Bullying Isn't a Crime

Elie Mystal: Parents running to the courts set a horrible example for kids
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 12, 2010 4:27 PM CDT
Bullying Isn't a Crime
Parents who run to the courts to stop bullies are doing their kids no favors.   (Shutterstock)

(Newser) – Elie Mystal wants you to know that he frequently got the snot beat him out of him as a kid. Which gives him the authority in a Nixon-goes-to-China kind of way to declare that the country is seriously overreacting to bullies. "You see, American children apparently have become so fragile, and Americans parents so litigious, that schoolyard bullying is as likely to be settled in a court of law as it is behind a dumpster out back where boys used to handle their disagreements," he writes at the Above the Law blog.

Bullying is awful, but it's also "unavoidable when more than one male competes for whatever status/prestige/sex is on offer." It's always been this way and always will. The cases of Tyler Clementi and others are tragic, but "how far are we willing to take this thing?" he asks." I don’t like slippery slope arguments, but people get bullied in one form or another every day. We can’t charge all of them, so why should we charge just the ones who happen to have a victim who takes the extraordinary step of ending his or her own life?" Parents must teach their kids how to handle it, not how to run to a lawyer.
(Read more bullying stories.)

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