This 4-year-old Indian Boy

ran out into the parking lot

of my apartment complex and screamed, “I won’t be bullied!”

While three black boys on bikes

laughed at him


his helpless anger.

Adults don’t notice

or care.


they feel powerless to stop it.

One of the black boys on a bike

followed an old lady and her Scottish Terrier

down the street, to the beauty salon.

The dog lunged at the boy, barking, choking itself on its own leash

and he laughed. He started making faces at the dog and dancing around.

“Stop that!” The old lady screamed, but he followed her down the block, tormenting her, anyway.

It was something to do.

I watched this, amused. Their suffering had just begun.

Of course,

the best thing you can do to a bully

is treat him or her like a fly.

Swat them,

Ignore them,

Do your best not to be bothered by them.

My White neighbors have spoken to these boys

like Mr. Rogers. “Don’t you understand that people want peace and quiet?”

And the bullies scream and laugh at them. There is no teacher or principal

that these adults can go to, to ask for help, and they are helpless.

The bullies own the parking lot

and the adults don’t own anything—they rent.

13 thoughts on “When Adults Don’t Own Anything

  1. They need smacking; to teach them that their “power” was only imagination. It does not matter by whom, nor how, but if they do not learn that lesson, they will grow up without compassion, and that would be a real waste of their lives.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I am not, in general, in favour of violence: often the only lesson it teaches is that the solution to not being able to do as you wish is to be more violent than anyone who might stop you. But any form of restraint is also an exercise of power, and bullies lack the self-restraint that they really should have. It would be nice if one could simply teach a bully how self-restraint is valuable, but if they’re not of a mind to listen, that idea simply won’t land. So sometimes one must use the only language that they are listening to; sometimes it is healthy to be a bigger bully _but_ also to show them that the violence they experience as a result is impartial: an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth and no more. And then, when you have their attention, it may also be possible for them to see self-restraint in action, by the way that the violence against them ceases. All children should learn self-restraint; not all parents teach it (or perhaps know it themselves).

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I really enjoyed reading your thoughts, Someone. I have realized that the biggest threat, is someone who does not threaten. They don’t announce what they are going to do. Somebody who is able to stay silent is dangerous. I think violence is a last resort, for sure! Thanks for your thoughts, again! 🙂


  2. Zero tolerance for bullies, abusers of any kind. None of this “time out” crap; it doesn’t work. Bullies and abusers need to have done to them what they do to others. Period. Don’t waste my time and tax payer dollars. I was not hit as a kid; I didn’t need to be hit. I was taught respect and I taught my kids respect. My husband taught them to defend themselves. Give a bully/abuser an inch and they’ll take a mile. I don’t have time for this shit. You want to smack an old lady and her dog around. Then you should be smacked around. You want to take your unwanted newborn and throw it off a room. You should be thrown off a roof. Read the Bible; an eye for an eye. No, my beliefs aren’t very popular and I really don’t care. This country … hell, the world … needs a hero. Bring it on!

    Liked by 1 person

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