Tuesday, November 10, 2009


This morning on CNN, I heard Michigan Rep. Pete Hoekstra say that he believes the attack on Fort Hood is a terrorist attack, but not in the vein of Timothy McVeigh's Oklahoma City bombing. I'm perplexed as to why not, but that's not the issue that I want to deal with here.

First, I believe this shooting was horrible and inexcusable and my heart goes out to the families that were touched by it.

Although I know there are more complex factors involved in Nidal Hasan's attack, what I want to address here is the issue of bullying. Reports have stated that Hasan had been harassed by his fellow officers and he'd complained about it prior to the shooting. This man is a grown man and should more effectively deal with harassment, but this situation highlights the problem bullying has become.

It seems to me that victims of bullying are no longer accepting it. They are not having a Revenge of the Nerds reaction in which they come up with a rousing "We are one" speech to win over their enemies. Instead, they are all Carrie. So, I am perplexed as to why (1) people keep bullying others and (2) they are coming up with meaner, yet more sophisticated methods by which to do it (e. g. cyberbullying).

We have got to teach our kids to stop being so mean to others because with these mass shootings, it is not only dangerous to them, it is dangerous to everyone.
I mean, really, what's going on here?


evenshine said...

First, I don't think ANYONE is teaching their kids to be mean. I mean, I have doubts about my sanity sometimes, but I am always careful how I personally deal with bullies, so that my reactions are learned and reflected by my kids.

Just my two cents, but "these things are happening" because all people are inherently flawed, and they don't have any recourse when they are at their wits' end. Some are not taught how to deal with their frustrations, and some never saw disputes settled amicably. Some have mental problems, imbalances in hormones, or medical conditions that move them to do things they shouldn't.

I think (sane) people bully because they feel powerless, and the use/abuse of power is one of the things that makes this world turn.

And so we teach our kids as best we can, and try and protect them, but we tend to overlook the Nidal Hasans of this world. Maybe that's where we need to start: compassion.

The Diva said...

I agree that people are not teaching kids to be mean, but we need to be actively teaching them to NOT be mean. I suppose part of the solution is to start with compassion and work diligently to instill that in our children.

But I am still perplexed and frustrated because young people, adults, whoever, have always been inherently flawed, there have always been people who felt powerless or who have had mental problems, etc. etc. What's different now? Is it just that this bullying as a problem is only now coming to light? Or are we just meaner as a society? (Some have argued that our technology creates a distance between us as human beings and lack of community is the result.) Why, unless there is a collective tragedy, do we seem less compassionate toward other human beings?

Justin Narin said...

Bullying is really getting out of hand. It has got to stop fast!

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