Montgomery City Police Department report from Chief Phil Ahern: Bullies and Neighborhood Watch
October 11, 2011 - 8:11pm — Anonymous
What is a bully? We all know what a bully is and most of us have known one or two, but sometimes it’s hard to put a definition into words. Let me define the term: A bully is a person who hurts, frightens, and generally tyrannizes over others who are smaller or weaker. (The word bully at one time meant “a fine fellow” and was a compliment. Not so much these days.)
Bully is not a gender-specific term. A bully can be a boy or girl. In some urban schools, girl gang members are much worse than the boys. Neither does a bully have to be the biggest or oldest, nor does a bully have to be in elementary, middle, or high school. Adults are not immune from bullying or being bullied.
We read from social scientists how bullying isn’t normal behavior and there must be some underlying cause, like trying to get attention or the like. I would beg to differ. It seems to me some bullies bully because they can.
Bullying doesn’t have to be physical; it can be emotional or mental. Bullies have the internet, cell phones, and social networking sites to hassle and harass their victims. And victims they are; some to the point of suicide.
Kids have to be kids. They fight with and tease (sometimes to the point of tears) each other. Is that bullying? It could be, but most times I don’t think so. The problem with fighting and teasing among the young is, because they’re children, they don’t know when enough is enough. Age teaches that (or should).
Schools are trying to crack down on bullies and bullying. School officials try to keep an eye out for bullying behavior, but they can’t be everywhere or see everything. Bullies know that or soon figure it out and keep on.
Bullying among the young is not just a school problem; it’s a parent problem as well. There are a few things parents can do to identify and correct bullying behavior. Ask your children how their day went and then, listen. Question further if necessary and notify either school officials or other authorities as necessary.
Remember teasing or fighting (for the right reasons) may not be a bad thing. Children need to learn how to peacefully interact with others. From time to time watch your child or children at play. See if there are any bullying behaviors going on. If it’s your kid, take care of the problem. If it’s someone else’s, a contact with those parents may be in order.
This brings me to another topic; neighborhood watch. Such a thing was developed to try to keep a specific area safe; safe from without as well as within. There has been a program called Neighborhood Watch complete with window decals, posters, and signs. Such a program doesn’t have to be that official.
A neighborhood watch can be nothing than a group of neighbors getting together to decide to participate in such a program. They can watch each others’ properties when one or more families are away. Participants can watch the neighborhood kids at play as well. Of course, it’s better if the neighbors get along.
Include the children in the program, especially the older ones. Make sure the children know who to talk to or who to call in an emergency situation. Try to get the kids to talk to you about things in the neighborhood. Yeah, I know, that might work at 9 years old, but not at 12.
If a group of neighbors wants to start a watch program and doesn’t quite know how to get started, contact me. I’ll be glad to meet with you to discuss it.
Activity for the period September 26 to October 2 included investigations of 2 motor vehicle crashes and 2 complaints of theft. Persons were arrested or summoned to court for Stealing and Possession of a Controlled Substance. Two persons were arrested under authority of warrant. 1 ticket was written for an animal control violation. 8 warnings and 10 tickets were issued for traffic-related offenses.
Importance to me: