people-group it fails to actually BE about anti-bullying–it becomes all about those people. A bully is a person who willfully humiliates and hurts another person for their own sense of self-empowerment. It is unacceptable for anyone to bully ANYONE else. Stop the bullying. GET INVOLVED!
…and this story and video.
Despite a belief in a literal interpretation of the bible, and a traditional/historical understanding of what Christianity is, I’m not a part of the “Religious Right”. In fact, the Religious Right probably frustrates and sickens me more than they do you, Sonny. I am totally against the way they mix politics and religion and believe their approach only serves to confuse people about what Christianity actually is, what the bible says, and further muddles and messes with the already limping political processes. (I’m pretty sure I once laid out my position on “gay marriage” on a comment on your wall. My beliefs on that issue can be generally applied to most other similar politico-religious issues.)
What you point out about the approach of the Religious Right only goes towards the point I was trying to make: bullying is not about certain people-groups and any group with a “personal agenda” should just step aside. Certain people do not deserve “special representation”. All people deserve not to be bullied–period. There is no acceptable reason for any person to be bullied–ever. To make special provision for any particular group is to inadvertently say that bullying of other people, for other reasons, is not as big of a deal.
Everyone needs to understand what bullying really is (which has absolutely nothing to do with politics, differences of opinion, religious beliefs, sexual orientation, or any such thing.) Bullying is about one person (or collection of people) intentionally engaging another for the purpose of humiliating them, intimidating them and/or hurting them for the (generally subconscious) goal of deriving a sadistic sense of enjoyment and empowerment through such attacks. Generally, the bully focuses on something true of the individual; and by “something” I mean anything. It might be an appearance of homosexual tendencies—or it might as easily be the color of their socks (no exaggeration.) It is the nature of a bully to go for the most obvious thing, but they will can always find something. If the first thing doesn’t work well, they will just add “reasons” as time goes on. Once the target has been identified and the “reason(s)” chosen; the victim will be repeatedly and faithfully attacked, mocked, humiliated, and threatened until they are made to feel they are truly laughable, “a mistake”, sub-human, and, perhaps most heart-rending in my mind—not worth defending. The worse the person is made to feel; the better the bully feels about himself. To say, “Gays don’t deserve to be bullied about their homosexuality” is true. But it’s equallytrue that, boys don’t deserve to be bullied about being short, girls don’t deserve to be bullied about their underdeveloped breasts, no one deserves to be bullied about their smile, and underprivileged kids don’t deserve to be bullied about their shoes and clothing. Bullying is wrong—for any “reason”.
When homosexual-activists say it is wrong to bully gays BECAUSE being homosexual is fine—they destroy the entire foundation of an effective anti-bullying campaign. It is not “wrong to bully gays because being homosexual is okay”—it is wrong to bully gays BECAUSE it is wrong to bully any person for any “reason”!
Having myself lived through bullying; I am a serious anti-bullying advocate. I operate with a zero tolerance personal policy. I will not let one kid’s comment about another, nor a responding snicker, go unaddressed in my presence. I don’t care if it’s your kid or mine. I don’t care if they were, “…just kidding”. No way. Never. The silence and inaction of the teachers and administrators during my (short) stint in public high school resulted in a fervent desire to, “never be like them”—which has only grown stronger the older I’ve become.
No one, and no group, should get involved in the anti-bullying movement whose agenda is anything other than to see an end to bullying—period. It is certainly true that groups have more power and influence than individuals. If ever we could convince these groups to drop their personal agendas, and focus on the actual problem, we might really see a serious blow to bullying. In the meantime, I implore every person able to enter this campaign with a clear focus; please, get involved. The kids need you.