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April 18, 2010

Tonight on Larry King Live!

Posted: 08:00 AM ET

George Lopez Tonight!

He’s the comic who's making room for Conan on TBS late-night!  He tells Larry and YOU how he helped seal the deal!

Plus – Bill Cosby!

The suicide of Pheobe Prince after months of taunts and threats by fellow students has pushed the problem of bullying onto front pages across the nation.

Now, Bill Cosby gets serious on bullying and why it needs to stop now! What you need to know to take action and protect YOUR child!

Were you ever bullied in school, or WERE you the bully?

We want to hear your stories!

Filed under: Entertainment • Larry King Live


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Leah   April 13th, 2010 7:58 pm ET

It was both in my case. But i grew up and matured and actually felt bad for the pain I inflicted in others. However, I never expected bullying to be taken to such an extreme. May those teens rest in peace with the angels.


Orlando Velez   April 13th, 2010 8:45 pm ET

i never could take bullying seriously, i would walk in the bathrooms and see kids getting stabbed in the abdomon and arms until they gave them money. may those people who got bullied rest in peace.


Orlando Velez   April 13th, 2010 8:47 pm ET

their are kids crying inside, all around the world they need our help to put a foot down and stop bullying!


nivia mendez   April 13th, 2010 8:58 pm ET

hi larry i toowas bullied in school not knowing it was bulling i was peer pressured so i puck up drugs to fit in .. for yrs i was actively abusing drugs i got preagnant at 20yrs old got clean for 10 yrs picked up again for lots of yrs i finally got it together . today i am blessed to be in recovery and able to give advice to my children as well as thier friends and that make me happy to be able to be in thier life ..love you bill cosby and larry king...


Smith in Oregon   April 13th, 2010 9:02 pm ET

Is COCO coming out of the closet? Hopefully some of the desperate Coco audience will stick around to at least be entertained by Lopez.


michael armstrong sr.   April 13th, 2010 9:03 pm ET

Were these bullys ever spanked as kids my guess would be no .


Dan in WV   April 13th, 2010 9:03 pm ET

Hello everyone!


vic nashville tn   April 13th, 2010 9:04 pm ET

Waiting for Gorge Lopez


michael armstrong sr.   April 13th, 2010 9:04 pm ET

Kids bully because they fear no disipline .


trisha   April 13th, 2010 9:05 pm ET

Maybe Andersn can have George Lopez on his new program

Does Klein think he's going to improve Anderson's ratings by turning him in to the next Oprah? Guess then he won't have to travel so he won't have to separate from Ben!


michael armstrong sr.   April 13th, 2010 9:07 pm ET

George Lopez can not compete with Bill Cosby ever .


Smith in Oregon   April 13th, 2010 9:08 pm ET

Bill Cosby sounds like he has been living in the private school sector and has very few clues as to what really goes on in America's Public School systems. Yes, I realize you have a Phd. however that in no way translates to thumping on the bully pulpit for students to un-learn a habitual nature overnight. It is going to take many years to un-learn violence as the sole solution to problems.

Bill Cosby, why do Black Muslims bully children that are not black? Are you still associated with the new Black Panthers organization? Do you Bill Cosby 'think' the new Black Panthers demonstrates a peaceful organization and has peaceful interactions with non-new Black Panthers?


JKR   April 13th, 2010 9:08 pm ET

DR. COSBY,

YOU HELPED US RAISE OUR 3 ADULT DAUGHTERS WITH YOUR SHOW.......NOW HELP OUR GRANDCHILDREN LEARN....THEY NEED YOU....

JKR


michael armstrong sr.   April 13th, 2010 9:08 pm ET

I would vote for Bill Cosby to be president .


Sandra R. Polizzi   April 13th, 2010 9:10 pm ET

Yes Larry I was bullied due to being a new kid in grade schoolw and again in a new school in a different state...I'm 67 years of age and can remember how cruel other kids were.


michael armstrong sr.   April 13th, 2010 9:10 pm ET

Back then you had fist fights now days its gldiator wars .


Horsegirl   April 13th, 2010 9:11 pm ET

When I was a kid and I used to go to Sunday school, I was exposed to mild bullying. Even kids who go to church are NOT angels.

By the way I'm a big fan of Bill Cosby!


Sonya   April 13th, 2010 9:11 pm ET

I was bullied in school. Three girls use to pull my hair everyday. But oneday I was so tired that I took my bookbag and whopped some head then I was suspended.

Another case a neighbor was a bus monitor use to sit me inbetween the two boys everyday on the bus ride to school, I cried every afternoon. But then oneday I refused to get on the bus and broke down and told the principal and they never sat me between two boys again........😦

In all case, I never told my parents because I thought it was a kid or school situation not a parent situation.


Michelle   April 13th, 2010 9:11 pm ET

I know for a fact school will not report many things that they can be liable for. I use to work for a psychologist that worked with a school. They made her change her reports all the time so the school did not have to provide services. She had a student that was suicidal and they told her not to put that in the report because they would have to provide services for the child. The doctor quite working for the school and called the parents. Insurance and lawyers will not let adults step in. Your hands are tied.


Scot in Pennsylvania   April 13th, 2010 9:12 pm ET

Today, while my wife was at work she got a call from our 14-year-old son at home. During the bus ride home, someone on the bus stuck a used female condom on his back. When he objected, the others on the bus just laughed. As he complained to the bus driver, she said, "You shouldn't be so naive!" Needless to say, we are furious, esp. at the bus driver who could have done something. We have already complained to the school district and have been assured an investigation is underway.


Kevin E.   April 13th, 2010 9:13 pm ET

Thank you Dr. Cosby for adding your name to the countless throngs of parents who are trying to help our kids. After loosing a child to bullycide in 2002 I have been working and speaking to schools and educators about the single most important issue in our schools today.


michael armstrong sr.   April 13th, 2010 9:13 pm ET

Kids bully to show domination over another person .


Tripp Neal   April 13th, 2010 9:13 pm ET

I was bullied. I was bullied, becasue I'm diffrent than they "the bullys" are. I have a speech impediment, and I'm overweight. When I was growing up, that was part of life. Kids now a days are soft, and think that everything should be handed to them. The kids now, wouldn't last 5 minuets in the 1980's or early 1990's. I had to fight my way in school some, I won some, but I also lost. I had friends that would back me up if I needed it too.


Smith in Oregon   April 13th, 2010 9:14 pm ET

One of my greatest moments of justice came when a extremely vile grade school teacher was struck in the eye socket with a 60mph softball. That man physically beat, stomped, smashed the hell out of to many grade school kids to even begin to count.

I hope the Creator chose to recycle that man, if I knew where his gravesite was after all these years, I would be tempted to erect a doggie fire hydrant on that site so dogs could properly salute that man on a daily basis.


Andrew   April 13th, 2010 9:14 pm ET

I was severely bullied in school do to a bad complexion caused by acne. I attempted suicide 5 times, ran away from home and lived on the streets for 2 years at 15 to escape the constant taunts and abuse, both verbal and physical. I still hear the taunts of those bullies every time I look in the mirror, even though I am now forty and the acne has long since gone. It has destroyed my self-confidence for life and destroyed my childhood. I skipped school regularly and suffered from deep depression well into my twenties. I have spent most of my life in and out of therapy, but I cannot seem to escape those years. I am now considering volunteering my time to kids who have been bullied in a way to fight back the demons.


Doris Rosas   April 13th, 2010 9:14 pm ET

I was bullied. That was 40+ years ago and I'm still not over it.

KUDOS, Mr. Cosby, YES! My teachers saw it, but they never EVER did anything about it. You would think someone who is relatively intelligent would stop this sort of behavior.

I have seen, though, folks with little or no "education" get involved and give a talking to to these miserable hoodlums. Less and less, though, people get involved, because these hoodlums are not taught to respect their elders or respect authority.

Everything, absolutely EVERYTHING starts in the home.


Preschool2Teen   April 13th, 2010 9:14 pm ET

I was not bullied nor bullied others, but this is a very serious issue. I have recently started a program in my children's school and want to take it further about self esteem and our biggest topic is teasing/bullying. Just today we spoke about our feelings and how their feelings effect them to act out to others. One issue I see is the interaction or lack of interaction with parents. As a parent of 3 I admit we are busy, but doing this program and listening to other children I have stepped back to examine my reaction with my own children to ensure my husband and I can detect a change of our children being bullied or doing the bullying. This is not a joke, this is a major issue.


Marcy Harvey   April 13th, 2010 9:14 pm ET

I live in Sarnia, Ontario and work with a fabulous organization called Harmony for youth. I run a program in the schools called "Bully Busters" where I work with children and teach them how to stand up to bullies and give them coping stratagies on how to deal with bullies. We hope to reach enough students and help children learn how to deal with their feelings in a positive way, wether they are the bully or the victim, that we can end bullying all together.
Let's put an end to the violence and save our youth!!!


Beth   April 13th, 2010 9:15 pm ET

George Lopez wasn't "nice" to give up his time slot, he was SMART!

Sorry Mr. Lopez but I never knew you had a show, let alone when and where. Well, we ALL know now. Plus he now has Conan as a lead in as opposed to whatever show is before his, which I never heard of either.


Sonya   April 13th, 2010 9:15 pm ET

@Michael. I agree. I wonder if most of the kids that bully are younger siblings.


Beth   April 13th, 2010 9:15 pm ET

My child was bullied in middle school. Kids were taking her lunch out of her lunch out of her lunch box and throwing it on the floor, and they wouldn't let her into her locker all year. I took her out of school for one year, and home schooled her through the school system. She became very depressed. She's been home schooled since last August, and now she's lost 35lbs, doing much better and will go back to school this August. If the bullying continues again, I will pull her out faster than they can blink an eye. I believe it's the good kids that witness the bullying that are going to have to report these bullies. And also the teachers are going to have to step up the plate and take action when they witness this.


Horsegirl   April 13th, 2010 9:15 pm ET

I was made fun of by other kids because I was considered different since I was very shy and I either talked very soft or hardly at all.


Ellen   April 13th, 2010 9:15 pm ET

I think you should address not only children who are bullied but people who are bullied at work by co-workers and bosses. Other countries such as England and Australia have laws against adult bullying which can be as disasterous and hurtful as it is to children. You should do a show or more on this topic, too. It is very pervasive in the workplace leading to many problems usually for the victim.


michael armstrong sr.   April 13th, 2010 9:16 pm ET

When I was a kid my oldest brother would beat the snot out of me at least 6 or 7 times a day untill I discoverd what base ball bats was really good for that crap slowed down quickly .


Sonya   April 13th, 2010 9:16 pm ET

.......Smith!!!!!!!! Ha!


Pat Healey   April 13th, 2010 9:18 pm ET

I have two grandsons in middle school. ONe is 12 and one is 13. There are two teachers in this school (that I Know about) who are bullies. One teacher called a kid "stupid idiot". The other one called my 12 year old grandson that he is a "sticky bugger". I have heard her say that to him even in public at a soccer practice. At the time, I did not know she was talking to him. I don't know what to do about this. SInce they are teachers they could make their lives really very difficult plus embarrass them in front of their peers. Thanks for any help you can give me.


Carol   April 13th, 2010 9:18 pm ET

sadly love you Bill Crosby, but you seem very out of touch . Even Larry is speechless


john   April 13th, 2010 9:18 pm ET

Everyone who went to school was at some time bullied. There was a difference. however. As Dr. Cosby pointed out , there used to be ADULTS present. We knew if things got too bad there was some safe place to run. Teachers are simply not doing their jobs. Our High Schools have become miniature societies where children organize groups, elect leaders,and in general rule the roost. This is what happens when children, and high school students are children both emotionally and legally, are left to their own devices. Anyone ever read Lord of the Flies?


Sonny   April 13th, 2010 9:18 pm ET

No wonder we can't stop bully. Watch TV every night. Sarah Palin and other politicians say mean spirited and hateful things about others. American Idol judges have been know to say mean spirited things to contestants. And all of this gets big applause. Why would kids think it's wrong when they see it night on television with the adults all the while getting big applause.


Charlene   April 13th, 2010 9:19 pm ET

Hello Larry & Mr. Cosby.

When I was a child in school I was bullied. Pretty much from grade 1 to grade 12, it was constant. That experience scarred me for life and because of it I have chosen to never have kids of my own. I could never live through it if my child was to go through it too. To be totally honest I never thought I would live past the age of 18. Suicide was always on my mind everyday.

You ask why the teachers aren't seeing it or why they are not doing anything about it. It's because it's not done in the presence of authority. It's in lunch rooms or at recess in the hallways.

There is nothing that I can offer in how to stop it.... just know that being treated "less than"is with you for a life time.

Charlene – Alberta, CA


Susan   April 13th, 2010 9:19 pm ET

I attend a university that is nationally ranked for its education programs. From my experience and other people's experience in the teacher's college, next to no time is spent discussing the identification and prevention of bullying. It just doesn't seem that teachers receive adequate instruction in how to curb this serious issue.


michael armstrong sr.   April 13th, 2010 9:20 pm ET

When we were kids we went home after a fight not to the emergency ward .


kathleen, 30   April 13th, 2010 9:20 pm ET

Hi Larry! Yes I was totally non stop picked on through out k-12 grade with the skin condition I was born with&the way I talked and neither the special ed teachers nor the bus drivers nor folk did anything to stop it either! There was ONLY 2 classmates nice to me in the spical ed classroom& 4 other class mate nice to me when I got to HS.With all the other kids with most of them being boys in thoses special ed classrooms and some of the girls also were VERY VERYMEAN to me every single school day! About the only good thing is that this stuff happen before the having the camera cell phone like kids these day often do&also before myspace so I atleast wasn't remined of the constated name calling on the web for the rest of the world to see like kids&teens do these days.


Sonya   April 13th, 2010 9:20 pm ET

I don't think it is actually hatred!!! thats pretty harsh. Some people are bullied because of hate but most are bullied because they are looked upon as weak.


Loleta   April 13th, 2010 9:21 pm ET

Bullying. Children see all forms of bullying not just on reality shows, but in reality. Do they not see it on the news the way adults act in Congress, The way people acted in town hall meeting, the way The Tea Baggers act. It is all around them. We (Americans) have lost our civility.


Roz Carroll   April 13th, 2010 9:21 pm ET

Kids who bully come from disfunction in the home They have probably been tortured in the home and will take out all the frustration on anyone else They will usually pick on a weaker person one who is alone and more than likely will walk away from them This then becomes their outlet from the home disfunction They are neglected kids no matter if they come from wealth or poverty the lack of good attention from home will make them different and not a caring human becaz no body cares about them. They are neglected and get in with the wrong crowd and then the bulling becomes worse


Nicole   April 13th, 2010 9:22 pm ET

Larry, Bill and Dr. Irving-

I think it is important for us to remember that not only is it the children who suffer from depression and low self esteem that get bullied, but it also children who have Asperger's. On the Autism Spectrum, it is primarily a social disorder where the children look like any other typically developing student, and are also very bright but lack the necessary social skills their peers have developed. This population is at a large risk for bullying and subsequent suicide as well. As a music therapy grad student this is something that I see frequently and believe deserves more attention. Thanks so much and I appreciate your work!

Nicole, Florida


michael armstrong sr.   April 13th, 2010 9:24 pm ET

It's somebody trying to be the leader of the pack like wolves you ether roll over or your not excepted .


michael armstrong sr.   April 13th, 2010 9:25 pm ET

We need lots of reform schools .


Horsegirl   April 13th, 2010 9:26 pm ET

I agree with you Dr. Cosby!


Lorenda Patterson   April 13th, 2010 9:26 pm ET

I was bullied – what I call "made fun of" – during all of my years in public school from 1968-1980. During my elementary school days the actions often took place in front of teachers. The teachers were not "on my side" and let most things go on. Once, during basketball practice, while I was running backwards, one girl who was a constant bully to me got down on all fours behind me. I fell over her. I was not injured, but was very scared. All the coach/teacher told them to do was to come to the locker room area (where I had retreated) and apologize. There was NEVER any action taken against them. Then, there was the time I slapped a boy across the face because he had been intentionally "spooking" me for weeks. I did that in front of a teacher when he did it again. He looked at the teacher and asked "did you see that?" The teacher's response was "you deserved it." He never "spooked" me again.
Teacher didn't care about me and apparently still don't care about bullies today. Students today can not respond with the type of actions I took because of zero tolerance. The one who reacts is always the one who gets caught.
I've always thought that bullying was a reflection of the person's attitude about others and also a reflection of the attitudes they saw around them. Our society devalues persons who are "different" in some way and that's all bullies are doing.


Sonya   April 13th, 2010 9:26 pm ET

Do you think the kids that bullied the girl that hung herself should face criminal charges?

I especially dont think the boys should face satutory rape charges. They did not rape her. They just told people of they had sex with her. That is very common in teenage affairs.


Ms. Leon   April 13th, 2010 9:26 pm ET

Bullying is NOT exclusive to children. There is a much BIGGER issue that is not being addressed and that is VERBAL ABUSE. some marriages are centered around verbal abuse. 1 abuser and one victim. Children of these marriages CHOOSE how they will emotionally attach themselves to a parent. They will either be the verbal abuser or the victim and it starts VERY early. Children who are bullies (verbal abusers) HAVE LEARNED TO BE THAT WAY. It is a learned response. I am a Kindergarten teacher and I WILL NOT ALLOW IT IN MY CLASSROOM OR ANYWHERE IN THE SCHOOL IF I HEAR IT. Verbal abuse is NOT ACCEPTABLE AT ANY LEVEL. What are you doing to stop the way people hurt eachother with thier words?


Joyce A   April 13th, 2010 9:27 pm ET

I was always over weight even as a child and the kids always called me names ie: "fatty, fatty two by four couldn't get through the bathroom door", I would never tell my parents, I would keep it to myself. Although when I am in a the public eye I try to be positive but deep down inside I carry the scars of childhood and I have very low self esteem.
These scars never go away, at 66 I still keep to myself, I don't have a lot of friends, I have acqaintenances, it is very hard to overcome the childhood taunting. Everyone tells me that I carry my weight well and I am not out of proportion, I am not grosslly over weight just a bit on the heavy side. I never married, I never met a man that could get past the overweight problem and if they were going to haunt me with nagging about my weight I wasn't interested. Even today, my Family Doctor constantly says I should lose some weight, but, it is not that easy. Every time I go to the doctor, it doesn't matter what is wrong with me the blame always goes to my weight problem.
Has she never heard of a thin person with arthritis? or with a back problem? I just don't go to the doctor because I feel she is nagging me about my weight. The taunting one receives as a child stays with you for life.
J. – Canada


Horsegirl   April 13th, 2010 9:28 pm ET

@Nicole I have Asperger's syndrome.


michael armstrong sr.   April 13th, 2010 9:30 pm ET

I think those bullies should be put on probation untill there 22nd birth day these kids are mean as hell but there still just kids .


susan   April 13th, 2010 9:31 pm ET

Bullying is about power. I am a 50 year old that was bullied by a 25 year old in the work place.

Parents are not teaching their children proper behavior.


michael armstrong sr.   April 13th, 2010 9:34 pm ET

We must remember that girl had the last choice and she chose death instead of reaching out for other help .


Allyson   April 13th, 2010 9:34 pm ET

Larry my son was bullied for three yrs. I went to the school every time,about my son asking for them to make these kids stop and make it a safe place for him to learn,well it never stopped I say the school is to blame,the parents of the kids.At my sons school they tried to make it like my son was at fault. If I didnt take the steps I took I would of buried my son last Jan.More parents need to see this is a serious school problem. Allyson


Edward G   April 13th, 2010 9:35 pm ET

Larry,

Bullying, according to Diana Day is any comment or action that is a "put down, teasing, or rude comments".

We solve the bullying crisis by educating our children from an early age.

They have to learn that those that are participants if they laugh or encourage bullying ARE JUST AS GUILTY!!

We also need to encourage kids to know that it is ok to ask for adult help! Kids are afraid that they will be considered babies, or weaklings for telling. I tell my students that there is a difference between "tattling" and asking for help. When kids learn early on to speak up then we are helping them to be advocates for themselves and those weaker than ourselves.

We also teach our kids that someone has to speak up for those that are being bullied. Someone has to say "This is not right, it has to stop"! Then, they go get an adult to help.

Help us to stop this by continuing to talk about it!

Thanks!


michael armstrong sr.   April 13th, 2010 9:36 pm ET

I would like to see Bill Cosby do a CNN comedy news hour .


michael armstrong sr.   April 13th, 2010 9:40 pm ET

Heres a way to stop bullying slip a bigger kid some body guard money .


Patty   April 13th, 2010 9:40 pm ET

Oh you gotta love Bill Cosby. I started laughing so hard when he said he turned down three deals for the same time slot that Lopez Tonight took from Conan. Larry King just sat there and didn't crack a smile for a few minutes and kept asking him, "so you turned down a show?" I was laughing so hard Larry King finally got it. lol That was the best laugh I had in a long time. Here's to Bill Cosby! He reminds me of my dad except my dad is white. lol


jane mangold   April 13th, 2010 9:43 pm ET

Hi Larry,
I was bullied in Middle and High School. B/c of this time in my life...as an adult I have no friends and I'm bi-polar. I can't work b/c I fear people and don't sleep well. Bullieing should be a crime. They say the bullies have problems at home. I don't have the answer...I'm 50 years old and still suffering...thanks for letting me air about this tramatic action which has ruined my life.


James   April 13th, 2010 9:44 pm ET

I guess I've seen bullying from two different perspectives. I was bullied mercilessly beginning in middle school and didnt end until I graduated from high school. The bullying was both physical and verbal. Guess I deserved it for being such a wuss. As a recently retired secondary school teacher, I've also witnessed students being bullied.

This whole idea that "bullies are kids who have low self-esteem" is by and large crap. Sure, some kids who act as bullies have low self-esteem, but I've also seen popular kids act as bullies, as well as big-man-on-campus jocks, preps, heads, bros -– I've seen it all. Unfortunately, it's more of an attempt of kids to find their place in the pecking order. Some want to be on top, so they find someone to knock (sometime literally) a few rungs down the social ladder.

It's a sad part of growing up for some (being victimized) and it can leave a deep and never healing scar. Those years shaped the way that I view myself -– left me with a lot of hang-ups. As much as I hate it, I've come to realize that bullying is a part of human (or animal) nature and will never be completely eradicated.


Edward G   April 13th, 2010 9:45 pm ET

By the way, bullying is something we take very seriously at our school!


Dodie   April 13th, 2010 9:48 pm ET

The death of Phoebe Prince is a tragic situation.

What maybe the silver lining; if you can see this....possibly for the first time, the issue of bullying is hopefully being addressed.

I strongly feel school faculty should have a mandate similar to a psychologist, therapist or psychiatrist; whereby, knowledge of a person's destructive behavior akin to "Tarasoff" requires a "duty to report" or they are legally liable.


Chris   April 13th, 2010 9:50 pm ET

Mr. Lopez,
I enjoy your program but I would have more respect for you if you would stop saying basically "Conan is worried he will do to me what Leno did to him." It's great to be a loyal friend but it doesn't need to be at the expense of Leno. Yes, you are right, "they offered it to Conan 6 years ago;" however, Leno did not offer it to him. Leno was ordered to leave in 5 years. Leno handled his order to leave with class and dignity; too bad that class and dignity did not "happen" to Conan. I think it would be very professional of you if you said, "Conan is worried that the same thing will happen to us that happened to him and Leno." It "happened" to both of them, George. Good luck to Conan but Leno is a very decent man and should not be blamed.


michael armstrong sr.   April 13th, 2010 9:52 pm ET

Hi Dodie a hot paddle may help also plus slipping some body guard money to a bigger kid .


Nevada teacher   April 13th, 2010 9:53 pm ET

I get so mad when people automatically think that teachers and schools have the ability to stop bullying! We try. We talk to the bully, try to get to the root of their issue, if it doesn't stop, we bring in the bully's parents for a conference, still doesn't stop, then it's suspension, still going on? (yes, it is quite a process that by law we have to follow) then it's more suspension unless bodily injury occurs and then we are able to go forward with the expulsion process. Does that sound crazy? I think so, but without the parents of the bully being supportive and actually punishing their child for the behavior, it will not stop. So, can the schools and teachers stop bullying? No, not without the support of the bully's parents. If you think kids see getting suspended or other "school punishment" as a bad thing, think again. They view it as a status builder. See what happens when you take the ability to discipline children away from parents and schools? You end up with a generation of kids who have no fear of / nor respect for adults, peers, or other in general.


Debbie   April 13th, 2010 9:58 pm ET

Larry,

My 11 year old daughter attends a catholic school and is being bullied and told to kill herself by her fellow students everyday all day long. These students not only chant and yell this to her during school hours, but post it on facebook and other social networking sites, along with vulgar comments. My daughter told me today that she is forced to eat lunch in the bathroom because the other kids are relentless and she fears for her safety. Unfortunately, my question did not get to you in time while Bill Cosby was on, but I need help. I have tried desparately to have the school address this issue, but they do nothing except blame my daughter and threaten to expel her. The principal even went as far today as to say that she is not like the other 5th graders in this school who are innocent. I have gone to the police and filed a report, I have made numerous trips to the school with no success. Please help, this school needs to be exposed.


N   April 13th, 2010 9:58 pm ET

Bullying is a serious issue that is FINALLY getting well-deserved attention. Back in the day, the people in charge never took it seriously and the victims felt hopeless and suffered in silence. Nowadays, it is so much more widespread and in its worse form. It is abuse, it will escalate if not handled appropriately – shine a light on it, speak up, tell someone and put a stop to it. Do not stop until IT is stopped. It could very well ruin your life as an adult in so many ways.


Kate   April 13th, 2010 10:00 pm ET

I work for a large company and bullying goes on everyday. The supervisors and co workers are bullied by the same six people out of one hundred employees on our floor. These bullies show a total lack of respect and maturity. They have never been disciplined or demanded to be polite and show respect. Due to break down of family, I believe the problem is only going to grow. Supervisors at work are the same as teachers in school. It's easier to look the other way than address the problem. The majority of the people at work believe these bullies show poor character and wish there would be consequence for their bullying behavior.


Dodie   April 13th, 2010 10:02 pm ET

@ Edward G
By the way, bullying is something we take very seriously at our school!
**************************************

I am delighted to hear that from you.


Peter Shea   April 13th, 2010 10:03 pm ET

OMG Tiger's got an ankle bracelet to detect maple syrup to keep him out of pancake houses!!!!!! Guess we can forget about him playing the Canadian Open!


deb   April 13th, 2010 10:05 pm ET

to james they didnt say the bullies had low self esteem, they said the kids being bullied ( the victims), had low self esteem....


Lydia   April 13th, 2010 10:06 pm ET

I was bullied relentlessly for most of my school career, starting in the first grade and continuing on through my Freshman year of High School. I learned after a while that when a teacher says "I'll keep an eye on them," what they really mean is, "You're on your own." The conventional wisdom says to just ignore them, but how do you ignore something that is such an ongoing part of your reality? When you know the moment you wake up in the morning that you are going to spend your entire day having everything you do, everything you wear, everything you say, (and everything you DON'T do, wear, or say) twisted and thrown back at you in mockery, knowing that your belongings will be stolen or vandalized, that your lunch will be tampered with, that your very identity as a human being will be under attack until the bell rings to go home... That is an experience that leaves scars for the rest of a person's life.


Lee Copeland   April 13th, 2010 10:10 pm ET

I was bullied in elementary school. I am 73, so with time things have improved immensely regarding this issue. My sister and I were the only 2 jewish children in our school. I was beaten up on the playground at recess for being jewish, and a neighbor stopped his car on our street to tell the children not to play with me. I never bullied.


Dodie   April 13th, 2010 10:10 pm ET

@ michael armstrong sr.

The bullies are usually from a family who has a violent parent or authority figure. They are acting out their aggression on someone weaker.

The cycle of violence must stop!


deb   April 13th, 2010 10:13 pm ET

bullying has nothing to do with age.... just because their under 18 years old doesnt mean they dont know what their doing..... these kids are not mentally disabled, they know exactly what their doing thats why they lie to cover it up..... they do it when no ones around.... these kids are snakes in the grass...... if satan had a face their face is the face you would see.... stop making excuses for people kids or adults.... they chose to bully people and now their gonna suffer for it.... no one gets a free pass.... i pray they go to prison and get what they deserve..... its about time bullying is taken seriously.... how many more innocent children have to die before something is done..... how would you feel if it was your kid..... if the kids dont go away their parents should.... but, to do nothing is a sin and a crime.... and no matter what everyone is being watched by GOD....


marcia   April 13th, 2010 10:26 pm ET

larry please have guest on your show that have experienced bullying from, both sides of the issue. there are a lot of people addressing the issue that are really mis-informing people. the comment about bullied victims having low self esteem, depression or no moral support at home is completely untrue. that description actually describes attributes of the bullies. if you would ask some murderers, or rapist about their past experiences I bet a great percentage of them were picked on or degraded as a child. when I was in high school there was a young man whom people called fat and ugly, none of the girls would give him a date, this guy turned out to be a serial rapist. this bullying issue needs to be addressed aggressively because it is not going away, it is not childs play it is a serious matter with dire consequences. bullying should be listed along with other hate crimes because victims are terrorized by a group of people relentlessly, these attacks are verbal and physical, their intentions are to make the victims feel low and render them helpless just because they exist. our law makers must step in now!


Frank Bucca   April 13th, 2010 10:28 pm ET

Hi Larry,

I am a regular watcher of your program, but to night you disapointed me with the George Lopez interview.
George Lopez took a lot of cheap shot at Jay Leno. I thought you have
pointed out to George that Conan lost his job due to poor ratings, and not to Jay Leno's 10:00 PM time slot.

Conan was no match for Letterman. and now Letterman has fallen behind Leno in the rating. How do explain this?


Patty   April 13th, 2010 10:33 pm ET

Sorry I tuned in at the end of the Cosby interview and was not meaning to make light of the bullying situation. Suicide rate for adolecsents under 19 is pretty high. The internet may shed light on the reason why a young person might do it.


Dodie   April 13th, 2010 10:43 pm ET

@ deb

You stated:

these kids are snakes in the grass...... if satan had a face their face is the face you would see....

***************************************

Children are NOT born bad or evil. They learn this behavior from their environment! For someone who is religious, I find it very disquieting that you are so harsh with your words, like daggers straight into the heart!

Where is the compassion?


Thomas Brown - Broken Toy Project   April 13th, 2010 11:02 pm ET

It was great to watch Bill and his insightful commentary on bullying. As a national speaker, educator and filmmaker on the subject for almost 20 years, I have to take exception to a few things that the good doctor said:

1. It is practically an 'urban legend' that bullies have low self esteem. While some children that are bullies may indeed have low self-esteem brought on by problems at home, many school instigators, antagonists and tormentors have GREAT self-esteem and come from good homes. I have spent hundreds of hours in discussions with students about bullying, and two of the comments I hear a lot is that "It is fun to bully" and 'You're more popular if you are a bully." In short, some of our most popular students in school, are quite capable of being, and many times are in fact, the antagonists.

2. I strongly disagree that the media, where it be computers, video games, music or movies, has much to do with bullying. In the 60's and early 70's I was mercilessly physically and verbally bullied (tortured) during my junior high school years, and we did NOT have computers, video games or violent televsion. As far as music goes, probably the most controversial music back then was Alice Cooper and Black Sabbath, and I certainly couldn't blame any of them for bullying.

I think it is much too easy to blame the media for the bullying, youth-suicides and school shootings. The anguish and rage in children that take their own lives or lives of animals or other human beings, is often driven by the torment that they regularly receive in school and on the bus. I have been told by many bully victims that some of the violent games actually helps diffuse their anger.

Here is what I believe are the most significant factors in why school bullying is so far out of control today:

1. For far too long bullying has been regarded as "Just a part of growing up" This very thought has created a lack of interest in powerful and influential people getting involved to create the kind of awareness that can actually help this problem.

2. There is too much emphasis on sports in many schools and communities, with not nearly as much attention and credos paid to the band or other activities like drama, science, choir, etc. Because of this, the bullying and hazing that sometimes goes on among athletes is ignored or brushed off as "boys being boys."

3. There are educators who want to address bullying, but get very little support from school administrators or the majority of teachers.

4. Like it or not, some teachers and educators condone bullying and are often quite mean to individual students in front of other students. This kind of behavior practically guarantees a child to be further bullied. Some teachers and educators DO look away when they see what is obviously bullying behavior; either because of fear of a law-suit from an influential parent of a child exhibiting bullying behavior or little support from school administration.

5. When schools do bother to put on an anti-bullying program for parents, depending on what else is going on at the school that evening, attendance is usually low. But things would be different in a community reeling from a bullying related tragedy. I was speaking once in Pennsylvania and two moms showed up from a city that was still emotionally recovering after a school shooting. These woman took the microphone and said that their community only wished they had an opportunity to address a problem that could avoid a tragedy, instead of experiencing nightmares from what had happened for real.

6. The kids that are not the bullies or being bullied are not being utilized enough to help with this problem. There is value and power in getting kids to use their imagination and creativity to come up with their own brand of awareness programs. Consider what kids nationally did to help the victims of Katrina, or the team that shaves their heads in order to make a child with Leukemia feel better about themselves. The fact is, there is a natural goodness within children that is not being utlized enough by schools. Of course schools claim that because of the focus being driven on mandatory testing, they just don't have the time for such programs. I say MAKE the time! Kids are part of the answer to this problem.

7. My program is NOT and never will be anti-BULLY. The emphasis shoudl not be on BULLIES but BULLYING. That is the problem. All of this talk about prosecuting BULLIES and standing up to BULLIES really frustrates me. WE, my generation and those before me, are a big part of the problem, because we never recognized the problem for being as serious as consequential as it ultimately is. So let's not focus on or blame BULLIES. It was bullying that made my childhood hell, not bullies.

8. We need to get more of the influential media and influential and powerful individuals to join forces or singularly create programs that make people aware of the serious nature and consequences of school bullying, NOT wait until something tragic happens and then react. Imagine if one-tenth of the coverage given to the lady with 8 kids or Tiger Woods ... was given to school bullying awarenessa nd strategies. My goodness, we would be on the right track to actually making schools the safe and secure place they purport themselves to be in the first place!

9. Another entity that needs to 'shape up' is the TV networks and film studios that create programming and films marketed directly to children, that actually make fun of bullying. Disney and Nickelodeon are the main culprits in sometimes making bullying a laughing matter.

10. FInally, I think one of the biggest stumbling blocks for us to get around is the belief that school antagonists are not capable of caring about anyone or anything. There is too much talk about punishment and not enough about working with these kids to bring about change.
Regardless of the extent of bullying that I endured as a child, I did not grow up wanting revenge or believing that they were nothing more than societal rejects incapable of feelings. The very children that bully others would never think of hurting an animal ....

... and the very children that stand around and watch an unpopular classmate being verbally or physically tore apart ... would be aghast and confrontive if they saw the same ridicule and inhumane treatment being given to an animal.

Somehow we have to get kids to care about those in their school ... on two legs ... as much as they do about things on four legs.

I think they will learn to care, but first we have to believe that they are capable of caring and then provide the time and tools to show us.

And THAT'S when the frequency and severity of school bullying starts a turn-around ... for the good.

Until then, and until we get a whole lot smarter in this country, more bullying related suicide and school shooting tragedies are inevitable.

"Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it"

Thomas Brown
The Broken Toy Project / Closer Look Films


Cajazz76:24:8   April 13th, 2010 11:13 pm ET

@Thomas Brown

You broke our toy blog...great revealing thoughts and great supportive info, glad you were nearby to post.


Thomas Brown - Broken Toy Project   April 13th, 2010 11:31 pm ET

What do you mean by "you broke our toy blog?" Thanks for the nice comments.

Tb


Charlene   April 13th, 2010 11:34 pm ET

To Debbie with the 11 year old daughter.

Pull your daughter out of school before it's too late......

Reading some of these posts have made me cry, because I can relate to the life long pain. To know that people who are in their 60's still feel the pain and remember it like yesterday should tell you how much bullying affects one's life.

C


terri ann   April 13th, 2010 11:40 pm ET

yes, bullying can affect out lives & I'm a grannie. 81 yrs,,I was taunted for being too skinny, too tall, too quiet,,& for being from a poor family, no elec fridge, just an ice box....the bullies did not look so great @ several high schl reunions,,


Thomas Brown - Broken Toy Project   April 13th, 2010 11:44 pm ET

Charlene, you're right. And the fact is there are a lot of famous people who were bullied, and despite the fact that they are super wealthy or famous, their eyes well up when they start to recall the bullying they endured as child. On the other hand, I have encountered many adults, who also get very emotional when they recall their own childhood mistreatment of people. Several years ago I was speaking to a parent group in Indianapolis and a well-dressed gentleman stood up and stated that until that very night, he never realized how cruel and insensitive he was to other kids while growing up. He then said that he was going to make it a goal to look those people up and apologize. I was extremely moved by his honesty. The fact is, just like today, many bullies do NOT realize how much they hurt others, because few if any people are telling them that they are. This is a mean-spirited society and kids today see too many examples where mean-spirit is practically celebrated. Its sad ... but true.


Smith in Oregon   April 13th, 2010 11:49 pm ET

If children are not taught to tell their oppressors 'Hell No', are they going to learn to do that to corrupt police, drug cartel members, gang members, and the corrupt boss they sadly are now working for?


Kim   April 14th, 2010 12:06 am ET

I was usually the bystander, but there was a time when I made one girl feel excluded from our group of friends. I've always had regret over that. There was another girl who was taunted by pretty much all the kids... it was so sad. I wish I had been a better friend to her and stood up for her. But as a bystander, you always felt you had to be careful, or you'd be next to be excluded or taunted. Sometimes, though, the bystander's inaction can feel just as bad as the bully's action.

My oldest daughter is disabled and had a horrible time... she was the girl who ended up being taunted by all the kids in middle school. It was terrible for a long time. But, I'm really happy with our school district that takes it seriously, and has started being more proactive in preventing these things before they happen. It was tough for awhile, but at least they are responsive and now doing something about it. AND they are even starting to teach character education to the kids in our district.

It still drives me nuts, though, to read stories like Phoebe Prince and realize there are still SO many ignorant people, and school districts that blow things off until it's too late. There's still so much work to do.


jordan   April 14th, 2010 12:12 am ET

i was bullyed at school and i hated it but i had a to much of it so i fighted back and my school friend were happy for me now cuz im in high school and im stroge kids are scared of my im not the kind to start a fight if thay have to hit my first


Herman   April 14th, 2010 12:13 am ET

As a child growing up in the early 60's in Jackson, Miss. I feared the daily eatings coming home from school more than the Klan. From the 1st through the 7th grade I was beaten nearly every day. It was only when my family moved to another part of the country that I realized I was not the problem. I later became a teacherand my #1 issue was to create a learning atmosphere were learnin was the issue, not personalties and put downs. I will always remember what happened to me but I learned I was not who the bullies said I was. I was who I slowly bean to believe am. I had no esteem and was told to be a man.
But I had to learn that was on the job training.


Tina Outlaw   April 14th, 2010 12:13 am ET

My son was bullied at his school so badly that I as a mom went to the school checked in as a visitor then sat in his class and said nothing just starred at the kids responsible finally the teacher took us all out of the room to talk and he never had a problem again the two boys actually became his friends I believe parents need to make there presence known to these bullies so they know that if u mess with my children I will hold you resposible and also more anti bully activities need to be in place.


Stacey Flagler   April 14th, 2010 12:14 am ET

Hello Larry,
I just wanted to thank everyone that is bringing this to everyones attention. My nephew Corey Flagler commited suicide over 6 weeks ago in Havlock, Ontario, Canada. He was being bullied by kids at his school, he was only 17! The worst thing is that this was not the first time a child has commited suicide because of these particular bullies. The school system should be protecting their students, their children from something like this! There should be some sort of law that needs to be put into place so that these bullies are put away, either put in a juvenile detention center or even jail!


Boulder, CO   April 14th, 2010 12:15 am ET

I'm sorry, bullying has been going on loooooong before computers. All it takes is for a child to be different. This girl was the new kid. Don't even try to put fault on her parents, children are cruel and will latch onto any weakness. She had just moved here from another country, she was different.


grayfoxes56   April 14th, 2010 12:17 am ET

I think all high schools should offer trade education. These young people go to high school 4yrs and many are disinterested in being there..they should be being educated to enter society as well as being prepared for college..most won't go to college so they should be taking courses like plumbing, mechanics, plastic works, glass fitting, carpentry, custom sewing, upholstering, prep chef's. If they learn that they can do something constructive with their hands, the mind usually follows along with a pride, so when they get out of school, no matter what their home life or social life is like, they feel a self worth of themselves. The current system is not working..everyone is in an uproar about prayer being taken out of the schools, I'm in an uproar that trades are taken out of the schools..The larger schools should have junior colleges attatched to the campus so they can envision graduating and going on to the next level..These "kids" want to act out on what they think adulthood is, it is our obligation to show them with trades.


Boulder, CO   April 14th, 2010 12:18 am ET

Oh, and I was horribly bullied as a child. I moved here from another country as well, and did not speak English. If I had depression or low self esteem, it was as a result of the cruelty not vice versa.


Rose Marie Schimelfening   April 14th, 2010 12:21 am ET

It is always good when you hear that the kids that bullied you are dead or in jail.


Don & Betty   April 14th, 2010 12:25 am ET

We lost our son to suicide in June 2006. He experienced significant bullying in school and received an 8 cm blood clot to his testicle. The principal's response was "Boys will be Boys". We tried to have him switch schools but were met with great resistance from the School Board. There was a second incident and we finally were allowed to have our son switch to a new school. On registration day who do you think was three students behind our son – the student who physically assaulted him. It was evident that the School Board failed our son.


Dodie   April 14th, 2010 12:26 am ET

@ Boulder, CO

No one should have experienced what you did. I am so very sorry


Dodie   April 14th, 2010 12:28 am ET

@ Herman

You are very special. I only wish more people would be like you. Thank you for sharing your experience with us


Kate   April 14th, 2010 12:31 am ET

In 2001 my son was killed in a car accident, my daughter-his sister-was only in the 6th grade. The following weeks after his death my daughter was bullied and teased about his death. My husband and I went to the school to try to get this stopped but it was useless, we ended up pulling our daughter out of that school and put her in another school. She had to leave her friends and the school that she loved because of the teasing and bulliying about the death of her brother. This happened just weeks after her brothers death. Not only were we trying to recover after my sons death but we had to try and help our daughter not only adjust to life without her beloved brother but also life at a new school. We tried talking to the parents of the kids but I was told (and this is a quote that I will never forget) that Greg is gone-he's dead get over it. This is the parents saying this–so I guess the kids just learned their bullying ways from their parents, but this almost cost me another child.


Amarion SC   April 14th, 2010 12:45 am ET

Smith in Oregon,

U missed the Point..

U must have been a bully; how do u go from someone killing them self to "why do Black Muslims bully children"

But someone took there life due to White children thinking
"white is right"
and they can do what ever they want to anyone again. this is the issue Bullying not Black Muslims..

Buy a Clue


Parent   April 14th, 2010 12:47 am ET

Some good points were made but a lot of what was said I don't agree with. The bully isn't a person from a disfunctioning family and one with low self-esteem. I think that was the bully years ago but not today. We are using the same word "bullying" but it is not the same today. We need a new word for what is going on today so there is no confusion. The bullies are often accomplished students, high marks, very popular, on sports teams, they do not have low self esteem, they may even have an over inflated ego. Who can be bullied? Anyone, They are not people with low self esteem either, it might very well be after they have been harrassed but it didn't start that way. Bullying is all about power......they feel powerful. They enjoy it.


Amarion SC   April 14th, 2010 12:51 am ET

@ Kim,

that's where it starts our school district taking it seriously. The parents should be able to charge the school because they did nothing as if they were scared of the children/ young adults again the School system failed another child.

This is why Home school and private school growth is off the charts. Who want to trust an over populated school system for the safety of your children.


NorthSide   April 14th, 2010 12:56 am ET

I was bullied daily through junior high school. It became so bad that I would skip school and stay home weekly. It had a profoundly negative effect on my childhood and has certainly carried with me through adulthood.


Brent   April 14th, 2010 1:00 am ET

First of all, child/teen bullies should not be charged and put in prison, as they are children too, unless physical injury or death results from the direct bullying. I work for the government, and do suicide and mental health evaluations for adults and youth, for psychiatric hospitalization. Both the schools, and the parents need to be responsible to educate their students, and children on the effects of bullying, and on suicide prevention. Children and teens are mostly set on whats going on today, and are not concerned on future events past a week or two. So they have a limited understanding, and limited experience to what their lives will be down the road, and how much they can change things, or make things different. Many of the teens and kids I work with that make suicide threats after being bullied, usually feel that killing themselves will solve the immediate problem. What they don't understand is, that suicide is a permanent solution to a fixable problem. Bullies can be caught and punished by the school, and by cooperative parents. What teens and kids don't want to deal with is the social fallout they may get because of telling. They need to understand that you as parents, and schools will support them, make adjustments to remedy the problem, and even go as far as moving them to another school, or go to home study until the problem diminishes. Bullies will move on, and someone always bigger comes along and puts bullies in their place, be it their own parents, teachers, school administrators, or police. Educate your kids, talk to them about bullying, suicide, and death. Let them know you are there to listen and to support them-not lecture them-while they learn to navigate the difficulties of peer socialization. If you don't feel comfortable about talking to your kids about these issues, have them call their county suicide crisis team. These teams are specially trained to deal with these issues, and will gladly try to help your child to understand and cope with bullies, and thoughts of suicide.


Edward G   April 14th, 2010 1:09 am ET

To: Thomas Brown – Broken Toy Project

The young bullies I see usually say, I didn't know I made him/her feel bad". "I didn't mean it, I was just playing"!

I tell them it's not what you meant that's important. It's what the OTHER person thinks you meant and how it made them FEEL.!

That is why it is so important for administrators to be out and about their buildings. You hear so much! A lot of the job is about being proactive!

Kids also need to know that the principal's office is not just for getting into trouble. You CAN come in just to talk as well!


Angela   April 14th, 2010 1:52 am ET

George Lopez, the obscene language you used to trash Kate Gosselin is sexual harassment on the air! Is there no compassion from where you came from? Or you're just trying to stir up shame?


Sherry O'Neill   April 14th, 2010 2:58 am ET

You asked for people to comment on whether they had been bullied as a kid. I went through absolute Hell from 1970 until 1976, It all started when my parents and I moved to a new town. The first year, which was 3rd grade wasn't "too" bad. There were mean remarks, but nothing terribly brutal. During the summer between 3rd and 4th grade my father had an aneurysm in a grocery store, and essentially died right in front of my mother and I. The paramedics were able to revive him, but he was handicapped for the rest of his life. I became terrified to go to school because I was afraid he would die again while I was there. His sickness evidently changed my personality drastically. because from that point on the attacks escalated. To compound things I have been partially disabled myself from a very early age. Most of the children I was friends with, but there were a few, perhaps a half dozen each grade who set out to make my life as miserable as they could. In 3rd grade I don't remember anything in particular being said although I know that I was constantly ridiculed for the fect that I had/have a bad overbite because of a problem with my lower jaw. As I recall they called me Bucky Beaver. I ran around with a little girl who was overweight. They called her Tubby Tuba. So goes the names of 8 year olds. But it hurt. The thing I remember most about 4th grade was the girl I sat across from kicking me. If I didn't keep my feet hooked around the legs of my chair she would kick me in the shins until I did. I don't remember how long I put up with it before I showed the teacher that I was bruised. Of course then I got called Tattle Tale. By 5th it wasn't a daily thing, it was an hourly thing. Between my home troubles and feeling more and more self concious from all the bullying I got the reputation of being a really easy mark. They would actually just keep on me about things trying to make me lose my temper and lash out. I was so meek I wouldn't lash out in retaliation. Then they'd do this sing song thing: Men-tally retaaaard-ed". I remember one time sitting in the cafeteria daydreaming, just looking off into space. Someone said, "What are you looking at Retard?!" By 6th all Hell really did break loose. I would quite often come home and tell my mother that that day was my last, I was NEVER going back to school. She of course would march me back to school the next day (if she was lucky). Between the fact that I actually was sickly, plus the fact that I had a really good handle on how to fake being sick so that I could stay home, I ended up missing a lot of school. She said to me one time after I graduated that it was amazing that I always made a miraculous recovery AFTER school started. I told her that it was really a no brainer. I knew I was home for the day. The stress was gone, and I really did feel better. When I did go to school the closer I would get to the school the sicker I would be getting. By the time I got to the door I was ready to throw up. Then I would smell the "school smell" and I really would feel ill. I knew what I was going to have to put up with for the next 8 hours. I was a complete wimp, and I wasn't emotionally able to handle it. Some of the highlights of 6th grade was on a regular basis I would walk in the room in the morning (still queasy) and someone would yell, "Eeew, Retard didn't DIE during the night!" I had this hat. Looking back now it was stupid looking. They said that I was Gilligan and made all kinds of rude comments along those lines. One time we were doing art projects. One of the kids switched my glue for white paint, and I ended up ruining my project. They called me a lesbian (they were 11 years old~they probably didn't even know what one was). They said my mom was a skank nd a big fat cow, and they called my dad an old gray goat. This continued through 7th and 8th grades, only getting worse. By then they'd wait until the teacher turned their back and then throw stuff at me. Then they'd all giggle. If the teacher would single one of them out they'd sit there with this smart ass grin on their face and deny they did it. In 8th grade my homeroom teacher called me up to her desk one day. She said, "Do you know (naming this boy)?" I told her that I did. She asked me what I thought of him. I said that he was OK, and asked her why. She showed me a note that was supposed to have been written by me. It said: I am going to kick (naming the boy's) ass) all over the school. She said, "Did you write this?" I said, "Are you kidding? Do you know how tall he is?" Fortunately she was well aware of the fact that I hadn't written it. It all came to a screeching halt in 9th grade. We had 2 junior highs in my town. In 9th grade we all moved to one school. The second day of school I was assaulted. We had all come out of the cafeteria and were waiting for the bell to ring to go to our classes. A girl who I didn't know started picking on me. I said, "Leave me alone." She just kept it up and kept it up. I told her again to leave me alone. She continued, finally grabbing my pant leg and tripping me as I tried to walk away from her. I got my balance back, and finally after 6 years lost my temper. I said, "LEAVE ME ALONE!" and I pushed her. I had very long hair which was pulled back in a ponytail that day. She grabbed my ponytail, wrapped it around her hand and pulled me over backwards. She tore every tendon in my upper chest loose. Somehow I flipped my head under my hair and got so that I was facing her. I slugged her and she let go. I tried to run away, but she caught up with me about 2/3 of the way up a flight of steps. She grabbed my hair again and pulled me down the steps backwards (headfirst). Evidently I landed on top of her because I actually made it up to the top of the steps before she caught up with me again. She literally tackled me in the hall. At that point one of my girlfriends came upon the scene and scared her off. The sad part of this was that there were hundreds of kids around us and NO ONE came to my aid except this one friend of mine. My math teacher was also a witness. When my friend got me up off the floor I ran to my teacher crying. I said, "Did you see that? Did you see what happened?" She said, "I didn't see a thing!" My mom picked me up that day because we were going to go shopping. She said that she knew as soon as she saw me that something had happened. She said I looked like death warmed over. She took me back into the school to the principal. He was going to expel ME because I was fighting. I guess the idiot never heard of self defense! I had to stay home the next day. The following day in math class the kid behind me poked me. I turned around. She said, "That girl back there wants to tell you something." I looked around her and saw that one of the girls who had been with the girl who injured me was in my class. She said, "Your life is going to be DAMN short." I got up and went right to the principal's office. I hadn't been able to identify them when it happened. I didn't know them. I told him to check the seating chart in the class. One of them is 2 seats behind me. I guess she squealed on the rest when they called her in. The next day we all got called into the office. What did they do but let us all leave at the same time. The whole way back to my class they were walking about 10 steps behind me talking amoung themselves in a loud voice as to how they were going to carve me up and kill me. The day after that I was in the girls locker room after gym class. One of them was in my gym class. She grabbed hold of me and slammed me up against the lockers. I went running to my gym teacher. Fortunately she wasn't as worthless as my math teacher. She grabbed the girl and dragged her to the principal's office. I refused to go back to school after that. When after about a week or 10 days I wasn't feeling any better my parents took me to the hospital. They found out that I had 3 fractured vertebrae! I have been permanently disabled since I was 14 from this attack. One or more of the girls called my house at all hours for months afterwards, threatening me. I ended up having to be homeschooled due to my injuries and also for safety sake. One of my girlfriends was an office assistant. I asked her if she could get into my permanent records and find out the name of the person (and I use the tern loosely) who did this to me. She did and told me the ring leaders name. I had never even heard of her. Now the $100,000 question. Through all of this what did the schools do. From 3rd through 8th they did little or nothing. At first my parents would say, "Oh they just like you and they don't know how to show it." I'd reply, "Well if this is like I'd hate to see what they do if they hated me." Finally it dawned on my parents that this wasn't "like" and I wasn't making it up. They would go to the school. The teachers would say that it was just kids stuff and that basically I shouldn't be such a wimp. One time I came home screaming and crying because this group of 3 kids had announced to the whole class that I had stolen something. My mom ended up dragging all 3 of them into see the principal along with their parents. Two of the sets of parents were very contrite and made their children apologize for telling such an awful lie, the the third parent was very flippant about the whole thing and couldn't have cared less. When I was injured ABSOLUTELY NOTHING WAS DONE! The math teacher refused to testify against them because she said that she was afraid she would get her tires slashed. The local police refused to do anything because they had been removed from patroling the school the year before, and they were mad they lost the job. So they wouldn't do anything. The school board tried to blame the whole thing on me, saying that I was maladjusted (or just flat out weird). My parents had to fight tooth and nail to get them to pay for my homeschooling, which back then had to be done by a certified teacher. Educationally I faired out much better. I got a college level education because I got individualized instruction from my teachers. But on the flip side I have had to live life since I was 14 with a lifelong, permanent disability. I will never be able to hold down a fulltime job. I have never up to this point been able to hold one down either. I've never married, nor have I been able to have children. Essentially I have been robbed of my entire life. Do I think bullying should be considered a crime? ABSOLUTELY! I think these punks should be thrown in prison and the key thrown away!


Smith in Oregon   April 14th, 2010 4:09 am ET

@ Amarion SC, have you ever seen the new Black Panthers? Have you walked up and spoken to one of the new Black Panthers routinely toting a loaded riot shotgun?

If not then you have absolutely no clue as to whatever I commented on in regards to Bill Cosby's association with that Black Muslim organization.

Are you under some mistaken impression that the new Black Panthers soldiers are like Hari Krishna followers that distribute flowers to bystanders in their embrace of peaceful coexistence with others?


Shari   April 14th, 2010 4:19 am ET

I would like to say that many times the bullying is something that could have been prevented if parents had been teaching kindness and tolerance of all kind of differences in peers and other people around us.
I do believe that all adults who are in the lives of the victims and the bullies should be more intuitive and asking the children more questions to find out what they are feeling and experienciing. Find out what they are feeling to make them feel violent towards others or suicidal...or even what feelings of depression they are feeling.
Adults...Parents , teachers ,neighbors, peers , friends, siblings ..should make sure the parents or a responsible counselor or clergyman know what is happening and not turn a blind eye to the problem or pretend the problem will fix itself or think the child with grow out of it. Make sure the victims and the Bullies get counseling to express and vent those feeling and get to the root of the problems.
I also believe the bullying problem has gotten worse because I believe that children are desensitized to greater amounts and types of violence at an earlier age. I believe that more children are killing other children that ever before in history...
WE MUST TEACH LOVE and TOLLERANCE and set examples of kindness and compassion even for strangers and people who look or act differently or believe differently than we do...... or Peace and acceptance of others.
We need to support television ,movies, books ,music and internet that teaches ,edifies ,educates,cultures , and gives us creative inovative thinking and promotes love not hate.Ask kids to put down the laptop and the Cell phone and be more involved with the family and friends and get outside and enjoy REAL LIFE!!
By the way, I loved watching Bill Cosby's Fat Albert cartoons...I loved watching PBS childrens shows he did that taught me to read and learn about animals and other bits of interesting facts. When I was in high school and college I loved the THE COSBY SHOW...... I know even my Dad..loves to still tell Cosby jokes like the ones about going to the dentist...why Noah built the Ark and Dad is great he feeds us chocolate cake!! Hugs and a kiss on the cheek for Mr Cosby and his family and friends like Rita Moreno who sings and dances so beautifully and used to be on my beloved Seasame Street. My Best Wishes to Larry King and his family too.


FM   April 14th, 2010 6:11 am ET

Parents of those who are being bullied need to step up and take charge. When one of my sons was being bullied I, at first, took the attitude that he was a bright child and could handle this. Boy was I wrong. It took him calling me (he was at boarding school age 15) at 10:30 at night saying that his bully had grabbed him by the neck and drug him down the stairs. I was horrified that it had gone from verbal to physical so quickly and was horrified with myself for allowing it to go that far. I bypassed the housemaster (as I suspected he was all too aware of what was going on) and went straight to the headmaster getting him out of bed and told him in no uncertain terms that if he did not deal with it I would pull my child out of the school and go straight to the papers. He told me that he would handle it and it was handled. The bullying stopped. Going to just one teacher at the school is often not good enough and feet stamping should go straight to the top till things are taken care of. To this day I have nightmares and feel shame about my lack of inactivity and I really should have done more at the start of it.

I guess in the end I was in a fortunate position of being capable of following through with my threats, if necessary, and the school was aware of this, but the principle is the same. Go to the top – Headmaster (Principal) and board of governors with the problem till someone listens and can prove they can help.


deb   April 14th, 2010 6:41 am ET

they do so know what their doing..... that's just another excuse..... it's not that they don't know it's that they don't care..... if they dont know that what their doing is wrong, then why do they do it one no ones around.... if they dont know its wrong then why do they lie..... if they dont know its wrong then why do they always bully someone whos vulnerable and shy.... why dont they bully guys bigger then themselves if they dont know its wrong.... or girls whos brother and father would come after them....... the answer is because they know exactly what they were doing.... also, if an adult admits they bullied people when they were younger.... and now feel bad its because bad things are happening to them now and their feeling sorry for themselves.... monsters dont change..... they just get old..... most people are evil its just a fact...... lock your doors and home school your children because this will never change....... protect your family thats the solution.....


deb   April 14th, 2010 6:50 am ET

dodie your an airhead..... the malls open aint nobody shopping..... i have compassion for the victims not the bullies DUH!!!! if you dont like my comments dont read them..... keep your opinions about my posts to yourself.....


deb   April 14th, 2010 6:59 am ET

it's not that complicated.... kids bully because they can.... its has nothing to do with psychiatry, what day it is, how they grew up.... their all over the place..... its just a choice.... their cowards and snakes..... if your smart and one your kids is being bullied fight back..... dont let the bully control your life or your childrens lives... ive seen bullies crumble when someone went after them.... trust me its not complicated !!!!! GUTS!!!! thats the answer....


Jayme   April 14th, 2010 8:26 am ET

Looking back, i was bullied to such a degree that early on in my teens i made 2 serious attempts to end my life. I grew up without parents that cared for me. I was raised by my grandmother who was my caretaker and spokesperson. I suffered low esteem and self hatred early on in my life. I was beat in school daily. I was called horrible anti gay names and punched, kicked and pushed into lockers. I was spit on and had names hurled at me on a regular basis. At the age of 15 i took an overdose of a prescription drug and ended up in a psych ward for a month. I then returned to the abuse. Things grew with such intensity that i quit school in my 11th grade class to save my life and preserve what sanity i had left. Not having any family that cared for me and having my own parents bail on me, i figured the abusers were right in what they did to me. I felt different. I felt strange and i never fit in anywhere. I figured if the first set of people in your life, your own parents couldn't care for you, how could anyone else. So i thought they must all be right in trying to kill me off. Sadly in Nov. 1993, I lost my beloved grandmother and the truest of friends. Today, because this scarred me for life, i am an unemployed, sad, lonely man who must live on disability and social security in order to survive. I forgive my tormentors but somehow cannot seem to forgive myself. I have no drive or motivation to continue in life. No goals and no ambition. My heart cries for those who must endure today. The world is colder and the values are so different. Life is cold and kids today face tougher challenges than ever before. Thank you.


Jayme   April 14th, 2010 8:55 am ET

I'm so glad that there is a place where we who were bullied can go to let go of that part of our lives that somehow we cannot shake. I speak to you Andrew and many of you others who have felt the sting of abuse. What added to my stress of abuse, was the cycle of abuse that i witnessed in addition to my own. It was a way of life in what family that was around me. Between husband/wives, siblings and cousins. Everyone i know used violence as a way of life. Then seeing it before my eyes and then suffering at the hands of tormentors in school added to my insecurites in life which in turn resulted in my attempting great harm to myself . They use to say years back, 'sticks and stones, may break my bones, but words will never hurt me'. Yet, its the words that can kill the quickest. All of your stories have impacted me because we hold one common denominator. Violence directed towards us that has destoryed our will to exist. I care for each of you, but your story affected me deeply Andrew. You seem like a wonderful person with a heavy but kind heart. I wish i had a friend such as yourself in my life. I am a lonely 51 year old man but i feel aged beyond my years because of the cycle of violence that has directed my life's footsteps. Today i am but a shell of a man that for years has been held prisoner to the violence thats just as vivid to me as it was years back. It's like shell shock! It's like going to war. Coming home and reliving the horror of what we saw. Thank you all for allowing a forum where we can share.


Sandra Zerner   April 14th, 2010 10:42 am ET

I believe there are many people who are carrying around a lot of pain in regard to bullying; former bullies carry around the pain they caused and victims carry around the pain of the torment they received. I have created a forum on my blog It's Good 2b Good to provide a place for victims to share their stories and ask for an apology from their tormentors and for former bullies to offer apologies to those they attacked, whether verbally or physically. It is so clear, especially after reading all the comments here, that the pain of verbal bullying has a deep and lasting impact. I would like to help others heal by providing this forum. Wouldn't it be wonderful if former bullies and their victims could come together and forgive each other and heal from the trauma of bullying?


Sandra Zerner   April 14th, 2010 11:51 am ET

In my program It's Good 2B Good I talk to the bullies, the victims, and the bystanders.
To the bullies I say: You would have no interest in attacking someone else (verbally or physically) if you knew that we are all connected. So, when you attack someone else you are hurting yourself at the same time. No one attacks another unless there is pain and suffering inside them. By attacking another you are adding to your own pain and suffering. There are healthy ways to alleviate your pain and suffering; use them and you will be happier and you will see that putting someone else down not only will not help you, but will hurt you in the long run.
To the victims I say: The bullying is not about you. Bullies find every reason in the book to pick on others because they are trying to alleviate their own pain and suffering. If they find you, let them know you are not available – you're not willing to be treated in a disrespectful way. Your worth does not depend on what your peers think or say about you. You are worthy because you are here! Think of it this way: what your peers say about you is none of your business (in other words – it's their stuff). In order to be immune from the pain you must build up your self-esteem and know in your heart you are ok no matter what anybody else says about you. YOU get to decide who you are and who you want to be, not anybody else!
To the bystanders I say: My message to you is the most important: You have the power in your hands to put an end to bullying. Most bystanders are afraid to get involved, but, as a group, if all the bystanders refused to allow bullies to hurt others, bullying would disappear tomorrow. If the majority refuses to allow the minority to exist, they will go away. They will be forced to find constructive and healthy ways to deal with whatever pain is causing them to lash out at others. No one wants to be in pain. Most people want to be happy. Just think: you could be saving many, many people from a lifetime of sadness and regret over behavior they could have stopped if they had support.


Dolores Leba   April 14th, 2010 12:53 pm ET

I was bullied as a kid in grammer school and highschool.It was mean and demeaning and terroristic.I was pushed and kicked and pulled my hair in church at a catholic school.I was made fun of daily.I was followed home from school everyday.It got so bad the nuns had to hide me in the convent/chapel.I'd spend my time praying till the cost was clear and go home.They would still be there waiting for me.The problem is family, siblings, teachers, and parents all need to be aware and educated and acting on the first offense.People are too silent,no one wants to make waves or make trouble..Our voice is taken away from us at a young age.We were told to not fight,not talk back to turn the other cheek.But how about self defense and the God given right to defend ones self.The right to happiness and freedom to persue happiness.That was all taken from me at a young age.No one helped me except the nuns and God he had my back always,he was my safety .We need to have our childrens back and other childrens back and speak up no matter what !!!Give our children a voice to be heard and protected.
Dolores


Margaret   April 14th, 2010 12:56 pm ET

Hey there Larry,
Wow what a topic. Bullying has been around since the dawn of time I would imagine. I was bullyied and beat up everyday by a girl who lived down the street from me. She would even get other neighborhood kids to join in. She even bullyied a friend and classmate to invite me to her house so she (the bully) could beat me up that day too. When we finally moved from that town I was going into the fourth grade. I gained weight and quickly became as big or bigger than the bully's in the new school and soon became the champion for other victims. In HS I literally would be the welcoming committee for new kids. I would introduce myself and offer assistance in the transition to the new school until the matriculated so that they could avoid bullying issues. Bullying is criminal. It affects people in such negative ways that they are either scarred for life or worse hurt themselves beyond repair. This is a complex issue with budget cuts and no jobs. Some parents are working so much just to keep the roof over their families heads that yes some things go unnoticed until unfortunately suffering or worse has occurred. This is not just a run of the mill community problem now. It's gone global. I'm pleased to say that my daughter, 8th grade, going to Cony HS, Augusta, Maine is having the opportunity to participate in Project KID headed up by David Klippert and Heather Gauthier, both staff members at the school. Project KID is addressing this issue head on. Project KID stands for Kind, Inspired and Determined. I say "hats off" to these folks and others like them who head up these programs. I would also like to say...... If our kids are determined enough to face this issue head on than it should be a "call to arms" so to speak to we as parents, grandparents, community members etal. Let's go world Step up, Speak out and Stop the violence!!!!!!!!!!!!


Charlene Lauver   April 14th, 2010 12:58 pm ET

My sister and I are 14mo's apart in age. When we were in High School she was a bully. She had a group of friends who gathered around her to hear how she insulted and made demeaning remarks to those who were the target of her taunts. Mostly kids who were not popular, not good looking and those she perceived as weaker and less dominate than she was. She was funny and all her friends would be laughing as she did the dirty work. I stayed away from her and had my own group of friends. She also bullied me but not with her audience around.
Our parents were both active alcoholics who could have cared less. They laughed along with her as she bragged about her taunts.
Today she is still a bully, although not to the extent she was then. I still stay away from her. I would never tell her my personal business or allow myself to be in any situation where I had no choices to leave on short notice.
We both grew up without any parental guidance. The main difference between us was our opposite personalities. I can remember a group of girls in school who would run when they saw her coming.


Sandra Zerner   April 14th, 2010 3:35 pm ET

In response to Margaret's post: Margaret, you are an incredible person. To do what you did for other kids to prevent them from being bullied showed moral courage (the courage to stand up for what's right, especially when others are against you). I teach my students to do what you did. If all kids had the moral courage you did bullying would not exist. You're right that it's complicated and there are many issues involved. I'm glad to see there are other program besides mine out there helping kids and adults solve the problems that lead to bullying.
Thanks for being an inspiration to us all!


Dodie   April 14th, 2010 6:09 pm ET

The real tragedy on this blog, is the number of people who have been bullied and for how long with no help or assistance. There is an old saying by one of my favorite authors:

The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons.
- Fyodor Dostoevsky

I would like to change that to say:

The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its schools!!!


Cathy   April 15th, 2010 6:46 am ET

As a Kid in School I was Bullied right on through Highschool.
In Elementary School I was Bullied not just by my classmates but by my teachers till the 2nd or 3rd class I was even punished for doing something I wasn't supposed to do,something small and the teacher sat me in the corner and had a couple of other teachers stop in to look at me and laugh.
In JrHigh & HighSchool I was afraid to walk to & from School due to I would be chased and my books would be thrown down & I would be pushed and shoved till they gave up In school I would also have my books knocked down or they would make fun of the clothing I wore or the Handbag I carried in HS, due to it had a saying on it like,
" It's you Babe" , anyway who cares what you wear or if you arent wearing the newest in trends like Puma , Nike, or Today there is Ed Hardy.
Today my Daughter is the one being Bullied in her first Grade class she was Bullied by this Girl it got to the point we had to contact the Teacher she told us Nicely here is the telephone number of the Girls home & her parents name please call her she is exspecting you'r call she knows about what is going on,.
After1 phone call she came to our home and we all talked it over in private and it ened up that the Bully and my daughter became best friends after that due to the other girl didn't know how to comunicate properly to get my daughters attention to say hey can we be friends ?
She also got Bullied in her Gymnastic class also due to the clothes she was wearing Hanna Montahna teeshirt she also was told she had Cooties to get away from them, she came home crying I was able to talk to her and relate to her problem due to I went through the same thing as a kid.

Even after HS was finished I was afraid to bump into some of the people that used to Bully me in Hs that is how tramatic it was for me, today over 20yrs later I am in contact with a few of those Bullies over FB and we all can laugh over it now incl me and talk about how silly it was back then.
But I don' know if I understood Dr. Cosby right,did he say those
who are Bullied come from homes that the Parents don' really find the quality time for their kids to ask them how are you today how was your day? That can't be all true due to I had the best mom in the world she always was there for me I just never told her about everything especially in Elementary School over the Teachers today I wish I did, due to there would of been trouble for then due to how they handeled me back then.
I belive the Bully is the one that comes from the Disfuncinal home it isn' always the one being Bullied!


N   April 15th, 2010 3:07 pm ET

Bullying doesn't discriminate. There are so many reasons why certain kids are the chosen victims...yes Mr. Cosby mentioned the proven main reasons in general re: kids who have low self esteem or are quiet and to themselves...but even the popular – supposedly "normal" kids are victims as well. People dislike or even hate others for so many reasons and they think they are entitled to act on it – POWER IN NUMBERS ONLY THO...too many to list here...a few being looks, personality, differences, good students, non-followers (the eagle soars alone), their choices in friends, inter-racial issues being a huge problem. I could write a book as well as many of you probably can but to sum it up, in any way, shape or form it needs to be UNACCEPTABLE, NOT TOLERATED and handled right away at the first sign...kids need to know they CAN tell someone right away and trust there will be a positive outcome. I waited 2 long high school years before I finally couldn't take it anymore and trusted my father to handle it. My situation was so complicated in so many ways and I was so afraid to tell him but he handled it and IT STOPPED. I finished my high school year by completing my salutatorian speech in front of my whole graduating class (most of whom knew exactly what had happened and were bystanders) and made it through to the other side. Side note: I now suffer from a chronic, incurable GI problem that has ruined my life entirely. I can't help but think if I had spoken up early on and got help...my life would be very different today. I was an all A student, supposedly popular but well-liked as I was a good kid and not a follower and was disliked for that. I chose to participate in a relationship with an old friend whom I had known since 6th grade. All was great until I couldn't give him what he "wanted" long term. He turned evil and ruined 2 years of high school life (that felt like a lifetime) that I will never get back. ONE TEACHER noticed a change in my behavior in class but made the mistake of asking me about it in front of the whole class so of course I said nothing. While I appreciate HIS NOTICE, if he had pulled me aside privately I would have told him the hell I was enduring. I have no doubt that if guns were prevalent back then I would be dead or I would have ended up like poor Phoebe Prince. ACTIONS = CONSEQUENCES...take action and stop the madness that is preventable. PS: his life is peachy – married with 3 kids, and the bystanders are pretty much the same people...there is that part of them that never changes...they are the followers or need to be followed. I've planned many of our reunions single-handedly in search of some closure but unfortunately I'm still searching for an apology or acknowledgement of wrongdoing...that's my never-ending battle.


John Briscoe   April 18th, 2010 8:09 am ET

Good Afternoon

i wish to know why American people are under the illusion that we Term Football here Soccer ?.For example , Manchester United (FC ) Football Club , Chelsea (FC ) Football Club ), ect,ect,.I look forward to hearing back from you soon and my e-mail address is, jxbriscoe@hotmail.co.uk.

Regards

John


John Briscoe   April 18th, 2010 8:14 am ET

Good Afternoon Larry

i am of the opinion that bullying is only used by cowards and people should stand up to them and also report them to the authorities .I definetely think that buillying is a crime and should be outlawed .


Dodie   April 18th, 2010 6:34 pm ET

@ John Briscoe

Good question. I have been asking myself the same question for many years. Actually I call "American soccer" (football) and confuse the heck out of everyone! lol


michael   April 18th, 2010 9:07 pm ET

Kids nowadays are too soft skinned. You don't need to give them extra help you need to teach them how to get over it its school it happens.


Michelle Doiron   April 18th, 2010 9:08 pm ET

I was bullied as a child. From grade 2 to grade 7 I ran from those who bullied me. If they went on the bus I ran home and vice versa. It really affected my self confidence, to the point that when my family was on summer vacation and we received news of a transfer I chose to stay on vacation and not go back to say goodbye to my friends. As an adult, I wish I could have gone back to say bye.


Tina Ward   April 18th, 2010 9:16 pm ET

Hi Larry,
My older daughter (now 23) was bullied all through catholic school by one of her classmates. Kindergarten through 6th grade. Her teachers all new about it and all except her 1st grade teacher did not know how to handle it. This made it immpossible for her to have friends as the other kids stayed away from her because they were afraid of the bully. But the real horrible consequence of this was my daughters bullying of my younger daughter (21). This behavior has continued to this day. Don't get me wrong.. they love each other very much but there is some very bad behaviors to this day. This has contributed to a very dire depression in my younger daughter. And my own failure as a parent in not taking care of the problem between my girls when they were young.


Kevin Davis   April 18th, 2010 9:18 pm ET

Have you ever wondered if "zero tolerance policies" have taken away the ability to establish a school culture of discourse, negotiation and compromise? "Zero tolerance" policies, implemented poorly, often displace the teaching of many social skills – i.e. empathy.


mrbill   April 18th, 2010 9:21 pm ET

Bill Cosbey and another black figurehead talking about the bulling of a white kid by other white kids in a school district with only a couple of blacks. CNN sure knows how to pick the experts. Send the black kids into this school district and see what happens to the news story then.


maryln48   April 18th, 2010 9:23 pm ET

I think Cris Rock has it right, you are moving for the white man. Are you getting paid as much as Conan? If not then he will take over and you let him do it. Dummy.


Joe G. (Illinois)   April 18th, 2010 9:24 pm ET

This girl committed suicide without ever bothering to ask Jesus Christ for help. That’s what I’m saying..

And maybe she didn’t think Jesus Christ could have helped.

But you all instead go ahead alright and fix the problem with Bill Cosby!!


liza   April 18th, 2010 9:24 pm ET

Living in Western mass near the nation wide bullying of Pheobe.

This is our society in 2009. These days bullying has become entertainment. HOLLYWOOD AND ALL ITS REALITY SHOWS need to be held accountable. All children are seeing these shows.
CENSORSHIP........or then just put porno on and call it FREEDOM OF SPEECH. come on now.

Bullying....HATE CRIME?
Bullying.....Gangs?


mrbill   April 18th, 2010 9:26 pm ET

Bullied? Glock 45 any questions?


Don   April 18th, 2010 9:27 pm ET

The reason Bullying is si rampant is because if you pop the bully in the nose you get in trouble with the school. If you report him you are a snitch.
The schools teach tolerance but how much do you tolerate.

I say pop em in the nose and take your chances


julie   April 18th, 2010 9:27 pm ET

I started being bullied at 3 years by some family members and my father ignord it. In school the girls did all the time. The parents picked their battles and I would not get the support and everyone else would go home and have a good night. Also, it does not matter what what kind of family you come from, it can happen in a lot of different homes. The teachers go from one extreme to another out of wanting control.


Jannette Cruz   April 18th, 2010 9:30 pm ET

hi larry i just wanted to say i have never been bullied or i have never been the bully i hate bullys i think it is so mean these kids commit suicide because of these bullys i wonder how the bullys feel after these kid die because of what they pushed them to do my heart goes out to all the familys who lost a child because of bullys


Eric   April 18th, 2010 9:33 pm ET

When I was young and kids teased me, I would complain.
The teachers always told me that "sticks and stones may break your bones, but words will never hurt you" Now you call those who said the words bullies and now that takes the heat off the teachers who for years said "sticks and stones may break your bones, but words will never hurt you"


mrbill   April 18th, 2010 9:36 pm ET

Sandy, with kinky hair and such, you most likely have some black in your DNA. So if you have 1% black in your DNA, according to the black community, you are 100% black. Just look at our President. I will be glade when we can do DNA tests on everyone and seperate the wheat from the chaff.


Don   April 18th, 2010 9:40 pm ET

Bullying starts in grade school and continues into the workplace. I was a target of workplace bullying, gang bullying, ,mobbing, psycological abuse to the highest degree. These people were once elementry and highschool bully's who had there hinchmen to carry out the crimes while they stood back and watched. It's about time the law take this seriously. All bully's have a sickness that must be treated. Hold bullys resposible for there actions by charging them with a crime. Then it remains on there record while they attend 5yrs of couseling and other forms of treatment for there problem. ....... no one should suffer from this mind abuse and physical abuse anymore!!!!!


xoxo rox   April 18th, 2010 9:42 pm ET

the funny thing about a bully is when you report them to a school monitor, they worry about their parents. they should mind their business because it will come back to haunt them.


Alan Rubin   April 18th, 2010 9:43 pm ET

Yes, I got bullied in school, but it made me a tougher individual and I do not befriend people too easily and I do not forgive or forget. As for the person who did the bullying, he was caught by the local police vandalizing our property. All of a sudden, his father comes to our house and begs us not to press charges. My father said he wanted money for the damages caused by his son. When the father refused to reimburse my father, my father pressed charges and asked for the maximum charges on the kid who vandalized our property. Now he has a police record and I have no sympathy for the kid or the family. Let them rot in hell.


Sabrina   April 18th, 2010 9:43 pm ET

Regardless of any of our opinions of bullying, a childs life is gone, left behind is a family to mourn their loss. Then there are the 9 other families whose lives will forever be changed. So here are all these people affected emotionally and dealing with some type of loss.
Unfortunately, unless we use this tragedy as a motivator to stop bullying, it will not change anything.


C B Perrin   April 18th, 2010 9:44 pm ET

Consider the fact that some administrators at schools bully the teachers as well as the students. Bullying in the workplace is a problem. Don't expect those that bully others to take care of the problem in schools.
The root of the problem is not in the schools anyway, but in the home where parents or adults in control bully children. Bullies are made not born. Parents need to teach their children to show caring, love and respect.


xoxo rox   April 18th, 2010 9:47 pm ET

the funny thing about a bully is when you report them to a school monitor, they worry about their parents. they should mind their business. i was bullied for some dumb reasons but ive overcome it. should i discuss what they did? or about my middle school?


Tina Ward   April 18th, 2010 9:48 pm ET

Interesting that there are few to no comments from a bully. Do they not see themselves or are they embarressed or are they still bullying?


Sandy from Biloxi   April 18th, 2010 9:48 pm ET

MR BILL !
I am French and Indian thank you very much and it doesnt matter what blood I have. It gave no one the right to harm me. What might be your problem, Oh my my, you are one of the bullies we are talking about.


Helle Algreen   April 18th, 2010 9:54 pm ET

Many of these social problems are primarily an American phenomena. I, myself, am a Danish citizen and cannot understand how children are taught social- and coping skills. Yes, of course we do need to keep our students safe in our schools, but we also need to connect with them as adults. Too much supervision and intervention at an early age will, in my opinion, prevent young children to learn how to resolve problems and think critically. I think that parents often get too involved with their children's lives, and that can quickly become counter productive. In those cases, it's no longer about appropriate behaviours : it's about our children disassociating from reality and not recognising right from wrong. "Mom/Dad will alway fight my battle. I do not have to think about the consequence of my action".


Carrie   April 18th, 2010 10:00 pm ET

I am now 35 years old and still haunted by an incident in Jr. High. I was the victim of verbal bullying. If not but by the grace of God, I could have easily taken my own life at that time. I realize now how silly that would have been; however, am deeply disturbed by the faculty, staff, and parents in this situation. I do NOT believe that bullies are a direct result of home life. I do, however, believe that bullies are in constant competition to be popular. The more popular they feel or if their popularity is threatened, they will bully more. I know that my situation was many years ago, but the school did confront the parents of the children involved in my case and it only got worse for me. The parents didn't stop it. Whether or not they were able is unknown to me, but I certainly believe that parents should do EVERYTHING in their power to teach the harmful effects of bullying to their children.

It seems to me that parents just simply don't "parent" their children. Personally, that was the case. The parents I dealt with in my situation were too busy trying to befriend their children. Teachers simply turned their heads and said "I didn't see anything."

Regardless of the circumstances in this case, Phoebe obviously felt that her life was over whether or not she lived or died. And, that is the most disturbing piece to me. I've heard of schools implementing anti-bullying programs. I'm sorry, but what a joke. Bullying will not stop! We really just need to spend our energy letting these children know that their lives are worth something with or without those fellow students. I personally know how hard that would be, but that will be the only thing to prevent another incident such as this. Perhaps teaching a little prosocial behavior in the home and school would be a good idea. We, even as adults, are so busy looking out for No.1, we forget that we are teaching our children the same (by example).


xoxo rox   April 18th, 2010 10:07 pm ET

im not a bully but i was bullied. do opinions count?


Alex Armstrong   April 18th, 2010 10:11 pm ET

I was often bullied in school due to the way I dressed. I often get called gay because of it. But, I try not to pay attention to the idiots. But, occasionally it will get to me. I sometimes do still get bullied. As if school wasn't enough to deal with I have to go and put up with idiotic people all day. It sometimes goes as far as getting hit, pushed, & shoved into lockers. If you don't see eye to eye with everyone else or don't keep up with the latest fashions or dare speak your mind. You will get picked on for it. I mean getting asked if your gay around 15 times a day gets old. It bugs you. Giving the bully a detention will not help. Honestly, it makes it 10 times worse. Because, then you not only are labeled gay, you add the title snitch, tattle tale, or "narc" to your persona.


JULIE SILVEY   April 18th, 2010 10:12 pm ET

Geo just showed his pig ass opinion on TV. That comment about his echnicity moving if ever Sarah Palin became Prez was so atroscious,, Why did I bother watching? That's not comedy.

If you feel that way, please go to your homeland (not the U.S.)
How can George Lopez make all Latino's leave the country.
Is that a threat or a PROMISE?????? lol

I'm thinking threat. Cuz, you know bout welfare, right?
How can you do that?!?!

Stupid question?


Judie Ryan   April 18th, 2010 10:15 pm ET

My husband and I have a collective teaching experience of 20+ years. My daughter attends an upper to middle class, excellent rated school system. On my daughter's first day of school, I interceded when two k-level kids on their first day at school were beating a third boy with their book bags. I quickly discovered that there was not one adult {teacher or principal) available to do anything and didn't appear for some time. I broke the fight up and got the principal involved some time later because she wasn't around. Over the course of time at this school system, I observed bullying that was ignored in girl scouts which rose to the level of the group repeatedly slapping another scout. The adult leaders, one of whom was a first grade teacher, ignored and in my opinion even encouraged it. Another example of bullying occurred in the school cafeteria. A larger child threw a smaller child up against the wall so that she could cut in line. The cashier very obviously ignored what was happening. Since I was right there and couldn't ignore it, I sent the bully to the end of the line. But, one of the most offensive behavior on the part of the school is to tell the kids "Don't tattle." At the age, 5, when kids according to the Freudian stages of development, are testing the world to see if the rules they have learned apply to the world, the school undermines the parents, the child's moral development and self-esteem and trust in adults. The child at this school system is mistreated because he has been kicked, the aides and teachers tell them "Don't tattle." Evidently the school from the board and administration down want to get across the idea that "the school" ignores bullying and even physical abuse. They convey the rule that at this school do not bother to tell an adult that bullying, planned abuse, violence is occurring or is going to occur, because we don't care, but don't blame us if something like Columbine occurs. As outrageous as it seems, teachers often abandon kids (at our school up to 200 kids at a time–kindergarteners, first and second graders at inside recess.) This seems a disaster waiting to happen and yet most parents don't know it is even occuring. My daughter along with others were bullied by what I would call an emotionally disturbed third grade teacher who often dressed like a pole dancer with no reprimand from the administration. She punished 7 and 8 year old kids not for misbehavior, but for among other things, not signing their name on the upper right hand corner of the paper, even if the child was left handed and found it difficult to do so. From this teacher's bullying behavior, other students then learned how to bully and continued bullying those same students. I observed this kind of bullying from several other teachers, often choosing the most vulnerable students to humiliate in front of their peers. Although over the years, I and other parents have reported these examples of bullying to the administration, they again did nothing and ignored it. Public schools that ignore bullying behavior and set up policies like "No tattling." that in fact jeaporadize the safety of their students, should lose both their state and federal funding. And these schools wonder why they can't pass a levy!


Jackie   April 18th, 2010 10:40 pm ET

I was bullied in high school. I think that something serious needs to be done. Bill Cosby brought up the issue of how much money does it take to put these children in prison in regards to taxes. Well I'd like to know how much of our taxes are going towards keeping these sociopaths in our schools!

I think the answer should be complete expulsion from school if the child has a history of bullying. They should not be able to access public schooling, until it is proven they have gotten help and are mentally stable enough to be around students without bullying them.

It is unfair to the students who don't bully to have to put up with these types of monsters on a daily basis. If an adult worked at a job and was harassed, they could go to the boss and have it taken care of. For many students who are bullied they can go tell the dean over and over again and nothing will happen. Sociopaths, tend to be manipulative and know how to say what to a person in the right situation. I'm sure that there have been cases were bullies were pulled into the deans office, and claimed they were the ones being victimized. Maybe this is why bullying victims are blamed, or perhaps the schools just feel it's easier to tell the victim to change, then it is to get the bully to change. Considering that bullies tend to have bullying parents, who bully past the rules for their child.

So, it's simple the parent doesn't want to see their child behaves like a decent human being, let them figure out how to educate their child themselves. There needs to be a law, protecting students from bullying, one that expresses what I said earlier. Your child behaves like a sociopathic monster, then your child no longer has the right to public education.

I'm sure some people might say, "Oh well if the child isn't educated they'll become a criminal or go to jail!", it seems clear to me that with the mindset bullies have, they're already on their way to prison. The only issue is how many innocent students souls they will take their with them.

I also would like to mention, as a person who was in Special Ed having Asperger's Syndrome. That it is unethical to put bullies in Special Ed under the claim they have a behaviorial disorder, not to say everyone with a behaviorial disorder is a bully. However, like I said earlier in regards to bullying parents, I wouldn't be surprised if schools thought it's easier to tell them their poor little baby is troubled, then making them face that they have a monster living with them.

Putting bullies in Special Ed is giving them the perfect grounds for finding a victim. Special Ed students are more vulnerable to being bullied, and should be protected from bullies. My bully was in Special Ed, under the claim he had a behaviorial disorder. That's nonsense! He was a sociopathic student, who made me his victim. Meanwhile I'm told I don't understand social cues. I don't understand social cues? I'm not the one going around hurting others for fun! How am I the one misunderstanding things?

Well, after awhile of them telling me I have a problem understanding social cues, without teaching me what I'm not understanding. I became a bully, because nobody would defend me. I had to frighten the other students away from me, just so I could be left alone. I kept being told I didn't understand social cues, no matter how well I did at my schoolwork.

I went to a high school that felt being social was more important then having an education. I'm afraid that this may be a problem in more schools than just mine. A friend of mine said based on my experience, that they felt my school environment was similar to Columbine's That the students who excelled socially got perks, and the students who didn't despite doing well in school, were shunned.

With an environment like this is it any wonder there would be bullying? Perhaps we need to stop taking time out of class for "social time" and making school like it used to be. You do well at your schoolwork, or you fail. None of this instilled bias, and believe me I have heard stories about teachers who hold a bias against certain students. Typically those considered Emo, Goth or Punk, at least from what I'm aware of.

We need to make teachers aware that you cannot tell who a student is by the clothes they wear. There has been a stereotype, thanks to Columbine, that Emo, Goths, or Punks are more likely to be bullies. They tend to be more likely to be the students who are bullied, and are depressed or with low-self esteem. Not always the case, but in some cases it is, it was for me. I considered myself a Goth in high school. There's more a likelyhood for the popular students to be bullies either to, keep their status amongst the social hiearchy, or because their friends convince them it's cool to pick on the losers.

Also I've had friends in high school who were harassed by the faculty for being Goth or Punk, I don't think Emo was really established when I was in high school. So not only did they fear their bullies, they had to fear being persecuted by ignorant teachers who felt something was inherently wrong with them just for wearing black. Upsetting an already upset and depressed teenager, is not a good idea.

Another thing I ran into is that I didn't need psychatric help because I was getting good grades. I was self harming and crying every day, and I did not get the help I needed because I was getting good grades. Could someone explain to me how this makes any sense, that I was punished for doing well in school? Or that I wasn't diagnosed as depressed, while wearing all black, considering myself Goth, and being a huge fan of Marilyn Manson on top of the self harming. Wouldn't that be like a huge red flag saying, "Hey I think this student over here is depressed! Helllooo!"

I'm sorry this got so long, it's just whenever this issue is brought up, and it seems to be being brought up a lot lately. I want to make sure my views on it are heard, in hopes that this will not continue. I fully believe that there is no reason at all that students should be sent to a place, where they have to fear for their sanity. If a students bullies more than once, I'm not all about the zero-tolerance thing, because bullying is a tricky he said she said complicated sort of thing. They should be no longer permitted to receive education at that school. This happens enough, the parents will realize they have to raise their children to be decent human beings, if they want them to get an education.

What I'm trying to say is education perhaps shouldn't be a right, but it should be available to those who earn it by behaving and not harming others.


i_love_cats   April 19th, 2010 12:15 am ET

i was bullied for many years. it was verbal, and it was emotionally damaging. bullying should be a crime. also, i was never bullied over the internet. it often happened right in the classroom


Teacher   April 19th, 2010 12:16 am ET

Bill Cosby has made some great points, however he needs to understand that there ARE teachers who try their best and absolutely nothing gets done about it. For instance, bullying reports are filled out, proper documentation is completed and it is up to the principal to submit the bullying reports. My point is that Mr. Cosby is doing a wonderful thing raising awareness regarding bullying, however he truely needs to come into the school system to see, firsthand, how it functions.


jen   April 19th, 2010 12:17 am ET

Yes- I was bullied in middle school & high school... mostly verbal and social bullying by members of my supposed "friends" in my social group...
As a teacher now myself, I want Mr. Cosby to know that yes, as adults in the school system, we should recognize bullying when we see it... but keep in mind that the bully is very good at hiding the bullying and harassment from the teachers... he/she knows when to do it without getting caught... it is very difficult to address bullying sometimes when we can't see it...
Technology has enhanced the bully's weapons... cell phones, computers, etc. allow the bully to attack 24 hours a day...
Finally, it is important to remember parents play a large role in this... many times the parent of a bully is made aware of his/her child's actions, only to dismiss it or acknowledge the behavior and condone it... when will we hold the parents responsible just like you suggest we hold teachers accountable?


Kim   April 19th, 2010 12:18 am ET

I too had a son that had a difficult time in school, and Feel that teachers and coaches unknowingly set these children up for bullying. When you pick teams on football or any other sport team , like A-team or B teams in football, or maybe you bench them because of their size it sets them up to be bullied by kids that think they are better. Perhaps when a teacher calls on a student in the class for not having their work, instead of talking to them quietly one on one, that also lets students tease them. It is Teachers and Coaches responsibility to treat students all the same and give ALL of them confidence.


Minda Krawitz   April 19th, 2010 12:19 am ET

I was bullied PLENTY. But Bill Cosby and that woman he's with – they forget to say you get bullied because you have a DISABILITY!!! If people see something wrong with you, whether you can't keep up with the other students, you're a TARGET! It's even worse TODAY!


Marietta Reed   April 19th, 2010 12:20 am ET

I was the victim of bullying for fifteen years at work. I was called names, threatened with a gun, my work was sabotaged, my clothes were urinated on, they called my home and threatened to burn it down, they flattened my tires. It was non-stop. I went to GM management to complain, but I was told, there was nothing they could do to stop it. Then after a GM exec threatened a subordinate with a knife, I reported the incident to Detroit. I was removed from my job, transferred to another dept. – then run down by a towmotor. I did everything I knew to stop the bullying, but whistle blowers are NOT protected. So, we not only have to do what we can to stop bullying – we have to protect the whistle-blowers. I went from $127,000.00 a year to making $20,000.00 because I spoke out against bullying.


Billy Rogers   April 19th, 2010 12:26 am ET

What is so sad is that there are people who DON'T believe that bullying happens. There was a kid here, in Anniston, Alabama, that hanged himself because he was being bullied. He was 13 years old. Immediately after the kid killed himself, the police chief said that his investigation reveal no bullying, or gang activity, in the Anniston School system. The superintendant of the schools said there would be a "complete investigation" into the matter. Well, after her "complete investigation", it was determined that there was no bullying that led to the young man's suicide. All of that, to me, was appalling!

1. For the police chief to say there was no evidence of gang activity, or bullying, in the school system, is disgusting on every level. There isn't a school system in America that has no "gang" activity. Especially public schools.

2. The young man, and his parents, and his grandmother, reported, reported, for the better part of a year, that he was being bullied. There was no investigation done. His parents requested that he be transferred out of the class, and the school refused to.

3. For the police chief to posture on the side of the school, without doing an investigation, was irresponsible, and sent a very dangerous message to the community that it was the city agencies that were going to be "protected, and served".

This led to all kinds of rumors of abuse, neglect, and someone even suggested that the kid's father hanged him! The insensitivity and callousness that our society shows is scary.


Minda Krawitz   April 19th, 2010 12:27 am ET

When I was in the first grade, I got made fun of and ostracized by a black man who worked as a janitor at the Morey Annex School, just because I was turned around in my seat in the cafeteria during lunch. He made me stand up in front of everyone and I wore leg braces because my legs were crooked. Everyone in the cafeteria laughed at me. I was so horrified, I couldn't tell my parents what had happened to me because I thought it was my fault and thought I did something wrong. I was already being made fun of because I was learning disabled, too. I couldn't tell my parents until I was an adult.

People will bully you if you have a DISABILITY, and it doesn't stop EVEN AFTER YOU'VE BECOME AN ADULT!!!! I got made fun of terribly when I was in College at East Stroudsburg University because I was different. You would think once you become an adult things would get better??? That's not true. It's the SAME. They just do different things maybe, but you're still picked on and singled out!


Lynette   April 19th, 2010 12:38 am ET

Dr Bill Cosby you need a reality check. These teachers and administrators know exactly know what is going on. These so called educated adults sit by and watch. Some of them laugh and enjoy seeing a group of kids mistreat another child. And you want to know how I know that? I was the mistreated child and I did not conform. I did not run with the "wolf pack". From kindergarden to 12th grade I was persecuted daily. I had rumors spread around about me especially rumors of a sexual nature. The main bully I took her to court and was made to apologize to her. And she went back to bullying and I would not speak to her. So I was considered mean spirited. I was also raped before I graduated based on the sexual rumors. There were girls and guys who were mad at me because I was a virgin. One teacher that heard these nasty rumors told me he knew all about me. So he began to proposition me. Rather than be an adult and try to help me. Yes bullying is a hate crime. Now that I am older and I look back all of the kids that made fun of me and made my life a living hell. All of them had problems at home. Parents need to be made responsible for the actions of their children. And stop punishing the victims. Bullies do what they do because no will bother them. Bullies hate children who possess something they don't. Bullies are full of hatred and jealousy. And the child that is the target is a mirror for the bully. That child makes the bully see everything that is wrong with them.


Miriam   April 19th, 2010 12:40 am ET

I was bullied mercilessly by both the boys and girls in Elementary and Junior High school. In High School I was only bullied by a few people.

I had a very high self esteem, was nerdy, and a girl that went through puberty early. I also had a strong home support system, but since both of my parents had been victims of bullies and never learned how to not be bullied, they couldn't figure out how to help me.

I eventually learned a few techniques to deal with bullying.

1) Travel in packs with friends from class to class and going home.
2) Befriend all the other weirdos and people who get bullied. Help each other out so that the bully is outnumbered.
3) Learn to make jokes about yourself (if the cause of your bullying is perceived self pride). If you make the jokes about yourself before the bully does it defuses the material they have available to hurt you with (if using words).
4) If the bullying is physical, get your parents to take you to self defense classes or sign up for Track & Field (so you are better at running away from the bully).

I didn't deal with Cyber Bullying until I was an adult. Similar rules apply though. If someone is harrassing you through a social media, have your friends join the social media and be supportive. Numbers still matter in preventing bullying.


Diana Prine   April 19th, 2010 12:48 am ET

I was bullied from middle of 3rd grade on till high school why because i was shy and backwards i would not be in clicks smoke or do drugs There was a ranch drum farm abused boys who went to our elementary school and they picked on other kids especially me it seemed tripped me in hallways hit me on the head with there school books name calling continuously they would steal my stuff and throw it around on the bus i hated the bus everyday made me sick at my stomach my best friend came to my rescue until she left for 7th and 8 th grade not only that i had a sick mom who i got abused from her its not the internet its parents and the social economy , dont u think parents bully on the baseball fields football hockey if you have the money you have the power and control to do what you wantt school was the worse for me i hated it i hated to come home too but God had to be with me I had a second grader who had my hair pulled so tight i couldnt get away and my head the bus driver didnt do nothing nor the principle i was in 5th he was in 2nd the whole bus cheered for him i was in tears I did graduate and my friend Judy remembers it too she even did a couple things i never forgot i always had to be on guard parents allow it kids will too there will be a major social division worse than now and its very sad


TaNasha   April 19th, 2010 12:50 am ET

YES this is a big problem! I am going through this now with my daughters school but wit a unlicensed student teacher. The student teacher was left alone with her in the class and as she was attempting to leave the class to go to lunch he asked her where was she going. When she replied that she was going to lunch he said that she had to clean up a mess that was on the table. She explained to him that this belonged to another child and he blocked the door way insisting that she had to clean the table. My daughter became fearful, started to cry, and stated to him that he was making her afraid and he continued to stand there and insisted that she clean up the mess. She said she went back to clean the table and when she observed that he was no longer at the door she dropped whatever she was cleaning and ran out the class. I followed up and reported this to the administration and although they took his statement and my daughters they informed me that 'it was not enough" for them to move him to another class and that I should consider that this was about HIS career. I was outraged and reported this to the Board of Education. The superintendent of the sch informed me that she could not come into the sch and tell the principle how to run her school. When I went to file a police report although they (police) allowed me to file the report but the sergaent took the complaint back as I was leaving. He told me that this was a school matter and that if the student teacher did this AGAIN then I could come back and file a report. To see the look in my daughters eyes as she told and reinacted this story out to me is heart breaking. Her nights has been restless and she speaks about what will happen, will she have to go back into this class..... I am very afraid to take my daughter back to this school tomorrow because they are cleary going to try to force me to put her back into this class with this man.... I feel such a sadness with this situation. I dont understand how people could think these situations (esp. as they are starting) as smaill ones. At a lost.....


Jill   April 19th, 2010 12:56 am ET

I was verbally bullied from 4th grade thru 9th grade in front of teachers, bus drivers and playground supervisors. I did not respond because I was taught by my mom that they would stop if I ignored it. No adults ever said one single word to the other students on my behalf. This was in 1969-71. When I broke down and cried in class, the teacher refurred me to a psychologist. The psychologist called me out during class once a week (which furthered the heckling from students). Still no adults intervened when the other students made jokes about me. Finally one day I openly punched a girl in the hallway before class. We were both suspended. My record was cleared even though I started the physical fight.


Jill   April 19th, 2010 1:12 am ET

I believe the Howard University commentator gave textbook answers. She spoke nothing about kids who bully purely for social gain. I don't believe that all the kids who bullied me were in a sense bullied by their parents.


Anonymous   April 19th, 2010 1:52 am ET

I was bullied in 8th grade, but what I didn't know at the time is that it crossed the line into illegal actions. There was a boy who would get behind me as I entered the crowded intersection in our school and use the opportunity to grope my buttocks and breasts. I was sexually assaulted in this way daily for many months. The pack of friends this boy associated with made up lies about my having sex with this boy and others and spread it around the school. For months I was called a slut, a whore, a hoe, and other similar names by the other girls in the hallways between classes every class change. The boys would come up to me at lunch, a group of about 6 of them would surround me and just start calling me names and saying that I did "it" with someone or another and I wanted to do "it" with someone else. Then they would threaten to come to my house and rape me. After school they would wait for me to leave and then follow me as I walked home making threats and saying more things intended to hurt me. One day they took the freshly cut grass at the school and threw it on me. Six boys did this. There wasn't any way to fight back. They would make lewd comments in class in front of the teachers. They would call me names in class and make disparaging remarks in front of teachers. I once asked one of my teachers why she let them get away with it. She said there was nothing she could do, their parents were so convinced they were perfect angels the parents would have anyone fired that so much as implied their children had done anything wrong. Then they started calling me nightly. They would ask for me by name and when I came to the phone they would say things like "I know where you live and I am going to come rape you tonight." or "You know you want it. You might say you don't but I know you do so I am going to come rape you." My parents eventually changed our number. I went to a counselor once with the problem. She told me in no uncertain terms that it was my fault all this was happening because I hadn't tried to fit in hard enough. That confirmed my worst fears that I was somehow responsible for the treatment I was receiving. After that I made sure my parents didn't know what was going on because I didn't want them to be disappointed in me. However, I did tell my Mom that I would not, under any circumstances, be returning to that school next year so she could arrange to special transfer me out of district now. That was how I got through the year. I knew I was going somewhere else the next year and I just kept that in mind all the time. I have this to say to parents: If a child gives you any hint that they are being bullied at school REMOVE THEM FROM THE SCHOOL IMMEDIATELY. There is time to figure out exactly what went on later, but DO NOT leave your child in the situation. The damage that can be done, even if your child doesn't doesn't decide to end it all, is significant and substantial. I can't emphasize that enough. It is not about working through a situation among children, it is about what could be occurring that is very adult and entirely criminal. REMOVE YOUR CHILD and make sure you have the ENTIRE story before you insist they return.


Joe   April 19th, 2010 3:09 am ET

I was bullied all through my childhood. I was a quiet, overweight child who made for an easy target. Even now at 40 years old I still see the bullying occuring among my peers. However it now takes on the form of marriage equality, political views, etc. where entire groups of our population are placed at a lower level by those of the "in" crowd.

Until the adults can learn to respect each other amongst all our differences, how can we expect the children to do any different?


TexasMom   April 19th, 2010 3:17 am ET

My son was bullied verbally from almost the beginning of the school year at a well known charter school. Months of seeing a change in him, becoming more internal and sad, I decided to wait and see what happened after Christmas break. I spoke to staff at the school and nothing really was done. I decided to take him out and home school. Two months later as the story on a girl hanging herself due to bullying, he told me that he had been that sad and had thought of doing that too. There was never any moment in my life where I felt such terror or grief at the thought that maybe I would have missed it and not have my son in my life. My stomach aches now as I write this. I am begging that parents who see a change, no matter how small, talk to them. If you dismiss their feelings, you never know what the outcome would be. I am so blessed to still have my son and grateful we have a close relationship that he would confide in me. I do think the schools need to do more, but ultimately, the parents need to pick up on those signs too. Because I am home on disability, I was able to homeschool. Not all parents have that choice. I pray that the news keeps this out there and parents catch the warning signs either if they have a child who is bullied, the teacher who witness's the action and dismisses it. Talk, talk, talk to you child and REACT if they need help.


John Briscoe   April 19th, 2010 5:35 am ET

Hello Dodie

thank you for the answer to my earlier question .

Regards

John


tester   April 19th, 2010 5:45 am ET

C'mon larry, is it that hard to find interesting guests these days?

Cosby's as stupid and full of himself as ever.

Someone needs to tell lopez that generally when he laughs at all his own jokes, he's the only one laughing. Not funny at all. You can even see the fear in his eyes-he knows his show's going to bomb. Who thinks this idiot's funny? How did this fool even get on TV?

You want someone funny, get sarah silverman, or cathy griffin, or stephanie miller.


PROF Dave W. Dawson   April 19th, 2010 6:45 am ET

I was bullied quite a few times.
I was a loner too so I had to stand my ground "on my own".
God was always there.
And the words needed in "battle" were always there.
And those that did bully me are no longer any threat.
Don't you just wish I was American?
I get the strangest haunting that I must prove myself even more against the meanest & nastiest before I venture towards Opportunity in America.
Have a nicer day America.
Regards,
Dave a law-abiding citizen.


donald jackson   April 19th, 2010 11:16 am ET

Hey guy's i just wanted to say thanks for bringing for shining a light on how bad bullying has gotten over the years i was bullied as a child at let me tell you it's know fun and i do agree that tv has made thing worse , i call these punks tv babies who go a round beating up and bullying people , with that in mind let me tell you about a website i saw the other day,it's a site that i think promotes bullying it's called [bloggin4bulies.com] and the site is for bullies to talk about how they bully people and push people around they talk about beating up co- workers and all sorts of crazy things ,however i will give them credit for one thing they have an open format if you've ever been bullied you can speak out , so i'm asking everyone who read's this comment to go to blogging4bullies.com] and speak out ,then maybe the jerk,s that post on that site will begin to understand bullying people is not right


B. Rios   April 19th, 2010 11:44 am ET

We keep hearing on the news about all the people stranded in Europe and other countries, but i have not heard of anyone talk about all the military personnel stranded and the families waiting for them to come home. Is the Military doing anything to bring them home or let their families know what is going on. Why is everyone else trying to get an alternate route, but not the military all the planes and ships they have and no one is doing a thing about it.


ann   April 19th, 2010 2:27 pm ET

I am so thankful for the attention this serious issue is finally getting. In October 2006 my beloved 21 year old son died by suicide. He wrote that the bullying he endured in school left him "with no self esteem and feeling like a loser". There are no words for the unspeakable pain our family has been through as a result of this tragedy. I have spent the years since my son's passing learning as much as i can about bullying, it's causes and how to prevent it. Bullying prevention is also crime prevention, dropout prevention, substance abuse prevention, suicide prevention. The effective bullying prevention programs help kids feel more connected to each other and to school. When kids feel safe and valued they are better able to learn and succeed not only in school but in life. I am very hopeful that we can create schools and communities where kids feel safe, cared about and valued!


Dr. Keri   April 19th, 2010 4:00 pm ET

http://bullyingstories2010.blogspot.com/

These stories are heart wrenching!

Come make a difference in the lives of other families going through bullying by sharing your personal story about bullying.

I completed my dissertation on bullying and I want to hear your stories. Please take the time to come share with other people.

Dr. Keri


Dodie   April 19th, 2010 4:20 pm ET

@ John Briscoe

I don't know if I would call that an answer, but I certainly have a good time with saying it.

It is my way of saying... why not go along with the rest of the world.. Why must we be different!


Cajazz76:24:8   April 19th, 2010 4:30 pm ET

Why do some perceive George Lopez as a threat? He isn't running for the office of president. When was the last time we had a comedian as a U.S.
president? Oh yea, how soon we forget...George was both a clown and a threat...and a two term president and elected twice as governor. Lopez you are now scaring the HELL out of me...but you still make me laugh.


Dr. Keri   April 19th, 2010 4:44 pm ET

"Bullying prevention is also crime prevention, dropout prevention, substance abuse prevention, suicide prevention." Ann, I think you have hit something big here. We know from research that bullies are more likely to in jail by the age of 25 than people who do not bully others.

Albert Einstien defined insanity as doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

How do we create lasting change?


xoxo rox   April 19th, 2010 5:19 pm ET

i was bullied in school but i overcame it.
elementary: because i was overweight, taller than everybody in class, and prettier than the other girls in class. i was asked to meet them behind a building one day but i didnt and ducked when i saw them before my car turned the corner. they were gone for 3 weeks and i heard others talking that they are bruised.

middle school: it wasnt directed towards me but with everyone, it was if you had holy socks or clothes that cannot help you conform. i didnt go to school the morning the bomb was supposed to explode and kill because i was told by the victims and then i told grandpa.


Diane   April 19th, 2010 8:12 pm ET

My daughter is a special ed student and after suffering 3 years of bullying she is on psychiatric medication and called a "froot loop" by the principle and teachers. I have been to the school too many times to count trying to get them to listen but each time we are the ones who are looked at as the bullies. I have had DSS in my home and therapists trying to find a reason to blame us for everything that happens. When the therapists found nothing wrong in our home we were called liars by the principle and the teachers who claimed they saw nothing and that my daughter is making things up in her mind. My daughter has no one to turn to who will listen to her. Last week my daughter was sexually assaulted while the teacher said she was out of the room for a moment. My daughter did not report the attack, thank God some girls wittnessed the attack and reported it. My daughter was scratched and groped and grabbed and her clothes were torn. I asked her why she did not report what happened and she told me it has been going on everyday and she was scared and no one would believe her. This boy is a regular student and he was suspended for 10 days. He is sending threats through his friends that my daughter will pay for this.I just don't understand! How far do things have to go before anyone will help us? I am so afraid that one morning I am going to find my daughter dead. She is not safe at school and her mental health is really suffering.


Candy   April 19th, 2010 11:29 pm ET

I was teased as a child in school. It was horrible. My father was military and we would move from place to place. I was always the new kid in class. The boys would always hit on me and the girls hated me. I hated school.

I tried suicide twice but was not even able to carry that out correctly! As an adult, it has left me not trusting of others. I am currently working on making changes in my life. Women still do not trust me and their husbands are always hitting on me. I just try to stay as far away as I can from married couples.


xoxo rox   April 20th, 2010 12:14 am ET

can you teach a bully a lesson by hitting back? it worked for me. then both her parents said to me and my family, "you are the reason she is like this!' then they got deployed and never saw them again. its like she had two personalities because she was an angel with her parents and you know the other side when they werent there.


xoxo rox   April 20th, 2010 12:36 am ET

@john. yes ive read lord of the flies and its good. the movie was boring though.


xoxo rox   April 20th, 2010 6:54 pm ET

more like teasing than bullying. sorry.


xoxo rox   April 21st, 2010 12:48 am ET

I went onto aol and found this on how to get kids to talk about bullies.

Children are literally being bullied to death.

There's even a word for it now: Bullycide.

But it's more than a word to Dr. Michele Borba, an educational psychologist who has written 23 books on parenting. It's a picture of an 11-year-old Canadian boy she keeps in her pocket.

He never made it to 12. Hounded by bullies, he killed himself, and his father gave Borba the photo after she gave a lecture on bullying. Borba, whose latest book is "The Big Book of Parenting Solutions," tells ParentDish she keeps the photo with her to remind herself she is talking about the lives - and possibly the deaths - of real children.

One in three children between grades six and 10 are involved in bullying as either victim or bully, according to Cox News. That's one reason Congress is considering the Safe Schools Improvement Act - a federal bill that would give school staffers training on bullying issues.

Parents can help, but what if they don't know their children are being bullied?

A mother on the East Coast, who asked not to be identified for fear of her son's safety, tells ParentDish she noticed her 9-year-old's grades slipping. He frequently became ill and asked to stay home from school.

Yet he said nothing was wrong.

Something was wrong, of course. He never said anything because he was big for his age. In fact, that was both the reason he was being picked on and the reason he didn't want to say anything.

"He was told time and again: 'You're a big kid. How could these smaller kids begin picking on you?'" his mother says.

No story is typical, Borba says, but this mother's situation is very, very familiar.

One of the main reasons kids don't report bullying is humiliation. Younger kids often report bullying, Borba says, but older kids are embarrassed and fear retaliation.

The mother of the 9-year-old says parents who try to help often make things worse by applying adult solutions to the child's world.

"The kid world is not the same as the adult world," she says. "The child world is a jungle, and adults don't understand the jungle."

Plus, Borba says, parents often try to fix the problem with a few quick sentences.

"The stuff we're telling them isn't working," she says.

What parents need to do is recognize that bullying is a crime, Borba says.

As such, she says, it needs to be thoroughly investigated, and you need to be a detective.

"You have to play Columbo," Borba says.

First, you have to identify the problem. Kids who are being bullied often have similar symptoms, Borba says, which include:

Unexplained physical marks, cuts, bruises and scrapes or torn clothing A fear of being left alone or going to school, riding the school bus Only using the bathroom at home Headaches, stomach aches, frequent visits to the school nurse's office Increased hunger (a possible sign his or her lunch money has been stolen) Once you've determined your child is being bullied, Borba says, you need to get him or her to talk about it. But don't just ask them straight out what's happening, she advises.

Ease into it slowly with statements such as, "Wow. A lot of kids are being bullied these days. Are you seeing any of that at your school?"

Borba suggests watching movies such as "Mean Girls" or "Dumbo" where characters are bullied as a possible springboard to discussion. The important thing, she says, is not to confront the child.

"You're giving him an out," she says.

Once the crime has been exposed, Borba says, it's time for more detective work. She calls it learning the three Ws and an H. Where did it happen? When did it happen? Who did it it? How did you deal with it?

Armed with this information, Borba says, you can create a case profile and better advise your child and work with school officials to end the bullying.

One of the best things you can tell your child, she adds, is to look bullies in the eye.

Researchers at the University of Toronto did a study on bullying to find out who are the most likely targets. Bullies will pick on just about any mental or physical difference they can pinpoint, Borba says, but researchers uncovered an interesting fact.

No matter the child's difference, bullies were less likely to pick on kids who looked them in the eye.

For parents, Borba advises them to befriend their children's friends to learn more about what's going on beyond an adult's field of vision. And above all, she says, let kids know they are not to blame for being victims.

There are 10 magic words when it comes to talking to the victims of bullies, she says: "I want you to know you didn't do anything wrong."


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