Anti-Bully Legislation Misguided

The Washington Times (Washington, DC), October 31, 2011 | Go to article overview

Anti-Bully Legislation Misguided


Byline: Deborah Simmons, THE WASHINGTON TIMES

Nearly every state in the union has - and the District of Columbia is considering - anti-bullying laws that allow school employees to determine whether a student is a bully.

Be careful: If we continue overindulging the anti-bullying movement, our children will be thrown to the wolves in the criminal-justice system.

The problem with the movement is that it calls for transferring to the government our parental authority to raise morally conscious children.

As the Greek wise man Aristotle said, No government, no matter how good it is, can make its citizens morally virtuous.

That is why the legislation under consideration in the District, which could be voted on next month, is overkill.

Indeed, I hardly intend to offend, but a youth calling another youth or adult a derogatory name or racial slur can easily be misconstrued if the D.C. bill becomes law.

Ditto for name-calling such as cripple and dummy and using such phrases as you talk like a white person and that's so gay.

What's next? Terms like old woman, "druggie " skinn "and"fats ? How about descriptions like"the short, black woman with the dreadlocks."

There was a time (not so long ago) when parents would teach their children that sticks and stones may break your bones, but words will never hurt you. And we were taught at home that it's not the names you are called, but the name you answer to.

Unfortunately, the harder we seek to relinquish parental responsibility, the smoother the road to perdition.

An unfortunate truth is that our schools are having a difficult enough time trying to teach the three R's. Yet, whenever an attack or youth suicide involving a gay teen hits the headlines or makes the rounds of social media, as occurred recently in a Ohio high school, the push for anti-bullying rules, regulations and laws kicks into high gear.

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