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Bullying - Where Does It Start...?

Sadly the last month or so has been filled with an inordinate amount of news reports about bullying, especially in schools. The result of much of this bullying has been that many young people have chosen, rather than face another day of this torment, to end their lives. I'm certain that in your home it has been no different than in mine - the subject has been talked about and hashed out over and over. As disturbing as it all is, even more disturbing is the fact that after all the talk and sharing there are no answers.

I've discussed this subject with grandchildren who are in grammar school, high school and college. To my horror they all said, "Yeah, sure, Grandma, it goes on all the time."

For the most part the bullying that my grandchildren relate is hopefully not of the caliber that would push someone to take their life. Yet, bullying is bullying and most things in this life tend to escalate over time.

I know things are different now with all the technology that sends things out into the universe for eternity. I also know that young people have not cornered the market on bullying. People are bullied in the workplace, in their communities, in just about every venue known to the human race. Pressure is put on individuals because of race, sexual orientation, religious beliefs, ethnic background, the way they dress, age or just because they may have rubbed someone the wrong way. Very often, too often, this pressure takes the form of bullying. People leave jobs they find rewarding, quit organizations they have come to enjoy working with and stay away from getting involved in their community because they fear the bullying. I was amazed to find that there are people who refuse to speak up in their community about what they termed 'police bullying' - i.e. they feel they have been treated unfairly by a police officer yet they do not complain as they fear retaliation on their children (especially those with teenage drivers in the family). Having always been very outspoken in the community I asked my children if they ever felt the wrath of the powers that be due to my activities.

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