So Governor Gary Herbert recently signed a law against bullying which is apparently “stronger” than the last one. We don’t really know how much stronger it is because in the midst of ABC4′s impeccable reporting, they forgot to mention anything about the actual law passed – what it prohibits, who it targets, what constitutes an infraction, what the punishments would be for breaking said anti-bullying laws. The only thing they say is:
It makes it illegal to bully students “and” school employees at anytime, or location, even online.
Note to the editors at ABC4, you don’t need quotes there.* If you’re trying to emphasize the word, italics would probably be better. But the only reason you would need to emphasize that word is if the change in the law now includes school employees, where it previously only included students. But, like I said, I have no way of knowing whether or not this is the case because you didn’t do your fucking job!**
But editorial incompetence aside, Herbert is apparently having PTSD from his wedgie years. He wants your kids to be doughy and weak. He wants graduates of the Utah public education system to be fragile. He wants them to have little grasp on reality, be sheltered and coddled, and come crying to their mothers and/or government as soon as they encounter their first inconvenience in the real world. (i.e. He wants them to be Mormon.)
I’m not condoning kids beating the shit out of each other; I am, however, condoning not making it illegal to make fun of someone at school. Kids don’t need to be taken out of school in handcuffs just because they called someone a name.
Is the new law that strict? Could children really be carried away in handcuffs just for putting some kid in a cage and kicking a soccer ball at them? The answer is yes. You could be called out of an important work meeting in order to pick up your five-year-old son from jail because he pushed someone on the playground.
At least that’s what I’m going to assume until ABC4 does some actual reporting and tells me otherwise.
To be fair, after a bit more research I did find an additional article on ABC4.com which does mention the bill:
The language gives authorities more power to regulate what kids can and can not do in their own home if it involves bullying over the internet.***
Which means the government can regulate what your children are doing at home, but adults still can’t order a drink in a restaurant without also ordering an appetizer.
This makes me so angry, I want to punch a kid in the face.
*Also, “anytime” should be two words (any time) and you don’t need that first comma. Please send payment for freelance editing via PayPal to email@example.com.
**Notice how I used italics to emphasize those words. Bolding or underlining them would also have worked. Quotes, however, would not have.
*** The word “Internet” should always be capitalized.