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Jonathan Martin Should Man Up, Confront Bullying Teammates

by Todd A. Smith

Man Up

            The bullying epidemic has taken center stage recently.  Taunts and threats have led to suicides and the Internet has only made things worse.

            Bullying, despite being reprehensible, has been a rite of passage for every generation.  Children played the dozens relentlessly as far back as people can remember, but the consequences have never been so dire.

            Unfortunately like racism and discrimination, bullying will always be present in our society.  How one responds to bullying is what is important and we need to start teaching people that sometimes in life you have to stand up for yourself, even if that means physically confronting the bully.

            Recently, Jonathan Martin, an offensive lineman for the Miami Dolphins, walked away from the team, after repeatedly being verbally and physically abused by teammates like Richie Incognito.

            Incognito allegedly left taunting voice messages that included the N-word among other insults and threats.

            One teammate is quoted as saying, “We’re going to run a train on your sister…She loves me.  I am going to f**** her without a condom and c** in her c****.”

Although locker room hazing is a ritual in the NFL, if these allegations are true, the Dolphins definitely went too far.  Teammates having even said that Dolphins coaches wanted Incognito to toughen Martin up, but the controversial offensive lineman went too far. 

Nevertheless, there comes a time in every man and woman’s lives where you have to stand up to people that are disrespecting you or your family.

            I often tell people, I won’t fight if you disrespect me, but if you disrespect a female in my family all bets are off and the rules no longer apply.  If I have to physically confront you, then that’s what’s going to happen.

            Martin should be applauded for showing restraint despite the numerous threats, but sometimes restraint needs to be forgotten and one needs to man up and defend himself and his family.

            Although bullying should be stopped at all costs, we are doing our children a disservice by thinking it is going to go away.

            We are doing our children a disservice by making them believe that everyone in the world should be nice to you and everyone is going to be your friend.

            Truthfully, the world is unfair and you have to be man enough to accept that and make a way for yourself in this world anyway.

            Throughout life people will treat you bad, talk about you behind your back and try anything they can to prevent you from doing better than them.

            Furthermore, when you are in the public eye like Martin, the critics will be even more ruthless.  Criticism will come from every corner and crevice in the world, and if you are too thin skinned or sensitive, the haters will eat you alive.

            A grown man that is over 300 pounds should never allow himself to be treated unfairly by another man.  Although I feel for Martin, that makes one less of a man.  And if someone threatens a female in your family and you do nothing about it, that makes one even less of a man.  A man should be a protector first and foremost, not the one that needs protecting.

            Unfortunately, we need to teach our children that the world is sometimes cold, and you have to deal with the frigid temperatures or just give up.  The choice is up to them.

            Although I am in no way condoning bullying, child bullying is basically a microcosm for adult reality.  Your skin has to be thick enough to endure the hatred that will definitely come your way when you get older.  And when the haters realize that their ignorance is not going to stop you from reaching your destiny, the bullying and the hatred will disappear.  Guaranteed

Basketball Hall of Famer Michael Jordan was notorious for criticizing his teammates.  Some like Horace Grant said that they were not tough enough to take it.

However, teammate Bill Cartwright allegedly pulled Jordan to the side and informed him that if he ever rode him again, he would end his career by breaking both of his legs.  Jordan’s taunting and ridiculing of Cartwright ended immediately.

Life is hard and people will treat you bad throughout life.  That has always been a fact.

What makes one a real man is standing up for yourself and your family and never quitting no matter how difficult life becomes.

This article was published on Friday 08 November, 2013.
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