A Thought on the “Anti-Bullying” movement

A friend of mine told me he was on Facebook and got involved in an argument about “bullying.”  Bullying is the latest focus of society’s meandering sense of injustice.  Is bullying bad?  Of course.  But there have been bullies as long as there have been people.  From the momentum the anti-bullying movement has gained in pop culture, news, and the like you’d think it was a recent development.

But I think there’s something else going on here, which brings me back to my friend.  A young girl had given a little boy a valentine saying she liked him and asked if he’d like to come to church with her sometime  (the boy was the son of my friend’s friend.)  The mother got on Facebook and apparently ranted that she was offended.  Her friends chimed in in agreement claiming this was “religious bullying.”

Oh, hi Irony!  You’re nothing if not punctual.

As my friend pointed out (and later the mother relented and admitted it was a harmless gesture) bullying comes from mean intent.  This was obviously not ill will.  The girl, who obviously liked the boy, wanted him to be a part of another area of her life.  The commenters on the thread however failed to ease up on their accusation that this was some sort of persecution, aimed at bullying the little boy around because he didn’t share her beliefs.

Bullying is a buzz word, and it’s become the catch-all term for any action that makes us feel less than comfortable.  It’s as if the first one to make the accusation wins.  The other party is automatically charged with defending themselves, no matter how innocent the action.

Should we act to stop actual bullying? Yes.  Should we stand up to face bullies when we ourselves are pushed around? Yes.

Especially when they are the ones throwing the word around.


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About Keith

Christian, Conservative, Husband, Father, Writer.

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