Thomas Sowell's latest column at Human Events focuses on the empty rhetoric that often substitutes for action in addressing the problem of bullying.
When politicians want to do nothing, and yet look like they are doing something, they appoint a blue ribbon committee or go to the U.N. or assign some Cabinet member to look into the problem and report back to the President -- hoping that the issue will be forgotten by the time he reports back.
When educators are going to do nothing, they express great concern and make pious public pronouncements. They may even hold conferences, write op-ed pieces or declare a "no tolerance" policy. But they are still not going to do anything that is likely to stop bullying.
In some rough schools, they can't even stop the bullying of teachers by the hooligans in their classes, much less stop the bullying of students.
Not all of this is the educators' fault. The courts have created a legal climate where any swift and decisive action against bullies can lead to lawsuits. The net results are indecision, half-hearted gestures and pious public pronouncements by school officials, none of which is going to stop bullies.