Will Meinen | The Tattler
GREECE, N.Y. — Karen Klein, an elderly bus monitor for the Greece School District, has received an outpouring of support after a video of her being harassed by middle school students went viral. The video was recorded and posted by one of the little bastards, and immediately condemned by nearly everyone who watched. The police and school district were involved, and the families of the aggressors have received death threats.
“It is shocking to me that middle school students would be so cruel to a grandmother and school district employee,” said the Superintendent of Greece schools in a statement to the Board of Education. “Bullying and intimidation will not be allowed in our schools.”
Not everyone was shocked by the display of cruelty and disrespect, especially a number of middle school students who have chosen to speak out.
“Kids my age are assholes,” explained 12-year-old New York Public student, Kyle Greer. “The stuff those kids said to that old lady is just another day on the playground for me. My cat died last week and a classmate told me that the cat probably killed itself because my feet smell like old possum farts. My mom bought me charcoal insoles for my shoes to help with the smell. I just sweat a lot, okay!”
A campaign was started for Ms. Klein, a grandmother of eight, to raise money to send her on a nice vacation. The campaign has yielded enough funds for the woman to retire from the school district.
“People are giving that lady so much money just because kids were mean to her,” said seventh grader Lisa McBrian. “If I was given five dollars every time a group of girls called me fat, I’d be a millionaire.”
Ms. Klein has appeared on several talk shows in response to the attention the incident has received. She has chosen not to press charges, instead requesting a meeting with her abusers to inquire about the motivation for their behavior.
“Why were those kids so insensitive?” Peter Chang asked rhetorically. “Because they are jerks. Why is everyone making this so complicated? My parents gave me a perfectly American first name and still classmates make fun of my heritage. They call me ‘Ching Chang.’ Or they ask when I have time to do homework because I’m probably always watching ‘Rush Hour.’ No, I don’t know karate, but I wish I did; maybe I wouldn’t get made fun of so much.”
Unfortunately, we were not able to include all salient comments we received from middle school students from across the country. Other students that were not surprised by the outrageous behavior on the bus that day: the kid with divorced parents, the asthmatic, the early developing girl, the poor kid with only one school outfit, the new kid, and the Sudanese boy who hardly speaks English.