Act firmly against bullying

I was shocked when I read a friend's post on Facebook about a seventeen year old guy in the US state of Michigan who killed himself because of excessive bullying by his school mates. Bullying other people just because they're different in some way and don't fit into your narrow idea of 'normal' is truly abhorrent.

The whole issue lies in what people believe is 'normal'. Some whites believe people of any other color are abnormal. Brown people believe whites are abnormal. Some straight people believe gays are abnormal. Some Indians believe people from the North-Eastern part of India are abnormal. Some North Indians feel South Indians are abnormal. It goes on and on. Anything different is considered abnormal. This myopic view that many of us take must really change.

It is really sad that bullying exists in almost all schools and colleges. It is considered 'cool' to bully and it almost becomes a symbol of strength. The trauma that the target undergoes is too horrific to even be imagined. Your entire sense of self-worth takes a hit and the impact is often felt life-long. The mental torture that the victim undergoes leaves emotional scars that may take decades to heal and may actually never heal. These scars manifest in unimaginable ways and affect the individual's entire life, the relationships he or she has, the way he or she parents and deals with the normal pressures of everyday life.

Due to the extremely serious nature of the consequences, this kind of behavior must be considered deviant with some very strict laws and rules in schools to punish people who indulge in this. Exemplary punishments must be handed out to the guilty so that no student ever even remotely considers doing this again. Schools that do not do this must be punished severely by the law so that they take this important issue seriously.

Parents must watch out for their kids. They must talk about the possibility of being bullied and create an environment where they should be free to talk about the problems they're having in school. Without any outlets for their frustrations, kids often resort to what Josh Pacheco did in the story above and you really don't want that to happen.