The Bully-in-Chief of the United States

The Trump Bully affect has an impact across the country — even on children still in schools. Students are seeing this behavior and thinking it’s okay.

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If you are a living, breathing human, then you have experienced bullying. Whether you’ve witnessed it, been a victim, been a bully, or simply seen it on television, you know what bullying is.

The typical bully archetype is usually that of someone who is physically imposing, verbally and/or physically aggressive, and in some way has more power over their victim. A great example of this is season-one era Harold from Hey Arnold, or any other antagonist from a Saturday morning Nickelodeon cartoon.

If we take these three qualities into account and apply them to Donald Trump, he fits every category. Physically imposing? Well, he’s over six feet tall and carries himself even taller, which can be intimidating to people shorter than that. Verbally/physically aggressive? His derogatory language toward women and people of color is evidence enough for this. More power over their victim? He’s the freaking president of the United States. That’s quite a lot of power.

Now, I’m not here just to tell you that Trump is a bully and then go on my merry way. That would be way too easy. Let’s instead discuss what happens when a bully runs a nation.

Contrary to popular belief, children watch the news. They may not fully understand what’s happening, but they hear everything. Also, a child’s mind is still being shaped and can be easily swayed by things heard out of the president’s mouth. So, when Trump makes accusations that Mexican people are “drug dealers and rapists,” a child may genuinely believe that.

When this hypothetical child now goes to school and encounters a Hispanic classmate, they have all these opinions infiltrating their brain and may possibly repeat Trump’s rhetoric. This has already been the case in Louisville, Kentucky, where a boy chased a Latina girl around shouting “Build the wall!”

Bullying begets bullying, and when the source of harmful language and bullying comes from someone with the amount of authority that Trump has, it spreads throughout an entire country. It gets absorbed into the minds of every child who hears it, and it can be repeated without them knowing what the harmful words mean.

So, how do we fix this?

Censorship is not the answer. Children deserve to know what is happening in this world. However, parents and teachers have a platform by which they can educate the children around them. When Trump says something offensive or inappropriate, it is crucial that it is explained to children that it is behavior that is unacceptable to imitate.

Additionally, schools in general need to have a stricter “no bullying” policy. I can personally attest to this as at my school we were told that bullying would not be tolerated, and yet teachers would still overhear students saying the most horrendous things to each other and did absolutely nothing about it. This then creates a culture in which students then believe they could get away with anything, and that’s exactly what happened — both in schools and in this country.

Fundamentally, it comes down to compassion. Children are the ones most capable of compassion if cultivated properly. Teaching compassion creates a whole new generation that are capable of ignoring such harmful rhetoric and accepting each other for who they are.

 

Disclaimer: The political views presented in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of Not Another Millennial Blog.

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