There has been an intolerable spate of bullying in Australian schools. I’m not one for statistics because they are misused, but apparently 70% of senior students in our schools consider bullying a problem. See what I mean by a silly stat? I would have thought that 100% would regard it as a problem, but there you are. Your child has been bullied and so you do the right thing. You go to the authorities who should be protecting him or her. But the school headmaster and the police are derelict in their duties and nothing is done about it. So what should you do about the problem?
You can let your child be bullied and threatened and even attacked. You can try to tell your child that these bullies are cowards and that karma will finally catch up with them. You can even take the internet and mobile phone away from your child so that he or she is not harassed by cyberbullies.
But why should your child be deprived of the benefits of the internet just because some scumbag is trying to victimise him?
There are reported cases of children who are too afraid to attend school because those bullies have threatened to get them. One young girl even killed herself because she couldn’t take the bullying any more. And that is tragic.
In today’s “Brisbane Courier-Mail” there is a report of a court case against parents who were so fed up by the inaction at Beenleigh High School as well as by the Queensland police, that they took matters into their own hands and bashed their child’s tormentor. They received suspended sentences from a judge who called them vigilantes. However, the mere fact that the sentences were suspended reveals much about the judge’s real opinion, doesn’t it?
I disagree with this description of the vigilante parents. I prefer to call them protectors and defenders. How long should you persist with reporting attacks to the police? Until your child is brain dead or mentally scarred for life?
As a matter of fact, if someone bullied my children and threatened to hurt them while the police and authorities did nothing to protect them, then I would feel obliged to do my duty as a parent and protect my children. I brought them into this world and I have to make sure they are safe. It’s the least I can do for them.
Would it be better if there were a system that took care of bullies and put them away somewhere, far, far away from my children?
Of course. But if the police and the education department allow my children to be bullied then there is no other way. I have to do the protecting.
Perhaps a friendly chat with the bully would be in order. That is step one. Then a friendly chat with the bully’s parents perhaps. But something tells me that such a nice chat would not be well received by the low scum who gave birth to the bully. Knowing what was in store for me, I most likely would be escorted to this chat by someone much stronger than I.
So what am I actually saying here? Well, If you hurt one of my children, or anyone in my family, then I don’t give a damn if you call me names. As long as my child is safe. And don’t preach to me about peace and goodwill. Such stories were written by people who did not know there’s a jungle out there. You only have to look around you to realise that civilisation is a very thin veneer.