Today the Minnesota Zoomobile came out to do a show on anti-bullying.
One of the animals used in the show was this red-tailed hawk. She's a little mistrustful of people, but is oh-so-gorgeous.
The show was for the area kids, co-sponsored by the Library Board and the local 4-H club. It addressed the topic of what to do when being bullied, and gave the kids some steps to follow.
The steps were:
- Tell the person who is being a bully, "Please stop. I don't like what you're doing."
- Walk away. Go somewhere that person isn't.
- And if all else fails, go tell a responsible adult about it.
Now realistically, that's a good plan. I'm not sure I 100% agree with it all. I mean, in a perfect world where everyone is playing by the same rules, sure. Then it'd all work. But in real life? Eh. Not so much.
In fact, that's why the Kid ended up going to preschool a year before we had wanted to send her. She & I were at a McDonald's for lunch one day, and she was happily playing in the ball pit. I looked up just in time to see a little guy throwing balls at her head and hitting her with the flap on the entrance. I got up to go over to see what was going on and was proud to hear her saying, "Please stop. I don't like what you're doing." Unfortunately, the boy just kept on keeping on. Well, until he saw me coming, that is. I must have had quite the look in my eyes because his mom jumped out of her seat and hustled over to see what was going on. When I said that he'd been hitting my kid, she didn't believe her little snowflake would do such a thing. (I did manage to restrain myself from throwing balls at HER head and asking her if SHE liked it. I'm rather pleased with myself for that.) But it was obvious that my Kid had spent too much time with adults and not enough time with kids her own age, so we figured that we'd start her in the 3-year old preschool that year so she could be around people her own age.
That said, I'm not saying to meet bullying with bullying, because that's not the answer either. My parents were big on, "You don't ever START the fight, but if you have to, then you be the one to END the fight. By whatever means needed." The shift in attitudes since I was a kid oh-so-long ago is noticeable, though. We pretty much dealt with it ourselves, with little or no adult intervention. I don't know what the answer is. But I do know that the animals were really interesting at least.