Monday, March 03, 2008


A guest post by TIKUN OLAM

I am concerned about the bullying that is going on in the fourth grade at my son’s school. He and his best friend explained to me that a few “mean kids” have been taunting one child for “laughing too much,” another for “being Chinese” and yet another for being overweight. The school has an impressive record of integrating anti-bullying programming into its curriculum by tying the issues to Judaic values in the classroom and programs that include group discussion sessions with the guidance counselor and principal. Because addressing problem behavior in children is what I do professionally, I am going to be meeting with the principal and school guidance counselor to help with brainstorming new ideas to further address these problems.

I still remember my fourth grade experience. I remember the bullies. It is astounding how cruel children can be to each other.

In my professional life, working with teens, the bullying is not a whole lot different. The students with limited empathy skills who are seeking power taunt their weaker, smaller and slower peers. One of the young men that I have the privilege to know is currently struggling with the effects of bullying on his self esteem. He wrote a rap about it and was excited to perform it for me today. He even brought in a CD with the “beats” so I could get the full experience. He knows that I am concerned about bullying and he told me that I could share his rap with you.

Don't Think I'm Small
M. B.

They think they can get at me cuz I'm small
Yeah right man I'm like a brick wall
I hit harder than a cannonball

You better stay of my way before you get spray with an AK47
Send yo ass to Heaven

Since I was born I been strictly on a mission I got 20/20 vision
All the haters, I can spot them from far, but I am not Sean
But I am still a young boy that drive the grown folks right up a wall

If you don't know s--- about me
Then don't assume if you assume your life will be doomed

I'll pop you like a balloon
I'm too sharp so don't start my name is Mo

If you try, you'll die
--- with me, my name is M- - - - - - -

Yeah that's me
And you know I'm a beast

Victims of bullying are more likely to suffer from childhood depression, low self-esteem and social isolation. School shooting have been tied to bullying as well. Any ideas?

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