MNGOP Sen. Chamberlain objects to "emotional distress" in Dibble bill's definition of bullying

Chamberlain (right) thinks Dibble's notion of bullying casts the net too widely.
Last year, the MNGOP ran out the clock on Scott Dibble's anti-bullying bill on the final day of the legislative session.

Dibble vowed to renew his push this session, and so far, so good -- the bill, approved by the House last year, successfully made it past its first Senate committee hearing earlier this week.

But some Republicans remain opposed to Dibble's legislation, in part because they think it relies on an overly broad definition of bullying.

One of those opponents, Sen. Roger Chamberlain, R-Lino Lakes, takes particular exception to a clause in Dibble's bill that characterizes "intentional infliction of emotional distress against a student" as bullying behavior.

"With the Dibble bill you can literally be in a classroom with 17-year-old juniors and have a discussion and there might be an area where someone, no matter who they are, could bring something up that someone might consider objectively offensive, and then be told they can't say that because Susie or Johnny over there doesn't believe that and they are offended by that difference of opinion," Chamberlain said, adding he worries that the free speech rights of students will be trampled if Dibble's bill becomes law.

And because Dibble's definition of bullying is overly broad, school districts will end up investing an inordinate amount of time and resources into enforcement, Chamberlain predicted.

"When you talk about emotional distress, that leaves very little discretion for educators and administrators," he said. "There will be a great number of instances and a great amount of reporting and paperwork requirements."

As a result of concerns of that sort, Chamberlain has introduced his own anti-bullying bill.

(For more, click to page two.)

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midwestexplorer81 topcommenter

I'm so sick of hearing about these anti bully laws. Not one school permits bullying but they can't stop all of it and they also have no business policing after school social media! Lets face it, bullying is a part of life, kids are some of the meanest people on the planet. Later in life when you go to work as an adult you have to face workplace bullies too! We all know the bullies at our place of employment and we either tell them where to stick it or we ignore them.  I can see not far in the future a 7 year old calling somebody dumb or ugly and being hauled off to jail for three days awaiting charges and a court date. I'm sure that will end bullying right?

swmnguy topcommenter

Oh, for the love of Pete. Anybody have kids in the schools, or know people who work in the schools?  Trying to define the crap kids do to each other is impossible for lawyers.  But everybody in the schools knows damned well what it is, kids and adults.  Even the bullies know it's bullying, once they get much past toilet training.

The problem is you still have jackasses who think a kid should just work it out with the bully, or fight him.  And you have parents who refuse to believe their little angel is a bully.  So you have to have some kind of rule, or the parents can just say, "Mrs. So-and-So hates my kid for no reason at all."  Se we have to have rules to describe what we all already know anyway.

I've always preferred the personal approach when I see kids bullied.  I have gone to teachers and principals and reported it, and then stood there in my Middle-Class White Professional stance, strongly implying, "Now I've told you, I'm going to stay right here until you do something about it."  It works very well.  But not all kids tell adults, and not all adults can do the Middle-Class White Professional thing as well as I can do it.

And, unfortunately, we live in a litigious society dominated by legalistic bullshit.  A kid steals a candy bar; we have to take him to juvie, book him, and get him into the prison/industrial system.  Can't just make him apologize to the store manager, and spend the next couple of Saturdays sweeping the parking lot.  And we can't apparently deal with bullies without a huge stack of legal definitions.  The teachers in the schools mostly know what's what, and almost unanimously do a great job dealing with bullying when they know about it and have cooperation from parents and Administration.  Even without a law, but a law makes it all official and shields them from the above-described jackasses.

The opponents sure do a crappy job of pretending their objections aren't about having to be nice to gay kids.  Intemperate speech between partisans in the various media?  My Stars, Mildred.  I'm feeling faint.


this law distresses me emotionally, can I sue someone? ps kids good luck with life after school you're going to need it 


Anti-bullying bill? Only if it includes ALL targets of bullying

(Link at end contains the links to all references below)

If you're going to put together an anti-bullying law, ALL victims and potential victims of bullying need to be included. 

Time after time, especially in this last year, we've seen law abiding gun owners and their children become the target of the anti-rights bullies. These attacks and bullying tactics against law abiding gun owners and permit-to-carry holders have been ramping up at an alarming rate recently, and there's no doubt that the adults perpetrating this bullying are instilling that same bullying attitude in their children, who will no doubt be targeting their innocent classmates with similar harassment, attacks and bullying.

In light of the evidence I will post below, the language in the bill needs to be amended to include ALL of the potential targets of bullying, as follows:

>>>>Intimidating, threatening, abusive, or harassing conduct may involve, but is not limited to, conduct that is directed at a student or students based on a person's (or parent's) actual or perceived:

--Political affiliation (Conservative, Republican, Tea Party, etc)

--Membership or participation in various clubs or organizations (i.e. NRA, other gun rights orgs, gun clubs, etc.)

--Participation in various hobbies, lifestyles or competitions (i.e. shooting sports, hunting, target practice, etc.)<<<<

As we've publicly seen published in mainstream media, newspapers, YouTube and Twitter feeds, the anti-rights bullies make no secret about their instability and their desire for harm to come to law abiding citizens who happen to be gun owners:

--Donald Kaul in the Des Moines Register calling for the death of NRA members and for its supporters to be dragged behind pick up trucks, and for a perfectly legal and law abiding organization, the NRA, to be classified as a "terrorist organization. Link.


--The Journal News published the addresses of legal, law abiding gun owners in their newspaper. They published the address of victims of violent crimes and victims of stalkers who'd purchased firearms to protect themselves. Link. 


--Anti-Gun Newspaper’s Gun Map Leads to Stalking of Domestic Violence Victims. Link.


--A gun control proponent on YouTube calls for the murder of Michelle Bachmann: “I think we should shoot the bastards…. Especially Michele Bachmann. I think we should stick her up on a wall and put a bullet in her.” Link. 


--Texas Democratic Party Official Calls For Murder of NRA Members. Texas Democrat Party official John Cobarruvias issued multiple terrorist threats to begin hunting and killing people who voice support for legal gun ownership: 

“Can we now shoot the #NRA and everyone who defends them?,” he wrote on Twitter, also writing on his blog, “They need to [be] wiped off the face of the earth.” Link.


Liberals on Twitter call for murder of NRA members (Link):

@prisonforbush: "Someone should shoot this m*****f****r NRA President David Keene," added Michael Mayer. In at least two other tweets, "Mayer" suggested using Keene for "target practice."

@angrydemdotcom: “#GunControl will exist when some nutjob chooses to exercise their #2ndAmendment rights at #NRA headquarters…”

@90sRememberer: “Murder every NRA member”

@Arseburgers: “…Get every member of the NRA to stand in a circle, aim & shoot…”


Post-Newtown witch hunt: NRA president and members bombarded with death threats (Link): 


Professor Calls for NRA Member’s Death By Firing Squad: May 30, 2013, WV Gazette. Link.


Sept. 19, 2013, Journalism professor says he hopes for murder of NRA members' children. Link. 


Link (includes links to all references above):

MicheleBachmann topcommenter

@MNRKBA  Take your medicine grandpa. You are doing that thing where you babble like a lunatic.  THAT IS BULLYING.  

swmnguy topcommenter

@MNRKBA The article is about schools.  The law proposed is about schools.  None of your examples has anything to do with schools.

CinBlueland topcommenter

@MicheleBachmann You called MNRKBA a name "grandpa"!!! That's cyber bullying!

But thanks for helping point out how dumb this kind of law is.

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