I know it sounds outrageous and you may be asking yourself, “How can a child bully and adult?” However, the sad truth is that it happens. Nowadays with all the emphasis on children’s rights, which I’m not an opponent of, there are some situations where the pendulum has swung the other way. School is the most common place for this type of bullying to occur.
“You can’t touch me” seems to be the most spoken phrase by pupils towards teachers today. Some pupils misbehave in school and use this line when the teacher goes to intervene. Some pupils are even more bold by warning the teacher that they will lose their job and it can go even farther especially if little is done to the offending child. They become even more empowered because they have gotten away with it and will push the boundaries even more. If the teacher tries to stop it, some pupils will even go as far as to make a false allegation against the teacher. The teacher’s career is on the line and there are many accounts of the teacher going through hell before their name is cleared. Even when it is, little or nothing is done to the pupil who thinks it’s cool that they got a teacher into so much trouble. Some bullying of adults can go even further.
Guess what? I won’t be using any of “He Was Weird” in this particular post. This is because Mark doesn’t bully any adults, his condition and experiences would not let him. Cue, this week’s book, “Rupture” by Simon Lelic. The story is about a female detective who is called into to investigate a shooting at a secondary school. This shooting was carried out by a teacher whom everyone just want to paint as a psycho. But as the detective digs further, she discovers that it isn’t so simple and that this mild mannered teacher may have been driven to it.
Throughout the entire story, the reader gets many account of bullying by pupils against the teacher. He gets his bike destroyed, someone defecates in his briefcase. At a pupil-teacher football (soccer) match, two students slide into him intentionally breaking his leg. Towards the end, it is discovered that a humiliating blog is set up about the teacher. The teacher does try seek help but the head master seems totally uninterested. In the case of the blog, he hides behind “free speech.” Furthermore, another teacher is bullying him too so it’s no wonder why he goes into school one day and shoots dead three children, one teacher before turning the gun on himself. “Rupture” highlights children bullying adults at its very worst.
The bullying of adults by children is similar to the bullying of older children by younger ones. Both is done on the belief that if the victim addresses it, they will be the one who gets in trouble. In the case of the adult, it might be career ending or lead to criminal prosecution. This form of bullying needs to be taken more seriously as it’s just as bad as any other form.
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