Minn.'s rework of anti-bullying law takes shape

  • Article by: MARIA ELENA BACA , Star Tribune
  • Updated: July 19, 2012 - 12:28 AM

Task force review will be revised. Final report due to governor Aug. 1. Draft report offers no specific language, but guidelines should be included in law to clarify policies on bullying .

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mattyjpJul. 18, 12 6:37 PM

Why is it that these anti-bullying laws only apply to school settings? There is excessive bullying that happens adult-to-adult via social networks. We work very hard to stop this bullying harassment in schools, so why can't we stop online bloggers like John Hoff (AKA Johnny Northside) from using the internet to harass and intimidate people? People like John Hoff need to be stopped, and his argument that he has a 1st Amendment right to harass people in nonsense. We need clearly stated laws that can be easily enforced by local authorities to combat online harassment and bullying.

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kruzelcJul. 18, 12 6:43 PM

When did kids today get to be so soft? In the past, if you got picked on, you learned to toughen up. Now it seems everyone wants a law in place so they can sue a bully for hurting some kid's "wittle feelings".

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higgins04Jul. 18, 12 6:51 PM

Our school is very proactive when it comes to bullying. We call students on it immediately, we have lessons on a regular basis about bullying, and it still happens. We send kids to the office, and the best we can do is have the student serve a detention, write a letter of apology and have a conference with parents. To a lot of these students, this is nothing, and the parents very seldom support the consequences. Parents will argue that their child should not have to serve a detention. A law with some teeth would really help!

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bluemaxJul. 18, 12 8:58 PM

You will always have kids bullying kids and you will always have kids accusing kids of being bullies when no bullying ever occurred. The sad part is that those accused of bullying are immediately guilty even though they may not have done anything wrong at all. Where is the punishment for kids who falsly accuse others of bullying? Just as sad is that those that are bullied are not allowed to stand up to their bully without themselves being punished. Will more laws really help?

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stoneageJul. 18, 1210:04 PM

"In the past, if you got picked on, you learned to toughen up."...........In the past, Neanderthals beat each other with clubs. What kind of civilization do you want to live in?

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strongmomJul. 18, 1210:04 PM

The language needs to be crystal clear and specific issues defined, to include "religious bigotry" which is a huge issue and at the core of alot of bullying and harassment. Parent accountability needs to be emphasized and a parents refusal to accept their child's punishment should be cause for concern. Children learn what they live, so it's no surprise to hear that the bullies often have parents who explain away their behavior. Training and message reinforcement could help alot too.

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kruzelcJul. 19, 12 1:47 AM

@stoneage: I'd rather go back to beating each other with clubs. People still learned to toughen up instead of bringing litigation against every little thing. It's not called "Survival of the Socialist", but "Survival of the Fittest" for a reason.

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minn12Jul. 19, 12 2:51 AM

This is nothing more than a veiled attempt to give special rights to a certain 'group', at the expense of others. There is nothing wrong with current law that prohibits bullying of ANY student. Yet the liberals demand a whole new level of government involvement in local matters. Just say 'no'.

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Willy53Jul. 19, 12 5:53 AM

It is time republican bigots be put in their place. Let's use plain language. The "main problem", bluemax, is not that those accused have no way to defend themselves. The problem is that parents who give their awful legacy of bigotry to their kids occassionally produce bullies. The most accute bullying occurs in the form of anti GLBT intimidation. The kids who are accused of bullying are not committing suicide. Those who are the object of that bigotry are the ones at risk. It is a shame that an entire political party has decided to give strength to the persecution of gay and lesbians, singling out a specific group of people to limit their rights as human beings. It takes a special type of politics to use the demonization of a particular group of people to consolidate political power. Republicans will continue to oppose attempts to protect the rights of gay Americans by calling the anti bullying statutes "big government" and recalling the good old days when arguments were settled with a fist fight. But eventually, homosexuals will be able to marry and enjoy full citizenshiop and protection under the laws of the constitution because the vast majority of young people will simply demand it. That's one trend that bodes well for our future.

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purlieuJul. 19, 12 6:22 AM

It's crucial that bullying be stopped at a young age. Young bullies grow up to be adult bullies that we have to deal with in our homes, in our neighborhoods and in our workplaces. Bullies will damage others all of their lives.

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