Superpowering Our Kids
We have reached the end of The Bullying Antidote! This chapter wraps up everything we have learned with some big-picture ideas: The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, human rights, and how Sweden got to the top of the UNICEF child well-being list.
“As much as we like the idea of an antidote to bullying, what we really love is the idea of building immunity. We really love the idea of a superpower: Zorgos! Our secret word represents all the antidotes we’ve mentioned rolled into one. To be called forth, it must be nurtured from the inside and the outside.” (p. 347)
Q: Zorgos is a six-letter word that symbolizes all of the human qualities that are the opposite of, or the antidotes to bullying. After reading this book, how would you personally define Zorgos?
“…Bullying overlaps with civil rights issues; it can be seen as discriminatory harassment when it is based on race, national origin, sex, age, disability, or religion.” (p. 348)
Q: Parents don’t always realize that schools are required by law to protect children from discrimination and harassment issues. How do you see your child’s school teaching these concepts? What types of bullying are not legally-protected harassment issues?
“When students are taught about human rights in schools, they tend to treat one another and themselves better.” (p. 348)
“Human rights are something we give one another.” (p. 350)
Q: Who is in charge of giving humans their rights? Other humans who have power. How can you give rights to those who you have power over?
“The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, Article 29, specifies that countries must take responsibility for…all appropriate legislative, administrative, social and educational measures to protect the child from all form of physical or mental violence, injury or abuse, neglect or negligent treatment, maltreatment or exploitation, including sexual abuse, while in the care of parent(s), legal guardian(s) or any other person who has the care of the child.”
Q: All members of the United Nations have ratified (agreed to) the Convention on the Rights of the Child, except three: the United States, South Sudan (the newest nation), and Somalia. Why do you suppose the United States has not done so?
Extra Credit: Sign this petition for the Universal Declaration on the Rights of the Child, or write to your representatives in congress!
The United States is at the bottom of the UNICEF (United Nations Children’s Fund) well-being list. Sweden landed at the top of the list. Let’s compare:
“The Swedish government supports the vital parent-child attachment process that promotes healthy development…. Meanwhile, the United States is the only country in the developed world without a mandatory paid maternity leave. Even in Afghanistan, the worst country in the world in terms of mothering support, mothers get ninety days of paid leave.” (p. 352)
Q: Which of the facts about Sweden listed in the bullets on page 352 do you find most impressive, or most desirable for our country?
“Adults, just like children, are influenced by their peers. The conversations we have, the news we watch and listen to, the interactions with other adults—all of these things influence us. It is essential that you find a buddy who shares in your vision of positive parenting. Or better yet, a community.” (p. 357)
Q: Through this discussion process, do you feel like you have found a buddy to support you in your work as a parent? A community?
What will you do next?
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