Bullying was the subject and Gilbert Brown delivered the message with emphatic intensity, much like he did on the football field when he felled Packers opponents.
“Bullies are cowards,” he said to 450 students at Durand Middle and High School. “They need an audience and don’t give them that. Also, if you’re being bullied, try not to show any fear, because when you do, the bully gets stronger.”
Brown went on to describe how bullying is now a 24/7 activity with social media. Prior to the onset of the online culture, victims would have a brief respite when they were away from school or other social settings, but now worry about the constant putdowns that can take place through the web.
“There are kids that cry themselves to sleep each night because of it,” Brown continued. “Don’t be any part of bullying. Put a stop to it. Stand up for those that are being bullied. Tell a teacher, tell a parent. Put a stop to it.”
Andrew Quarless added to the effort, too, when he said, “dare to be different.”
The students, who sat in focused attention, participated fully with thoughtful questions. One young lady became particularly emotional when asking how one apologizes to someone for being a bully.
There were light moments, too. Brown chastised three students who were wearing Minnesota Vikings jerseys. Maybe Brown forgot that the state border was close by.
“How can we have three idiots in this crowd,” Brown said with a laugh.
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