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Is bullying considered abuse?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/23/2017 Category: Society
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 440 times Debate No: 99228
Debate Rounds (3)
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I wanna know what everyone else's opinion is on this topic. I have done some research and i need answers. I need help to understand if it is.


I do think bullying is considered abuse. First I will take a look at the definitions of both terms individually, and then I will compare similarities and differences between those definitions to support my claim.

First lets take a look at the definitions of "abuse" and "bullying". According to Merriam-Webster, 'Abuse' is defined as (among other things) language that condemns or vilifies usually unjustly, intemperately, and angrily; physical maltreatment. Now lets take a look at the definition of 'bullying'. The American Psychological Association (APA) defines bullying as "a form of aggressive behavior in which someone intentionally and repeatedly causes another person injury or discomfort". They also go on to say in the same paragraph that bullying "can take the form of physical contact, words or more subtle actions".

Let's compare those to definitions. Merriam-Webster's definition of 'abuse' as "physical maltreatment" goes almost hand in hand with APA's definition of 'bullying' as any form of repeated aggressive behavior against another individual that causes injury and discomfort. They both recognize physical mistreatment in their definitions. However, bullying is not exclusively physical. Many people are verbally bullied. APA acknowledges this fact and so does Merriam-Websters definition of abuse as "language that condemns or vilifies usually unjustly, intemperately, and angrily."

Just by looking at the definitions themselves, I think its clear that bullying is considered a form of abuse. Maybe its not as looked down upon compared to other forms of abuse like child abuse or sexual assault, but its still considered a branch of abuse.
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Debate Round No. 3
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by Hawkecrail 1 year ago
My only problem in this is the definition of bully and abuse is fairly close, so theres really no debate, more of "how can one side stretch the definition or make it stricter
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