Autumn in the North Cemetery.

Sixty miles west of Boston, Massachusetts there is the small New England town of Sturbridge. Located at the junction of I-90 (The Mass Pike), and I-84 it has become known as the "Crossroads of New England". The town was first settled over 300 years ago, and like other small New England towns it has grown just enough over the years to be in a difficult place today. How do we embrace the future without forgetting how we got to our present? How do we attract the right kind of growth, and maintain who we are? And, what about our culture out here in Central Massachusetts?

These pages will cause one to think about how to protect what we have, our future direction, and how to move on in the very best way.

Those thoughts, and other ramblings, will hopefully inspire more thought, conversation, action, and occasionally a smile...

...seems to be working so far

Saturday, April 10, 2010

The Need For Changes In The Law

Those teenagers in South Hadley that are accused of bullying a classmate to death got me to thinking a lot over the past couple of days. The documentation of the abuse the victim went through is enormous. Seems that there were those in a position to intervene, but for reasons known only to them, they did not.

Maybe those in position did not think it was a serious threat.

This seems to be a continuing theme in most bullying cases. Those in the position to intervene, and stop the bullying, just don't. I want to think that they really don't think the threat is real, that it is only a random, occasional act, but I can't. In this particular case, the story, and documentation tell otherwise.

The teenagers are accused of constant, harassing, threatening behavior towards the victim. Some say the parents are to blame. I don't know. Maybe the parents were lax in not teaching them about how to play well with others, and about good and bad behavior. Who knows? But, one thing is for certain: those accused are people with the capacity to know the difference between good, and bad behavior entirely on their own. The parents cannot be blamed because their child decided not to use the lessons taught them, unless those same parents were aware of what their child was doing.

The only ones that can be blamed are those that are accused, and those that knew of the bullying, and chose to do nothing.

They are as guilty as those that did the bullying. They were the enablers.

I see something coming from this case other than a verdict. I see laws being written to insure this does not happen, in the same way, again.

Those that suspect bullying must report it. Teachers, medical professionals, family members, anyone that sees bullying, or suspects it, must report it. Then it will be investigated, and if real, the behavior will be stopped.

The result of another law controlling more of our behavior? Lives will be saved.

Good enough for me.


  1. This points out the very serious underlying issue and that is the way in which our children are communicating on line. Unacceptable verbal communication is bantered around on Instant Messenger, Facebook, Myspace, etc at a very important time in a child’s life, that being their adolescence years. These correspondence become irrational and abusive, and the average teenager gets sucked into these “conversations” very easily. It seems almost normal to them.

    I’m not talking about every teenager, because not everyone falls into this trap.

    It is the responsibility of the parents to be sure that they teach their children not to participate in these unhealthy dialogs. Without recognizing the problem, we will never fix this serious problem.

  2. True, but this time the bullying was done in person, in school, and while the girl was walking home from school. Whether online, or in person all bullying must stop.


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