Bullying is not OK

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This is in response to the Sun Journal story May 8, “Problems, pranks and pressure.”

Corrections officer David Trafford was quoted, “It was just some guys having a good time, you know? Nobody got hurt.” Sounds like what one might have heard in Massachusetts recently, as several teenage boys stood trial for the relentless bullying of Phoebe Price, a young girl who eventually took her own life.

But it wasn’t a quote from a Massachusetts teen; it was from a local adult, and a corrections officer to boot. A corrections officer who might have thought, “These guys (fellow officers) are adults. They shouldn’t be bothered by it.”

What he doesn’t get, what bullies never get, is that it doesn’t matter how old you are, bullying is not OK.

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Bullying hurts the target, whether the person is 13 or 30. It is intended to. It’s a mean, sadistic act. It’s getting off on hurting someone less powerful.

Rather than dismissing it as “just boys having fun,” this kind of behavior must be addressed quickly and decisively. Sheriff Desjardins took the right steps when he disciplined corrections officers at the county jail, and the community should be backing him up. Period.

By the way, I was not aware that the “guys” were hired to “have a good time” on the county’s dollar. I’d have fired them all for that alone.

Pat Malcolm, Lewiston

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