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Recently, I was reading the Songs of Innocence and Experience written by William Black, specifically the Songs of Innocence – The Little Black Boy. This is a poem about a little black boy who will soon be sent to England to become a slave. This poem made me think about all the issues that impact children around the world. One that has always been close to me is bullying, so that is what I will be writing to you about today. From my point of view, there are two different types of bullying; these are real world (verbal and physical) and cyber (internet and other forms of communication).
The first topic I will be covering is real world bullying. This involves face to face verbal discrimination and physical assault. I have heard the saying “sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me” thousands of times over the years. But I believe that this is completely false. Offensive words, phrases, comments and remarks can be far more hurtful than the simple shove to the ground. Words like “fat” and “useless” can cause children to develop a lot of self-doubt, insecurity and depression. This, from what I have personally witnessed happens a great deal more than physical violence as a form of bullying. Though, that isn’t to say bodily abuse doesn’t occur frequently. This can also cause children to generate insecurity about their physical capabilities if they are constantly being dominated in this way.
As well as real world bullying, there is also cyber bullying. This includes insults, name calling, and other hurtful comments of slurs used over the internet or other means of technological communication. Platforms like Facebook Messenger, Snapchat, Instagram and WhatsApp are all places where cyber bullying occurs. On sites such as these, people can also make public posts to be viewed by their ‘friends’ where they can quite easily start rumours or just abuse specific people. This is just one of many ways in which children get bullied.
A study done by Victoria State Government – Department of Education and Training explains that bullying impacts four group; the victims, the bullies, the bystanders and the school as a whole. It finds that bullying causes the victim to display high levels of emotion and vulnerability and/or develop anywhere from minor to extreme cases of low self-esteem, depression, anxiety, loneliness and isolation which can eventually lead to substance abuse and in the worst cases death. However the perpetrator usually feels disconnected from school, gets into a lot of fights and have an increased likelihood of theft, violent behaviour and binge drinking. I 100% agree with these statements, as they describe how greatly bullying can impact people’s lives.
In conclusion, bullying is something that affects children all over the world and not much is being done to stop it. One simple way to stop bullying is to teach kids to stand up for themselves, doing this will make them feel empowered and make the bully back off. Also, teaching kids to defend themselves and fight back. If a child is attacked, they can’t just run away. They need to know how to defend themselves otherwise they’ll just get beaten up.
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