Blog

December 12, 2013 - 5:47pm
By Becki Cohn-Vargas, Not In Our School Director Recently, a group of Not In Our School student leaders in Soledad, California shared with me an anti-bullying video they made to show at their high school. The video dramatized a fictional girl who was cyberbullied and ended up stabbing herself to death in the nurse’s office. I asked them why they felt they needed to highlight suicide when they were appealing to their peers to stop bullying. “Kids today are used to high school drama,” they told me. “And besides, they won’t listen to us if we just talk about ‘not bullying’.” With something as...
December 9, 2013 - 7:55pm
  This post originally appeared on the ACLU of Northern California's Blog. By Jory Steele Like many people around the world, Nelson Mandela is one of my greatest heroes.  I was incredibly fortunate to move to South Africa several months before he was elected the first democratic president of South Africa.  I was coming of age, just as South Africa was transforming itself.  It was a magical, hopeful time, and Nelson Mandela was at the center of it.  His smile had the power to light the world, and he used his gentle, yet unbending strength to bring down an unjust regime and build a democratic...
December 6, 2013 - 9:11pm
Agender Teen Seeks to Move Forward Sasha Fleischman, a Berkeley high school student who was severely burned while riding the bus, returned to their Oakland home on November 27. Sasha, who identifies as agender, preferring the pronoun “they”, was targeted for wearing a skirt. The 16-year-old suspect now faces hate crime charges as an adult. In an interview with ABC news, Fleishman exuded warmth and clarity, speaking out for the first time since the harmful occurrence. With a desire to move forward, Sasha spoke about the suspect with the news station. “They probably didn’t realize how big of...
December 5, 2013 - 8:16pm
Photo Courtesy of The New York Times Nelson Mandela, the globally recognized champion of human rights, helped to shape his nation, the African continent, and the entire world. His work of bringing community together against hatred and intolerance aligns perfectly with the mission of Not In Our Town, and he will continue to serve as inspiration for us along with countless others. Mandela grew up in a society which considered him, at best, a second-class citizen. Apartheid--literally, “apartness” in Afrikaans--was the law, a system which favored the small minority of white South Africans. The...
December 4, 2013 - 8:43pm
Valerie Hughes and a participant. Photos by Pam Allen-Ellis   Valerie Hughes stood in Bissell Park in Oak Ridge, TN watching an 8-year-old paint scars onto the faces, necks and hands of anyone who would sit still long enough. “This is what bullying looks like,” he told his human canvass. Valerie and her local Not In Our Town group managed to pull the young and old of Oak Ridge into a community event called Paint Over Pain on Oct. 25 to celebrate that “we are all ‘flawesome.’” Not In Our Town Oak Ridge was sparked by Valerie after her daughter was assaulted in a classroom. Through the group...

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