By Andy Harper
Sidelines, Middle Tennessee State U.
I’d like to think that I’m somewhat of an idealist. I’d like to think that world peace is achievable and the philosophy of “love your fellow man” isn’t just meaningless print on a Christmas card.
So why are kids like Carl Walker, 11, and Eric Mohat, 17, killing themselves? Maybe they’ve been listening to “Teenage Suicide” by Big Fun too much. Or maybe the vicious social hierarchy portrayed in movies like “The Heathers” is reality.
Sirdeaner Walker, mother of Carl, told members of the House Education Committee last week about her son. “What could make a child his age despair so much that he would take his own life? That question haunts me to this day, and I will probably never know the answer.”
“What we do know is that Carl was being bullied relentlessly in school.”
Her pitiful story was part of a plea for Congress to strengthen anti-bullying practices in our country’s education system. Walker, along with reps from the National Association of School Psychologists and “Students Against Violence Everywhere,” want more programs that involve an active approach to preventing bullying.
Walker said “faggot” and “gay” were some of the bullying slurs used against Carl. Likewise, William and Janis Mohat, parents of Eric, filled a federal lawsuit against their local Ohio school district because their son was harassed in a similar way. Full story.