By now you may have heard Delanie Marcotte, a 5th grade student at Pollard Elementary School in Plaistow, NH, deliver a tearful and heartfelt message to the school board about bullying. She had looked forward to being a 5th grader very much, but she said that it certainly isn’t what she hoped for.
This beautiful and brave little girl was told that she “should be shot in the head with an AK-47 and buried in her backyard.” She is often kicked, punched and tripped at school for no reason. She began to dread going to school, and finally she had had enough. She appealed to the school board to take bullying seriously and to do something about it.
Her father has said that she is a very kind girl, and does her best to stand up to bullying. When she sees it happening to another child, she asks the bully to stop and to say sorry. This is pure courage, especially in one so young.
I am sure that this young girl will do great things in her life. The fact that she is not taking the bullying anymore speaks to her upbringing and her loving spirit. She may be too young to understand that people who do or say mean things are often hurting inside. It is a sad truth that hurt people hurt people. Bullying is just one part of it.
We may never know or understand what makes a bully, but this amazing girl is facing the bullies head on. The very fact that she made her experience public shows not only courage, but a kind of dignity you don’t often see in children—or adults, for that matter. She knows that she does not deserve to be bullied. She knows that other children are bullied, too, and she does her best to stop it.
I may not see a real bully these days myself, but I know a hero when I see one. Delanie Marcotte is a hero with the virtues of kindness, compassion and respect for others. I hope with all my heart that someone (most likely her parents and family) tells her every day how magnificent she is and how brave.
I hope that one day soon we will see the end of bullying in schools or anywhere else. This little freedom fighter will not be the only one to stand up to bullies. This kind of hatred needs to stop and soon.
I have hope for Delanie’s generation. I hope that there are more Delanies out there.