Before the Fall

Children are often viewed to be innocent creatures, carefree in their ignorance, full of joy and laughter. Yet, if one only looks into their own childhood, this idealistic imagery becomes less concrete. Don’t get me wrong, frolicking children in the park makes me smile; it’s the maternal side in me I suppose (don’t tell anyone though ;)). What about the maliciousness children can evoke upon one another? We, as adults, have no excuse as we should “reformed” and “cultured” into knowing that this sort of unadultered bullying is not condoned in society..or is it? How often do we excuse bullying by children as an act done out of ignorance? When I was younger, I watched my brother endure a constant onslaught of torment from his peers, eventually driving him to change schools. No one wants to think children are capable of malice; however, this is the case. One can attribute this sort of behaviour as an expression of discovering one’s self and establishing some sort of identity or reputation amongst one’s peers. Sometimes, humiliating another is the only way to prevent the same treatment from others. After all this rationalization of why children can be vicious to one another, how does one mitigate it? Does one mitigate it? If not, how will this affect the lives of these people, whether they are the bully or the bullied, in the future? One can never forget the school shooting in Columbine or Taber, Alberta; those who opened fire had been subjected to constant bullying. Just…whose fault is it? Societal construction? Gah..

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