HRC Blog

Sioux City Journal Runs Front-Page Editorial on Bullying

Sioux City JournalPost submitted by Dan Rafter, Former HRC Associate Director of Communications

The Sioux City Journal ran a powerful front-page editorial on bullying yesterday, following the death of a local teen last week who experienced bullying and harassment because he was gay.

This is not a failure of one group of kids, one school, one town, one county or one geographic area. Rather, it exposes a fundamental flaw in our society, one that has deep-seated roots. Until now, it has been too difficult, inconvenient -- maybe even painful -- to address. But we can't keep looking away.

The piece also takes to task those who seek to trivialize bullying and harassment, like Heather Wilson. Last week, the GOP U.S. Senate hopeful from New Mexico criticized the Student Non-Discrimination Act because it “criminalizes” teasing. The editorial said of such people:

Some in our community will say bullying is simply a part of life. If no one is physically hurt, they will say, what's the big deal? It's just boys being boys and girls being girls.

Those people are wrong, and they must be shouted down.

We must make it clear in our actions and our words that bullying will not be tolerated. Those of us in public life must be ever mindful of the words we choose, especially in the contentious political debates that have defined our modern times. More importantly, we must not be afraid to act.

Read the full editorial.

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