Another light has been dimmed, one dead 21 year old student – Zulfarhan Osman Zulkarnain from the National Defence University (UPNM) and five students from the same University charged with murder.
Bullying, in the classroom, outside the classroom is out of hand. (As I was writting this post, I learned of another death, that of, 18 year of T Nhaveen, who was left brain dead by some of his former classmates)
Being angry, no longer is an option or an acceptable solution. We need to comprehensively reexamine and evolve the way we tackle bullying in our education system.
Instead campaigns and solutions that tackle parts of the problem, we need to relook at the ecosystem that nurtured the belief that a person can use verbal, physical or mental coercion to get what they want.
We need experts monitoring our children in the classrooms and dormotories, for tell tale signs of abuse. At a glance, the problem is too easily blamed on one actor, a teacher, a dean or a councillor but look closely and we will often see that a bully gains his inspiration from many sources. Inspiration comes from all directions, from TV shows where he learns that stronger heroes get what they want to classrooms that practice excessive discipline where he learns that the loudest and most authoritative voice compels others into submission.
Are we able to break the habit? One believes we can impose our will upon others? Only by sound educational practices, by respecting the individual’s right to thought and choice and by the shared belief that disagreement with another’s opinions is not a disagreement with the other. This can be stopped but we have to dig deeper for solutions and begin the long journey to healing our society.
We need to teach our young these lessons at the earliest of stages, at the beginning and at every opportunity Before our children end up learning too late in the game, the hard knocks way, that if you break the law.
The law will break you