How We Are Raised

How we are raised makes us who we are, in part.  Also how we respond to how we are raised, our personalities, media influences, etc.  Right now, I am considering the smaller influences.  Recently, there has been a lot of discussion about bullying, especially when it comes to gay rights issues.  I found myself digging deep, wondering where this comes from.  Sure, some of it may be parental or peer influence, but where else does it come from?  I began to think of the core of bullying.  Kids who get bullied are generally different from other kids… they may be extra smart, a different ethnicity, or of another sexual orientation… you name it, differences stand out.  Something disturbing popped into my head at this point.  I remember a long time ago, watching Sesame Street… totally innocent, right? Well the characters on the show were playing a game where they found the object that didn’t belong.  The objects were lined up in a row, and the one that “didn’t belong” was taken away.  For example, there may have been a row of four square objects and one circle.  Doesn’t this seem wrong?  Sure, we can look at it as a simple mental exercise or learning technique… but is it really just that?  Kids are learning that something which is different doesn’t belong with everything else.  Sure, we can look at this as a simple child’s game… but I think we need to question it as well.