MYTH: Bullying is a simple school issue.
The gang crisis got out of control because we kept trying to solve it as a police problem, not a community-wide crisis. The same is true in bullying. As long as we think the schools alone can fix it, we’ll never make headway.
MYTH: Bullying is a rite of passage for kids.
The old phrase, “Kids will just be kids” is also aiding the spread of uncivil behavior within our communities. To believe that bullying is simply part of growing up in America is a great mistake. Bullying is an act of violence and treating it as anything less is an obstacle to improving the situation.
MYTH: Today’s bullies really aren’t all that different from when you were in school.
The understanding that bullies in today’s society are very different from your experience-based perception can be helped along by answering the following question: Did you know of anyone from your school or neighborhood who committed suicide due to the impact of bullying while you were growing up? Tragedies such as these are occurring daily in this new world. Today’s bullies have graduated from name-calling to cyber threats and gang intimidation and we have failed as a society to understand their new and potentially deadly weapons.
Bobby Kipper and Bud Ramey have co-authored two books and numerous articles on the crisis in youth violence plaguing our culture, addressing “best practices” for making a difference in the gang crisis and bullying epidemic that is impacting an entire generation. Over 4,400 young people committed suicide last year, largely due to the bullying epidemic. Their books, No BULLIES : Solutions for Saving Our Children from Today’s Bully and No COLORS : 100 Ways to Stop Gangs from Taking Away Our Communities, offer advocacy for at-risk youth.
Bobby Kipper, Director and Founder of the National Center for the Prevention of Community Violence, is a career law enforcement officer with extensive experience in the area of preventing youth and community violence nationwide. His background includes working on a number of key national initiatives with the White House, Congress, and the Department of Justice.
Bud Ramey is the 2010 Public Affairs Silver Anvil Award winner of the Public Relations Society of America—the highest public affairs recognition in the world. His grassroots public affairs and humanitarian successes and advocacy for at-risk youth stretch across three decades.