Saturday, 7 September 2013

musicians oppose bullies, but they have strong friends

click to go to Kerrang! website

The last time I bought Kerrang!, New Wave of Heavy Metal pioneers Iron Maiden and Saxon were were regulars; Helloween and older hands like Ozzy Osbourne and Gary Moore, of blessed memory, were frequent flyers in its pages.

So when I bought a copy for old times’ sake the first thing I felt was a vague sadness that I wasn’t familiar with any of the bands mentioned. Then I noticed a special feature on bullying.

Black Veil Brides are part of an army of rock bands participating in MOB – Musicians Opposed to Bullying – and a line of their song Unbroken (which featured in Avengers Assemble) has been used on T-shirts funding a film, The Bully Project.

I was very interested in what Bride founder and vocalist Andy Biersack had to say. He was bullied because his hair was longer than the norm. When I went to school blokes with long hair were the cool ones, but tempus mutat mores, as we were always saying in the East End of Glasgow.

click to watch government film
Then he said he was a bit chubbier than the rest. Unfortunately fat(ter) kids have always been punished by their peers, but don’g always get better treatment from adults. A 2007 Telegraph article reported authors were "making fat children bully targets", but I’m thinking about real life. In the British government’s first "Change for Life ad, we see a kid sitting playing video games then the huge word "fat". Then we have school uniforms: chain stores are only stocking uniforms for stick insects, while one Surrey newspaper’s story on shops that did stock uniforms for fat kids was headlined "our shame". Welcome to nudging.

It’s good that bullying is being dealt with by rock musicians. But while governments and their friends effectively encourage bullying to further their agendas (eg on health), the problem will infest all sectors.

Gerry Dorrian
300 words


Government Change for Life video

Unbroken by Black Veil Brides

Click to watch The Bullying Project full movie

Authors making fat children bully targets - The Telegraph

Our XXXXL shame: Oversize Sussex school uniforms puts spotlight on child obesity - The Argus

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