People call my friends and I bullies (especially Jason). I wrote a few articles more or less saying that my friends and I were part of the 85% of kids who bullied a few of the “designated victims” at school. These victims got bullied because they were, frankly, complete weirdos or idiots or were not engaging in proper boyhood behaviors. They were freaks, weird freaks.
Some of my commenters got very angry over these articles. One was a parent. A Chinese woman who used to send me money all the time left the site in anger.
There were a few designated victims when I was a boy. I can think of maybe five boys from ages 10-13 who we bullied quite a bit. But 85% of the boys joined in with us.
Therefore, most normal kids bullied a few designated victims and these boys could not be called bullies in any way. It’s insane. How can you possibly make a case that 80-90% of young boys are “bullies” who we need to go to war against? It’s madness.
On the other hand, there was a small number of somewhat sociopathic, pre-delinquent boys, some of whom as teenagers almost seemed “pure evil” who bullied lots of boys outside of the few designated victims. They bullied anyone they thought was weaker than they were. So, sure, 10% of boys are bullies who need to be disciplined. But when you say 85% of little boys are evil bullies the word loses all of its meaning.
Look: here is the truth. Boys have always bullied other biys. Girls bully other girls. Kids basically bully each other. They probably do so all over the world and they have probably been doing so for as we back as we can study. In essence bullying is an innate feature of the process whereby a boy becomes a man. This has probably been going on forever all over the world too.
The thing is that almost all boys bully a few designated victims, and this is more or less normal. As they become adults, they usually stop bullying others in a few years. I stopped bullying at age 20 when one of my victims challenged me to a fistfight. At that time I thought and decided that I was just too old for this childish meanness.
As former bullies age into adults and parents, they all become fanatical anti-bullying activists, raging against bullying everywhere it rears its head. If they will admit that they used to be bullies, almost all of them will say they were wrong. As parents, these people will always say that all bullying is wrong. Useless “wars on bullying” are waged against human nature and the results are disappointing.
Bullying will continue into the forseeable future. Almost all boys will bully a few designated victims in more or less normal behavior. A few boys will be much worse and will be known as “the bullies.” Almost all of them will stop bullying in early adulthood. Then they will go on to become parents. After they become parents, they will say their childhood bullying was wrong, and they will wage furious pointless wars against some White Whale called Bullying.
Bullying is simply human nature. You can try to control it but I doubt if you can ever stop it.