Thursday, September 24, 2015

(Redo) John Henke Bully Summary Response

Summary: Topic sentence: title, author, strong verb, main idea
Bully, directed by Lee Hirsch, exposes the monstrosity bullying has become.
  • Supporting ideas to prove main ideas
The entire movie consists of stories of bullying victims, how they have hurt themselves, and even sought suicide over life. Teachers are depicted completely overlooking this bullying, scolding even the victim rather than the actual bully themselves.      

  • Explanation of ideas
For example, teen Tyler Long was pushed to the limit through constant persecution. When he sought help from the teachers in his school, they deemed his issues irrelevant. Tyler’s family knew what was going on, and there was no doubt in their minds that Tyler took his own life.
  • Concluding sentence: restate main idea
Bully attacks important points about how everyone should be treated as an equal and how the power of words can completely change a life.

Response: Topic sentence: title, author, strong verb, agree/disagree (correctly portrays/ incorrectly portrays), because ___________ and ______________
Bully, directed by Lee Hirsch, accurately demonstrates the horrors of bullying because Hirsch wants everyone to know they can make a difference.   
  • Claim 1: Hirsch depicts what bullying can do to a person
    • Set-up There are many victims, one being sixteen year old Kelby. Kelby confessed to being gay in a community where homosexuality was taught as a sin. When Kelby confessed to her parents she even told them, "Don't stop loving me"(Hirsch). Only someone who has been abandoned by everyone would ask their parents, the people who should love them the most, to continue their love. She was endlessly persecuted by her classmates and her teachers; the torment seemed to never end.
    • Evidence: Kelby revealed the reason for her endurance was her friends, “My friends were the only ones keeping me from hurting myself” (Hirsch).
    • Explanation of quotation to prove claim - Kelby cut herself repeatedly and attempted suicide three times. Her close friends and supporters helped her persevere and they saved her from further harm.   
  • Counterclaim 1: However, it seems that Hirsch only portrays the extreme incidents of bullying.
Bully exhibits only the victims that respond rashly and excessively. Many victims will simply ignore the bullying. All students experience bullying at sometime in their education. As one of the school administrators said, “Kids will be kids, boys will be boys, they are just cruel at this age” (Hirsch).
    • Explanation of quotation to prove counterclaim
Not all bullying cases end in suicide, retaliation, or some other extreme reaction. Countless people who are bullied have no issues with it, and do not take excessive measures. The movie only illustrated people who cut, committed suicide, or were constantly bullied. This corroborates that Hirsch’s ideas are biased,  stereotypical, cliche, and blown out of proportion.   
  • What are the strengths/flaws of this argument? Rebuttal progression
At first glance one could think that bullying is not a significant problem. It is undeniable that not every bullying case ends in tragedy, and one could even insinuate that most bullying incidents are not calamitous. However, suicide is the second leading cause of death in teens, and tenth overall (10 Leading Causes of Death). Anyone can recognize that bullying is a serious problem that should not be overlooked. Furthermore, the collateral damage of bullying victims responses must be acknowledged. The Arapahoe Shooting. Columbine. Countless innocents were destroyed in these massacres. The extent bullying victims are willing to go is staggering.   

  • Concluding sentence: restate main idea
Hirsh’s movie Bully justifies meaningful points about bullying in today’s world and the effects it has on teens and children. Anyone can make a difference in a victim’s life and a person can go from a bystander to a hero just by speaking up. Hirsch’s points in the movie were spot-on and they masterfully validate the repercussions of bullying.

Bully. Dir. Lee Hirsch. Perf. Ja'Meya Jackson, Kelby Johnson, Alex Libby, Tyler Long, Ty Smalley. 2011. DVD.

"Top Ten Causes of Death, United States 2010."  United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  United States Government, 2010. Web. 1 Sept. 2015. <>.

13, 2014 October. "Kelby Speaks Out on Bullying." PBS. PBS, 13 Oct. 2014. Web. 28 Aug. 2015. <>.

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