The "Bully" label has become trendy, unfortunately.
IMHO, the term "Bully" has gotten quite trendy. Of course it's not trendy to be a bully, but if you can spot one in a crowd, you get a gold star.
There are classes in identifying bullies. There are seminars on how to combat bullies. There's new vocabulary, such as "bully behavior". Children as young as 5, or maybe even younger, are being coached on how to react when they are being bullied. The associated press is reporting on out of control bullies and their incompetent parents.
There have been reports of very sad stories, where kids have been victimized. These may be completely valid, and I don't mean to discount them here. In fact, I can't really speak to them specifically, because I do not have enough information.
What strikes me though, is the ease with which parents and children alike come together to point fingers at young children.
Group think. Mob behavior.
On facebook recently, a mom I'm connected to, who I don't know very well, made a comment about a child in her kid's classroom. Her daughter had told her a story about this other child's poor behavior, and the daughter was upset about it. This is normal. What happened next, though, was an extreme outpouring of support for this mom, not only to support her frustration, but the comments became complaints about the child and her parents. There was name calling. The child had "incompetent" parents. The child was "a bully". The family was discussed openly among a fairly large group of women, most of whom did not know them at all. The parents were blamed for their philosophy and technique, which was not identical to the women chatting. Continued on the next page