Saturday, March 24, 2012

Chicken Soup with the mathematics of bullying...

In the six years between graduating from high school and enlisting in the military I operated a motor vehicle after drinking more than the legal limit of alcohol pretty much every Friday and Saturday night. That translates into about 1200 individual incidents of DWI. At the time, all of my friends and millions of our young adult peers behaved in a similar manner. Here's the important question:

Why did I (and all of those millions) not crash into something?

During my early adulthood a small minority of drunk drivers crashed into something, but most of them got away with it. Imagine if American culture promoted the idea that drunk driving was harmless based upon the fact that most of the time, no one is killed.

That's how American culture treats bullying.

It's common to hear that school shooters (Columbine, etc.) were bullied prior to becoming homicidal. It's also common for the voices of sanity to be overwhelmed by a chorus of voices reminding us that most of the time bullying does not precipitate homicidal behavior.

Here's the question:

Drunk driving was always illegal, but it only became socially unacceptable after it caused a sufficient degree of death, property damage, and human suffering. What degree of death, property damage, and human suffering will be deemed sufficient to correct the American public's opinion about the harmlessness and acceptability of bullying?

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