The Commercial-News, Danville, IL

January 31, 2014

Bullying not limited to Internet


The Commercial-News

---- — Bullying not limited to Internet

Editor:

I wish to address bullying. I heard on TV that it is so easy to bully someone via the Internet.

I disagree. Bullying was around 80 years ago. I’m proof positive.

My sister taught a country school which had about 15 students, grades first through eighth.

My sister was 23 years older than I and lived at the farm with her husband until they could save enough to move out on their own. When she would prepare her lessons, I was always eager to learn so I could read, write and count.

The reason the little boy wouldn’t stay in class, an eighth-grade “ornery cuss” would tease him and tell him he was going to throw him in the well. He was afraid to say anything, so my sister didn’t know he was being teased.

L.A. Tuggle was the superintendent of schools, so she contacted him to see if she could enroll me, so he would have a classmate. They came to an agreement. I was enrolled in first grade at 5 years old. There wasn’t any kindergarten back at that time. This was 1935.

In 1941 the country schools were consolidated, and I moved to the Indianola Grade School when we moved in 1942 from the farm to our residence in Indianola.

For a young girl to go from 15 students to that many or more in one class was traumatic in itself, but when I was in fifth grade at 10 years old, I had the misfortune of maturing quicker than my classmates. The sexist remarks I had to endure and names I was called, “Jersey Cow,” is one I can print, were embarrassing to a young, shy girl.

I cried a lot and couldn’t tell my unsympathetic teacher; she bawled me out for crying all the time. And I was too ashamed to repeat what they were saying to my dad because he would have gone to school and “cleaned their clock.” So, there I was in pure h---!

So I don’t think Internet is the beginning of harassment. It’s been around a long, long time.

I’ve outlined all my “teasers,” and if any are still alive, I forgive you. Now with all the lewdness on TV, you would fit right in in today’s society.

Wilmetta Feezor

Indianola