Bullying happens. That is a fact. But the reality is that almost every form of peer conflict these days is likened to bullying, and that is not the case. The real unfortunate side of bullying is that people sometimes go too far, and that is the problem. But teasing and roughhousing are part of the social process. It builds bonds, whether we admit it or not.
According to society's definition of bullying, I have been bullied throughout elementary school. I never let myself be affected by it. Its all about the mindset. If you let a bully's words bother you, then you are part of the problem. I agree, physical violence bullying should be cut down, but if we change what we define as bullying and focus more on actual bullying then I would be content with the discussion.
I volunteer at my child's middle school. Every Wednesday they spend a half an hour talking about bullying. They do exercises, they watch videos, and they talk about it. But I observe the kids and it doesn't help anything. They are just as mean to each other as we ever were in school. The schools should get back to teaching.
The problem is not that we talk about bullying too much. The problem is that we don't talk about bullying enough! Our kids think that it's "cool" to bully someone for begin different. We don't hold our children accountable for their actions when they bully someone and in many cases the adults encourage it.
It is easy to label just about every action and interaction as bullying these days, but that doesn't change the fact that it still happens to kids and adults alike all of the time. It doesn't hurt to hear about it, because perhaps when people's instincts to respond in a negative way come up, they will be challenged to respond a bit more humanely.
Children these days are expect their politicians to do more when it comes to bullying. We need to re-create the culture to let everyone know that bullying of any kind will not be tolerated. Of course, you also have to deal with the bullys that are commonplace within the workplace as well. Just say no to bullys!
Whenever people complain that society is focused too much on a specific social issue, that is likely the best time to focus even more on that social issue.
Fixing a broken culture is not meant to be a comfortable process. It's meant to ruffle feathers. It's meant to make people angry.
If you're angry over the discussion about the damaging effects of bullying, you're probably benefiting from the structure of society which permits said bullying.
That, or you lack the empathy or real-world experience of being a victim.
Either way, it only serves to reinforce the need to have these discussions, and have them openly and loudly in the public sphere.