Cleft lip & palate + cyberbullying songs: American Idol tie-in

 American Idol this year has connections to two issues dear to my heart: the craniofacial disorders known as cleft lip and palate kids and the cyberbullying they often experience. The connections include a young singer from greater New Orelans, Cameron Richard, and the father of the A.I. winner of last year's runaway hit show Nick Fradiani.Cleft lip and palate.  'A Raceland teen who won over the hearts of many across the country on "American Idol" is bringing attention to Cleft Palate … [Read more...]

Easy trick teaches the impact of cyberbullying.

 A  schooteacher in Britain used an incredibly effective trick to teach kids the powerful effects of cyberbullying.She posted an image of two apples cut in half on her Facebook page. The image communicated a powerful lesson. In front of a classroom, she insulted and continuously dropped one apple on the ground to symbolize the effects of bullying.On the outside it looked just like the apple that was not "bullied," but when split in two, "the apple we'd said unkind words to was bruised and all … [Read more...]

Boy hassled by bullies in film has new life.

   Bullies got more than they bargained for when Alex Libby, one of the students in the 2001 "Bully" documentary, flowered and began to thrive in a new school. Tho Alex still has the flattened nose and Asperger's that triggered much of his earlier bullying, he's a confident happy kid these days.Columnist Tony Leys of the Des Moines Register wrote this follow-up story on Alex recently. Here it is in its entirety: Bullies find unintended consequences of their acts. Alex Libby, who was featured in … [Read more...]

Heroines, bullies, and Batgirl’s final bow as a hero.

As I noted earlier in the week on various social media,  Batgirl, whose face graces my "Heroes, Villains, and Fools" home page, has died.  Ms Craig was a heroine to the kids of prior generations who were unused to superheroes at every turn. Superheroes could mainly be found in comic books. Among other villains, Craig fought bullies.Craig was trained as a dancer, which helped her perform her own stunts as Batgirl in the iconic 1960s TV series "Batman." Craig died at her home in Pacific Palisades, … [Read more...]

Cyberbullying——actresses Willis and Patridge talk.

Last March and early April, I blogged about cyberbullying and featured Monica Lewinsky's Ted Talk about it. Well, two more celebs have weighed in about being cyberbullied: Rumer Willis (daughter of Bruce Willis and Demi Moore) and Audrina Patridge  (reality star and TV personality).Cyberbullying – The Fastest Growing Faceless Crime.As I  noted in prior blogs, Patti Agatston, PhD— from www.cyberbullyhelp.com—defines cyberbullying as "using the Internet or other digital devices to send or post … [Read more...]

“Bully” —an anti-bully film—on PBS

Classic anti-bully film. Over 13 million American kids will be bullied this year, making it the most common form of violence experienced by young people in the nation. Bully, directed by Sundance and Emmy-award winning filmmaker Lee Hirsch, brings human scale to this startling statistic, offering an intimate, unflinching look at how bullying has touched five kids and their families as they cope in different ways with relentless cruelty while trying to fit in. Filmed over the course of a single … [Read more...]

Disabilities and Lady Gaga’s anti-bully lyrics.

  Lately, news reporters have been writing about Lady Gaga's foundation to combat bullying. Because so much of the foundation is linked to the recording artist's words in "Born This Way," it's important to look at the lyrics. Disabilities mentioned. What's exciting to me, besides the anti bully message, is Lady Gaga's use of the word "disabilities "about two-thirds into her song:  "Whether life's disabilitiesLeft you outcast, bullied, or teasedRejoice and love yourself today'cause baby … [Read more...]