Bullies and bullying

Sir, – Una Mullally's assertion that "bullying is rooted in a lack of empathy for the self, and the projection of one's trauma, fears, insecurities, confusion, and self-loathing on to someone else" will sound familiar to anyone who has ever endured a modern parent-teacher meeting ("Helping bullies is key to combating bullying", Opinion & Analysis, November 18th). It has a pseudo-scientific ring but most parents take this kind of "education-speak" with a grain of salt.

It sounds so much like a desperate search for excuses to justify an unwillingness to forcefully confront bullying.

Anyone who truly believes that bullies are to be coddled because they are lacking self-esteem should reflect on the case of Donald Trump, surely the world’s most famous bully.

Does anyone really believe that the little Donald was lacking in self-esteem?


Is it not more likely that he possessed an excess of self-esteem, that he was over-encouraged at home and in his private schools?

Perhaps his classmates, and later the world in general, would have been better served if those charged with his care and education had attempted to make him aware of his faults, of the limitations of his talents and abilities, and of the rudiments of right and wrong.

One suspects they simply did everything to bolster his already overblown sense of his own worth, like a fire brigade hosing down a blaze with petrol. – Yours, etc,



Dublin 11.