Expatriate Owl

A politically-incorrect perspective that does not necessarily tow the party line, on various matters including but not limited to taxation, academia, government and religion.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Bully for Him!

The ink is now hitting the newsprint:  Manhattan attorney Chaim Book has filed a lawsuit against the Northport-East Northport School District, alleging that his client's son was bullied with vicious antisemitic comments and that the school officials did nothing to stop it.

I have seen only the ink in the tabloids (paper and cyber, here, here and here), and have not yet read any official court documents.  I know nothing about the student, a former freshman at Northport High School whose given name is not given but whose parents are Robert and Anita Slade, about whom I also know nothing more than what appears in the media.  I do know a little about Northport High School.  I know Chaim Book only by reputation, which is favorable (a number of years ago I did win a case against his law partner before he became his law partner).

Jews are definitely a minority at Northport High School, but not nearly as small a minority as were in the junior high school I once attended at the time I attended it (the Jewish population has since grown by leaps and bounds over the past 40-something years).  When my family moved into the community, my sister and I added significantly to the junior high school's Jewish population, but it still could be counted on the fingers of both hands.  And yes, I was the subject of a few antisemitic taunts.  I say "a few" because word got out that I was willing to risk a suspension on my record for resorting to a physical response to such taunts.

Again, I do not know anything about the alleged victim.  I do not know whether he has the physical and emotional wherewithal to effectively respond in a pugilistic manner.  I do not know anything about his personality, and whether it is facilitative of the "bullying" alleged in the lawsuit (which, again, I have not yet read firsthand).  I therefore take no position as to the propriety of the lawsuit.

Nevertheless, I cannot help but wonder whether this alleged victim ("alleged" in the strictly legal sense; there is no question in my mind that he was in fact subjected to the taunts, including the ones memorialized on the Internet) has adequately prepared himself for the environment at Northport High School.  Has he engaged in some sort of martial arts training?  And, at the risk of alienating the Jewish liberal hoplophobe contingent, did his father ever take him to the shooting range?

Yes, it has become more fashionable of late to bash Jewish people in America and elsewhere.  Yes, the school officials can do far more to stop it and should be held to account.  But I cannot help but wonder whether many in the Jewish community are being too pampering and overprotective of their offspring, and whether we are raising too many wimps in the younger generation.


  • At 20 May, 2012 04:18, Blogger Aaron said…

    The problem these days is that if a kid stands up for him or herself and gives the bully a physical response, the schools come down on them like a ton of bricks.

    Zero tolerance finds them both at fault, or even worse the victim gets in more trouble than the instigator.

    We're raising a generation of passive eaklings who are being trained to not doin anything to protect themselves but report and let authorities handle it. Sigh.


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