The law, known as the Anti-Bullying Bill of Rights, is considered the toughest legislation against bullying in the nation.Well this neatly summarizes the national psychopathology, doesn't it. WE ARE GOING TO FORCE YOU TO STOP BULLYING! We'll respond to violence and intimidation with coercion. We'll bring in the cops and the courts. We'll be proactive. We will seek out the bullies and destroy them.
Now psychopathically, ahem, um, no, psychopathologically speaking, what we call bullying is actually a learning curve into adulthood; it is the early human operating system reprogramming itself to ape the actions of its elders, clumsily and imperfectly. Bullying is considered a uniquely childlike behavior, and when it is encountered among adults, it's seen as a case of arrested development, a grade-school mentality somehow stuck in place. But this is completely backwards; the adult world is built on bullying; the whole vast edifice of status and hierarchy is bullying; the law is bullying; authority is bullying; the enforcement of style and trend is bullying; the mechanisms of advertising and consumption are bullying . . . and these poor school kids, bullies and bullied alike, are just imitating that bizarre and competitive adult world into which they are subsumed every time they walk into a school. Education is rigid, hierarchical, and competitive; it is in fact ever more competitive; and here we are, telling these kids on the one hand that they must not be mean to each other, but on the other hand they are the vanguard in the very battle for the future, the crack troops against the Chinese math menace, or whatever. They are competing with each other for better test scores. They must not be left behind. They must achieve the promise of the future America where every janitor and pipe fitter has a graduate business degree and seventeen years experience in an executive management capacity with an emphasis on human resources and spend process growth development improvement practices. So on the one hand they are supposed to be civil and decent and compassionate, but on the other hand they are supposed to triumph. And meanwhile those who manage to reject the obscene, competing priorities of education, well, just put them on drugs. That'll fix them. It is not the law that needs to change to stop kids from bullying each other, but the perverted culture in which they are born and raised.