What would you do if you learned your kid was a bully?
In Greece, New York, parents of middle school students who taunted a 68-year-old bus monitor saw it happen on a video that went viral; it captured students hurling insults, threats of physical and sexual assault at Karen Klein. One comment she couldn't ignore referenced Klein’s son, who committed suicide a decade ago.
Police and the school district where the incident took place are publicly grappling with how best to discipline the students involved. Meanwhile, the CNN community has weighed in on Facebook and on CNN.com about what they would do if their own kids were the culprits in such an intense case of cruelty.
Some commenters on CNN.com felt students’ threats rose to the level of harassment and police action should be taken. Some comments are edited for clarity.
antoinette18 One kid actually said that if he would stick a KNIFE in her, it would be like cutting through butter. That is a THREAT. It went beyond teasing to actually touching her, threatening her with bodily injury through a weapon and sexual assault. They should all be charged as adults. Their parents should be responsible. They are raising animals. And the parents should be forced to take parenting classes and boot camp.
Colorista The harassment and threats should be punished legally. In addition, that big chunk of community service is warranted but I would add that there is a "supervisory clause" and that a parent must be present and participate in all of the hours with their little darlings. Since it is the end of the school year, they should be banned from riding the bus for the first month of school in the fall. Failure to attend/get to school in that time frame means more service hours for mom/dad/miscreant. I am all for a parental boot camp.
BinaryTruth, Truth can be found in logical, rational thinking. Bullies will stop when they face actual consequences for their behavior. It really is that simple.
Michael Cox It's called harassment and it is a crime and the ones that said they wanted to sexually assault her could be charged with more. I would personally give them all 1,000 hours of community service and have their parents write her a letter of apology that they would have to publicly read for what their teenagers did since they haven't taught them any discipline or manners.
Kevin Huan Le I don't give a crap how old they are, I've been angry for the past two days since I've seen the video. I hope they suffer in prison and get charged as adults for such verbal tormenting to a senior. You just do not make fun of death.
On Facebook, many felt society shoulders the blame for kids behavior, but the responsibility to teach respect starts at home.
Joseph R Kramer This is a direct result from a change in our society and parenting. I am only 28, but I can remember when I was a kid and was disrespectful to anybody I paid for it when I got home. Beating these kids is not the answer...but it is next to impossible to teach kids any sort of respect with the way things are now in the schools and what they are watching on TV or finding online. I blame the parents and a majority part of society, these kids will just laugh at punishment.
Sue-z M. Tatum What is wrong with this generation? Wow, these parents need to sit these little brats down and tell them...how it was back in the day, and show some respect...UNREAL!!!
Anna Foss Moore That's ridiculous, if any of those were my kids I'd spank them. Thankfully I've raised my kids to be more respectful and also to be kind. Parents these days have got to figure it out and learn to actually discipline they're kids, otherwise you're just raising a bunch of spoiled little brats who think they're special and should instead be in jail where at least the only other ones they hurt or others just like them.
Marie N Pierre Thank God, my kids will never do that... I raised them too well. They need a better education and better parenting to help these kids! They have too much freedom. Please educate your kids! Raise them well so tomorrow they be a productive citizen... Please parents be responsible!!!
If these were your kids, what you do? Log on to Facebook and let us know.