“Education Minister Christ Carter declared that schools in New Zealand will need specific steps to combat or at least deal with bullying” (New Zealand Government Focuses On School Bullying).
” Bullying can be defined as using one’s power or position to intimidate, injure or humiliate a lesser-force person or position” (Safe Schools Project).
It is an activity used in schools to get some psychological pleasure at the expense of others. According to recent statistics, “1 in 2 students encounter bullying occasional times during every term of school. Furthermore, 1 in 4 elementary school students was harassed more than once or twice in any given time at least” (Statistics on Bullying). Cases of bullying are rising day by day in schools around the world. Bullying takes place in many forms, such as physical, verbal, social, cyber, etc. Physical Bullying causes physical injuries to the victim, whereas social, cyber, and verbal Bullying causes psychological problems. Physical Bullying refers to a direct attack on the victim. In contrast, other forms of bullying refer to name-calling, making offensive remarks concerning religion, appearance, gender, culture, social and economic status, etc.
” A research by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development found that 1.7 million U.S. children could be classified as bullies in grades 6 through 10″ (Safe Schools Project). The above statistics reveal the seriousness of school bullying cases. Moreover, even though society is progressing rapidly, such cases are rising day by day. School bullying is a universal phenomenon that mostly occurs from 6 to standard to 9 the standard. Moreover, it occurs in all schools irrespective of the location of schools. To put it another way, school bullying takes place in both urban, suburban and rural areas.
Some people argue that school bullying should not be treated as a severe offense. In their opinion, school bullying helps the victims to develop resistance and meet the realities of life or difficult life situations in the future. On the other hand, critics of school bullying argue that Bullying should be considered a severe offense in schools because of the enormous physical and psychological problems it can develop upon the victims. This paper argues against school bullying after analyzing various types of school bullying and its consequences upon the victims.
Bullying occurs in schools out of jealousy. A lot of bullying victims, for example, happen to be bright students. Dull students may develop jealousy towards bright students, and they will look for opportunities to attack the bright students in all possible manners. In some cases, because of Bullying, stunning students suffer more. Here also, students who have inferiority complexes with respect to their appearances may attack the beautiful one either physically or verbally. In short, in many cases, the motivation for Bullying is arising from jealousy.
The aggressive behavior is getting more and more strengthened in the minds of the upcoming generation as time goes on because of their increased exposure to media like television, films, and the internet. It should be noted that aggression is a significant theme in most of the television programs and films. Heroes also exhibit aggressive actions in many of the films. In short, celebrities play an essential role in cultivating the image that aggression is a status symbol. To put it another way, many teenagers believe that aggression is an activity that can bring recognition among peers. Thus, many teenagers started to exhibit heroism and aggression through Bullying. Teenagers do not have the ability to segregate between good and evil. They don’t have the maturity to think about the consequences of their actions.
In some cases, teenagers engaged in Bullying to catch the attraction of the opposite sex. Many teenagers have the illusion that harassing others may develop a hero image for them. It should be noted that the dominating mentality is inherited among human beings. Those who are physically and emotionally strong may try to stamp their supremacy upon others. Such desires often end up in bullying cases.
There are different types of bullying, such as physical, verbal, emotional, social, cyber, etc.
Physical Bullying is nothing but a direct attack upon the victim by an individual or group of individuals.
In the case of verbal Bullying, bullies often concentrate on harassing the victim verbally. In some instances, verbal Bullying may lead to physical attacks on the victim.
“Social alienation happens when a bully is deliberately excluding someone from a party. It also involves spreading gossip and fun about others by highlighting their differences “ (Types of Bullying).
Social Bullying is an act of isolation of the victim from any group.
In such cases, the offenders form a group and block the opportunities for the victim to interact with others. In social bullying cases, the offenders may fabricate stories about the victim and spread it to the school.
Cyber Bullying is developed only in recent times because of the massive popularity of the internet and mobile phones among teenagers. It is an act of spreading fabricated stories and rumors about the victim through the internet and mobile phones. For example, it is quite possible for offenders to spread the naked picture of the victim through the internet with morphing technology. It should be noted that such incidents may create huge psychological problems in the minds of the victims. “92 Students aged 11-16 from 14 schools in London conducted a Bullying study. 22% had experienced cyber Bullying at least once. 6.6% had experienced being bullied in this way in the previous two months” (International Network).
Many people have the false belief that Bullying usually occurs among teenage boys in schools, and teenage girls are comparatively reluctant to perform such activities inside the school campuses. In reality, Bullying is common among teenage girls also even though the nature of Bullying among girls is slightly different from that among the boys. Verbal Bullying is usually more popular among teenage girls. It should be noted that boys are physically stronger than girls, and they may utilize their muscle power more for harassing others. On the other hand, girls like socializing very much, and they may spread rumors and fabricated stories about others.
According to Dune et al. (2010), “Bullying, in schools, can blight student experiences of formal education and their abilities to make the best of the opportunities they have” (Dune et al., 2010, p.1). Bullying can convert even bright students into dull ones. It should be noted that Bullying causes physical as well as mental injuries to the victim. In some instances, mental injuries may become severe than physical injuries. Victims who suffer severe mental injuries may develop psychological problems such as depression, suicide tendencies, Paranoid Personality Disorder (PPD), and Schizoid Personality Disorder (SPD), bipolar diseases, etc.
In most of the cases of school bullying, the victims may develop depression. Depression developed as a result of school bullying may last for a few weeks to years. If left untreated, depression developed due to Bullying may lead to other severe psychological problems, including suicidal tendencies. It should be noted that bipolar diseases may develop to a victim due to consistent Bullying in schools. In short, school bullying can eradicate the life of the victims.
Paranoid Personality Disorder (PPD) is another psychological problem that can be developed because of consistent Bullying.
” Paranoid personality disorder is a medical condition where an individual has long-term fear and mistrust of others” (Paranoid Personality Disorder).
It should be noted that psychological injuries caused by Bullying may force the victim to look suspiciously at even family members or beloved ones. Such people may lose their trust and belief in others, and they may develop doubts or suspicion even for simple things.
Schizoid personality disorder is the third psychological problem that can be developed due to school bullying.
” Schizoid personality disorder is a psychological condition in which a person has a lifelong indifference and social alienation to others” (Schizoid Personality Disorder).
In this case, the disordered person may not interact appropriately. This is because of the fear generated by the bullying experience. Such people will treat all others as their enemies, and they will deliberately keep a distance from others. They will also try to lead a life in the virtual world rather than in the real world. The rights of this world may not be the rights of their world, and the rights in their world may not be the rights in the real world.
Suicide tendency is the worst psychological problem that can be developed as a result of school bullying. In this case, the victim may lose his interest in sustaining his/her life and wait for suitable opportunities to commit suicide and to escape from a world that is hated by them. Logical thinking or critical thinking abilities might be lost in the case of such people. They may think that there is no space for them in this world, or it is impossible for them to continue living. In short, a Bullying activity performed for a joke may end up in suicide. Life is so precious for everyone. Everybody has the natural right to lead a free life in this world. Under such circumstances, Bullying is an intrusion into the natural rights of a person, and it should not be encouraged under any circumstances.
” A broad analysis of childhood bullying and the connection with suicide found that it is not only the Bullying victims who are at risk. Bullies themselves also are more likely to have suicidal thoughts” (Pope). Many people have a false belief that Bullying may affect only the victim. In some instances, the offenders develop repentance later for their malicious activities upon the victim. For example, a bullying victim commits suicide. In this case, the possibility of developing repentance in the minds of the offenders is more. Guilty consciousness may haunt such people throughout their life, and the outcome could be another suicide.
To conclude, Bullying should be prohibited on school campuses at any cost. ” Research indicates that harassment can have lasting detrimental effects on children, but that properly designed school interventions can dramatically reduce harassment” (Safe Schools Project). Bullying in all forms should be prohibited in schools considering the negative impacts on the victim. Stern actions should be taken against the offenders by the school authorities so that such cases may not be repeated in the future. Small and moderate levels of Bullying may not cause many damages to the victim. However, persistent Bullying may cause huge psychological problems for the victim. Most of the offenders do not know up to what extent they can harass others. The absence of any response will encourage the offender to repeat his activity again and again. In other words, it is impossible to set any limit on school campuses to prevent Bullying. Complete prohibition of Bullying is the only way to save the upcoming generation from developing Bullying related physical and mental problems.
Teachers and school authorities can do a lot in preventing bullying cases inside the school campuses. Teachers should make sure that Bullying in any form is performed inside the classrooms or the school campuses. They should monitor the activities of each student closely so that the culprits can be caught and punished. They should create awareness in the minds of the students concerning the consequences of Bullying. Since the nature of bullying cases among boys and girls are slightly different, separate intervention plans should be implemented by the authorities to counter bullying problems.
Many of the bullying victims are reluctant to reveal the bullying incidents. This is because of their fear of the offenders. Often, offenders threaten the victim and prevent her from complaining. The authorities must gain the confidence of the victims to get proper awareness of the bullying cases inside the school campuses.
- Dunne, Mairead., Bosumtwi, Sam Cynthia., Sabates, Ricardo and Owusu, Andrew. “Bullying and School Attendance: A Case Study of Senior High School Students in Ghana”. 2010. Web. 19 April 2012.<http://www.create-rpc.org/pdf_documents/PTA41.pdf> Print
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- “Paranoid Personality Disorder”. 2010. Web. 19 April 2012 <http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/PMH0001934/>
- Pope, Tara Parker. “With Bullying, Suicide Risk for Victims and Tormentors”. The New York Times. July 18, 2008. Web. 19 April 2012.
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