The parents who are trying to improve the anti-Bully programs at Grandview Heights are exasperated by the resistance they have encountered, if I’m reading their Facebook page correctly. After all, nobody will say, “I am pro bullying”. So why is it so hard to change the school? The problem is that change has a political component that is not spoken out loud. There is a close concept to anti-Bullying, called “Political Correctness”, that adds a political side effect . Given the current climate, nothing political will be easy.
Palin calls“Political Correctness” a Suicide Bomb Vest
There was a lot of word salad in the speech that Sarah Palin gave when she endorsed Donald Trump, but her use of the term “Political Correctness” and comparing those who want to see more PC speech to terrorists, is now standard for those on the far right (which now seems to be the majority of the Republicans).
For the most people, the term PC is nothing more than an expectation that rude speech is poor manners. Racist and sexist talk is not acceptable from anyone who represents a business, it can get people fired if they imply that brown customers are unwelcome or that women are too dumb to use a product or service of any company. Insulting a potential customer group is bad PR.
There has always been a conservative push back against PC in political speech, and it is now become one of the top issues of the race for the republican presidential candidates. All of them complain that they are being held back by PC critics, and spend much of their speeches blasting the concept of politically correct speech, as though it was a foreign invader which infected us.
Trump has brought racist speech to the front of the conversation, with his beliefs that Mexican immigrants are bringing crime and disease, and that Muslims should be stopped at the border. He has normalized anti-gay and sexist speech, he calls his female critics ‘fat pigs,’ and ‘dogs,’ Trump has supporters who say, “he speaks out when we can’t, because of PC police”.
Bullying is mostly about prejudice
Kids who make fun of gay classmates, or fat kids, or any of the different categories kids are divided into are mostly allowing prejudice to become a weapon to use against others. An important step in anti-Bully programs that are effective is to teach that prejudice is wrong.
Parents who belong to a church that teaches that gays are evil have probably already contacted school board members, and told them that they will not stand for any rules at the school that imply their religious beliefs are wrong. Conservative parents conflate anti-Bully with “PC out of control”, and they will made it clear that they will be looking for a new board member to support if the school gets serious about bully prevention.
Politics are crazy right now, and it’s sad that they have leaked into the school system. I think they will be the unspoken gunk that will slow the gears of change for the foreseeable future.
The majority of the school board members are conservatives who have not given any public comments about political correctness, but they can be expected to follow their leaders in condemning it. Bringing in some new board members in the next election will be needed for change at the school.
Article in the Dispatch – Programs to fight bullying set up in central Ohio schools
Culp is quoted in the article saying “I disagree that the district isn’t doing all it can.”