Sunday, October 05, 2014

How to end bullying: legalize retribution

A recent news item from the land of insanity and perfect tea caught my eye:

A court heard how after two girls called Walker Harry Potter, he snapped, stabbing one of them in the face so hard that the blade of his vegetable knife broke.

Walker then pushed the other girl's head into a nearby fence and shouted: ‘Die, die’.

He claimed he launched the ferocious attacks in Southampton, Hampshire, after being goaded repeatedly by the girls who called him Potter.

As far as anyone who is sane is concerned, this guy did nothing wrong. They bullied him and the school and authorities did nothing, thus he fixed the situation by injuring the injurers.

The authorities then swooped in and seized him and punished him, but this makes no sense. He was not acting on his own here; they began the assault with social mockery. This is damaging to individuals. He stopped the damage.

Even more, we should look at this on a social scale. All of our anti-bullying programs have failed. Not just a little, but utterly failed to achieve anything. We are incentivizing bullying by protecting bullies and persecuting those who defend themselves against them.

"Sticks and stones..." -- no. Social mockery is destructive and causes extreme emotional trauma. If we are serious about stopping bullying, legalize retribution. Bullies will know they are no longer protected and will think more carefully, and we won't need to call the Nanny State SWAT teams to punish the bullied in the name of equality.

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