To this day … for the bullied and beautiful

Shane Koyczan is an award-winning Canadian poet, author and performer. You may recognize him from the opening ceremonies of the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics where he wowed a live audience of over 60,000 people (over 1 billion world wide) with his piece “We Are More.”

Opening ceremonies Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics

We Are More

Did you know that there is actually a day designated for anti-bullying awareness?

Anti-Bullying Day (a.k.a. Pink Shirt Day) originated in Canada and is best known in North America. It takes place on the last Wednesday of February or the second Thursday in September. It originally started as a protest against a bullying incident at Central Kings Rural High School in Nova Scotia, when a grade nine student, Charles McNeill, arrived at school wearing a pink shirt. On Anti-Bullying Day, many of those who participate wear pink to symbolize a stand against bullying.‘s purpose is to prevent bullying through education and awareness. It provides educational programs and resources to individuals, families, educational institutions and organizations. It makes online learning and educational resources available in order to help people deal effectively and positively with the act of bullying and its long-lasting negative consequences. Be more than a bystander. Learn how you can confront bullying and teach others to do the same. Much of bullying stems from a widely misunderstood sense of self and others (especially where sexual orientation is concerned).

The Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network strives to assure that each member of every school community is valued and respected regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity/expression. The It Gets Better Project‘s mission is to communicate to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth around the world that it gets better and to create and inspire the changes needed to make it better for them.

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Read the New York Times article which says, “One way to better identify real bullying is to listen to how teenagers themselves describe their interpersonal conflicts.

“Bullying is a particular form of harmful aggression, linked to real psychological damage, both short and long term. There are concrete strategies that can succeed in addressing it — and they all begin with shifting the social norm so that bullying moves from being shrugged off to being treated as unacceptable. But we can’t do that if we believe, and tell our children, that it’s everywhere.” – The New York Times

Most teenagers can identify bullying, but they can also distinguish it from what they often call “drama,” which, the researchers Danah Boyd and Alice Marwick have shown, is an accurate and common name for the ordinary skirmishes that mark most children’s lives. In fact, it’s drama that’s common, and bullying, properly defined, that’s less so. “Sometimes, bullying stops when we all become just a little more open minded.


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