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BOTD 03-08-14 Blast from The Past - Little Bully Billy

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Skater


Bransom Postmaster
Blast from the Past - Little Bully
A Skater Production

Your son just turned eleven last week and he's in the fifth grade. You got a note from one of his teachers telling you he's been picking on one of the other boys in his class. Being the 1970s the school isn't inclined to even get involved and consider this boys will be boys.



Billy 11
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The teacher says all of the bullying has been verbal. What will you say to Billy? Remember this is the 70s. Billy tells you it's no big deal, that everyone teases that kid.


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1strappedboy


Sherrif
It was the 70's when I was Billy's age and I can assure you that while my father was still alive at that point he'd have been VERY disappointed that I was being that way toward another kid. It is entirely likely that I would have been told to, if not befriend the kid, at the least be nicer to him and if I brought a SECOND note home for the same reason I could count on a good spanking from him!

Actually, our teachers would have intervened first before sending a note home; they didn't see this stuff as 'boys being boys' unless the teasing was obviously teasing. At the first sign of "malice aforethought" we were called down on it. Our little school contained just the kids of our immediate town so we were all neighbors anyway and our parents "parented" any kid in town. Just the way it was!

Now the following year (when I was 12), there would be an ENTIRELY different answer to this!  affraid 

John Boy


Sherrif
if it is the 70's I would consider "No big deal" as serious back talk. So he could get spanked just for that...

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AFinch


Sherrif
I graduated from high school in 1971. The concept of "verbal bullying" didn't exist. "Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words can never hurt me" was very much (wrongly) the mantra of the day. Broken bones heal in 6 weeks--the words never go away.

"Everybody teases that kid?" Seriously? If "everybody" jumped off the Empire State Building, would that be a good reason for you to do it? Like Dimitri, pre-monster, I'm going to have a serious talk with Billy, full of the "how would you like it if..." conversation. I won't demand he befriend this other kid, but I will demand he not participate in the bullying/mean-spirited teasing. And I will make myself perfectly clear that if I receive another note on the same subject, he (Billy) won't like my response one little bit. He can figure out/worry just what exactly that means.

David M. Katz


Marshall
AFinch wrote:  The concept of "verbal bullying" didn't exist.  "Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words can never hurt me" was very much (wrongly) the mantra of the day.  Broken bones heal in 6 weeks--the words never go away.

"Everybody teases that kid?"  Seriously?  If "everybody" jumped off the Empire State Building, would that be a good reason for you to do it?  Like Dimitri, pre-monster, I'm going to have a serious talk with Billy, full of the "how would you like it if..." conversation.  I won't demand he befriend this other kid, but I will demand he not participate in the bullying/mean-spirited teasing.  And I will make myself perfectly clear that if I receive another note on the same subject, he (Billy) won't like my response one little bit.  He can figure out/worry just what exactly that means.

I concur


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squarecutter


Sherrif
Just because everybody is bullying this poor kid doesn't make RIGHT young man. For the sass I'm getting combined with the behaviour the belt is coming off. Then he has a last chance to think about what he says here , and at school. I hope he will feel a little less cocksure, perhaps even as small and helpless as his victim. He will know that another report like this and the belt will be put to use

ivor


Marshall
I'm joining the K Club.

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Pi Beta


Deputy
I'm going to approach the parents of the other child to find out from them how bad this may be and how their son is being affected. Then I propose to ask the boy and his parents round one evening without letting Billy know so we can have a round table discussion about how much verbal bullying can hurt ending with the question to Billy, "Now, what do you think we should do about this?"

I hope I will have one very small, ashamed little Billy cringing at that point.

I won't spank - this time. Next time, however - well, there had better not be a next time!

MemoryMan


Sherrif
As a kid well before the 70's verbal "bullying" was an unknown concept.  The "sticks and stones mantra" was a girls response to name calling.  There was little in the way of name calling amongst boys. "Teasing" was generally related to a particular event, didn't normally happen on an industrial scale, and if not responded to, or responded to with humour or a smack in the mouth, died away with time since it became no fun.  It happened and we all developed our own coping strategies.

We were after all a community, comrades united against the cane wielding oppressors.  There were some unfortunate misfits who were unable to integrate, but rather than being taunted they were generally just left outside the mainstream loop.  In retrospect, sadly so.

By the seventies I was such a scenario parent and schoolboy society hadn't moved on all that far.  Having received the note (Highly unusual.  I never ever got one in RL)  I would not have accepted Billy's response, I would have interrogated him and got to the bottom of the matter (possibly in more ways than one) and responded to the letter in the light of what I'd discovered and the action I'd taken.

Sadly the development of today's anti bullying industry combined with psycho babble and the coining of phrases such as "self worth" has combined with the internet fashion for anonymous flaming and seemingly destroyed a kids robust innate ability to give insults their face value and shrug them off.

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ivor


Marshall
I was waiting hoping MM would respond to this BOTD to ascertain his experiences which would be about 10 years prior to mine.

I also don't recall any bullying at my schools in the 50s. Perhaps I was just lucky in that it didn't happen at the schools I went to. At my senior school (eleven on) there should have been scope for it though as the pupils were a mix of reasonably affluent fee paying boys and scholarship boys many of whom came from 'working class' homes. Now I'm not going to claim there was any out of school interaction between those groups - at least not until they were sixteen or so - but I can't recall anyone being picked on or ostracised.

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Jack


Admin
Since this is set during my childhood, it's a bit hard. I'd have to picture myself as someone who grew up 20 or more years before.

HOWEVER,

As someone who was teased, I think I'd let Billy know that it IS a big deal, that words can make a huge difference, and that I wish he'd think about how he'd feel if he was the one that 'everyone' was teasing. I'd definitely also remind him that 'if you can't say something nice, say nothing at all.' I would then remind him of Mark 12:31 and Matthew 5: 7 and 9. Then I'd let him know that, if I hear about it again, I'm wearing him out.


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Jack


Admin
Off the subject, but...

AFinch wrote:"Everybody teases that kid?" Seriously? If "everybody" jumped off the Empire State Building, would that be a good reason for you to do it?

I know I've shared this before, but one of the best days of my childhood was when my grandmother said, "All the boys are wearing their hair short these days."

You can guess what my reply was.  What a Face 


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StevieWeeks


Trailboss
As a child who turned 12 in 1968, I can attest that there certainly was bullying, though I don't think the issue was anything like it is today. I just don't think, for example, that there was such an intense pressure to conform among youngsters as there is in the twenty-first century, and the venues for bullying were more limited; just possibly bullying was too much work to be sustained... unlike today, where much of it is done online.

I was subject to some bullying myself... until just before my eleventh birthday when my balls dropped and I suddenly became the strongest boy in the class; the other boys did not catch up to me until the second year of high school... by then, I'd dropped off the bully's radar and all...

Little Stewart Pinks did get some bullying during elementary school... he was tiny, a little dainty, and he had that name.

Later on, when we turned 17 and attended different schools, we had a reunion party; this ENORMOUS six foot four, strongly built lad who played Canadian Football for his school team walked into the room...

"Don't you remember me? I'm Stewart!"

Several pairs of underpants suddenly become quite soggy and damp...

I'm annoyed with Billy... and his response makes me even angrier. I think that the boy is going to find out what it is like to have someone bigger and stronger tormenting him and all... At the least he'll feel my hand across his bare buttocks.

Stevie  Twisted Evil

Skater


Bransom Postmaster
I agree with Kier on this one


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squarecutter


Sherrif
i wonder if there is amnesia but I also grew up in the 70s and recall seeing quite a lot of it in secondary school anyway. I do wonder if the greater deterrence existing before then kept bullies down. Personally I've always felt that with bullies you have to knock their esteem for 6 then build it back up again or your just teaching them that their rotten little house of cards is ok. Esteem is not earned by smashing someone elses to bits

Kat


Editor Extraordinaire
I'm also with Kier's K Club. "Verbal bullying" may not have been a term in in use in the 1970s, but concepts exist before we put a label on them. The absence of a label for the bad behavior doesn't mean the behavior didn't exist and do great harm. In the 1970s, school personnel often did expect kids to take care of such bullying themselves, and it is unfortunate that this attitude still exists with many teachers and administrators. Others adopt a self-protective, know-nothing attitude to insulate themselves from noting things they would rather not acknowledge. Then and now, some kids were able to stand up to bullying; other kids had/have no emotional resources for coping with the intense daily assaults.

Kat

db105


Trailboss
A talk to try to appeal to his empathy and make him realize how hurtful this can be, and then a bare bottom spanking to reinforce the message

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MemoryMan


Sherrif
Kat wrote: Then and now, some kids were able to stand up to bullying; other kids had/have no emotional resources for coping with the intense daily assaults. Kat

An interesting discussion.  The dictionary definition of bully had remained unchanged over the past century but it seems that inbred resistance to intimidation has plummeted.

Kat here has made a very good point.

In my schooldays, perhaps due to necessity growing up in war torn Britain, the majority of kids were well endowed with resilience and confidence, and that appears to have been eroding over the years. Whether this loss of robustness is due to affluence, a dependency culture emanating from this increasingly politically correct bleeding heart society where every little setback becomes someone else's fault, - or whatever, I know not.  But it is happening.

For some folk every setback prevents them from "Getting on with their lives"  until somebody else has sorted it for them.  How many years to go now before self confidence and resilience become reclassified as arrogance - and a crime?

Perhaps Big Brother has the answer.

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kalico


Sherrif
I was just being born in 72 so I really have no clue but I can guess what would have happened....I'm thankful to say I grew up with out being apart of or seeing any bullying....I'm not saying it wasnt happening I'm just saying I had no knowledge. Teachers and staff still tried to keep it all quiet and private.

I'm wondering that maybe if we still did that it might not be such a big problem...so many things we did as kids is now considered bullying.

As to the BOTD I'm in with kier....we will talk and see if we can find out what the main issue is but I will be letting him know that he will be toast if there is a second note......


Hugs kal

Jack


Admin
MemoryMan wrote:
Kat wrote: Then and now, some kids were able to stand up to bullying; other kids had/have no emotional resources for coping with the intense daily assaults. Kat

An interesting discussion.  The dictionary definition of bully had remained unchanged over the past century but it seems that inbred resistance to intimidation has plummeted.

Kat here has made a very good point.

In my schooldays, perhaps due to necessity growing up in war torn Britain, the majority of kids were well endowed with resilience and confidence, and that appears to have been eroding over the years. Whether this loss of robustness is due to affluence, a dependency culture emanating from this increasingly politically correct bleeding heart society where every little setback becomes someone else's fault, - or whatever, I know not.  But it is happening.

For some folk every setback prevents them from "Getting on with their lives"  until somebody else has sorted it for them.  How many years to go now before self confidence and resilience become reclassified as arrogance - and a crime?

Perhaps Big Brother has the answer.

I kind of think you're misinterpreting what Kat said, and possibly the situation.

I was bullied, and it mostly didn't bother me. I was usually happy for almost any attention, and when I wasn't... well, it was like Stevie, where I was a pretty big kid, so if I got too tired of it, it usually stopped.

There are other kids who don't have that. They've been torn down most of their lives, and they just don't have any resiliency. They take it and take it, until they realize that no one else gives and damn, and there's no end to it, so they end it themselves - either by killing themselves or their tormentors, or both.

Since I know people who tried to commit suicide when we were in high school, I'm willing to bet it has less to do with how resilient people are, and more to do with the twin facts that we have more news reportage, and people are less willing to allow cover ups of this kind of action.


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Stone Man


Marshall
Billy will be reminded that he is not "everyone" and will therefore be ending his verbal (or physical) bullying of this student or any others.

We need to go for a walk in the woods for some one on one time to discuss what Billy has been doing and why it is so bad to do.

In the 50's and 60's I remember physical bullying to be more prevalent than verbal. No amount of lecture or punishment would stop a bully. Eventually a "few good boys" would band together and pound the bully a good one which would close the issue for awhile. The teachers who knew what was going one had the good sense to leave that lesson alone.

By the seventies, bullying became a front and center issue, one could hardly say "BOO" before ending up in the Principal's office. Not particularly a better way of handling things.

Jack


Admin
Stone Man wrote:By the seventies, bullying became a front and center issue, one could hardly say "BOO" before ending up in the Principal's office. Not particularly a better way of handling things.

I certainly don't remember that. There was plenty of verbal and physical bullying going on where i attended in the 70s.


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