The above video has been kicking around for a bit, and it is something worth watching because it does tend to be a bit of a tear jerker regarding bullying. It inverts the idea of gay and straight in society and has at its premise the idea of how would people react to living in a world where homosexuality is the norm and heterosexuality is the ‘deviation’, and what kind of bullying it would lead to.
I have some issues with it for some very oddball reasons. Maybe it is because of how I see the issues surrounding sexual orientation. The unfortunate reality is that sexual orientation is heavily tied into gender constructs. In a sense, for the world to be majority gay, the gender constructs we have would have to be completely torn down. It isn’t a one-to-one ratio.
The premise is wonderful, but it got me to thinking in a direction other than sexuality. Bullying isn’t really about sexual orientation or gender identity or even necessarily about enforcing societal norms.
It’s about power.
In a way, bullying, like rape, is not about the obvious causes, but rather about power over others. When I was growing up, I was bullied a lot- and for a lot of reasons. I was and am overweight. I wear glasses, I have red hair, and I am a know-it-all sometimes. The thing is, I had overweight kids bullying me about being fat. I learned a lot talking to some of my bullies after they grew up a bit, and what I learned is that many of them came from homes where they had no real power over their lives. They had broken families, they lived in bad neighborhoods, and so forth.
They wanted power over me so that they could feel more like they had power over themselves.
Just some food for thought about how we tackle the problem with bullying, and that does include teaching acceptance of homosexuality, bisexuality and transsexuality.