by Kenlynn Slats
Have you ever been bullied for being different? Today, throughout the world, students are being harassed for multiple reasons. Whether it’s because of your appearance, race, weight, cultural, or sexual orientation. According to National Bullying Prevention Center, 64% of students did not report that they’ve been bullied while the other 36% reported it. One question is that what causes a person to bully?
One reason why a person would bully is because they aren’t being treated right at home. National Education Association states, “A parent who disciplines a child with yelling or hitting is teaching a child to react in that manner with other people.” Rachael Rettner says that a child will most likely turn into a bully if both of their biological parents aren’t around as much, or being raised with a single parent.
Another root why kids and teenagers become bullies is because they are lacking attention from loved ones. ESchoolToday claims that parents, teachers, and friends that don’t give enough attention to the person, they might find comfort in harassing other people. Not taking notice to the child will cause them to feel angry, alone, and depressed.
The last remaining reason why people bully is because they want to feel dominant or superior over others. 2KnowMySelf states, “A person might become a bully in order to feel worthy.” The bully might feel weak at home because of a parent or guardian is controlling or strict.
There are number of ways to deal with bullying in schools. The first solution to this problem is allowing the victim to contact a trusted adult. Education World suggests that you could be an advocate for your school and discuss with the principle about enabling an anti-bullying policy.
Rachel’s Challenge helps connect students to be kind to each other. In Kuskokwim Learning Academy, staff encouraged students to participate in this activity and watch videos about Rachel’s Challenge and how it had an impact on students.
Lisa Currie mentions many benefits of being nice to one another. There would be a decrease in depression, stress, and bullying. Students’ self-esteem would rise along with concentration, positive vibes, and serotonin. Serotonin boosts mood, learning, memory, sleep, and your health. An act of kindness to friends, family, and loved ones results in positive benefits.
In some cases, one can let themselves get in trouble with the law. There’s a cyberbullying law in Alaska. Cyberbullying is a crime and the bully would go behind bars. Second degree harassment includes repeatedly insulting, making anonymous phone calls late at night or in the morning, exposing and sharing photos or videos of the victim’s private body parts, and calling the victim for a fight or inappropriately speaking to him or her. Criminal Defense Lawyer also includes that the second degree harassment is in the class B misdemeanor. The bully would have a fine about $2,000 and spend time in jail for 90 days or less.
You can argue that “kids will be kids” or they’re just teasing each other. But here is the weakness; allowing kids and teenagers to behave this way will just continue later on. Bullying ruins many lives, but why can’t we replace all the negatives with positives? Teaching students that bullying is a serious issue and educating them how to deal with bullies would potentially save someone’s life. There are solutions to this problem, such as informing a trusted adult about what’s happening, showing respect to each other, and telling students that cyberbullying is a crime.
Kenlynn Slats wrote this Problem and Solution research paper while she was attending the Kuskokwim Learning Academy. She is a recent graduate.