Monday, August 27, 2012

Paying It Forward

I am certain that many people are familiar with Karen Klein - the Upstate NY School Bus Monitor who was viciously bullied by the kids on her bus.  Karen was brutally bullied for being overweight.  The attack was merciless - to the point of bringing her to tears.  And beyond!

A video of this attack was released on Youtube and in a short amount of time it went viral!

(If you really need to see it, you can look it up.  I will not post that trash on my blog.)

If you've already seen the video, you know how heartbreaking it is to watch as this poor, sweet, elderly woman is being verbally gang-raped.  Frankly, it made me sick to my stomach to watch it.   I could see the pain in her eyes, the struggle to act as if it wasn't bothering her.  As the relentless shots kept coming.  I know what it is to try and let it not affect you.   At the end of the day, you are a human being and OF COURSE it affects you.  Despite that an unfortunate amount of people feel that fat people do not have feelings.

I have often said that fat is the acceptable prejudice.   You certainly could not walk down the street and make fun of someone's race.  You could not point at a disabled person and laugh.  But somehow, it is considered socially 'okay' to slaughter overweight people.  To publicly disgrace them, and turn the whole thing into a side show for your own humor.  Especially if you have friends with you.  An audience will inevitably make the attack worse.

Once the video had began it's circulation, a wonderful Toronto man who was troubled by what he saw, decided he would do the right thing.  To attempt to soothe Karen's crushed soul.   He started a website - a fundraising campaign to send Karen on a vacation.  The goal was $5,000.  And he allotted one month for the donations to come in.

Much to everyone's surprise and delight, the donations were pouring in at record rates.  By the time the video, and Karen's story had circulated world-wide, more than 32,000 people were moved to contribute to the fundraising campaign, which ultimately brought in a whopping total of $703,873.00!!!

A true testament to the Power Of Love.

Karen has since been moved to share the love, by paying the generosity forward.  She has started her own website  the Karen Klein Anti Bullying Foundation, which is hosted on the website

In school I was bullied.  I have been teased throughout my childhood and well into my adult life.  It actually amazes me that adults can at times be just as hurtful as children when it comes to bullying.  I am not sure why some people need to make someone else feel low in order for themselves to feel bigger.  To crush a person for the benefit of your own ego.

I think it is a beautiful and wonderful thing, that out of the ugliness of that day ... one man started an avalanche of love.  And in doing so, has passed the baton ... inspiring one woman, who in turn will take her story and try to create a nicer world for us all.

If you would like to explore Karen's site and join her campaign against bullying, just click on the link below.

A keen example of rising from the ashes.

Let's pray that a day will come when bullying no longer exists!!!

What a wonderful world it would be ~