In the past, I called posts like the one I am about to make, “A Victory for the Bullies,” however, I get the impression that some of you are tired of seeing that title. Therefore, I’m using stealth tactics and giving the post another title. This does not stop what you are about to read being yet another victory for the bullies.
Following the death of her friend, who took her own life on account of the bullying she was receiving, Emily Gipson of Lebanon Tennessee, posted a free verse poem about the bullying and suicide going on at her school. She was given permission by a teacher to use his classroom as a backdrop for a school project. The video she made for her poem chalked up 600,000 views on Youtube.
If you have been following my posts for awhile, you probably already have guessed that the school reacted to the video in a way that was not favourable to Emily. That’s right, she was suspended from school for two days. The school’s reason behind the suspension: She was in the school after hours and after all students were told they had to be out of the building. While the school denies the suspension was anything due to the content of the video, the teacher was mortified by the content, and even denied claims that the suspension was down to the video inciting violence, I still can’t help wonder that the denial was a smokescreen. Once again, we see a school using some bullshit violation of a school rule to punish someone who wants to do something about the bullying at their school.
Please watch the video and judge for yourself:
To address any possible backlash, I am in no way saying that being a bullying victim or speaking out against bullying is an excuse to break the rules. True, Miss Gipson might have been in the school building when she shouldn’t have been, but she was given permission by a teacher to be there. Plus, as a teacher myself, if I had given a pupil permission to use my classroom for a project, I would have at least checked on the pupil at least once, for safety reasons if anything else. This way, if Emily was saying anything shocking or inflammatory, he could have stopped it. So, this teacher isn’t totally guiltless here.
As for the school, I believe that the suspension of Emily was a reaction to the fact that she had highlighted bullying at the school. No school likes to admit that such a thing goes on in their institution. They have even stated that they never had any complaints of bullying from Emily or her friend who committed suicide. However, other students have claimed that it did go on. Besides, how many cases of unreported bullying are there in schools across America? I suspect millions. Many victims are too scared to report bullying and that’s probably why the school never heard about it. But instead of trying to address the issue of bullying, they decided to suspended this brave girl who had the stones to speak out against the terrible plague that is bullying.