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Response to MichiganVote (Reply #54)

Tue Apr 2, 2013, 10:07 PM

67. We aren't so far apart as it may have seemed.

"Following Columbine, school administrators and school social workers began to receive flyers by the day/week for 'conferences' that dealt with bullying. And multiple bullying laws have been enacted."

I remember that, and was very glad it happened. I was the..."chosen one" when it came to being bullied when I was growing up. Every school day, for literally years, on the receiving end. It followed me from grade school, to jr high, to high school. People can be unbelievably cruel assholes, even as children, and when you're the biggest kid in school (I was nearly 6 feet tall, and wearing a size ten shoe before I was in 4th grade) but generally an easy going gentle person, the teachers and admin figure you can take it, and it isn't bullying. That's how it was in my time and situation, anyway. Toward the time I was close to becoming a legal adult, I started fighting back, but that presented a whole different set of problems, and a hard lesson in how fragile human beings are physically, and the necessity to control myself, my actions, and my temper...but that's another story.

I was and am still pleased any time I see resources devoted to end bullying.

"Ok. First, all of these conferences are expensive and require time away from busy staff schedules. So schools tried bringing in various school based anti bullying programs for students. Again, expensive and time consuming. But its what people wanted so schools did what they could with the budgets they had. Neither state or federal governments have given anything to these schools for these programs. Sure, they can write a grant. But the fact is that usually means that some do-gooder admin. or other staffers take time to do this outside of their school hours. Don't tell anyone cuz' we all know that public school staff are union thugs only out for themselves. (Not)"

I know, right? It gets old...the "thugs" meme. And, you're right about the expenses.

"So what does this all mean? Bullying still occurs. Should we just abandon all of these options? Conclude that because we have not eradicated bullying among uncivilized immature youth our efforts have failed for one and all?"

Of course not. But we shouldn't be treating the people not doing the bullying, as if they are, either.


"Now let's take the case of school shootings. What has the public wanted to support in the 15 years since Columbine, since the shooting at the Amish school and the assorted other instances throughout this country? I would argue that the public has held its breath and its nose and done nothing for or within the schools. People generally want to propose the bullying is the central reason for school based shootings. Research suggests that while bullying is one reason, it is not the only reason. In the case of the inside school shooter, bullying is usually the igniter but the fuel for the felon lies deep in their own psychology or world view. And let me tell you something really scary. In the schools, we know who these at risk of violence children are. They are already being dealt with, quietly and confidentially, they get handled."

In so many ways, you're right about this.

"In this country we have had more than one shot across the bow to warn us that individuals like Lanza exist, are active and will shoot to kill. We know that high stress in workplaces causes people to go "postal". We know that there are unstable or irresponsible gun owners who in the wrong situation will resort to violence. We know that areas such as Chicago are rife with firearms and use them against one another or unprotected youth."

No doubt. You are again, right about this. Bad things are happening. People resort to violence when they shouldn't, no question about it. The thing about Chicago, though, is generally, the people that are using them against one another or unprotected youth, are unlawful possessors of firearms. My view on that whole situation, is that part of it is due to the war on drugs. That's definitely a fuelling element of whats going on there. Another, is the militarization of law enforcement. When there were beat cops walking the beat, neighborhood cops, we didn't have problems like those that exist today. Not to the same degree anyway. Not to say those are the only issues, but those two are bigger than anyone gives them credit for being, IMO. When I start getting the vibe of "clamp down on amendment 2 and gun ownership" and ignore the rest, though, it doesn't sit any better with me than the rest of it. Note, I'm not saying I get that vibe from you or your posts, I just mean generally.

"Hell no. Our problem, yours and mine, originates in Washington and among the various State legislators."

While we may disagree on specific measures, we seem to be in total agreement here. What with the new changes in a few states, on MJ, and with the news I keep reading that leads me to believe this will spread, i'm encouraged that within my lifetime, the WOD will be ended, or at the very least dialed down a few notches, and I think that's a difference maker when it comes to things like the gun violence in Chicago. Add some real attention to poverty and education, and it would most likely turn out to have a substantial effect.

I apologize for my tone earlier in our exchange. I am admittedly pro-gun, and while i'm not real proud of it, I'm not ashamed of it either. In my time on DU, I've had some real knock down drag out spats with others on the other side of the issue, and particularly over the last few months, been called "second amendment extremist", "gun fucker", told that I love "guns more than children", accused of "nra talking points" and so forth...and it tends to color my replies sometimes. Its something that I am working on.

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liberal N proud Apr 2013 OP
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beevul Apr 2013 #67
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