Back to School (Amidst Homophobia and Bullying)

Justin Aaberg, 1995-2010

I’m not much of a reactionary.  In fact, when it comes to public schooling, I tend to take a live-and-let-live posture.  I want my own kids to ride the bus and learn how to navigate that rolling-Lord-of-the-Flies environment.  Same goes for recess.

But when I hear a story like that of Justin Aaberg, recently in the news in the Twin Cities, it reminds me that The Lord of the Flies is, in fact, a cautionary tale.  When left to their own devices, kids can be downright brutal to one another.  And it seems that the bullying that Justin, who was openly gay) received at school may have directly led to his suicide on July 9, at age 15.

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