Is it possible to feel sorry for a bully?
Is it possible to wonder where the truth really lies, even when presented with what looks to be irrefutable proof?
I wondered when I heard about this story you’ve probably also been following over the last few days. An Australian 7th grader, Ritchard Gale, was caught on camera bullying 10th grader Casey Heynes. Ritchard punched Casey in the face and stomach before Casey decided he’s had enough. With that, he lifted and body slammed Ritchard to the ground. School officials suspended both boys for the fight but not before the video of the incident went viral and became a worldwide sensation.
Now Ritchard has given an interview with an Australian TV show, where he admits he bullied Casey but then says he, himself, has been a victim in the past.
Many people quickly took Casey’s side; nicknaming him “The Punisher” on message boards and creating a Facebook “like” page that attracted nearly 100,000 fans. Now Ritchard’s family, claiming they are victims of the video, are asking for an apology.
Okay, look, I know this kid Ritchard is no saint, heck we can see that in the video and in his own actions when asked if he has any remorse. But there’s a part of me that can’t help feeling sorry for him and that perhaps there is more to the story. I may be reading WAY too much into this, but there’s another part of me that’s not so sure Casey is the picture of innocence, even though that in no way justifies Ritchard’s bullying of him.
But what do you think? Does Ritchard’s family deserve an apology? Is there more to this than was caught on camera? And do you think bullies ever, really change?
Let’s hear from ya, fire away!