Thursday, February 10, 2011

Facing the epidemic of bullying

Posted By on Thu, Feb 10, 2011 at 3:47 PM

A recent video has surfaced that shows a young, school-aged male, being subjected to physical and verbal abuse from fellow students.

As reported by the Philadelphia Inquirer, this video was recorded by a purported perpetrator involved in the incident. It's just one of several bullying stories that have surfaced, including those that ended with the devastating deaths of Asher Brown and Tyler Clementi.

Brown and Clementi were both targeted because they were gay and subsequently took their own lives. These disturbing cases drew media attention to national suicide awareness campaigns like It Gets Better and The Trevor Project.

Eric Attard, executive director of the Pikes Peak Gay and Lesbian Community Center, recorded a testimonial for It Gets Better. (The Indy first reported on this project here.) Attard's video features a personal account of the harassment he endured on account of his sexual orientation.



What sticks out in his testimonial, however, is his reassurance that a "behind the scenes" support system existed for him — even when he didn't feel like that was the case.

This bullying epidemic can't be cured by a vaccine or a pill; only a coordinated effort of community support can effectively tackle this issue. The testimonials of hope and perseverance of individuals who have been the targets of bullying are positive and inspiring messages that truly help address the epidemic. Although these testimonials won't immediately solve the bullying problem, together they serve as evidence that speaking as one, we can create a very strong support system.

If you want to record your own video, check out this page on the It Gets Better website.

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