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Janet Hubert Headshot

Stop Bullying Month Over... Now What?

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So we are now coming to the end of National Bully Prevention month, now what? Where do we go from here?

Dr. Phil has talked about it; he's even had bullies on his show. The View had the little boy who was bullied then videotaped on their show. They brought big time football players on to make him feel better, gave him tickets to games, etc, brought national attention to the little boy's plight. One player I remember even told him that they, would be his big brothers. All well and good, but now what? Where do we go from here?

Sometimes I read these stories and they break my heart. I hear my own story within these stories.

I share my story with those mothers and fathers, who are left to deal with the carnage created by those kids who bully and their parents who are in complete denial of the damage their children have caused.

My rage is at the parents who revel in the fact that their children are well liked, let's call them the "popular" kids. Those "popular" kids love to make the not-so-popular kids lives miserable.
I remember dealing with a father on the phone, whose son had been bullying my son for years. On the advice of the school, when my son finally stood up and fought against his tormentors, I had a conversation with the bully dad.

"What's the big deal, all kids call each other names," he said. I knew this conversation would be going nowhere. Now, I live in a so called diverse, progressive, wonderful community, with a great school system, where black, white, live together in so-called harmony... (Yawn).

Bullying is everywhere, it is all over the internet, it is all over the news with programs like TMZ, people are paid well to bully other people, and we live in a society it seems, that condones bullying. Every time we sit back and write a comment with complete anonymity we are all guilty of bullying.

Perhaps if we hold the parents criminally responsible, something will change.

In the black community, bullying takes a whole other form. Smart black kids are bullied for not conforming to the status quo of what other children think black should be. If you aren't walking around with your pants down to your knees listening to rap music, then suddenly you aren't black. If your grades are stellar you aren't black enough. Young African American males are walking through high schools pretending to be dumb because they don't want to lose their so called street credibility. HBC colleges are losing great students like my own son because they feel they wouldn't fit in, he didn't want the scrutiny to continue like it did in high school. Being the child of someone in the public eye is not what it is cracked up to be regardless of what people may think. I come from the old Harper Valley PTA school of thought.

My frustration with his situation prompted me to create J.G. and the B.C. Kids.

J.G. and the B.C. Kids is the story of a little black boy who longed to belong, but dared to be different. My hopes were to bring book smart kids and street smart kid together to make life smart kids. I created this superhero because I understood what it felt like to be bullied myself. To the reader, I will always be Vivian Banks, but to my son I am just his mom. Other kids don't understand that, so at times I have apologized for him having to take the arrows that have been thrown so carelessly, missing me, but hitting him right in the heart.

For the parents of kids who are bullied, the damage will continue for years to come. I looked through the TV screen at that little boy's eyes. Children who are bullied are never the same again. Listen to your children when they come home and say they never want to go back to school. Hear them before it is too late. Bullying starts at an unbelievably early age now.

We now live in a society that seems to reward bad behavior. Pregnant teens are getting TV shows. Housewives, some of them (mothers), are punching each other out in front of the world. The great Chef Ramsey, who screams obscenities at people over food... why?

When will it end, perhaps when it affects the people's children creating some of this garbage we are being force-fed.

I recently saw Perez Hilton on a talk show saying he didn't realize he had been conceived as a bully, and now wants to be thought of in another light, same with 50 Cent. Well, here my two cents:

Bullies move on because it's easy for them; they have suffered no collateral damage, but the bullied sometimes never get the chance to.

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