The Beast Within-Part 2
‘Bullying the Bullies’
In my last article I was talking about the sad phenomenon of extreme far right activists who would break down flea market benches belonging to foreigners, who did not have the required license by the state, to dispense justice their own extreme way, just to show that they are in favor of the Greek ones, who have legal documents!
Well, their ‘action’ continued with lots of fuss and rush outside a theater in the heart of Athens, where the premiere of a play (with an, admittedly, unorthodox scenario regarding Jesus Christ) was taking place, while the majority of high ranking priests would officially take sides against the so called ‘protectors’ of Christian Orthodoxy, both on TV and the internet, while Greece’s Democratic reputation would ‘bleed’ once more, on an international scale and the ‘show’ goes on…
However, many of us would listen to this sad news speechless, while eating our dinner in front of our TV screen but still taking No action at all!
But again, to what degree should we as teachers be held responsible for this inappropriate way of doing and displaying justice?
As I mentioned in the first chapter (The (Golden) dawn of the Greek Morality) we are to blame too, to a great degree, as people’s way of thinking and acting when adults, derives from their childhood, their cultural background and the principles they have been taught both at home but specially at school, no matter if it is about their native or foreign one!
As we all know, nowadays, there have been numerous cases of the so called ‘bullies’ (young people -in their majority-who make racial, religious, sexual and other kinds of discriminations, using physical or verbal abuse against minorities of ‘different’ people, by humiliating, threatening, exploiting or even beating them).
To do so, they usually act in groups where there is a ‘chief’, who usually has a dominant personality and his/her ‘attendants’ who are in awe of him/her, while the victims are –in most cases- low profile people, usually feeling inferior due to their ‘difference’, which might relate to their different skin, religion, external appearance, behavior, sexual orientation and the like.
To achieve their ‘goals’, bullies usually yell at, humiliate, physically attack or (more outrageously), come to sexually abusing them, even on a daily basis, once they see no reaction on their victims’ part.
And this is the point where we as teachers should take drastic action, as when encountering such phenomena, not only should we not turn a blind eye but on the contrary, we must denounce them, in order to finally eradicate them.
Unfortunately, I have personally been a victim of bullies when at school but a testifier of bullying even when teaching in class or during school intervals.
However, once I noticed such offensive behavior, I took immediate action though. To my surprise, I saw no reaction by my colleagues!
So, next time you come across any kind of bullying, you should scold the ‘offenders’ with no inhibition, while trying to explain to them how painful their actions might be for their fellow students.
Yet, if they continue, inform the director/ress of studies straight away and show no mercy. Believe me; you will do them good in the end.
On the other hand, you should ‘teach’ their victims to protect themselves specially when alone, by yelling at their offenders when being yelled at, as this is the best way to dishearten them, according to psychologists.
Finally, we should bear in mind that bullies themselves, may have been initially bullied too and they probably decided to come to ‘the other side‘, the same way foreigners have intervened with far right, nationalistic groups/parties, (which are in general against foreigners!) just to take their revenge for the racism they have been faced with so far, against other foreigners!
Human soul can be both poisoned and filled with love, children may be too immature to realize the immorality of their actions against other children, so it is our duty to instill them with love instead of hate.
Because we, as teachers, apart from educators we are pedagogues too. That is why we should care about our students’ ethics and principles the same way we care about their education. Otherwise we will be recruiting an ‘army’ of human haters in the future, whether we like to admit it or not!