I need to expand more on the blog I wrote last week about the boy in my son’s grade. All these stories about the violence that results from bullying has led me down a path I've been avoiding. What was particularly jarring about what happened is that I had a vague memory of a story that happened a few years ago. I just looked it up and found it here.
A few things stick with me. That the parents were engaged and involved. That the boy was troubled. But the single most enduring image I have in my mind of this boy is him, wrapped in a blanket, crying. The other is the outreach of the community to his family after the fact.
After the fact. I can’t help thinking this could have been avoided if there had been community involvement BEFORE it happened. Because if there were, very possibly, this boy could be home with his folks, and the other boy would still be alive.
Instead, he’s in jail with no hope of parole. Both families have lost a child, forever, in two different, horrible ways.
These events are what came to mind with what happened on the school yard a couple weeks ago. Have I headed something off? It’s too soon to tell. But only by raising awareness can we all take ownership of our kids, their safety, and their well-being.
It’s the least we can do.