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Mitt Romney, Bully?

Mitt Romney, Bully?

We’ve all done things when we were younger that we probably aren’t too proud of. But the danger of running for office is that your life becomes an open book, ready for examination.  But should your behavior as a teen have any bearing on whether or not you’re fit to serve as President of the United States?

It’s a question that many are debating after learning about Mitt Romney’s reputation as a bully in prep school.  According to the Washington Post, his “pranks” often targeted those who were thought to be homosexual or somehow weak, such as gathering a gang of high school kids to hold down a student and cut his hair. “John Lauber, a soft-spoken new student one year behind Romney, was perpetually teased for his nonconformity and presumed homosexuality. Now he was walking around the all-boys school with bleached-blond hair that draped over one eye, and Romney wasn’t having it. “He can’t look like that. That’s wrong. Just look at him!” an incensed Romney told Matthew Friedemann, his close friend in the Stevens Hall dorm, according to Friedemann’s recollection.”

Romney claims he doesn’t remember the incidents, but apologizes if he hurt anyone’s feelings.  “‘Back in high school, I did some dumb things, and if anybody was hurt by that or offended, obviously I apologize for that,’ Romney said in a live radio interview with Fox News Channel personality Brian Kilmeade. Romney added: ‘I participated in a lot of hijinks and pranks during high school, and some might have gone too far, and for that I apologize.”’

Of course, conservatives say that being a bully isn’t that big of a deal, and that it’s just “boys will be boys” hijinks.  “Let’s get to work, America. The Obama campaign needs your help. Did Mitt Romney ever point to what he claimed was a stain on your shirt, and when you looked down, he flicked your nose? Did Mitt Romney ever break wind in gym class and blame it on you? Did Mitt Romney ever refuse to be “It” even though you very clearly tagged him? We must stop this monster.”

Maybe these were just pranks (although holding down someone to “hatchet job” him is a lot different from stealing a twinkie from a lunch box), but it’s the lack of serious concern over the allegations that can make a voter pause.  With so many recent suicides among the teen and pre-teen population, Romney had a major chance to really help students understand that bullying isn’t just something that all kids do, and everyone goes through as either a bully or a victim.

With so many students afraid to even go to school, what a wonderful opportunity it would have been for him to really apologize, say that what he did was wrong, and that he wished it had never happened, and that no student should have to suffer through what he put his targets through.

He could have stepped up.  And he didn’t.

That’s what someone considering their presidential vote should think about.


Photo credit: Thinkstock

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7:05AM PDT on Jun 6, 2012

It's obvious that Romney has sociopath markers. He giggled when confronted with this information, had no compassion or regret.

The real reason he didn't choose the moment to turn that past behavior into a positive message is that he didn't see anything wrong with what he did!

He has made several remarks showing offensive or inappropriate behavior while campaigning and seems genuinely puzzled and dismissive when called on his actions.

Don't expect any lessons of acceptance or compassion from Romney. Just watch him carefully when he isn't scripted.

He is purely out of touch with people around him and how his actions affect them.

8:48PM PDT on May 14, 2012

Lee, non sono io chi parla di'el ragazzo Trayvon e'quella pazza e'fuotuta d'Inna! Anzi io o'parlatto bene di liu. Legge quello che lei a detto. Mi piu parlare male d'quella tragedia. Alora buona notte e'sogni d'oro. Cioa bello

7:26PM PDT on May 14, 2012

troubled people


7:24PM PDT on May 14, 2012

Ahern, you and Inna Z are cut out of the same cloth. By the way if you think my reply was aggressive perhaps it is you who need to inward. That which bothers you most, is what you are culpable of. Now if you want to make this situation a you win I lose that if fine. In the future any and all remarks from you shall be ingnored. Life is way to short for this type of inane and ludicrous you said, she said sophomoric repartee. So you win all is good in the world and I shall continue on my joyful and merry path.

7:14PM PDT on May 14, 2012

Aurea W...

Still aggression? You do have your freedom to verbally aggress people. Conveniently, not acknowledging that you began verbally aggressing me after ERRONEOUSY presuming that I paid any attention to you in the first place.

Methinks there are psychologically troubled people here...LOL

6:42PM PDT on May 14, 2012

Caro Lee, mille grazie per vostra gentileza! Quella stronza pensa che 'e migliore che tutti!
vorie' io di vedrerla faccia a'faccia, ma tu sapiete che e' codarda!

4:11PM PDT on May 14, 2012

Ahren, incivility? What a luverly word to use. But pray tell who are you to judge me? If what I say is challenging to your ever so civilized ears, that is unfortunate! The truth does not hurt, but it does make people of your ilk very uncomfortable! Do not ever try to abridge my freedom of speech. Non piue!

3:28PM PDT on May 14, 2012

Please curb your incivility Aurea W.

3:25PM PDT on May 14, 2012

Aurea W.? Who are you?

I was addressing David F. Not you. I dont know what you are talking about. I have not read any of your posts. I was just referring to a recent assinne conversation I had with someone. If you're a mormon, not a mormon, an atheist or whatever else and what you know or don't know on the subject - I don't give a *. Your aggression is uncalled for.

1:02PM PDT on May 14, 2012

That's a really hard one. I did stupid things as a kid that I wouldn't now. We all change. But still...hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

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