The spectre of bullying is dogging our country. From a viral video of a road bully in Subang Jaya, to a Terengganu student being assaulted by his schoolmates, it appears that bullying is a neverending problem for the country. What measures can we take to eradicate this menace, or at least bring it under control? Is it all down to education, or do we need sterner measures such as corrective punishment to bring the issue to the fore? I don’t look back on my school days fondly, thanks to memories of being bullied. The boy seemed to have it in for me, despite me not even doing anything to him. He probably just didn’t like my face and needed a punching bag. Needless to say, that phase of my life between Form One and Form Three was a living hell for me.
I seriously don’t know what it will take to eliminate bullying. I think the Internet is in some way to blame. Our kids watch these bullying videos and think it’s cool. But then again, it should be up to the parents to pull their kids aside and tell them that no, this is not right, and this isn’t what you need to emulate. If you don’t have any respect for your fellow man, then boy, do we have problems indeed.
We cannot just lay the blame on the education system. Lessons begin at home. If parents do not take the trouble to educate their own kids, then there is little that teachers or the education syllabus can do. These are moral lessons that cannot be taught anywhere else. Empathy, sympathy for your fellow man is a trait that is nurtured.
Education is certainly the first step towards eradicating bullying in society. We’ve already seen many examples of the worst that can be brought out among people. The Nhaveen case is still fresh in our minds, as is the bullying video in the Sabah school. Start teaching them at a young age before the rot sets in.