Sunday, August 4, 2013

Let's Go Back to Public Shunning

Youngest's competitive soccer team is comprised of a bunch of really good kids, and maybe one or two little shitheads. Overall, though, a great ratio of good kids to bad kids. [Oh, sorry, no kid is "bad" nowadays, you say? Excuse me whilst I laugh uncontrollably.]

This being competitive soccer, there are quite a few competitive parents in the mix. The ratio of parents who cheer their kids on to those who coach their kid -- and others' kids -- from the sidelines or scream uncontrollably isn't such a good ratio. Partly that's because the cheering parents can get drowned out by the others. And partly because one of the fathers is a wife-beating, child-beating horrid man.

Horrid. Several of us have nearly firsthand knowledge of the wife-beating and child-beating charge. The rest of us hear him shouting at his sons when they make a mistake. On more than one occasion, he has pushed a son to tears.

So even those without firsthand knowledge of his brutality in the home (and when he thinks there are no witnesses) should have a damn good idea of what a horrible man he is based on his actions on the sidelines of the soccer field.

Oh, a few might just want to act like it's not their problem or it's none of their business or he can just get a little over the top sometimes.

They are fools. They are the fools who hold conversations with him, who greet him when they see him, who talk of having a drink later. I don't see how they do it.

I do not ever greet him. I do not ever look at him except to glare in utter contempt. Were he to approach a group of people of which I were a part of -- which he never does because he understands how much I despise him and I'm pretty sure the feeling is mutual -- I would walk away from the group. I would not make space to enable his inclusion.

He is the poster child for all that is right with public shunning. I say he underscores the need for such a retro action.


S said...


True Colours said...

Good for you! It can be very hard to refuse to accept someone's behaviour, especially if the rest of the group seems to have decided to turn a blind eye. Do you have support from other parents?
I read an excellent blog on hear which suggested that when we see something wrong, instead of feeling obliged to confront the wrongdoer or report to the authorities, which can be so scary we decide to do nothing, simply talking to a peer. When a bad thing happens, chances are lots of people thinks it's wrong, but everybody thinks they're alone in thinking that. If you can find yourself an ally, it becomes much easier to take further action.


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