An email just arrived and I must admit that it took me by surprise. In all the years that Rugby’s message has been out there, we have had very few negative comments.
Most of the time, adults and kids have responded with positive remarks and appreciation for all that we are trying to do here. The “Tail” of Rugby Jones: A Rascal’s Journey from Disability to Ability was the beginning of our mission because of the quantity of unbelievably positive responses that we received. Parents and kids shared their stories both good and bad and everyone benefited from their experiences.
We learned about bullying from the kids and parents who experienced bullying first hand from the perspective of the bullies, the bullied, the bystanders and the parents.
Over and over again, we have heard how much our message has helped children embrace their differences and take pride in who they are. We have received a ton of messages sharing how much better kids get the fact that weight differences, stature differences, ethnic differences, sexual differences, learning differences and physical differences shouldn’t be the basis for how people are treated.
Then, an email arrived today that rocked my very being! I will only quote a portion of it.
“How dare you tell people that it’s ok to be homosexual? How dare you say that different races are the same as us? You are the devil and you are spreading the devil’s message that bad people and bad deeds are a good thing.”
Receiving an email like this proves to me that our message is an important one. How can children understand that bullying and demeaning any person is wrong when this is what they see adults doing?