Michigan enacts misguided bullying law

Michigan enacts misguided bullying law

Grace Kim, Online Chief

Matt Epling was a freshman when he was hazed by upperclassmen at his school. Forty days after the incident, he took his own life.

The state of Michigan responded to this by making a terrible law that sanctions bullying, the very thing that made Epling kill himself.

According to The Huffington Post, “the law allows harassment by teachers and students as long as they can claim their actions are rooted in a ‘sincerely held religious belief or moral conviction.’”

The bullying of gay, lesbian, or transgendered individuals is pretty much protected.  As a result, if someone being gay is against another student’s so-called “moral conviction” or “religious beliefs,” bullying the gay student is completely within reason, according to the state of Michigan.

To see this going on in the 21st century in America is beyond my wildest imagination.  Bullying hurts.  Bullying kills.  Bullying needs to have legal repercussions.

According to the Washington State Post, “Government statistics show that at least a third of students ages 12-18 report being bullied during the school year.  Most states have a law that makes bullying illegal, but there is little reinforcement.”

Great progress here, America.  Not only is bullying protected in Michigan, but the laws in other states against it are ineffective.  Bullies are going to keep harassing other kids because they know all they will get is a slap on the wrist from their school.  The next victim could be my best friend.  If they were to take his or her own life because of bullying, I would want to see justice done to the murderer.

It’s horrid to think that if America, especially Michigan, doesn’t wake up soon from their error, my friend’s bully will still be free to bully even more children, and is that something we all would like to see?

Grace Kim is Online Chief for The Patriot and jcpatriot.com.