Thursday, June 21, 2012

Karen Klein bus monitor video: should she give back the money?

Wait a minute. What about all the children who were bullied on that bus? I bet they'd like a vacation. They can't simply decide to quit riding the bus. How about $600,000 for an effective bus monitor who can educate bullies? Both the bullies and the bullied need counseling.

I wonder where these obnoxious youngsters learned contempt for people who are poor or fat? It seems that these cruel kids are voicing attitudes that are widespread among adults. Charlies M. Blow agrees with me:

Bullies on the Bus
New York Times
June 22, 2012

...Those boys are us, or at least too many of us: America at its ugliest. It is that part of society that sees the weak and vulnerable as worthy of derision and animus.

This kind of behavior is not isolated to children and school buses and suburban communities. It stretches to the upper reaches of society — our politics and our pulpits and our public squares.

Whether it is a Republican debate audience booing a gay soldier or Rush Limbaugh’s vicious attack on a female Georgetown law student or Newt Gingrich’s salvos at the poor, bullying has become boilerplate. Hiss and taunt. Tease and intimidate. Target your enemies and torture them mercilessly. Maintain primacy through predation.

Traditionally inferior identity roles are registered in a variety of ways. For Klein, she was elderly and female and not thin or rich. For others, it is skin color, country of origin, object of affection or some other accident of birth...

Click HERE for the original video of the bus incident.

Donations for bullied New York bus monitor surpass $600G
By Joshua Rhett Miller
June 23, 2012

Brutal bullying more common than you think?

An online feel-good fundraising effort for a bullied bus monitor has surpassed half a million dollars — and is growing.

As of early Saturday, more than $605,000 has been donated to Karen Klein, a 68-year-old grandmother of eight who appeared on a 10-minute video earlier this week being berated and bullied by four seventh-graders on a bus operated by the Greece Central School District, near Rochester, N.Y. Klein has also been offered a trip to Disney Land with nine guests by Southwest Airlines, has learned...

Karen Klein Should Give the Money Back
Chris Kelly
Huffington Post

Something's been bugging me about Karen Klein, the school bus monitor from Greece, New York, who was taunted by children in a video on YouTube, and now seems to have been given half a million dollars by nice strangers who feel bad:

What happened to her never should have happened.

Someone should have been monitoring the kids on that bus.

And clearly it wasn't Karen Klein.

I hope she gets the $500,000. I hope she gets more. I hope she goes to the Walt Disney World Magic Kingdom Park, Orlando, and has her picture taken with Woody and Jessie the Yodeling Cowgirl.

But I can't shake the feeling that she should also take $15,506 and give it back to the people of Greece, New York, who paid her to monitor children on a school bus.

A job she -- while clearly a human being who didn't deserve to be treated like shit -- was also incapable of performing.

Again, not saying the children were right and she's wrong, or she was asking for it, or there's any excuse for making people cry just to see if you can. There's a special ring of hell for people who do that, and it's not Rochester, but you can see it from there.

They're bad and she's their victim.

But why was she there? What did she think her job was? What did the parents who put their children on the bus think?

Because, for $375 a week, to ride the bus twice, she doesn't appear to be preventing very much bullying.

Again: She's a nice lady, a grandmother apparently, and the things that were said to her were horrible, but that's okay, because she says her hearing aid doesn't work that well. Which circles us back to the question of what she saw as parameters of her assignment.

And what she, and the parents who hired her, consider "monitoring."

Here's how Mrs. Klein, a former school bus driver herself, described the ugly incident that never should have happened to the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle:

"I was trying to just ignore them, hoping they would go away and it doesn't work."

No, it doesn't work. It also doesn't work when children are bullying other children. That's why we put monitors on the bus.

To protect the children.

Again. (And again, and again.) Karen Klein is a person, and no one should be cruel to her. A bad thing happened. She should have never been on that bus.

Karen Klein bus monitor abuse video: Youtube video of woman bullied by children goes viral
June 21, 2012
Faith Karimi

A profanity-laced video of middle school students in upstate New York verbally abusing a bus monitor is sparking an outpouring of support as strangers worldwide rally to her side.

In the video, the students taunt Karen Klein, 68, with a stream of profanity, insults, jeers and physical ridicule.

Some boys demand to know her address, saying they want to come to her house to perform sexual acts and steal from her.

The bullying continues unabated for about 10 minutes in the video, reducing Klein to tears as a giggling student jabs her arm with a book in one instance.

"Oh my God, you're so fat," one says.

Klein, a bus monitor for the Greece Central School District, said she tried her best to disregard the harassment. The students involved attend Greece Athena middle school. "I tried to ignore it ... I didn't hear some stuff and tried to shut them out," Klein told CNN affiliate WHAM.

She said one comment from a boy aboard the bus was especially painful. He tells her that she does not have family because "they all killed themselves because they didn't want to be near you."

Klein's oldest son took his own life 10 years ago, according to the affiliate.

...The video prompted an outpouring of support and a fundraiser by an international crowd funding site that had gathered more than $100,000 by early Thursday.

"Let's give Karen a vacation of a lifetime. Let's show her the power of the internets and how kind and generous people can be," the fundraiser's organizer said on the website. The organizer did not respond to CNN requests for comment on the website. The school district said its bullying team and the local police are conducting an investigation.

"We have discovered other similar videos on YouTube and are working to identify all of the students involved," the school district said in a statement.

It did not elaborate on whether the additional videos are related to Klein's case.

"While we cannot comment on specific student discipline, we can say that students found to be involved will face strong disciplinary action," the school district said.

The students involved are minors, according to the school district. CNN does not name minors involved in alleged crimes unless they are charged as adults.

Officials involved in the investigation will hold a news conference Thursday.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

lonesti15If she was doning her job it would never got to this , when it first started she should have talked to someone or written them up. If she was scared of then she should not have had that job, she got paid to do a job and did not do it, so she took a paycheck every week for not compleating her job. Give her her trip but put the money to teach people how to stop bulling, she has to admit she was not doning her job, so now every one feels sorry for her, if she did her job the kids that did this would have been stoped and this thing would never have happened She should have told the driver to stop the bus and called for some one to come and help but she just sat there and let it happen As a bus driver for over 20 years i resent this whole thing it gives other monitors and drivers who do there job a bad name We are there for the safty of the childern not to be there friend and look the other way. She said she thought they would stop but if it was that bad it was not the first time it happened So as I see it the money should go to teach others how to put a stop to bulling .If a adult can not control the children on there bus then they should find another job GIVE IT BACK KAREN