When I read the headline I thought “Finally someone who gets it.” Well after reading the article I was only half-right. The author of the article is Kathy Hersh who is co-chair of the Miami-Dade Community Task Force to Eliminate Bullying. While she admits that school shootings can happen anywhere her reasoning is questionable. While trying to eliminate bullying is indeed a noble cause she’s guilty of perpetuating the myths that bullying led to Columbine and Red Lake…
A Miami-Dade County grand jury convened last year to answer that question. The jury studied 37 deadly incidents in schools across the nation, hoping to find a common characteristic among the perpetrators that could be used to profile potential killers and possibly prevent a similar tragedy. The only common factor that it could identify was that all the killers had been the victims of persistent bullying, victimized to the breaking point.
The same day that we visited Arza to try to persuade him to support the bill, a boy in Red Lake Reserve, Minn., shot his grandfather and his companion, then went to school and killed 10 classmates before turning the gun on himself. Michael Weise had been a frequent target of bullies, and he couldn’t take it anymore.
First off it was Jeff Weise not Michael and he was a bully, not the bullied. Secondly, I’d like to know which incidents they studied because I can name several where bullying was not a factor. The fact that a legitimate organization that aims to end bullying does not have their facts straight is scary. Not only that but since they buy into the bullying myth it just lends legitimacy to would be school shooters who think they are justified in what they are doing.
And the three things that students asked for to help with the bullying problem don’t sound like things that students would request. I mean did students really request an “active peer-mediation programs”. That sounds like something feel good adults who forgot what school was like came up with. If a victim were to engage a bully in an active peer-mediation program it would just lead to more bullying. The only thing that can be done to stop bullying is to catch bullies in the act. If you don’t, bullying will remain the age-old problem of the victim’s word against the bully’s.
And the myth just continues to perpetuate.