Bullying appears rife…..still!

After the last post, we see another story that appears to offer more of the same. It appears that there are serious issues with the legend of Lance Armstrong. I still think the best response was written in August (although I have only just clocked this) from the Guardian’s Matt Seaton:

The most important lesson of the Lance Armstrong story, though, is the hardest to prepare for and guard against: our own gullibility and willing complicity. What is astounding and disturbing is that one man – a dominant personality as well as a dominant athlete – was able to enforce his will, isolate, bully and silence his doubters and critics, and win the world’s top cycling event year after year and make people believe in him, despite there being, apparently, dozens of witnesses to its utter phoniness. Too many people had too much invested in the Lance Armstrong story, and the power of persuasion followed the money.

We still have so many relational issues to address in this world – lets face them head on, one by one, if necessary.

Hodgson’s speech – context is everything here

The response to Roy Hodgson being appointed as the England Manager for the National Football team was one of shock as expectations had been firmly placed elsewhere.  This shock resulted in a wide response of upset and anger manifested against Roy as an individual.  It was into this context that his speech (use of the letter R was picked upon) was used to degrade him.

In themselves, the newspaper headlines were not horrific, after all we are used to “Wozzy” (Jonathon Ross) using humour for the same issue.  The real issue here, for me at least, was the context.  Hodgson was not wanted by the popular majority, people were angry that ‘their man’ was not even approached and so the press began its bandwagon against Hodgson, before his appointment was confirmed and the main point of attack was his speech.  It was not humour, it was a personal attack. Humour in the same light is reflected by the Fulham fans (whom he was once affiliated) having a banner that used the same tone but in a different context.

I believe that Hodgson was being bullied – my hope is that one day soon, he will be able to use humour against the very people who sought to knock him back.

Roy (great name too!) – I wish you well and trust that your ability and experience will be evident to all.


bullying, humiliation or fun?

johnThere has been a lot of press on the latest rounds of Strictly and X-Factor.  One thing that has been surprising me is the attitude of the judges.  The judges on both shows have expressed a very strong desire to get certain contestants booted out of the show.  The current seasons of both shows have seen strong condemnation, by the judges, to particular acts.  The attitudes, words and attitude with which they are conveyed have been quoted in a variety of ways from bullying, to humiation to fun.

If young people or children were to engage in this sort of public denunciation they would be taken to task for bullying people, it would not be considered acceptable behaviour, yet here we are in prime time viewing on British TV seeing adults behave in a way that is quite shocking.  What is worse, both competitors are abiding within the rules of the relevant shows, providing entertainment (which is what saturday evening TV is about!) and putting copious amounts of effort into their performances.  They are being targeted because the judges opinion is considered “paramount” in all things.

I wonder what mixed messages our younger generations are taking on board as they see the now ritualistic bullying and humiliation of some of the celebrities (lossely used term!) on our TV screens.