Cyberbullying

“How to Prevent the Effects of Bullying,” argues that “[p]arenas and schools must Join forces to stop It [bullying]” (Diane Widener. 201 3, p. 7). After analyzing her argument, I find that, although the recent employment of zero-tolerance bullying programs has helped raise awareness of the topic, Widener provides a compelling argument that school anti-bullying policies require such reforms as to include parental intervention.

Particularly, what is meant by parental intervention is action that synchronizes both n-campus zero-tolerance programs with at-home action. This can include parents taking away their child’s cell phones at night to prevent them from “obsessively check[inning] messages and postings” (Diane Widener, 2013, p. 8). Widener’s article focuses on capturing the attention of parents In order to persuade them to follow up on their kid’s dally lives. In developing her case for the need to reform zero-tolerance programs, Widener provides findings from reputable sources regarding the role of parents In on-campus and off-campus harassment cases.

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For example, she encourages parents whose children engage In accessibility “to limit his or her computer privileges to school assignments only’ (Diane Widener, 2013, p. 8). Furthermore, to reinforce her argument, Widener includes a list of negative symptoms indicated by most victims of bullying. Finally, she notes that ant-bullying policies often don’t work unless schools have a system in place for students to report bullying (often times, student action is encouraged by concerned parents at home). What makes Widener’s article persuasive is its consistent appeal to ethos.

Psychologists, we re informed, supported most of the opinions found in the reading when it was not factual information. As an example, Widener uses a fictional scenario depicting a relatable on-campus Interaction between two girls that ends In the devastating downfall of the bullied victim. The cause of the scenario was Influenced by an argument taken online by one of the girls who we assume to be the bully. While this depiction appealed to pathos, it was quickly followed by four sentences of name- dropping that appealed to ethos. For example, one of these sentences revealed that “… The the rise of accessibility, the effects of bullying are more widespread, says psychology professor Amanda Nickering, Ph. D. , director of the Jean M. Alberta Center for the Prevention of Bullying Abuse and School Violence at State University of New Work’s University at Buffalo” (Diane Widener, 2013, p. L). While little is revealed about Widener’s character, it reflects that of a well informed person. Underlying Widener’s article is the implicit moral principle that social Justice requires that we do everything we can to maximize everyone’s opportunity to enjoy an unmolested experience.

While this seems obvious, a parent could argue that It puts too much emphasis on Invading their child’s privacy and not enough on sanctioning the bully. However, the first step In dealing with harassment Is preventing It. By being Involved with their child, a parent can prevent NV or near Trot taking part In Dulling. Minus, relocating ten problem. The difficult question we need to address is how we are to balance the needs of children to prevent such behavior without intervening too much as to stunt their independent development.

Wittingly, Widener provides us with an appeal to ethos by informing us that “Without intervention, the effects of bullying – which include depression, low self-esteem and, in extreme cases, suicide – will continue” (Diane Widener, 2013, peg. 7). What’s more striking is that “[a]bout 4,400 young people kill themselves each year, according to the Center for Disease Control,” and even though they aren’t directly attributed to bullying, “[b]Lully victims are 2-9 times more likely to consider suicide than non-victims, according to studies by Yale University’ (Diane Widener, 2013, p. 7).

She suggests that we try pilot programs such s KAVA, “in which students, teachers and parents all participate, [to] examine everyone’s role in bullying” (Diane Widener, 2013, peg. 7). She says that the program has “reduced bullying by 50% compared to schools that don’t use the program” (Diane Widener, 2013, peg. 7). Parents need to ask themselves at what cost they are willing to limit the ability of bullies to harass victims. Take, for example, the following two scenarios: (1) Parents let kids be kids, despite the ability of social networks to be exploited as tools for harassment, and undergo the consequences

Oust as the victim in Widener’s scenario underwent symptoms of depression and low self-esteem), (2) Parents become involved with their children at home and work with school officials to levy new anti-bullying policies, despite the encroachment on student’s social liberties (but consider the fact that they waive these freedoms so long as they live under their parents household). While neither of these is very pleasant, my intuitions favor scenario (2). Without a doubt, there are too many variables at work here; my basic point is that I’d rather be a part of my child’s placement than have it ruined because of bullying.

Near the end of Widener’s article, she acknowledges that while “[s]tanning up for your bullied child can be tricky, because kids often are afraid it’ll make bullying or social isolation worse… Taking action is worth the risk of temporary blowback at school”(Diane Widener, 2013, peg. 9). While she does this to appeal to logos, she goes back to her original style of appealing to ethos by citing that “[I]f kids don’t speak up, there’s no record of the bullying,” Juvenile says. ‘There may be some short-term pain, but it will help in the Eng run” (Diane Widener, 2013, p. ). Widener objects to the opposing side’s argument by basically saying that speaking up doesn’t hurt anyone, whereas the opposite only promotes gunny sacking. Of course, the result of gunny sacking being self-harm, counter-harassment, or suicide. So, even if one thinks that Diane Widener is a bit one- side in focusing on the prevention of bullying (rather than how to punish it, or in essence deal with it), ultimately I think she provides a compelling argument for the need for such reforms as to include parental intervention in the prevention of bullying.