Monday, April 29, 2013

inspire kids and other athletes

Don't feel alone - "...I'm happy today, and I'm glad they were just ideas and I didn't act on any of them" "The cost was great in asking me to not speak candidly or be able to be open about myself in a complete manner," Harris said. "If I could have done it differently, I would have hoped I found the strength [to come out]."...Harris hopes his experience and example can support others who are struggling with their identity. "I want people, whether gay athletes, athletes still in the closet, or youths who are not sure what their sexuality is to know those are common feelings," Harris said. "Don't feel alone in having them..." - Mike Foss, USA TODAY Sports 29 March 2013 (READ MORE)

Good Enough - "...This guy played football in high school. He was among the top prep offensive lineman in the country! He played foot ball in college where he earned all-conference honors twice, and named honorable mention All-American in his last year at Stanford. Then he went on to be a first round draft pick in the 2003 draft. He's gotta be able to play a little, right? According to him, he was gay the whole time, so apparently it doesn't make a difference in his abilities. If being gay meant he wasn't any good, he wouldn't have been any good to begin with. After he's on the team, and obviously good enough to remain on the team, how does finding out he's gay, all of a sudden make him not good enough anymore? I mean, damn, you're playing a game with him, not sleeping with him. Why are sports teams so bothered by having gay teammates? Do you think they're watching you in the shower? Do you think they purposely try to get close to you when you practice? Do you think they are secretly in love with you and will try to hold your hand on the field during a game? Stop being ridiculous and get over yourself! Gay football players are there to play the game just like the heterosexual players are. Plus, you're probably not that fantastic and they wouldn't want you anyway!..." - The Working Poor, Chicago Now, 30 March 2013 (READ MORE)

Normal Guy - "...Media outlets using phrases like, “a former offensive tackle for the 49ers and the Raiders recently admitted to being gay in an interview with CNN,” and, “Suspicions of Harris’ homosexuality first spiked after he was arrested in January after a dispute with a supposed boyfriend,” just bring a negative light to the coverage, as if his being gay was something sneaky to be found out. If the rumored gay NFL player were to come out of the closet, even privately just to teammates and his organization, media reports would explode. Attention would be placed on that athlete for their entire season (and longer) which could also bring about resentment among teammates. All of that fuss for a person who is just trying to live their life as honestly and openly as they possibly can. Harris told CNN, “I’m gay and I’m a former athlete and I think I’m a pretty normal guy.” That sentiment showcases the problem with the media’s lopsided coverage of Harris’ legal issue. Harris’ story could have easily been framed around the domestic violence dispute, as it is for many other professional athletes in heterosexual relationships. Unfortunately, it does happen relatively often. Media reporting usually covers the legal process, but doesn’t follow-up confirming the athlete involved is, in fact, a heterosexual, as the media has with Harris nearly three months later. It’s unfortunate that such a negative event was the catalyst that forced the revelation of intimate details about Harris’ personal life, when he clearly intended to keep it personal. Equality is a fundamental right for all human beings, but it should be on one’s own terms. In the process of the media trying to make a story out of the fact that an NFL player is gay by spotlighting them and focusing interviews on that topic, they risk ostracizing that individual even more..." - Alison Bullock, NESN, 30 March 2013 (READ MORE)

Kwame Harris (born March 15, 1982 in Jamaica) is a retired American football offensive tackle who played six seasons in the National Football League (NFL). He was selected by the San Francisco 49ers with the 26th overall pick in the first round of the 2003 NFL Draft. He played college football for the Stanford Cardinal, when he won the Morris Trophy as the top offensive lineman in the Pac-10 Conference in 2002. Harris played high school football in Delaware, and was among the top prep offensive lineman in the country. He played three years at Stanford, twice earning all-conference honors and earning named honorable mention All-American in his final season. Harris was among the top-rated offensive linemen available in the 2003 draft, and he played five seasons with the 49ers and one with Oakland Raiders. He was a starter for most of his career, but often struggled with blocking and committing penalties...After the incident became public, Cintean stated that Harris identifies as gay, remarking that "he is a very private person. He doesn't like to talk about his personal life." On March 29, 2013, Harris officially outed himself as a homosexual during an interview with CNN. No NFL player had come out as gay while they were playing, and only a few had after retiring. - Wikipedia (READ MORE)

Monday, April 22, 2013

civil rights need to be for all

Civil Rights - "...The God that I believe in is a god of love, not fear," Osmond, who is a practicing Mormon, told Diane Sawyer. As for same-sex marriage, Osmond noted, "I believe in [my daughter's] civil rights, as a mother. I think that my daughter deserves everything that she desires in life. She's a good girl. She's a wonderful child." She then added, "I don't think God made one color flower. I think He made many." Osmond, 53, has spoken out in support of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender rights in previous years, usually citing Jessica's role in that mindset. "I think everybody should have the right to share homes and finances with somebody that they care about," she told KOST 103.5 Los Angeles in 2009. "You know on those types of things I'm very supportive. When it comes to marriage...I think that civil rights need to be for all." Meanwhile, Osmond's brother Alan reportedly hosted a "pro-family" rally at the Utah State Capitol earlier this week, aimed at "benefitting the protection of marriage" from gay and lesbian Americans, according to Towleroad..." - Huffington Post (READ MORE)

Son Michael - "...I thought someone had run a knife into my heart,' writes the singer. Michael was an adventuresome child,' she recalls fondly. 'It was impossible for anyone in the family to stay upset or angry if he was around.' When Michael was 13, a woman rang the family's doorbell and revealed herself as his birth mother. 'We all sat and talked for over an hour,' says Maria. 'Michael was intrigued and excited.' But his biological mother disappeared after that, which Marie says 'seemed to confuse him at an age when he needed the most stability.' The star is also candid about her son's prolonged battle with drug addiction, which started at the age of 12. Marie blames herself and her own depression in her second marriage for his struggles, claiming that 'Michael sensed my hopelessness. It's too much pressure for a child to worry about his mother's happiness.' Things looked up in 2009 when Michael enrolled at The Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising. 'Michael had made a promise that if I even suspected him of doing drugs I could kick him out the house,' she recalls. 'It was something we never had to contemplate because my son made good on his promise...thousands of times' in her mind. 'My one consolation is that I never end a conversation with my children without saying "I love you,"' she says. 'It was the last thing I said to my son.' Since his passing, Marie says 'not a day goes by that Michael isn't my first thought in the morning and my last before I fall asleep..." - Daily Mail, 27 March 2013 (READ MORE)

Suicidal Impulses - "...The day before his death, Michael spoke with his mom about how he was feeling lonely and isolated. "It was the first time I heard him start to cry and say he was alone," Marie says. "That he had no friends. That he felt despair." Watch Marie talk about her last phone conversation with her son. Concerned, Marie tried to help Michael from afar. "I told him: "Mike, I'm going to be there Monday, and it's going to be okay,'" she says. "But depression doesn't wait till Monday." In his suicide note, Marie says Michael wrote that he knew that morning would be the last time he would get up, brush his teeth, eat breakfast, make his bed and get dressed. "He had made that decision, I guess," Marie says. "He loved his family, but...the pain was too intense....When I had postpartum [depression], I remember vividly driving that car and people would be better off without me," Marie says. "I really believed that." But something stopped Marie from acting on any suicidal impulses. "It was my age that told me: 'Marie, that's crazy,'" she says. "Children don't have that kind of age behind them...When they're 18, everything [seems] hopeless...During that time, I was going through a very public divorce. Going through a custody battle. My dad died, and my son went into rehab," Marie says. In rehab, Michael tried to take his own life. "But at that time," Oprah says, "didn't he promise that he would never [attempt suicide] again?" "He did," Marie says. "And I believed him..." - (READ MORE)

Olive Marie Osmond (born October 13, 1959) is an American singer, actress, doll designer, and a member of the show business family The Osmonds. Although she was never part of her family's singing group, she gained success as a solo country music artist in the 1970s and 1980s. Her best known song is a cover of the country pop ballad "Paper Roses." From 1976 to 1979, she and her singer brother Donny Osmond hosted the TV variety show Donny & Marie...Olive Marie Osmond was born in Ogden, Utah to Olive and George Osmond, and was raised as a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. She is the only daughter of nine children; her brothers are Virl, Tom, Alan, Wayne, Merrill, Jay, Donny and Jimmy Osmond. From an early age, her brothers maintained a career in show business, singing and performing on national television. Osmond debuted as part of her brothers' act The Osmond Brothers on the The Andy Williams Show when she was three, but generally did not perform with her brothers in the group's television performances through the 1960s...On April 29, 2009, Osmond revealed that her oldest daughter, Jessica, is a lesbian and had been living in Los Angeles with her girlfriend for the past three years. In interviews Osmond has expressed support for her daughter and for same sex marriage rights. On February 26, 2010, Osmond's son Michael committed suicide by jumping from the eighth floor of his apartment building in Los Angeles. He reportedly battled depression for most of his life and had been in rehabilitation at the age of 12. The autopsy released on April 21, 2010 revealed that no drugs were found in his system. Marie Osmond is a Republican. - Wikipedia (READ MORE)

Monday, April 15, 2013

Brodie’s Legacy

Great Courage - "...We want to get it out there that bullying is not OK, it’s not on. If you step over the line and start to disturb someone mentally or physically, then you will have to take responsibility for what you do,” Mr Panlock said. Brodie's Law ambassador and anti-bullying coach Sue Anderson said people being bullied need to know that it’s okay to ask for help. “Speak up about what you are experiencing and seek help – you do not have to deal with this on your own,” Ms Anderson said. “It takes great courage to decide to interrupt and no longer participate in an ongoing bullying situation. You do not deserve to be bullied – you didn't ask for it, and you don't have to accept it.” "We all have the power to take a stand against bullying by listening to and supporting the target of the bullying, speaking up and spreading the word that bullying is never acceptable and is not welcome in our community,” Ms Anderson said..." - PRWEB, Victoria, Australia March 15, 2013 (READ MORE)

Serious Crime - "...Our family has been fighting to (have workplace bullying the subject of criminal charges for a year plus," he said. "We haven’t been sitting on our hands." "When you assault someone, that’s a criminal charge, isn’t it? Brodie was assaulted, physically, and there are witnesses. "Nothing’s ever too late ... If this can save someone else’s family ... in the future, if the law is good enough for that, fine. But if it’s not, it doesn’t mean a thing does it?" Victoria Police have not charged the men responsible for bullying Brodie. Victorian Attorney-General Robert Clark said today that "serious bullying was a serious crime" and should carry a significant jail term. "These changes will put beyond doubt that the terrible suffering inflicted on Brodie Panlock will constitute the offence of stalking and carry a jail term of up to 10 years," he told 3AW. Mr Clark said Victorian families were "entitled to be confident" that young workers were protected from victimisation at work. "These changes should give parents confidence that their children can start out in the workforce without being victim to this terrible bullying..." - Thomas Hunter, The Age, April 5, 2011 (READ MORE)

Monday, April 8, 2013

Definition of Bullying

Power Imbalance - "...the word is being overused", she says, "expanding, accordionlike, to encompass both appalling violence or harassment and a few mean words." In order to tackle bullying properly it needs a tighter definition, says Bazelon - something like "abuse carried out over a prolonged period of time, involving a power imbalance". This may not fit in either case of Bailey O'Neill or Amanda Todd. There was no history of intimidation that led to the punch thrown at O'Neill, a district attorney said. While for Todd, the fact that she reported conflicts with classmates led many to ascribe her death to bullying when "her account of online seduction, stalking and blackmail cries out for...police investigation..." - The Independent, March 12, 2013 (READ MORE)

Traditional Definition - "...Bullying has traditionally been defined by three elements: aggression (the intent to harm), a power differential, and repetition. The predominant term used in research within the United States has been “peer victimization”, which focuses somewhat more on the experience of children who are victimized and less on the intent of those who perpetrate the bullying..." - Prevnet (READ MORE)

The Victim or The "Target" - "...Bullying is the use of force or coercion to abuse or intimidate others. The behavior can be habitual and involve an imbalance of social or physical power. It can include verbal harassment or threat, physical assault or coercion and may be directed repeatedly towards particular victims, perhaps on grounds of race, religion, gender, sexuality, or ability. If bullying is done by a group, it is called mobbing. The victim of bullying is sometimes referred to as a "target". Bullying can be defined in many different ways. The UK currently has no legal definition of bullying, while some U.S. states have laws against it. Bullying consists of three basic types of abuse – emotional, verbal, and physical. It typically involves subtle methods of coercion such as intimidation. Bullying ranges from simple one-on-one bullying to more complex bullying in which the bully may have one or more "lieutenants" who may seem to be willing to assist the primary bully in his or her bullying activities. Bullying in school and the workplace is also referred to as peer abuse. Robert W. Fuller has analyzed bullying in the context of rankism. A bullying culture can develop in any context in which human beings interact with each other. This includes school, church, family, the workplace, home, and neighborhoods...." - Wikipedia (READ MORE)

All Forms of Harassment - "...Bullying is repeated verbal, physical, social or psychological behaviour that is harmful and involves the misuse of power by an individual or group towards one or more persons. Cyberbullying refers to bullying through information and communication technologies. Bullying can involve humiliation, domination, intimidation, victimisation and all forms of harassment including that based on sex, race, disability, homosexuality or transgender. Bullying of any form or for any reason can have long-term effects on those involved including bystanders. Bullying can happen anywhere: at school, travelling to and from school, in sporting teams, between neighbours or in the workplace...." - NSW Public School (READ MORE)

Workplace Bullying - "...Persistent, offensive, abusive, intimidating or insulting behaviour, abuse of power or unfair penal sanctions which makes the recipient feel upset, threatened, humiliated or vulnerable, which undermines their self-confidence and which may cause them to suffer stress...Bullying is a compulsive need to displace aggression and is achieved by the expression of inadequacy (social, personal, interpersonal, behavioural, professional) by projection of that inadequacy onto others through control and subjugation (criticism, exclusion, isolation etc). Bullying is sustained by abdication of responsibility (denial, counter-accusation, pretence of victimhood) and perpetuated by a climate of fear, ignorance, indifference, silence, denial, disbelief, deception, evasion of accountability, tolerance and reward (eg promotion) for the bully..." - Bullying Online (READ MORE)

Problem Behaviours - "...Common, clearly understood definitions of bullying, sexual harassment and racial discrimination are the cornerstone of any successful program. Definitions and consequences of engaging in these problem behaviours should be posted in common areas and classrooms and reviewed regularly. Students must be engaged in this process. The definitions found below have been tested out on large student populations in many countries. With the exception of the sexual harassment definition, they should be used for grades four and up. Due to developmental reasons, the definition of sexual harassment should only be used for those in grades eight and higher. The definitions found below are based upon the West Vancouver School District Safe School Surveys and the World Health Organization’s definitions of bullying in the international Health Behaviour in School-Aged Children surveys. To harass someone is to bother, make fun of, trouble or attack them, and this is done repeatedly. Someone who harasses wants to hurt the other person (it's not an accident), and does or says the same things over and over again...." - CPHA (READ MORE)

Psychologists' Definition - "...All the misdiagnosis of bullying is making the real but limited problem seem impossible to solve. If every act of aggression counts as bullying, how can we stop it? Down this road lies the old assumption that bullying is a rite of childhood passage. But that’s wrong. Bullying is a particular form of harmful aggression, linked to real psychological damage, both short and long term. There are concrete strategies that can succeed in addressing it - and they all begin with shifting the social norm so that bullying moves from being shrugged off to being treated as unacceptable. But we can’t do that if we believe, and tell our children, that it’s everywhere. The definition of bullying adopted by psychologists is physical or verbal abuse, repeated over time, and involving a power imbalance. In other words, it’s about one person with more social status lording it over another person, over and over again, to make him miserable. ..." - Emily Bazelon, New York Times, March 11, 2013 (READ MORE)

Monday, April 1, 2013

self-confidence and self-esteem

Calgary Herald: - "...Beck will be sharing screen time with actors Clive Owen and Juliette Binoche when the indie drama Words and Pictures begins shooting in Vancouver later this month. It’s an opportunity that just a few years ago would have seemed impossible. “I was afraid of rejection, unable to speak out in large groups of people or in classes,” said the teen, as she explains the cognitive dissonance of going from being “bullied” to winning a screen role. Beck says acting helped her break out of social isolation after years of bullying, and her own experience growing up in a disadvantaged home was very different than what she will be portraying on film...She said her hope in sharing her story is that her journey from being a bullied kid who felt like an outcast, to sharing screen time with some of the world’s best known actors, will inspire other kids to believe in their own dreams. “My parents came here from England and were so broke when I was born my baby stroller and mattress came from the dump,” she said in a phone interview. Her parents started out on welfare, but eventually got work. The family settled in Port Coquitlam, but life was anything but smooth. Beck was hit by a car at age seven, and was hospitalized with a head injury. Her father abandoned the family when she was nine, and event that “destroyed my self-confidence and self-esteem and I became withdrawn and quiet.” Beck’s vulnerabilities, including needing special assistance in school as she recovered after her car accident, made her a target for bullies beginning in grades 4 and 5, she said. “People I thought were friends became abusive, they made threats, stabbed me with pencils, made hurtful remarks. I was the only African-American in the school and they would feel my hair and ask questions about it...When Beck returned to live with her Mom in Grade 11, she decided to try acting. She found her calling after years of confidence and self-esteem issues...After a year of acting classes and “persistence,” Beck started getting gigs. “When that started happening my grades went up in school, my friendships were healthier...Beck is hoping to get a message out to other kids that might be struggling with self-esteem issues or bullying in schools. “School doesn’t last forever...Acting wasn’t given to me, I worked hard for it and it grew my self-esteem..." - Denise Ryan, March 11, 2013 (READ MORE)

Bernadette Beck (Born in Islington, London, England, UK on May 23, 1994), now living in Vancouver, British Columbia. Beck is currently managed by Kalee Harris at Play Management Inc. Her facebook page listed outdoor activities and public speaking as her personal interest. She currently filming "Words and Pictures" slated for 2014 release and featured in "Girl in Progress" (2012) and on television series "Level Up" (2011-12).

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Bullying is an abusive treatment, the use of force or coercion to affect others, particularly when habitual and involving an imbalance of power. It may involve verbal harassment, physical assault or coercion and may be directed persistently towards particular victims, perhaps on grounds of race, religion, gender, sexuality, or ability. The "imbalance of power" may be social power and/or physical power. The victim of bullying is sometimes referred to as a "targeted individual" (Wikipedia).