24-Hour Bully Stake-Out: why why why?

Kids are bullied there. And everywhere.

I’m one of the organizers of this event, an anti-bullying attention drive. So why is there such a thing, given (1) there are so many people and groups working to stop bullying and (2) it seems there’s a great deal of attention focused on the topic already?

You’ve wanted to know. There are three major (working) purposes for this event, which takes place 11.09:

  1. to maximize awareness of bullying throughout social media (or at very least, throughout Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, blogosphere)
  2. to mobilize us to end bullying where we live, if it’s possible
  3. to spread tools and encouragement online so we can deal with bullying in the meantime.

Notice how hard I worked to squeeze an M-word into each of those to assist your memory. LOL

Most anti-bullying initiatives fall short because their major goal is “end bullying.” They want it all at once, for the problem to just go away. Never mind that the “problem” involves human beings from every angle: those kind of problems are about as easy to end as it is for you to clean up dust by stomping on it.

If you ask for the impossible all at once, what you GET is either a worthless band-aid or a unilateral loser proposition like “zero tolerance.” (So many of our schools have one or the other now.) Not to mention ever so many tired, frustrated activists, possibly blaming themselves. We represent some of the brightest minds on the planet acting against bullying; we can do better than that.

And there’s also this: if all we do is heighten awareness, congratulations. Then what? If we leave people awakened to the problem, and don’t tell them what they can DO, it’s worse than keeping our collective mouths closed. But that’s what we often do. Not here, friends. This time we – all of us, and the other organizations we represent – are about a clear, consistent call to action. Any educator will tell you: if you want to really learn what you’re taught, you use it and you teach it to others. We are the ones who have learned.

Because they’re also out there: hundreds of frustrated educators, parents, neighbors, co-workers, and friends. They see bullying and they don’t know what to do. Or worse, they do the wrong thing. Or worse still, they do nothing but watch. There are tools, such as the No Such Thing as a Bully curriculum, to help us with that. Nobody should ever be left to puzzle it out, especially if awareness is high.

So hey, as 11.09 comes up, you just remember these goals. And whether you Tweet/Update your Status once or a hundred times, you make those times count, yeah?

24-Hour Bully Stake-Out on Facebook
24-Hour Bully Stake-Out described in detail

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~ by Ron Graham on October 18, 2010.

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