It turns out that teen bullies are more likely to become criminals as adults than non-bullies. Wow. How’s that for a stretch in logic! In a recent issue of the Journal of Youth and Adolescence, researchers analyzed several decades of data collected from more than 400 men in Britain. They were followed until they were in their mid-50s. Nearly half of the men who said they were bullies during their teen years engaged in some form of criminal activity (such as theft, burglary and assault) when they were adults. My favorite parts of the linked article is the following:
- The findings suggest that early action to help children at risk of becoming bullies may lower rates of criminal behavior among adults, the researchers said.
- “From a policy perspective, if we can address some of these risk factors early and identify children who are at risk of bullying, we can ameliorate adverse outcomes that may occur much later in life,” Piquero said.
Really? Somehow, that is new information that no one else had deduced? So, let me get this straight. If we can find out who the bullies are (like that is hard?) then we can get them some extra help so they don’t rob us later on? Brilliant! Let’s forget about the victims of the bullying and give all our attention to the bullies. Sounds fair. I smell a Nobel Peace Prize.