The “The Hunger Games” movie premiered with all the bells, whistles and fanfare one would expect from a Hollywood blockbuster movie release.
I watched news reports of movie goers that waited in lines, some overnight, to get a ticket to opening night premieres around the country. As I watched, I couldn’t help but wonder why Hollywood didn’t place such extravagance on the premiere of another movie, “Bully.”
“Bully,” a documentary produced by Lee Hirsch, Alicia Dwyer and Harvey Weinstein, focuses on the true life events surrounding what happens to children who are bullied in schools across America every day.
The Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) has given “Bully” a R rating due to language and “The Hunger Games” has been rated PG-13 due to brutality scenes of children being beaten.
According to Entertainment Weekly’s Lisa Schwartzbaum, “The Hunger Games” is brutal where the story needs to be, as Schwartzbaumn stated, “particularly when children fight and bleed.”
Schwartzbaumn said it conveys the misery of the oppressed.
I believe the true life atrocities’ our children face each day at the hands of bullies to be more miserable and oppressive than what characters encounter in a fictional movie.
According to the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, close to half of all children in America will face school bullying at some point during their attendance to primary and secondary schools.
This begs the question, if children at these age levels are being victimized, why not change the movie’s rating to PG-13 so they can see and know they are not alone?
Parentinged.com states that over 5.7 million children in our country are part of the bullying process, either as the bully or the victim of bullying. Studies by Yale University showed that bully victims are between two to nine times more likely to consider suicide than non-victims.
Kathy Butler, a 17-year-old lesbian student from Ann Arbor, a victim of bullying herself, has circulated a petition to lower the rating of the bully movie. (The petition is located at: change.org /petitions)
According to Butler, she has discovered that the “Bully” movie’s rating by the MPAA won by only one vote. She is circulating a petition in an attempt to get the MPAA to change the rating to a PG-13.
How astonishing that we as a society will wait in line overnight to buy tickets to a fictionalized movie, when we should be standing in lines and screaming from rooftops to stop the bullying of our children in America.