You want to know what happens when schools, parents, and communities don’t do anything about bullying? One of three things:
1. The victim to the bullying endures horrible physical, emotional, and/or mental suffering;
2. The victim to the bullying either goes on shooting rampages or commits suicide, as we’ve sadly learned, or rather, finally acknowledged this year; and,
3. The victim to the bullying fights back, because no one else protects him, only to face punishment.
Which brings me to the story of a 16-year-old Australian boy who rightly deserves to trump Justin Bieber as the new teen dream.
So, for anyone, young or older than 16 (because apparently that’s what makes you old these days), if you’ve ever been bullied, allow me to introduce you to your new hero:
Casey had been tormented every day of his short high school life. And after years of bullying, he snapped – both literally and figuratively.
In a video [seen here] that has now gone viral, the besieged kid gets taunted and punched in the face by a scrawny bully, while other students laugh and videotape the incident. Still, Casey impressively keeps his cool.
But, after more hits and jeers, he can take no more, and Casey lifts the piece of dreck antagonizer and smashes him down onto the concrete face first. (Well, some may say smash, others may cheer body slam.)
It could have been a Rice Krispies’ commercial with all those snaps, crackles, and pops.
Clearly, and audibly, the bully was hurt, especially when his leg connected with the wood bench on the way day. There are no reports to be found on his condition, but you can see in the video he appeared to be injured. (And, below, in the alleged picture of him, on crutches.)
A story in the Sydney Morning Herald stresses that this video may encourage more acts of bullying. The paper quotes a bullying expert as saying that rather than acting as a warning about the dangers of bullying, the video was ''allowing people to revel in a violent spectacle.”
It’s not violent spectacle in which people revelled however. People revelled in the fact that somebody, at long last, addressed a bully. Somebody stood up to (and smacked down) a bully when nobody around him would help.
It’s not the act of violence that appeals to us, because the only act of violence in this video came from the snotnose concrete sniffer. It’s the act of self-defence, and self-empowerment that appeals to us, because it is so rare.
Casey got suspended for his actions, and may face criminal charges. Criminal?
Criminal is the kid who picked on him and how he was apparently not punished at first (well, by anyone other than Casey), but since has (only) been suspended as well.
“Casey the Punisher” is a fan page on Facebook – one of many odes to the unofficial anti-bullying poster boy. Until the bully was also suspended, comments were littered with outcry over the “unfair” punishment.
Still, almost every person who has voiced his or her opinion is upset and argues that Casey shouldn’t be disciplined at all.
By punishing the victim it suggests he is at fault, and sends a message of fear to other victims. If you report a bully, you get in trouble. If you defend yourself against a bully, you get in trouble.
Statistics don’t show the whole story, and do vary from country to country, but according to bullyingstatistics.org, about 50 per cent of middle school students have been bullied. And about 25 per cent of students overall experience this on an everyday basis.
And what are we doing to stop this? Punishing victims?
Who are we trying to scare?
And why is that Casey got bullied – for years? Teachers never noticed? Nobody ever knew?
If Casey had not fought back, he would have been forced to endure more bullying – more fights. If the kid would never have bullied Casey there would never have been any fight.
Today, the future WWE star is laying low. A friend of the family says they don’t want any further publicity from this. At a time when the most well-known faces of bullied victims are dead ones, this is unfortunate.
Because Casey Heynes has brought a new face to bullying – an about face.
3/15/2011 12:45:41 pm
names of some famous bullies,HITLER,POL POT,MAO,ALL PRESENT DAY ARAB LEADERS,AHMADINEJAD,AYATOLLAH COLA KHOMEINI,UN HUMAN RIGHTS COMMISSION,HUGO CHAVEZ,THE GUARDIAN NEWSPAPER AND THEIR IDIOTIC HYPOCRITICAL FOLLOWERS,THOMAS FREEDMAN,HILLARY CLINTON,VLADY PUTIN,THE NEW YORK TIMES,MUGABE.GET THE MESSAGE.
3/15/2011 12:51:08 pm
Hi Dahlia,Thank you for the article you wrote.The bullies of today become the thugs of tomorrow.Of course all the so called do gooders like to make victims out of the victims.They are the true criminals.
3/16/2011 12:16:33 am
you need an editor.
3/16/2011 04:11:32 am
I’m on the fence about this one. I’m glad the kid stood up for himself, but ultimately his only way out was violence. I personally think that part of the reason the video was such a hit was because of the forceful slam. The same way that people like fights in hockey, crashes in Nascar and like to look at car accidents on the side of the road.
3/16/2011 04:49:30 am
brilliant. kudo's to the man that had the backbone to stand up to his bully. growing up, i never did. i never stood up to any of my bullies. and where did it get me? in mental duress. i formed a severe eating disorder. have been in and out of rehab centers, treatments. lost friends, relationships. hurt everyone i loved. ruined myself. all because i didn't stand up for myself and believed the belitting the children said to me day in and day out. believed the screen name MeggoIsFat. believed when they told me that if i stopped eating my stomach would eat itself. no, violence of any sort is not the answer. but in times of need, when no one is willing to support you. help you. believe you. stand their by your side when you are being harassed. a person has a right to self defend. verbally. or in this case, physically. because i believe it was the bully, who threw the first of many unwarranted punches.
Eliad: I think that experience may influence to which side you sway. Growing up being bullied, and growing the sister of a two brothers who were physically bullied - to a serious extreme, I am 100% in favour of how Casey handled his situation. In his situation, and understanding his history, it was the right thing to do.
9/28/2012 04:36:14 am
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