Nine year old Grayson Bryce was being bullied for carrying a My Little Pony back pack. He told his mom, she told the school counselor. The school says “we take any allegations of bullying seriously and work diligently in all cases to resolve the issues in the best interest of students. We have programs in place to prevent, report and intervene to keep our students safe and protected.” So what did the counselor do to intervene and keep Grayson safe and protected? She told his mom that he should hide his back pack.
According to Grayson’s mom “She said that if you have something like this you’re asking for trouble.” Later that day the principal called and said that Grayson had to leave the backpack at home.
Most of the fat people I know, including me, have had a similar experience – we’ve pointed out bullying that occurs because of our size and been told that if we don’t like being treated poorly for being fat, we should “do something about it” and become thin.
The idea here is that the problem is with the people being bullied – it’s obviously our fault because bullies wouldn’t target us if we weren’t asking for it by refusing to do or be what they think we should do or be. So we should just give our bullies what they want and then hope they’ll stop beating us up. If that doesn’t work we should just keep changing ourselves to suit them.
And that’s totally, completely, and utterly bullshit.
The problem with bullying is bullies, it’s not a nine year old boy with a My Little Pony backpack, it’s not fat people who refuse to self-deprecate, hate ourselves, diet or do whatever else bullies want us to do. The cure for social stigma is not a new backpack or weight loss, it’s ending social stigma. Suggesting that bullied people solve bullying by changing ourselves is, in and of itself, a form of bullying. And it’s never, ever okay.
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