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“Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.”
This is probably the worst quote I have ever heard.
Bullying continues to be a big problem in America. This intentional act of aggression is meant to cause embarrassment and physical or emotional pain.
This school year alone in the U.S., several teens have committed suicide because bullying was too much for them to handle. These suicides have been called “bullycide” — suicides committed because of bullying.
Bullying can be more than just physical harassment. It can take on verbal, nonverbal and digital forms, too. Words can hurt as much as, if not more, than physical action. Bullying causes anxiety, loss of self-esteem and confidence, depression, suicidal thinking and fear of going to school.
Every day, 160,000 students in the U.S. stay home from school to avoid being bullied.
The pain and embarrassment of bullying can follow victims throughout their lives.
Kids are bullied for many reasons. They can be bullied because of how they look, their clothes, sexual orientation, religion, beliefs, weight or sometimes for no apparent reason at all. Often victims are afraid to report the harassment.
Unfortunately, unless bullying is reported, school staff and parents remain unaware of the problem.
The Montana Legislature is currently considering a bill that will make sure that schools do not ignore bullying incidents that are reported.
Pam Kampfer, school counselor at North Middle School, feels the intention of such a bill is to promote safe schools, to assure that prevention programs are in place, and to make sure reported incidents are taken seriously.
I feel this will help schools and students because it will discourage bullying. This bill also will help provide kids peace of mind that they will be able to report bullying and not have it ignored.
It will also bring light to cyberbullying.
“Schools can no longer ignore cyberbullying just because it may happen outside of the school day,” Kampfer said “Cyberbullying comes to school every day. Cyberbullying is a 24/7 problem. Cyberbullying can cause even more distress than other types of bullying. It is often anonymous and incessant.”