Riding the school bus is a privilege. When I was young, we rode the bus to and from school every morning and every afternoon. Our bus driver had driven my father to school, and he didn’t put up with a lot of shenanigans on his bus. He wasn’t afraid to stop the bus and not move until everyone had settled down. However, we weren’t so bad as to have this happen often, and for the most part everyone on the bus respected Mr. Royster. We were taught to respect our elders. Disrespecting teachers, aunts, uncles or our elders was simply NOT tolerated in our home nor by society. You only backtalked one time before you were taught a lesson. I’m not sure what has happened as a society that parents are not teaching their children basic manners and RESPECT. They are not parenting their children and in turn, their children are exhibiting socially inappropriate behaviors such as bullying. This thought by parents that you need to be your child’s best friend is simply not successful. Being your child’s best friend does not teach them respect for you or others. These children just don’t care – and they have complete and total disregard for the feelings of others; children and adult alike.
What these four kids did to this woman was rotten, mean, and vicious. For almost 10 minutes this group of middle school boys taunted, threatened, and humiliated their school bus monitor until she cried. Sexual threats were made to her, as well as threats of physical violence. They told her how fat and disgusting she was, how they wanted to stab her, and how her entire family probably killed themselves because they hated being related to her. This was especially hurtful as Mrs. Klein’s son had committed suicide 10 years ago. What kind of a child does this to an adult? Teens can be jerks, but there’s a line between crude teen behavior and cruelty. These kids were CRUEL and malicious.
WARNING: These videos contain highly vulgar language and ideas that some may find disturbing. Please watch at your own risk.
Law enforcement in Greece, NY has opted NOT to file criminal charges against the boys. This REALLY saddens me. WHY are they not being charged? This was obviously not their first rodeo with bullying and the bus monitor says that they have harassed her before. She referred to two of them as bad apples. Others from the school have accused the boys of being bullies. When is the proper time to say enough is enough and show these children that this behavior will not be tolerated? Should the system wait until they have left a wake of emotionally abused peers and elderly behind them? Or should they wait until one of their bullied victims commits suicide because of their abuse? Is being passive really the right thing to do in this situation?
One of the fathers spoke to local media and apologized for his son’s behavior. But, where are the rest of the parents? Why aren’t they speaking out about their children and where are their apologies? Father of one of the boys, Robert Helm, reached out to Karen yesterday evening and apologized for his son’s behavior:
“I’m sorry. This is not the way I raised my kids. I never would have in my wildest dreams think that they were capable of anything like this,” Helm said.
“It’s not going to stop with, ‘You’re grounded; you’re not going to get TV.’ This is much bigger than that. This is something for a professional to interview Wesley and to find out what the underlying problem is.”
Robert Helm may have apologized for his son, but it was lacking something…HIS SON DOING THE APOLOGIZING to his victim! When the youth of society see nothing wrong with being disrespectful to the elderly, this is indicative of society as a whole not moving forward in a positive direction. Parents need to get it together and start parenting again. You are NOT your child’s best pal! Kids do not raise themselves. They learn from example and need structure and discipline.
These boys were VICIOUS! Two others have apologized to police – more likely not out of remorse, but because they got caught. The refusal of local law enforcement to seek criminal charges is disheartening. Sure, just let the school give them a slap on the wrist and make them pick up trash for a few weeks or volunteer somewhere. I’m not sure that is the way to get the message across to them that bullying is NOT ACCEPTABLE.
The apologies issued thus far:
Josh: “I am so sorry for the way I treated you. When I saw the video I was disgusted and could not believe I did that. I am sorry for being so mean and I will never treat anyone this way again.”
Wesley: “I feel really bad about what I did. I wish I had never done those things. If that had happened to someone in my family, like my mother or grandmother, I would be really mad at the people who did that to them.”
Wesley’s mom: “I can not even tell you how badly I feel. I am deeply sorry for what my son did. I wish there was some way to make it up to you. I would like it if he could do some work for you or help you in some way. I’m sure that you don’t want him anywhere near you or your property and I don’t blame. I am embarrassed , angry and sad about the awful way he treated you. I am truly sorry.”
Luis’ father: “We apologize, from the bottom of our hearts on what happened. We wish this will never happen again, to nobody and from nobody. Like Luis said, if your friend says to bully somebody, please don’t do it….A couple of people have already died because of this.
We apologize to Ms. Klein. We’re deeply sorry.”
Indiegogo.com has raised more than $500,000 to send Karen Klein on a vacation. Click the link above if you want to donate. Maybe she can use the money to retire so she never has to deal with this kind of abuse again!
Julia Van Orman, President of the Greece Board of Education says that this should be a “teachable” incident. Really? Everyone should let Julia Van Orman know that NO, these kids need to be punished for their behavior. You can reach her by email: Julia.VanOrman@greece.k12.ny.us
- Bullied bus monitor: What will happen to those nasty kids? – Christian Science Monitor (csmonitor.com)
- Video of Children Being Cruel to Adult School Bus Monitor (americanclarion.com)
- UPDATE: The Greece, NY Bus Monitor had a death in her family (bonjupatten.com)
- Kids In NY Appear To Be Running The Asylum (anthonypompliano.com)